Former Liberal MLAs Doug Bing, second from left, and Marc Dalton, second from right, oppose moving to proportional representation. (THE NEWS/files)

Former Liberal MLAs Doug Bing, second from left, and Marc Dalton, second from right, oppose moving to proportional representation. (THE NEWS/files)

Maple Ridge voters have had their say on how they vote

Friday was last day for mail-in ballots on PR

More people in Maple Ridge and Pitt Meadows filled out the mail-in ballots and mailed them in, so they have a say in B.C.’s electoral system.

As of Thursday morning, 14,218 valid ballots have been returned from voters in Maple Ridge-Mission, which is a turnout of about 32 per cent.

In Maple Ridge-Pitt Meadows, the numbers are almost the same, with 14,312 ballots received by Elections B.C., resulting in a turnout of about 34 per cent.

Friday was the deadline day, by which ballots had to be received by Elections B.C. in order to be counted in the referendum that asks people if they want to keep the current first-past-the-post system, where the candidate with the largest number of votes wins a riding, or if voters want to move to one of three proportional voting systems.

NDP and Liberal politicians had both been door knocking, for and against, respectively, changing electoral systems.

Interest in Maple Ridge and Pitt Meadows was lagging three weeks ago, in mid-November, when only 6.5 per cent of eligible voters had sent in a ballot.

Provincewide, Maple Ridge and Pitt Meadows are near the provincial average turnout of 35 per cent of eligible voters, as of Thursday morning.

Former Maple Ridge council candidate Peter Tam, with FairVote B.C., which supports proportional representation, said the turn out percentage in the referendum shouldn’t affect the end result.

He said earlier that only a simple majority of 50 per cent plus one, is needed for the government to change the electoral system.

“We’re keeping our finger crossed, across B.C. today,” he said Friday.

He expects the ballots remaining in the mail and those that were hand-delivered today at Service B.C. centres to add another eight per cent to the turnout.

“It’s going to be neck and neck, the results,” he said.

It’s also become a partisan exercise between the NDP and Liberals and is also being held at the wrong time of the year, Tam said.

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

Just Posted

Gordy Robson. (Contributed)
The intersection at Harris Road and Lougheed Highway (Google)
LETTER: Pitt Meadows resident wonders why traffic signals not updated

A local man has contacted the city and road contractor with concerns to no avail

The BCJALL draft was held on Thursday evening.
Maple Ridge’s Malawsky picked first overall in BCJALL draft

Burrards midgets again dominate the Junior A midget draft

About 150 guests attended the 16th annual Maple Ridge Pitt Meadows Chamber of Commerce Business Excellence Awards. (The News files)
Parker Kaumi, 6, and his mother, Lauren, baked cookies to raise money for the Canucks Autism Network. (Chris Kaumi/Special to The News)
Maple Ridge mother and son bake cookies for Canucks Autism Network

Raise $1,200 for the organization that offers activities and programs to children and youth with autism

Keith the curious kitten is seen on Nov. 4, 2020 at the Chilliwack SPCA. Friday, Jan. 22, 2021 is Answer Your Cat’s Questions Day. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress file)
Unofficial holidays: Here’s what people are celebrating for the week of Jan. 17 to 23

Answer Your Cat’s Questions Day, Pie Day and International Sweatpants Day are all coming up this week

(Phil McLachlan - Capital News)
‘Targeted’ shooting in Coquitlam leaves woman in hospital

The woman suffered non-life threatening injuries in what police believe to be a targeted shooting Saturday morning

sdf
Another Mission student arrested for assault, in 2nd case of in-school violence this week

RCMP notified of local Instagram page with videos (now deleted) showing student assaults, bullying

(Photo by Kevin Hill)
40 cases linked to Surrey Memorial Hospital COVID-19 outbreak

Fraser Health says two death are associated with the outbreak

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

JaHyung Lee, “Canada’s oldest senior” at 110 years old, received his first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine on Thursday, Jan. 14, 2021. He lives at Amenida Seniors Community in Newton. (Submitted photo: Amenida Seniors Community)
Standardized foundation skills assessment tests in B.C. schools will be going ahead later than usual, from Feb. 16 to March 12 for students in Grades 4 and 7. (Black Press Media file photo)
B.C. teachers say COVID-affected school year perfect time to end standardized tests

Foundational skills testing of Grade 4 and 7 students planned for February ad March

Sooke’s Jim Bottomley is among a handful of futurists based in Canada. “I want to help people understand the future of humanity.” (Aaron Guillen - Sooke News Mirror)
No crystal ball: B.C. man reveals how he makes his living predicting the future

63-year-old has worked analytical magic for politicians, car brands, and cosmetic companies

A unique-looking deer has been visiting a Nanoose Bay property with its mother. (Frieda Van der Ree photo)
A deer with 3 ears? Unique animal routinely visits B.C. property

Experts say interesting look may be result of an injury rather than an odd birth defect

Most Read