For some background, the new boundaries are kind of odd - they reduce, rather than increase, the number of provincial constituencies in time for the next election. That's pretty hard to think about in most parts of Canada, as we're used to seeing an ever-increasing number of politicians (as Ontario will soon see) - however, the three of the four Atlantic provinces have decided to decrease their provincial legislatures in their recent redistributions. The reasons for this vary - the population may be shrinking, the rural population may be moving to the urban centres, its a way of moving power bases around, et cetera. As with all electoral boundary redistributions, politicians and communities fight tooth and nail against the recommendations that come from the various elections commissions, especially those in rural and less dense areas where people feel they're going to lose their clout (or their representative) on the whim of a mad geography.
This being Newfoundland and Labrador, one of the most vocal places in the country and where parties of the population are so hilariously far-flung and isolated that roads don't even each them, you can imagine the uproar when, of the eight districts being gutted from the 2006 map, seven of them were being taken out of the rural parts of Newfoundland (none out of Labrador, which will retain its four seats). Thus began what should have been a long, drawn-out process that made no one happy and took a year or two to complete - but, that couldn't be, since a new election for the province has to be called this year, thanks the change in Premiers since the resignation of Kathy Dunderdale. By law, a new election has to be called within a year of a Premier resigning his or her position - putting this redistribution on schedule that normally wouldn't be recommended, especially in a province with people as vocal as Newfoundlanders tend to be.
In the end, though, the job was done, and we now have our final result - forty districts, about 30 of them truly "new." I did my transposition below over the course of about a week through piecemeal efforts, though in truth I began the process months ago. I even made a map, which you can see below. These numbers are about as accurate as I can make them - I am missing about 2,000 voters, but its all across the province and not just from a riding or two. Plus, no district is close enough for it to really make a difference anyway, I feel.
By region, the new districts break down into this, with the percentage of seats in parentheses. Normal letting is the new 2015 map, while the italicized lettering is the 2006 map.
Labrador: 4 seats (10%); 4 seats (8.3%)
Newfoundland (whole island): 36 seats (90%); 44 seats (92%)
Avalon Peninsula (including St. John's): 18 seats (45%); 20 seats (41.6%)
St. John's: 10 seats (25%); 10 seats (20.8%)
Newfoundland (excepting Avalon): 18 seats (45%); 24 seats (50%)
Rural constituencies (exception Labrador): 20 seats (50%); 25 seats (52%)
Urban/suburban constituencies: 16 seats (40%); 19 seats (40%)
Its interesting to note on that last point, 59% of Newfoundlanders live in urban centers - not 40%.
Anyway, enjoy, and if you have any questions or want the graph for yourself, let me know.
|Original Map Base done by (I think) Teddy|