On Wednesday, 27 November, 2019, Toronto City Council voted, by a 14 to 11 margin, in favour of Councillor Shelley Carroll’s motion to learn more about ranked ballots.
This is a huge step forward for ranked ballots in Toronto, because Councillor Carroll’s motion has initiated the process that the Municipal Elections Act requires be completed before a switch to ranked ballots is legally possible. This includes providing city council and the public with certain specific information (such as how much it would cost to implement ranked ballots in Toronto) as well as a set of minimum public consultation requirements (such as the holding of an informational “open house” and a public meeting).
This is pretty amazing because, once these steps are completed, we are just one vote at city council away from Toronto adopting ranked ballots for its municipal elections.
But it also means that those of us who support ranked ballots have our work cut out for us. While we managed to win this most recent vote, councillors were actually only voting on whether to gather information about ranked ballots and consult the public. Now we need to mobilize so that once these consultations begin, each and every councillor hears loud and clear just how strong public support for ranked ballots really is. We need your help to make that happen.
Information on these consultations has not yet been made public. But as soon as we know when they are happening and how you can get involved, we will share that information here. We hope you'll help us take this next critical step towards winning voting reform here in Toronto.