Côte-des-Neiges–Notre-Dame-de-Grâce borough councillor Marvin Rotrand presented an emergency motion demanding that Elections Quebec reverse its decision to merge the provincial ridings of Mont-Royal and Outremont.
The new riding will include all of Town of Mount Royal, Outremont and portions of NDG and Côte-des-Neiges.
The move also affects the ridings of D’Arcy-McGee, de Notre-Dame-de-Grâce and Mercier.
Rotrand said merging the two ridings will take electoral power away from the people living in the area.
He added that, relatively speaking, people in Gaspé will have more power than people in this new riding in the west end.
Some people at the borough council agreed.
“There’s a huge mass of voters who are totally upset,” Sharon Freedman said. “To the point we are prepared to take it to a legal challenge if we have to, given that it’s so undemocratic.”
Rotrand said what makes things worse is that they actually talked to Elections Quebec about this a couple of years ago and he said they agreed merging the ridings was not a good idea.
“It not only dilutes our vote, it poses questions about natural boundaries, it poses questions about diversity,” Rotrand explained.
“Our part of town is one of the most diverse in Quebec, one of the most diverse in Canada and yet that diversity doesn’t get to express themselves. That raises some serious questions.”
Last week Elections Quebec announced it would eliminate the downtown riding of Saint-Marie-Saint-Jacques, but after protests, they reversed that decision and came out with the merger.
Elections Quebec said that they did their best to keep communities together.
Rotrand doesn’t believe that and he has some powerful allies to back him up, including Executive Committee members Lionel Perez and Russell Copeman.
“It’s not a question of pitting one area against the other, but really looking at the overall weight of the Island of Montreal” Copeman said.
Rotrand said he’s going on the record tonight and is thinking of legal action.