Boundary changes could alter Burnside's voice on city council

Ken Partridge
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It's still unclear who will represent the Burnside area on regional council by the end...

It's still unclear who will represent the Burnside area on regional council by the end of this year, but it is clear that change is inevitable.

This fall's municipal election will be the first contested with the new district boundaries and Burnside will now fall under the purview of a revamped District 6, which is currently represented by Councillor Darren Fisher.

Fisher says his new district will now include Burnside, Dartmouth Crossing and parts of North and East Dartmouth. That's because the new boundaries bisect the old District 9, currently represented by Councillor Jim Smith, who is less than thrilled with the results.

"District 9 has effectively been split about 1/3 with Burnside and East Dartmouth and 2/3 toward downtown," Smith says. "The Dartmouth North area that's left, one could say it has been disenfranchised."

As for his own personal future, Smith is unsure how he will proceed.

"It really leaves me in limbo," Smith says. "I live in Lancaster Ridge so I will be residing in the new Downtown Centre district, the largest at 22,600 voters. However, I'm more connected in a holistic sense with the Dartmouth area north to south rather than the ears of Westphal and Port Wallace - although it would be a privilege to represent that area also. I feel like I have to abandon one part of the District and it's not a good feeling. So it's going to take time to digest what this means and what District I will contest."

Contacted about what it might mean to him to become Burnside's representative on regional council, Fisher says he respects Smith's dilemma and would prefer to withhold any comment until after Smith has publicly announced which district he will run in.

Geographic location: Dartmouth, Dartmouth North, Lancaster Ridge Port Wallace

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