For something that the vast majority of the population is barely aware of, electoral redistributions are incredibly exciting for political nerds.
Not only to political parties get to subtly (and sometimes not so subtly) try to influence an independent process, but the visceral infighting that follows afterwards is enough to convince most observers that politics is best enjoyed as a spectator sport.
NSW is undergoing a redistribution this year, and as is their right the four main parties have put in submissions as to how they think the changes should be made.
First of all, some background. NSW has 93 Lower House Seats. The current enrolment of NSW divided by 93 is, according to Anthony Green, 51 623 people. Naturally the enrolments cannot be exactly correct - but the paramaters that the Electoral Commission has to work within are, to say the least, challenging.
This is what the NSW Constitution Act says:
The submissions made to the Commission can be found here, including those from the ALP, the Liberals, the Nationals and the Greens.
Below I have include two quota maps helpfully produced by Anthony Green, as well as two maps from wikipedia that help with the names of the electorates:
The only solution, short of increasing the number of seats (which is not entirely out of the question) is to shift the boundaries of those Western NSW seats progressively eastward.
By the same token, the map Sydney shows the disproportionate growth in the North-West and South-West as well as in and around the CBD.
Ben Raue has written an excellent piece for New Mathilda that, to be honest, I'm tempted to just copy and paste and pretend it is mine. This is the most important part:
Goulburn is presently held by Pru Goward, a Liberal who sits on the Coalition's cabinet as the Minister for Community Affairs and Women.
Shockingly, the Liberals have suggested that Goulburn not be dismantled. They say:
The Greens and the Nationals both agree that Goulburn should go. The Labor solution is a little more complicated, and best shown through the map provided as a part of their submission:
The disscussion is obviously an incredibly complex one. Even if you exclude the maps, the Liberal's submission runs to 36 pages. The ALP produced over 50 pages including enough tables to make your eyes water.
The parties can now make further submissions until 20 March, and we can expect a decision later this year.