Barriere going to referendum

16.6 per cent of eligible voters choose referendum for borrowing $1.2 million to facilitate water main upgrade

It’s official, Barriere will be holding a referendum on the question of borrowing $1.2 million dollars to upgrade the water main on Barriere Town Road.

At the April 22, District of Barriere Council meeting, staff reported that as of 4 p.m., April 22, 2013, a determination of the results of the Alternative Approval Process (AAP) was certified by the Corporate Officer.  The AAP had been initiated to determine whether more than 10 percent of eligible voters wanted the required ‘assent of the electors’, for borrowing up to $1.2 million to facilitate a water main upgrade on Barriere Town Road, to be decided by referendum.  Of the 1377 eligible voters in the water service area, 229 elector response forms were received, which works out to 16.6 percent, well over the required 10 percent.  Council members passed a motion that the referendum process be started immediately.

Now that the referendum process has started, the District will have 80 days in which to carry out the referendum.  To meet legislated requirements for Other Voting, the earliest possible date that general voting can be held would be Saturday, May 25, with a mandatory advance voting opportunity being held 10 days prior on Wednesday, May 15.  Council members passed a vote that these be the dates for the voting.

Council members also passed a vote that the wording of the referendum question be as follows:

“Are you in favour of the District of Barriere Council adopting Bylaw No. 102, a bylaw to authorize the borrowing of up to One Million, Two Hundred Thousand Dollars ($1,200,000) for the proposed water main upgrade on Barriere Town Road?”

When a bylaw is involved, either a copy of the full bylaw or a synopsis of the bylaw must be included in the formal notice.  Council must approve the use of a synopsis instead of the full bylaw.  Council members passed a motion to use a synopsis of the bylaw.

Part of the process will involve the appointment of Election Officers, as per Section 41 of the Local Government Act.  A Chief Election Officer and a Deputy Chief Election Officer must be appointed.  Council passed a motion that Colleen Hannigan, CAO, who has significant experience working municipal elections, and has taken the election training provided by the Local Government Management Association (LGMA), be appointed Chief Election Officer, and that Tasha Buchanan,Administrative Assistant, who has also take the LGMA Election training, be appointed Deputy Chief Election Officer.

The schedule of the process is as follows:

May 2 and 9 – required notice for voting and request for applications for scrutineers in two consecutive weeks of the local newspaper (the Star/Journal)

May 3-10 – applications for scrutineers received

May 15, 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. – advance voting

May 25, 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. – general voting

May 27-29 – declaration of results

June 3 – application for judicial recount or adoption of borrowing bylaw if no judicial recount required

June 7 – judicial recount (if required) and adoption of borrowing bylaw

July 3 – quashing period for bylaw (if no recount)

July 8 – quashing period for bylaw (if recount done)

July 18 – deadline for fall borrowing request to TNRD