Part 2: Parliamentary constituencies
7.Part 2 of the Act provides that the number of parliamentary constituencies in the UK will be reduced to 600. It requires the Boundary Commissions to recommend constituency boundaries that ensure that the electorate of each constituency is no more than 5% more or less than the electoral quota for the UK. Factors are set out which the Commissions may have regard to when recommending constituency boundaries, subject to the parity principle. There will be four island constituencies expressly excepted from the parity principle, a limit on the geographical size of constituencies, and a method for resolving any complexities that may be caused in Northern Ireland by the need to round to a whole number of constituencies. Part 2 also sets out a timetable for the four Boundary Commissions to carry out their reviews of constituencies, and the consultation process for the Commissions’ recommendations. The next general reviews are to be completed by the end of September 2013 and subsequent reviews will take place every five years.