Canada: Online voting for municipal elections still years away: Ida Chong | Vancouver Sun

The provincial government wants to bring in online voting for municipal elections as early as 2014, but has to change legislation first, Community, Sport and Cultural Development Minister Ida Chong said Wednesday. Speaking to reporters at the Union of B.C. Municipalities Convention in Vancouver, Chong said both she and Premier Christy Clark support the concept of voting over the Internet.

“I don’t believe it is impossible. We’re very keen on it,” she said, but cautioned, “It is still two-and-a-half, three years away in terms of changing legislation. I think it is possible.”

Her comments came as UBCM delegates called on the province to enact changes that would allow them to conduct online votes, even though some delegates raised concerns about security and the potential for ballot fraud.

Canada: Nanaimo Council pushes for online voting in British Columbia |

Nanaimo council members will push for online voting when representatives from B.C. communities meet later this month to discuss provincial policy issues.

Three communities have aggressively lobbied for online voting. Coquitlam, North Vancouver City and Fort St. John have all urged the Union of B.C. Municipalities to take the issue to the provincial government. Minister of Communities Ida Chong said the B.C. Elections Act has to change to allow Internet voting.

Canada: British Columbia government says no to online voting in Vancouver | The Vancouver Observer

Vancouver citizens will not be able to vote online in this year’s municipal election after all. Ida Chong, provincial Minister of Community, Sport and Cultural Development, has written to Mayor Gregor Robertson that the province will not amend the Vancouver Charter to allow the city to conduct a pilot test of internet voting because of potential risks associated with voting online.

Recently, the Observer reported that the city was optimistic Chong would give her approval. City Councillor Andrea Reimer, who initiated the internet voting proposal, told the Observer that the provincial government was also interested in exploring giving voters an online option, and so should be willing to allow Vancouver to conduct its pilot.

Canada: Internet voting nixed for November municipal elections | Vancouver Sun

Vancouver voters can expect to line up the old-fashioned way this November, after the provincial government, citing “a number of serious risks,” nixed a plan to allow online voting in upcoming municipal elections.

“There are potential benefits to Internet voting namely convenience to voters, and accessibility for voters with disabilities or limited mobility,” James said in the letter. But online voting technology cannot guard against hackers, service disruptions or vote buying and selling, James said.

As well, B.C.’s chief information officer is still developing a way to confirm a voter’s identity and then make their vote anonymous. “[The voting process] is unlike online banking where the user’s identity is maintained throughout the transaction,” James said in his letter.