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

BC Ferries adds extra and late night summer sailings

Seasonal adjustments to sailing times also in effect on many routes

Greater Victoria records drop in building permit values

Values are up for British Columbia and Canada thanks to Vancouver

Victoria Shamrocks win proves costly

Shamrocks lose Rhys Duch to a season-ending injury

Suspect steals jewelry and ice cream bars in Oak Bay break and enter

Oak Bay resident loses $2,000 in gift cards to Visa Scam

WATCH: Barbers battle it out in Victoria

‘Barber Battle’ saw stylists and barbers from across North America go head-to-head

Man suffers burns, dog dies in fire in Nanaimo

Structure burns down on Clifford Road property in Cedar

Province comes through with funding for Charleigh Fales

Lake Cowichan toddler only one in B.C. diagnosed with CLN2 Batten disease

People throwing food at a bear in Fernie alarms conservation groups

“Approaching and feeding bears contributes to habituation,” says conservation group

Homalco tour gives glimpse into area’s ‘People, Land, Water’

First Nation business mixes cultural components with wildlife excursions

Feds announce $50M strategy to fight dementia

Emphasis is on prevention and and supporting caregivers

Federal Liberals’ plan to help first-time homebuyers to kick in weeks before election

Ottawa to pick up 5% of a mortgage on existing homes for households that earn under $120,000 a year

B.C. VIEWS: When farmland protection doesn’t protect farmers

Secondary residences aren’t mansions, families tell Lana Popham

Bombers down B.C. Lions 33-23 in season opener

Former Lion Andrew Harris leads Winnipeg with 148 rushing yards

Most Read