Meander Valley speak out at second inquiry into federal electoral divisions in Tasmania | Video

ELECTORAL MAPS: The first proposal suggested moving Dorset and Flinders into Lyons and out of Bass. The revised proposal keeps those areas in Bass but moves the urban areas of the Meander Valley into Lyons instead.

ELECTORAL MAPS: The first proposal suggested moving Dorset and Flinders into Lyons and out of Bass. The revised proposal keeps those areas in Bass but moves the urban areas of the Meander Valley into Lyons instead.

Your federal representative could change if boundary adjustments are made to Bass and Lyons.

An inquiry into the proposed changes was held on Monday in Launceston and heard from the Meander Valley, West Tamar, Dorset and Flinders councils. 

The change would see the entirety of the West Tamar municipality moved into Bass while the greater Launceston areas of Prospect Vale, Blackstone Heights and Hadspen would be transferred into Lyons.

Every seven years the electoral commission must review the number of electors and future number of electors to ensure it fits within a certain quota. 

If the numbers do not add up, changes to the boundaries must be made.

“My concern under this new augmented arrangement would be that for people of these urban area, people who connect themselves with this area of Bass, their representation at a federal level will be predominately based in Southern Tasmania,” Meander Valley mayor Craig Perkins said. 

“The redistribution will put the line along back fences and local roads instead of natural boundaries like rivers which people have come to know.”

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Meander Valley Council’s general manager Martin Gill said 130 members of the community had signed a petition stating that they wished to remain in Bass.

“A lot of the integrated strategic land use plans consider those areas as a part of Launceston and when we went through a recent re-zone of Hadspen ... the Tasmanian Planning Commission insisted that we bring Launceston to the table about the growth of greater Launceston and what impacts our changes would have,” he said.

Councillor Peter Kearney from the West Tamar Council said he did not believe his council would like to see its request to move the entire municipality into Bass done to the detriment of the urban areas of the Meander Valley.

“I don’t think anyone is going to die in a ditch in the West Tamar over whether north of Muddy Creek is in Bass or not but I think the economic consequence of moving the urban areas of Meander out of Bass would be far greater,” he said.

Flinders mayor Carol Cox and Dorset Council’s general manager Tim Watson also spoke in support of keeping their municipalities in Bass.

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