Electoral Reform Submission

Read Up: View Think City submissionto task force

Think City, in co-operation with Fair Voting BC, surveyed 3,689 British Columbians between February 22 and April 12. On April 15, final survey results were tablulated and presented to the local government elections task force as part of Think City's submission.

Campaign finance limits and electoral system choice were the top reforms British Columbians favoured.

Well over 90 per cent of the 3,700 citizens showed support for initiatives to take big money out of local politics:

  • 95.5 per cent of people said they supported campaign spending limits;
  • 96.8 per cent said they wanted disclosure of donations given between campaign periods; and
  • 93.3 per cent favoured limits on campaign contributions.

As well, there was significant support (73.4 per cent) for giving municipalities the authority to adopt electoral systems that are most suited to local needs and preferences. These may include forms of constituency representation (wards), proportional representation, ranked ballots, and various mixed models.

Citizens were not in support of reforms such as extending the voter franchise. Think City tested public support for various options including: compulsory voting (51.7 per cent opposed), lowering the voting age to 16 (61.1 per cent opposed), allowing resident non-citizens to vote (59.4 per cent opposed), allowing commercial property owners to vote (80.1 per cent opposed), and allowing business owners to vote (76.7 per cent opposed). None of these ideas were supported in the survey.

For more detailed results from Think City's 2010 civic electoral reform survey, please see our submission to the Premier's local government elections task force here.