On Nov. 30, I’ll be hosting a town hall at the Oak Bay Recreation Centre to provide an update on my work in the constituency and in the legislature. I’m also hoping to hear from Oak Bay Gordon Head constituents about issues of local concern. There will be plenty of time reserved for questions, comments and discussion.
The current session of the B.C. legislature has been very eventful. For the first time, the BC Green Party has official party status and a caucus of three elected members. We hold the balance of power in a minority government and are in uncharted waters in B.C. politics. In response to myriad requests for information, one of the topics covered in the town hall is how a minority government works and how the BC Green caucus is working with the BC NDP government under our Confidence and Supply Agreement (CASA).
This legislative session I have introduced (or reintroduced) a number of bills, including the Right to Roam Act to protect and clarify British Columbian’s right to access Crown land and cross uncultivated wild lands; Endangered Species Act, which seeks to protect at-risk wildlife and take proactive measures to prevent their decline; and a bill to protect Registered Disability Savings Plan (RDSPs) and Registered Education Savings Plan (RESPs) from creditors.
In October, the B.C. government introduced Bill 6: Electoral Reform Referendum 2018 Act, which provides the legal framework for Elections BC to conduct a referendum on proportional representation before Nov. 30, 2018. This fulfills a major promise of the CASA agreement. I am in favour of proportional representation, as it provides us with a better system of participatory democracy. But in my view, we must develop a made-in-B.C. form of proportional representation that ensures every British Columbian’s vote counts, that reflects our regional diversity and ensures local representation.
The BC Green caucus will contribute to the upcoming consultation process in the same way as everyone else. I believe it is critical for us to engage in discussion about the future of our democracy and I encourage everyone to make their views known.
There are many issues that we face, such as housing affordability, health care and the future of the Site C project. I look forward to the dialogue at our upcoming town hall and welcome your participation. I hope you will join us on Thursday, Nov. 30 at 7 p.m. (doors open at 6:30) at the Oak Bay Recreation Centre Sports View Lounge.
Andrew Weaver is MLA for Oak Bay-Gordon Head and leader of the BC Green Party.