Working to increase voter turnout

Lisa Goudy
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Coun. Brian Swanson speaks about his motion for administration to prepare a report regarding possible alternatives for the 2016 election at Monday's council meeting.

Voters are likely to see some changes in the next municipal election.

Council unanimously passed Coun. Brian Swanson’s motion for administration to prepare a report for executive committee by April 2013 regarding possible alternatives for the conduct of the next election.

“I’m concerned about the level of voter turnout. Though compared to Regina we’re wonderful, we’re still not very good,” said Swanson. “I think there’s a difference between having an efficient election and having an election that is inclusive and encouraging turnout.”

His motion included such alternatives as increasing the number of polling stations to 15 or 18, extending days of operation at the city hall poll and replacing voter machines with traditional ballot counting measures. Other options include holding a series of candidate forums and providing free transit service for election day.

Coun. Candis Kirkpatrick said having more polling station locations would likely make it easier and more convenient for voters to vote. She added that “we can’t be everything to everyone.”

However, she said she took exception to the idea to replace voting machines with traditional ballot counting. She said she was under the impression that suggestion came about because of the prompts issued on the machines when someone under voted or over voted in a certain category. Several voters said their privacy was breached and they didn’t like being asked in public if that was their intention.

For more information, see an upcoming edition of the Times-Herald.

Organizations: Times-Herald

Geographic location: Regina

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