Black Press Media file photo

Black Press Media file photo

OUR VIEW: Wards for Surrey worth a hard look

Ward system divvies up city into neighbourhoods with a council member representing an electoral region

Surrey city Councillor Doug Elford wants the city to consider moving to a ward system for electing council representatives.

Council is expected to deal with his notice of motion on Sept. 15, and it is worthy of serious consideration as this city is practically tailor-made for such an electoral system, given its distinct communities such as Cloverdale, South Surrey, Newton, Guildford, Whalley and Fleetwood, not to mention Fraser Heights, Port Kells, Tynehead and Bridgeview.

A ward system divvies up the city into neighbourhoods with a council member representing one of these electoral regions, much like an MLA or MP represents their particular riding.

READ ALSO OUR VIEW: Surrey train tragedy a safety reminder for us all

Such a system was used in these parts from before 1879 until 1957, when the provincial government ended it in favour of today’s “at-large” system, in which voters elect a mayor, councillors and school trustees city-wide. Mayors are still typically voted in city-wide under a ward system.

Elford argues Surrey is ripe for a ward system. It’s hard not to agree, as it would afford each community a voice at a time when some are feeling left out.

Elford maintains a ward system is superior because it allows neighbourhoods “a better chance” to get a representative on council and “kind of takes the big money out of politics, in a sense.”

Certain neighbourhoods have called for transparency, he noted, “and this is an ideal way to address that.”

It will be interesting to see what council will do with this motion next month.

The next civic elections in B.C. are set for Oct. 15, 2022.

Now-Leader



edit@surreynowleader.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Editorial Surrey OUR VIEW Now-Leader opinion

Just Posted

A cache of 89 crabs was discovered during a 2018 compliance inspection at South Surrey’s Elgin Park Marina. (Contributed photo)
$7,500 fine for illegal crab harvest discovered in South Surrey

Laird Goddyn found guilty in Surrey Provincial Court following 2018 investigation

South Surrey’s Meridian Golf Course – a 15-acre property that also includes a residence – has been sold. (Colliers Canada photo)
South Surrey’s Meridian Golf Course sold to new owners

Deal for popular par 3 course expected to close by end of the year

Gerry Vowles (left), Michael Cook, and Dave Sinclair were awarded “Dominion Command Presidential Citations” June 17 in Cloverdale. The rare awards were given out for “exemplary service to the Legion.” (Photo: Malin Jordan)
Three B.C. legionnaires awarded ‘Presidential Citations’

Ceremony took place in Cloverdale June 17

Kaushal Parikh raised $2,840 for COVID-19 relief in India during his almost nine-hour run around the new North Delta Secondary School track on Sunday, June 13, 2021. (Submitted photo)
North Delta ultramarathoner raises over $2,800 for COVID relief in India

Kaushal Parikh ran the 90-km virtual Comrades Marathon around the NDSS track in under nine hours

City of Surrey photo
Surrey starts Slow Streets pilot project

Speed limits have been reduced in six Surrey neighbourhood zones for one year to monitor impact on residents

People line up to get their COVID-19 vaccine at a vaccination centre, Thursday, June 10, 2021 in Montreal. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ryan Remiorz
Vaccines, low COVID case counts increase Father’s Day hope, but risk is still there

Expert says people will have to do their own risk calculus before popping in on Papa

Helen Austin performing with Trent Freeman at the 2018 Vancouver Island MusicFest. Austin is one of the many performers listed for the 2021 event.
Vancouver Island MusicFest goes virtual for 2021

Black Press to stream 25 hours of programming July 9-11

FILE – A science class at L.A. Matheson Secondary in Surrey, B.C. on March 12, 2021. (Lauren Collins/Surrey Now Leader)
Teachers’ union wants more COVID transmission data as B.C. prepares for back-to-school

BCTF says that details will be important as province works on plan for September

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry outlines B.C.’s COVID-19 restart plan, May 25, 2021, including larger gatherings and a possible easing of mandatory masks on July 1. (B.C. government photo)
B.C. records 120 new COVID-19 cases, second vaccines accelerating

Lower Pfizer deliveries for early July, Moderna shipments up

A Heffley Creek peacock caught not one - but two - lifts on a logging truck this month. (Photo submitted)
Heffley Creek-area peacock hops logging trucks in search of love

Peacock hitched two lifts in the past month

The Calgary skyline is seen on Friday, Sept. 15, 2017. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
2 deaths from COVID-19 Delta variant in Alberta, 1 patient was fully immunized

Kerry Williamson with Alberta Health Services says the patients likely acquired the virus in the hospital

The first suspension bridge is the tallest in Canada, with a second suspension bridge just below it. The two are connected by a trail that’s just over 1 km. (Claire Palmer photo)
PHOTOS: The highest suspension bridges in Canada just opened in B.C.

The Skybridge in Golden allows visitors to take in views standing at 130 and 80 metres

BC Green Party leader and Cowichan Valley MLA Sonia Furstenau introduced a petition to the provincial legislature on Thursday calling for the end of old-growth logging in the province. (File photo)
BC Green leader Furstenau introduces old-growth logging petition

Party calls for the end of old-growth logging as protests in Fairy Creek continue

Most Read