Issue Notice: 2018 British Columbia Referendum on Electoral Reform

 

During the 2017 provincial election, the campaign platform for the current provincial government included a promise to revisit the issue of electoral reform in British Columbia. As a result, on October 4, 2017, the provincial government introduced Bill 6, the Electoral Reform Referendum 2018 Act, to require a provincial referendum be held no later than November 30, 2018, on whether B.C. should keep its current voting system (First Past the Post or FPTP) or move to a system of proportional representation (PR).

The referendum will be held from October 22nd until November 30th via mail-in ballot. Registered voters will get a voting package in the mail from Elections BC between October 22 and November 2, 2018.

The referendum will ask British Columbians two questions:

  1. Which should British Columbia use for elections to the Legislative Assembly? (Vote for only one.)

– The current First Past the Post voting system

– A proportional representation voting system

  1. If British Columbia adopts a proportional representation voting system, which of the following voting systems do you prefer? (Vote for the voting systems you wish to support by ranking them in order of preference. You may choose to support one, two or all three of the systems.)

– Dual Member Proportional (DMP)

– Mixed Member Proportional (MMP)

– Rural-Urban PR

As a non-partisan community organization, the Chamber will remain neutral on the question of electoral reform. After extensive research and discussion within the Chamber and the Chamber’s Board of Directors, we have decided not to endorse any particular voting system presented on the ballot.

However, as a community service, the Chamber will be sharing educational material that assesses the merits and mechanics of each of the proposed systems including our current FPTP voting system. The objective is to inform our members on the proposed options for electoral reform and help the public make an informed decision.

A Chamber sponsored event on the upcoming referendum is also in the works for late-October. Details will be released soon.