Thursday March 22, 2012

Local Politics


It's Official

Chilliwack-Hope candidates begin plunking in signage after April 19 election call

Released by the BC Conservative Party


y-elections will be held on Thursday, April 19, 2012 to elect Members of the Legislative Assembly (MLA) for the Chilliwack-Hope and Port Moody-Coquitlam electoral districts. The seats became vacant when Port Moody-Coquitlam MLA Iain Black resigned on Monday, October 3, 2011 and Chilliwack-Hope MLA Barry Penner resigned on January 9, 2012.

"British Columbia offers voters an accessible and flexible voting process, ensuring that all citizens who are eligible to vote are able to do so," said Keith Archer, Chief Electoral Officer. "Elections BC is committed to administering the voting process in British Columbia with the needs of voters in mind."

Residents of the two electoral districts will be eligible to vote if they are 18 years of age or older on Thursday, April 19, 2012, (General Voting Day), they are a Canadian citizen and they have lived in B.C. for the past six months.

B.C. voters have more ways to vote than anywhere else in Canada. During the by-elections, voters may vote:

  • At their assigned voting place on General Voting Day from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.

  • At advance voting locations in their electoral district from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.

  • At any other general or advance voting place under absentee rules, or

  • If they can't make it to a voting place, they may vote at the district electoral office or Vote by Mail during the 28 days from when the election is called until General Voting Day.

"B.C. voters have tremendous access to voting opportunities that reflects the diverse needs of today's voter from senior to student," said Archer. "If voters aren't sure of where to vote I encourage them to contact us."

Voter registration for the by-elections closes on Thursday, March 29, 2012 at midnight. Visit Elections BC's secure Online Voter Registration system at to register to vote or to update your voter registration information, or call Elections BC toll-free at 1-800-661-8683.

Voters may also register or update their voter information when they go to vote. Voters must prove their identity and place of residence before voting or registering when voting. The types of identification that can be used are detailed on the Elections BC website at

Information including dates, times and locations of advance and general voting will be posted on the Elections BC website, published in local newspapers, contained in a by-election pamphlet delivered to all Chilliwack-Hope and Port Moody-Coquitlam households, and on yellow Where to Vote cards mailed to registered voters in the electoral districts.


         Elections BC administers by-elections under the Election Act, R.S.B.C. 1996.

         Under the Constitution Act, a by-election must be called within six months of a seat becoming vacant in the Legislative Assembly, unless the seat is vacant due to the recall of the MLA, in which case a by-election must be called within 90 days.

         The Chief Electoral Officer received the warrants for the by-elections on October 6, 2011(Port Moody-Coquitlam) and January 30, 2012 (Chilliwack-Hope).                                                                      Keith Archer

         192 by-elections have been administered in B.C.; seven under the current Act.

         The first by-election occurred on June 22, 1872 in the Cariboo electoral district following the, resignation of MLA Cornelius Booth; three previous by-elections were called in Esquimalt, New Westminster and Cariboo, but no votes were held as the seats were filled by acclamation.

         A by-election involves a single electoral district, although concurrent by-elections may be held, such as:

  • the March 15, 1989 Nanaimo and Vancouver-Point Grey by-elections,

  • the February 17, 1994 Matsqui and Vancouver-Quilchena by-elections, and

  • the October 29, 2008 Vancouver-Burrard and Vancouver-Fairview by-elections.

         There were 32,709 registered voters in the Chilliwack-Hope electoral district as of May 12, 2009 and 33,487 registered voters in the Port Moody-Coquitlam electoral district.

         Voter turnout in the 2009 General Election was 51.85% of registered voters in Chilliwack-Hope and 57.44% of registered voters in Port Moody-Coquitlam.

         The last by-election to be held in B.C. was the May 11, 2011 Vancouver-Point Grey by-election.

  • Voter turnout for the 2011 by-election was 38.94%. 



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