GUELPH POLITICAST #181 – Kevin Bowman, 123 Guelph

London has done it. Cambridge and Kingston might do it. But how about Guelph? How about the other 440 cities, towns and villages in the Province of Ontario? Because they can do it if they want thanks to the last provincial government! Get your mind out of the gutter because the “it” we’re talking about is ranked ballots for municipal elections.

As the City of Guelph heads into the 2018-2022 Council Composition and Employment Status Review, one Guelph group is pushing the Clerk’s Office to look at how we vote along with the number of councillors, their employee status, and whether the wards they cover should remain the same for the 2022 election. For 123 Guelph, the time is now to look at whether Guelph should join three other Ontario cities and move to ranked ballots.

Now, City Clerk Stephen O’Brien said in a recent council meeting that the method of how we vote will be debated after we figure out what we’re voting for, but should we be thinking about these issues as two separate things? Kevin Bowman would argue we shouldn’t. His group, 123 Guelph, has been pushing the City to make the change for years.

On the regular edition of the podcast this week, Bowman will make his case about why we shouldn’t wait to have a discussion about using ranked ballots in Guelph. He will also explain how ranked ballots would work, and what he has taken away from London’s use of ranked ballots in 2018. We also talk about Bowman’s own dedication to the cause, his attempts to advocate directly to council, and his own back and forth with the Clerk’s Office in discussing the issue.

So let’s get ask all our questions about ranked ballots (in no particular order) on this week’s edition of the Guelph Politicast!

You can find out more about the efforts of 123 Guelph to promote ranked ballots at their website here. The 2018-2022 Council Composition and Employment Status Review is currently underway, and the public feedback portion will likely start this fall. The first phase of the report will come back to council in the first quarter of 2020.

The host for the Guelph Politicast is Podbean. Find more episodes of the Politicast here, or download them on your favourite podcast app at iTunes, Stitcher, Google Play, and Spotify.

Also, when you subscribe to the Guelph Politicast channel and you will also get an episode of Open Sources Guelph every Monday, and an episode of End Credits every Friday.

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