With so many newly elected – versus re-elected – mayors and councillors ready to be sworn in on Monday, a review of voter turnout reveals a few points of interest from Rossland to Trail and the Beaver Valley.
With a three-way race for Mayor of Trail, voter turnout sat at 39 per cent. That is down from 50 per cent in the 2014 election, but still higher than this year’s provincial average of 36 per cent.
Notably, the six councillor seats were won by acclamation. The last time this happened was 1976, according to research provided by Joyce Austin from the city’s archives, so that could account for less ballots being cast this time around.
Historically, it’s the mayoral races that usually draw more interest from the electorate and bump up voter turnout.
This was the case in Fruitvale, which had the highest local turnout, with 55 per cent of the voting pool casting a ballot.
The other two municipalities that had both a mayor and councillor race on Oct. 20 were Warfield and Montrose. Interestingly, voter turnout was approximately 49 per cent in both those towns.
That number was about the same for the 2014 Warfield election, though there was no mayoral incumbent like there was this year.
As far as Montrose, voter turnout was up about 10 per cent compared to four years ago.
Finally, with no mayoral race in Rossland but a large body of candidates to choose from for six councillor seats, about 42 per cent of the electorate cast a vote. Still good, but no where near the 60 per cent turnout in the 2014 election.
Based on numbers provided by Chief Election Officers from across the province, estimated eligible voter turnout for the 2018 municipal elections was about 36 per cent, according to CivicInfo BC..