COMMONS

Government plans to redraw constituencies to be discussed

09 September 2010

The Political and Constitutional Reform Committee will question the UK’s boundary commissions on the government’s plans to equalise the size of parliamentary constituencies. Evidence will also be taken from experts on electoral registration.

The session begins at 10.15am on Thursday 9 September.

Witnesses

At 10.15am:

  • Bob Farrance, Secretary to the Boundary Commission for England
  • Liz Benson, Secretary to the Boundary Commission for Northern Ireland
  • Hugh Buchanan, Secretary to the Boundary Commission for Scotland
  • Edward Lewis, Secretary to the Boundary Commission for Wales

At about 11.00am:

  • Roger Mortimore, Head of Political and Electoral Research, Ipsos MORI
  • Dr Stuart Wilks-Heeg, executive director of Democratic Audit and author of a recent study for the Electoral Commission on electoral registration

Topics

The committee’s questions to the first panel are likely to focus on how, in practical terms, the commissions will approach the implementation of the government’s plans, including the method of redrawing boundaries, the approach to consultation, the proposed timetable for reviews, and resource implications.

Constituency sizes will be based on the electoral registers of December 2010 and the committee’s questions to the second panel will focus on the accuracy and completeness of the registers, and also on voter registration and engagement.

Background

Proposals to make all parliamentary constituencies roughly the same size in terms of numbers of voters and to reduce the number of constituencies from 650 to 600 are contained in the Parliamentary Voting System and Constituencies Bill. The House of Commons debated the bill on Monday 6 September.

Further information

Image: iStock

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