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Saskatoon News

Atchison against federal boundary changes

Outlines disapproval in personal letter to Minister Lynne Yelich
Reported by François Biber
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Saskatoon Mayor Don Atchison said he’s confused why ratepayers think he supports boundary changes for Saskatoon's federal election ridings.

“I was just stating the fact that city council has never dealt with boundary changes and for anyone to be out there saying the city of Saskatoon has agreed to boundary changes is not true,” said Atchison.

Atchison wrote to Blackstrap MP and Minister of State Lynne Yelich in a letter dated March 12, 2013 explaining his council has not been part of any discussion revolving around changing the boundaries.

Atchison went on to write that the new northeast neighbourhood of Aspen Ridge would essentially become part of the Kindersley-Rosetown-Humboldt riding.

“They have no common interests (260 kilometers away).  It makes no sense,” wrote Atchison in the letter.

During the Saskatchewan Urban Municipalities Association convention in Saskatoon earlier this year, Atchison said he remembers Premier Brad Wall talking about regionalism.

“He wanted cities and rural areas to work together,” said Atchison, adding the new federal boundaries show something different.

The proposed boundaries separate urban centers from rural areas, something Atchison said is contrary to his vision for a growing Saskatoon.

“I sent a personal letter to the minister and I attached all the meetings we’ve had with all the other cities and rural areas surrounding Saskatoon and that was it, just to point out that not only are we talking regionalism, we’re practicing what we preach and that’s far more important than just talking about what you might like to do,” said Atchison.

The mayor said he wasn’t sure if anything was final or not, he just wrote the letter to tell the federal minister that he was not on board with the proposed boundary changes.

fbiber@rawlco.com

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