Patricia Daly | March 18th, 2015
Like many of you, I will be checking my mailbox this week for my voting package on the 2015 Metro Vancouver Transportation & Transit Referendum. As I have already stated in the media, I strongly believe the transit plan will be the biggest investment in public health in our generation and am voting YES. For 35 cents a day per household, we are being given an historic opportunity to make a positive impact on generations to come.
Make sure you are registered
Since I voted in the 2014 municipal elections and haven’t moved, I should receive my ballot this week or by March 27 at the latest. I will also be checking to ensure my husband and adult children who live in Metro Vancouver receive their ballots and if they don’t, to make sure they are registered by May 15.
If you aren’t sure if you’re registered, call 1-800-661-8683 or visit www.elections.bc.ca and choose the “register” option. You’ll need your driver’s license number or the last 6 digits of your Social Insurance Number handy to complete the Online Registration Form.
The question on the ballot will be: “Do you support a new 0.5 per cent Metro Vancouver Congestion Improvement Tax, to be dedicated to the Mayors’ Transportation and Transit Plan?” Voters are expected to check the yes or no box. Make sure to follow the instructions for returning the ballot, as described in this Elections BC video.
To learn the full details of the transportation plan, visit www.mayorscouncil.ca
Who is eligible
Not everyone is eligible to vote even though everyone in Metro Vancouver, including tourists, will pay the additional taxes if the plan is approved. Only those who meet the following criteria can vote:
- Canadian citizens.
- 18 years of age or older on or before May 29, 2015 (Note: This includes some students currently in grade 12, who will have their first opportunity to vote).
- A B.C. resident for at least 6 months on or before May 29.
- Registered to vote in B.C.
- People who were registered for the last municipal elections in 2014 and have not moved will have their voting packages mailed automatically. People who are registering for the first time or have moved since the municipal elections in 2014 can register on or before midnight on Friday, May 15.
- Registration will continue up to May 15 – those without fixed addresses or ID can register by swearing a solemn oath. Some multilingual capabilities provided.
- Friday, March 27: All Metro Vancouver voters registered prior to March 5 should have received their packages.
- Monday, April 13: Plebiscite service offices open. Check www.elections.bc.ca for locations.
- Friday, May 15 (midnight): This is the deadline to register to vote. Call 1-800-661-8683 or visit: www.elections.bc.ca.
- Tuesday, May 26: Mailed in ballots need to be posted so as to arrive by 8 p.m. on May 29.
- Friday, May 29 (8 p.m.): Close of voting and closing of plebiscite services offices.
- Thank you for voting, and remember a YES vote will help VCH staff and patients, particularly those most vulnerable who rely on transit to access work, school, health and other services.
Read my past posts on this important issue: