Electoral boundaries report could be delayed

A vice-chair of the province's Electoral Boundaries Commission says final recommendations could be late after voters expressed concerns in Cape Breton and southeast Nova Scotia.

Voters have expressed concerns in Cape Breton and southwest N.S.

Members of Nova Scotia's Electoral Boundaries Commission plan to meet in Halifax this afternoon to decide whether they will ask for an extension, CBC News has learned.

Colin Dodd, vice-chair on the commission, said the delay appears necessary after voters in several areas across the province expressed concerns.

The commission is supposed to file its final report by Aug. 31.

An all-party committee of the legislature recommended new rules in January that would change provincial electoral boundaries and require all ridings to have roughly the same number of voters.

About 300 people waving Acadian flags packed into a building at the University of Saint Anne in Church Point, N.S. Tuesday night during a public meeting to protest the Electoral Boundaries Commission's proposal to amalgamate the Clare provincial riding with half of Yarmouth.

Many of the attendees said the new boundary would dilute their community's voice in the legislature and make it more difficult to elect an Acadian MLA.

More than 2,500 people attended a public electoral boundary meeting in Yarmouth the night before protesting the commission's proposal to split the town into two different ridings.

Part of the town would join nearby Argyle and the other would join Clare. They are two of four minority ridings.

Clare, Argyle and Richmond have a high percentage of francophone constituents, while the Preston riding has a large black population.