03/12/2015 07:09 EDT | Updated 05/12/2015 05:59 EDT

Size not sole factor in Newfoundland's electoral boundary review:commission

ST. JOHN'S, N.L. - The head of the electoral boundaries commission in Newfoundland and Labrador says population isn't the only consideration when it comes to reconfiguring the province's political map.

Some critics have raised concerns that rural Newfoundland will suffer with a reduction in the number of seats in the legislature to 40.

Commission chairman Robert Stack and his four member commission are looking at how to reduce the number of seats on the island by eight, while Labrador's four districts remain untouched.

Stack says it's well understood that dividing districts simply along population lines won't work because urban districts don't rely as heavily on their representatives as rural districts.

The commission is expected to present its proposed electoral map to the public by Apr. 11 with public consultations to begin shortly after.

A final report is to be presented to the legislature by June 9. (VOCM)