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Wednesday, 03 April 2013 16:33

Public comments were out of line

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In view of David Marit’s comments at the SARM convention recently in Saskatoon in regard to the Boundary Commission, I would like to point out that Mr. Marit’s lecture was out of line.
In using his position as chair of an organization devoted to rural issues, Mr. Marit attempted to use his influence to push a Conservative Party agenda that should have no place in a forum free of large “P” political dogma. His lamentation that the proposed federal riding boundary changes would alter federal representation in this province was the best reason I heard why the boundaries should be changed.
The move to a more rational system that eliminates many of the old rural/urban split ridings is a very positive change. A Member of Parliament may be faced with the difficulty of supporting rural at the expense of urban citizens and vice versa. As an example, there are many services available to urban residents that are either not available to rural residents or are very expensive to offer in rural areas, and which might have to be subsidized with government dollars. In this, an MP serving both urban and rural residents is faced with a conflict of interest. One serving only rural areas should have no such dilemma.
In Saskatchewan, rural and urban municipalities are represented by separate organizations, respectively SARM and SUMA. As a long-serving councillor and reeve, I have never heard anyone call for unification of the two bodies, and surely the same logic applies to rural and urban ridings.
In the future, I hope Mr. Marit sticks to what he is very good at, representing the needs of Saskatchewan rural municipalities.
Mixing in federal politics with this mandate is both disturbing and disappointing.
Duane Filson, Lafleche, Sask. Past Liberal candidate for Cypress Hills - Grasslands

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