B.C. Municipalities: Local politicians support four-year terms

UBCM convention backs longer terms to match up with provincial elections, an issue that pits rural and urban communities

Local government representatives vote on a long list of resolutions at their convention in Vancouver Thursday.

Delegates at the Union of B.C. Municipalities convention have endorsed having local elections every four years, to match up with provincial votes.

The resolution to extend terms of office from three years to four was supported by 60 per cent of voting delegates, who want the B.C. government to make the change in time for municipal elections in November 2014.

If it is enacted, B.C. would join Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Quebec, Nova Scotia, Newfoundland and Labrador, Ontario, Prince Edward Island and New Brunswick, which have four-year terms for local politicians.

The issue has divided urban and rural communities for years, with some rural councillors calling for shorter terms for what they say is mainly volunteer work with minimum pay. One rural delegate said the idea comes from “professional politicians” in the Lower Mainland, where council pay is higher.

Proponents argue that four-year terms reduce turnover and would increase local election participation by being timed with provincial votes.

The UBCM executive added another argument for the change, noting that several local mayors and councillors were elected to the B.C. legislature in May. The executive called for direction from the province “to avoid governance conflicts, expensive byelections, long absences on council and boards and the double-dipping of salaries.”

The UBCM rejected the suggestion of four-year terms at its 2010 convention. It was debated and supported in 2007. Earlier motions supported the current system of elections every three years province-wide.

 

Just Posted

Cooking with ‘Killer’

Reporter Dawn Gibson shares some of her favourite meals to make

Vic-Alert faces tidal wave of registration after tsunami warnings

City of Victoria system is free and provides early warnings of disaster

Tsunami warning after earthquake rattles Saanich residents

Scenes straight out of a disaster movie unfolded across Saanich Tuesday morning… Continue reading

Oak Bay reception centre at the ready for tsunami warning this morning

Local officials hold off on evacuation; warning ended shortly after 4 a.m.

Sirens don’t sing in tsunami warning for Esquimalt

Officials pleased with process, say sirens would have been activated had threat escalated.

WATCH: Greater Victoria residents gather at higher ground during tsunami warning

Ocean Boulevard and the Esquimalt Lagoon reopened shortly before 5 a.m. Tuesday

Touring art from war-torn Syria on display at Cedar Hill

Behind the Lines: Contemporary Syrian Art, Jan. 24 to Feb. 5 at Cedar Hill Arts Centre

Andrew Scheer on trade, Trump and Trudeau

Canada’s Conservative leader begins three-day visit to B.C.

Victoria’s most wanted for the week of Jan. 23

Crime Stoppers will pay a reward of up to $2,000 for information that leads to arrests or the seizure of property or drug

Victims restrained, sex toys and cash stolen from B.C. adult store

Armed suspects sought in adult store robbery

Babcock, Goyette and Smyth honoured at Order of Hockey in Canada

Mike Babcock, from Saskatoon, guided the Detroit Red Wings to a Stanley Cup in 2008

Bell Canada alerts customers who may be affected by latest data breach

Federal Office of the Privacy Commissioner said it had been notified

‘The tsunami alarm failed my household’: North Coast residents concerned over sirens, alerts

People living in northern communities share how they learned about Tuesday’s tsunami warning

Most Read