EDITORIAL: The students have voted — have you?

Deadline is nigh — have you filled out and returned your ballot in the province’s mail-in referendum on electoral reform?

If you haven’t yet, you are in the majority.

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According to Elections BC, as of Tuesday morning, 39 per cent of all ballots mailed out had been returned, either via Canada Post or by being dropped off at a Service BC centre (the Kamloops location is in the Kamloops Law Courts building at Columbia Street and Fourth Avenue and is open weekdays from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.).

The two Kamloops ridings continue to be among the more engaged, with 40.6 per cent of all ballots in Kamloops-South Thompson having been returned and 34.9 per cent of all ballots in Kamloops-North Thompson now in the hands of those at Elections BC.

Voters in Parksville-Qualicum are seriously engaged — with 47.2 per cent of all ballots returned as of Tuesday morning — while voters in Surrey-Whalley might need a reminder as only 19.3 per cent of ballots in that riding have thus far been returned.

The deadline to return ballots is this Friday (Dec. 7) at 4:30 p.m.

You can vote to keep the current first-past-the-post system or instead vote for B.C. to adopt one of three forms of proportional representation.

There is no shortage of information out there, including a video at kamloopsthisweek.com explaining the three PR systems and a point/counterpoint column debate.

Interestingly, students at Westsyde secondary held a vote and have decided to stick with first past the post, with 53 per cent of ballots cast in favour of the status quo and 47 per cent siding with proportional representation.

Of those who chose PR, the multi-member option was most popular, followed by dual-member and, finally, rural-urban.

Make a choice and vote.

© Kamloops This Week

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