Minister congratulates new councils, and comments on Capital governance results

Putting your name forward for public office is a significant commitment

Ministry of Community, Sport and

Cultural Development

VICTORIA – Community, Sport and Cultural Development Minister Coralee Oakes issued the following statement on Monday:

“Putting your name forward for public office is a significant commitment of an individual’s time and energy in service of your local community. Congratulations to all the candidates who sought local government positions on Nov. 15 and who have previously served their local communities.

“I would also like to thank all of the citizens who exercised their democratic right to vote for the more than 3,000 candidates seeking elected positions in municipal governments, regional districts, school boards and park boards.

“As the minister responsible for local government, I look forward to working with all of the newly elected local government representatives, as we work together to ensure a strong economy, and a secure future for all B.C. residents.

“This year, government introduced changes to the Local Elections Act, the most significant changes in 20 years. It is encouraging to see that voter turnout is generally up throughout the province, and we are encouraged that peoples’ voices were heard.

“In the Capital Region, a number of municipalities asked ballot questions about governance structures at the local level, and results indicate many citizens in the region are open to examining changes to the local government structure and/or service delivery.

“There is always value in dialogue about whether current governance structures are meeting local community needs. There is only one taxpayer, and it is the responsibility of all levels of government to ensure the most efficient and effective delivery of public services.

“The Ministry of Community, Sport and Cultural Development is now in the process of reviewing the referendum results related to this highly complex matter in greater detail, as I am sure the newly-elected councils will wish to do so when they take office.

“I remain committed to provide the support and resources required by the newly-elected local governments, once they have had an opportunity to discuss and review the results in greater detail.”