WITH due respect to Justice John Hall, chairman of the B.C. Federal Electoral Boundaries Commission, there is a not so "difficult to think of" alternative to the creation of a Burnaby North-Seymour riding. And it would be a far better choice for the vast majority of North Vancouver and Burnaby voters affected by the present arbitrary lines on a map.
Leaving aside the fact that the commission is confused about the location of the Seymour River and the new riding's western boundary, both the hearings and the telephone poll conducted by Burnaby-Douglas MP Kennedy Stewart clearly showed there is no public support for this artificial creation.
Neither North Vancouverites nor Burnabians claim much of a relationship with each other. The only link is the bridge with the world's longest name and even that connection proves fragile on occasion. The name of the new riding favours Burnaby, but depending where the sitting MP places his or her constituency office, Burnaby residents could feel slighted.
Yes, a boundary redesign has been on the cards for some time as the population of North Vancouver continues to grow, but adding a North Van-Seymour riding and creating a North Van- Ambleside riding between it and West Vancouver-Sunshine Coast-Sea to Sky Country makes considerably more sense than the mash-up recommended by the commission. MLA Ralph Sultan has ably represented a provincial riding that incorporates elements of North Vancouver and West Vancouver for years. We fail to see why this cannot be done federally.