Electoral reform – round 2
So, the referendum on the Alternative Voting system went against those who were arguing for change. But as I have noted before, the Parliamentary Voting System and Constituencies Act 2011 did more than make provision for the AV referendum. It also started a process of reducing the numbers of constituencies to the House of Commons from 650 to 600.
The detailed work on this is being undertaken by the Boundary Commissions – there are four Commissions, for England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.
In the case of England there will be 502 MPs rather than the current 533. The number of electors in each constituency must be no smaller than 72,810 and no larger than 80,473. In other words constituencies will become more equal in size than they are at present.
The Boundary Commission for England has stated: ‘Early indications are that the changes will have to be significant in order to reduce the number of constituencies by 31 and to ensure that they are of equal size. The majority of existing constituencies are likely to be affected.’
Provisional proposals for changes will be published in the autumn 2011. This will be followed by a period of consultation – with final recommendations due by the end of 2013.
You can follow developments at http://boundarycommissionforengland.independent.gov.uk/ which also links to the other boundary commission websites.