VICTORIA (NEWS 1130) – The stage is being set for a referendum next year to determine whether British Columbia will use a form of proportional representation to elect legislature members.
Under legislation introduced today, the referendum would be conducted by mail-in ballot and the proposal would need the support of 50 per cent, plus one, of those who vote.
Attorney General David Eby says the referendum must be held no later than Nov. 30, 2018, and if a new system is approved, the government will introduce legislation to implement it in time for the next provincial election scheduled for 2021.
Eby says details of a public consultation process will be announced in the coming weeks and will result in a report that includes a recommendation of the questions for the referendum.
Eby says the legislation is structured so a ballot with more than question could be accommodated.
The Green party is backing the NDP minority government’s legislation on the referendum.
A second piece of legislation introduced by Eby would reduce the number of seats required for a party to get official status in the legislature from four to two.
It also changes B.C.’s fixed election date to October from May.