Blind River council doesn’t want proposed changes to Northern Ontario federal ridings to take place. It approved a motion at its Monday evening council meeting to oppose the proposed plan.
Council received a motion from Algoma-Manitoulin-Kapuskasing MP Carol Hughes calling on a plan by Federal Electoral Boundaries Commission for Ontario to cut one riding and divide it between what is being termed super ridings. The plan would see Algoma-Manitoulin-Kapuskasing eliminated and split between ridings in Sault Ste. Marie and Sudbury.
Hughes has been joined in her opposition to the proposed plan by MPs of various stripes representing ridings in Northern Ontario, who have voiced concern that the elimination of one federal riding and how it will impact northern representation will result in less riding funding to individual communities in the north.
The lengthy motion was moved by Councillor Jennifer Posteraro and seconded by Coun. Steven Wells.
Several ridings in the north are larger than some European countries, and creating super ridings would make it difficult for concerns raised here to get adequate consideration in the House of Commons, those opposed to the move argue.
Coun. Posteraro urged those interested in commenting on the proposed change to make their views known to the electoral boundary commission in writing or make their views at a virtual meeting planned over the next couple of months.
“We need to have as many voices as possible give feedback to the committee that is thinking about erasing rural northern voices. This will be very detrimental to northern Ontario. There is still time to voice your opinion, be it positive or negative.”
She urged residents to go to the electoral boundary commission website to voice their opinion.
The council unanimously supported the motion.