Ontario Municipalities Support Local Choice
When the current provincial government introduced Bill 218 and moved to revoke municipalities abilities to use ranked ballots for their own elections, they did so with no consultation and with no one asking them to do so.
Unsurprisingly, this move was very unpopular and provoked significant opposition from municipalities.
Below, we have listed all the municipalities whose councils passed resolutions calling on the government to withdraw Bill 218, to remove the clauses revoking municipalities ability to use ranked ballots, or passed other similar resolutions.
1. City Council request the Government of Ontario to respect local decision-making with regards to local elections and withdraw its amendment to the Municipal Elections Act as it relates to ranked ballot elections.
A. That the City Clerk BE DIRECTED to submit the following comments on behalf of the City of Brantford (the “City”) to the Province of Ontario with respect to the proposed changes to the Municipal Elections Act, 1996:
i. the City does not support the proposed changes to the Municipal Elections Act, 1996, specifically related to the removal of the option for a municipality to hold a ranked ballot election.
That the Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing is requested to remove the proposed changes to the Municipal Act from Bill 218 that eliminate the option for municipalities to choose a ranked ballot voting system
Whereas Schedule 2 of Bill 218 proposes to remove the framework within Ontario Regulation 310/16 of The Municipal Elections Act, 1996 related to ranked ballot elections; now
That the Council of the Municipality of Grey Highlands is opposed to this change and requests that the Provincial government rescind schedule 2 from Bill 218.
That Kingston City Council reaffirm its commitment to Ranked Ballots as a legitimate option for municipal elections; and That Kingston City Council write local MPPs Ian Arthur (NDP) and Randy Hillier (IND), and Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing, Steve Clarke, to... reverse the government’s proposal to remove Ranked Ballots as a legitimate option for municipal elections (as per Bill 218);
a. does not support these proposed changes to the Municipal Elections Act;
b. does support the principle that each municipality should be able to choose
whether or not it uses first-past-the-post or ranked-choice voting;
Prince Edward County
That Corporation of the County of Prince Edward Council send a letter to the Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing urging that the Government of Ontario continues to respect Ontario municipalities’ ability to apply sound representative principles in their execution of elections;
AND THAT the Corporation of the County of Prince Edward Council recommends that the Government of Ontario supports the freedom of municipalities to run democratic elections within the existing framework the Act currently offers [which includes ranked ballots elections];
That the Council of the Township of Woolwich requests the Standing Committee on Judicial Policy amend Bill 218 to allow municipal councils in Ontario to retain the right to use ranked ballots in future elections
Association of Municipalities Ontario
Schedule 2 of Bill 218 makes changes to the Municipal Elections Act, 1996, to eliminate the option of using ranked ballots in municipal elections... These changes were surprising to many municipal governments and AMO recommends withdrawing the Schedule.
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