School District to decide on if changes are needed to trustee election bylaws

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FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. – Chief Electoral Officer for School District 60, Bill Lindsay was at the school board office last night to give his recommendations on how the school board should update the trustee election bylaw.

Bylaw #4/14 is the bylaw that governs trustee elections, it was originally adopted in 1993 and was last amended in 2013. Lindsay made multiple proposals to improve the bylaw as he felt that some of them were very hard to understand.

The first recommendation Lindsay brought up was introducing a map that shows the five Trustee Electoral Area (TEA) boundaries where residents can vote.

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Chief Electoral Officer Bill Lindsay with his map of the Trustee Electoral Areas.

Other recommendations involved what would happen if there was a tie vote in an election, with the solution being a Judicial Recount, or a run-off election.

For a resident to run for a zone trustee spot they must have a minimum of two nominations. The number of trustees in each zone is listed below:

  • Zone 1 (Cecil Lake, Goodlow, and Clayhurst): one
  • Zone 2 (Prespatou, Buick, Rose Prairie, Doig River First Nation, Blueberry River First Nations, North Pine, Montney, and Wonowon East): one
  • Zone 3 (Hudson’s Hope, Upper Cache, Tsay Keh Dene Nation, and Williston Lake): one
  • Zone 4 (Taylor, Baldonnel, and Two Rivers): one
  • Zone 5 (Fort St. John, Upper Halfway, Halfway River First Nation, Wonowon West, Charlie Lake, Pink Mountain, and North to Mile 225 on the Alaska Highway: three

Lindsay recommended to have the school board post-nomination documents on their website for the public to view for a minimum of 30 days, as well campaign financing disclosure statements and supplementary reports would have to be accessible for the next five years.

Lindsay hoped that section six of the bylaw which read, “TEA five is provided with an advanced voting opportunity because Fort St. John offers the same for its residents. TEAs one to four are limited to the one required advanced voting opportunity.” be reworked altogether because it was hard to make sense of it.

The next school board trustee election will be held this October in line with municipal elections.

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