Baie-d’Urfé mayor says electing councillors by district could avoid ballot-counting delays
Sunday night, the town was left waiting longer than others for results in the 2017 municipal elections.
Baie-d’Urfé was the last town on the island of Montreal to release results.
Tutino said slow tallying is common in Baie-d’Urfé because voters select seven names on a 20-candidate ballot.
One of those votes is for mayor and six are for councillors.
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Tutino is suggesting that candidates run to represent specific districts.
Residents would then vote for two positions: the councillor for their district and the mayor.
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Tutino said this could provide more comprehensive communication between residents and the government as residents would have a primary contact for issues in their neighbourhood.
Currently, residents often go straight to the mayor with their concerns.
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Districts would be divided by geography, rather than demographically.
However, drawing equal districts could prove to be a challenge when considering commercial and industrial areas.
“Everyone should get a piece of [the industrial district],” remarked Tutino.
The mayor admitted a district-divided Baie-d’Urfé could still face challenges.
Councillors who only need to cater to their district could potentially alienate residents in other parts of the town, she said.
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Such a system may also encourage councillors to pay less attention to the concerns of residents that might not affect a majority vote.
She said this isn’t the first time Baie-d’Urfé has considered dividing the town into districts, but did not confirm if she will address the election process in her coming term.
Luca Caruso-Moro is a journalism student from Concordia University who gathered election data for Global News in Baie-d’Urfé.
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