Huntington gives election date bill second attempt

Private member’s bill will require approval from majority to become law

Independent MLA Vicki Huntington

Delta South MLA Vicki Huntington may be the only independent representative left in the legislature but her goal of election reform hasn’t changed.

Huntington reintroduced legislation Wednesday (July 3) that would move B.C.’s fixed election date to the fall so as to prevent the budget process from being influenced by the election cycle.

“Every four years, British Columbia goes into an election without passing the budget for the coming fiscal year,” said Huntington as she introduced her bill in the legislature. “There is a temptation to use the budget for partisan campaign purposes.”

As a result, Huntington said there can be significant changes between pre-election and post-election budgets.

“I am proposing a practical change to B.C.’s fixed election date that would prevent the budget from being misused and disrupted every four years as an electioneering tool,” said Huntington in a following press release.

Huntington’s proposal comes as B.C.’s legislators are set to debate the 2014 budget, which she said is a resurrection of the budget introduced last fall but wasn’t subjected to legislative oversight because of the May election.

The Fall Fixed Election Amendment Act was previously introduced by former independent MLA Bob Simpson as part of a six-piece democratic reform agenda issued by Huntington, Simpson and independent MLA John van Dongen last February. The bill died—as all private member bills do—when the 2013 election was called.

Although Simpson and van Dongen are no longer MLAs, Huntington has said she will continue with democratic reform.

“This is one problem with an easy solution,” said Huntington. “Moving the election date to the fall would ensure our budgets receive the debate and oversight they need.”

A private member’s bill can be issued by any sitting member of the legislature, but unlike a government bill it cannot pass into law without the support of a majority of members, which is currently held by the governing BC Liberal Party.

Surrey North Delta Leader

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Surrey-Langley SkyTrain extension faces potential delays due to COVID-19

Pandemic ‘adversely’ impacting TransLink’s finances; ‘much work’ required to approve next investment plan

SIMPSON: For real leadership amid crisis, look west of Scott Road

Delta council, under direction of Mayor George Harvie, defines leadership during pandemic

PHOTOS: Loved ones reunite at Peace Arch Park ‘oasis’

Officials closed the park in mid-March over coronavirus concerns

Cloverdale businessman funds wells in Cambodia

Revive Washing in Clayton Heights donates three per cent of profits to charity

Cloverdale youth pastor’s sexual-assault sentencing delayed

Samuel Emerson due to return to Surrey Provincial Court in August

Mission prison COVID-19 outbreak ends, 9 new cases in B.C.

New positive test at Port Coquitlam care home

Facing changes together: Your community, your journalists

We’re asking you to lock arms with us, as we look to better days ahead

Man who bound, murdered Vancouver Island teen still a risk to public: parole board

Kimberly Proctor’s killer is still ‘mismanaging emotions,’ has had ‘temper tantrums’

VIDEO: Humpback whales put on quite a show

The ‘playful’ pod lingered by a Campbell River tour operator’s boat for quite some time

Getting hitched at historic B.C. gold rush town still on table during COVID-19 pandemic

Micro-weddings, online visits, offered at Barkerville Historic Town and Park

VIDEO: Police look for suspect seen tripping elderly woman in Burnaby

The elderly woman was walking near the SkyTrain station when she was randomly tripped

Chilliwack teachers, assistants concerned with lack of PPE guidelines ahead of school reopening

As schools get ready to open, many worry measures won’t be enough to protect students from COVID-19

Revelstoke woman finds welcoming letter on her Alberta-registered truck

There have been multiple reports online of vandalism to vehicles with Alberta licence plates

Spirit bear possibly spotted in West Kootenay

A local resident spotted the white-coloured bear while on an evening trail run near Castlegar on May 27

Most Read