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Initiative Petition Issued by Chief Electoral Officer

January 9, 2017

VICTORIA – Petition sheets for the initiative to amend the Fire and Police Services Collective Bargaining Act were issued today to proponent Joshua Henshaw. Registered canvassers have 90 days to collect signatures from at least 10 percent of the registered voters in each of the province’s current 85 electoral districts.

“In order to sign the petition, individuals must be registered on the provincial voters list as of today and may only sign the petition sheet for the electoral district in which they are registered,” says Chief Electoral Officer Keith Archer. “The proponent must return the signed petition sheets to Elections BC by April 10, 2017.”

There are no registered opponents or any currently registered initiative advertising sponsors for the petition. Individuals or organizations who intend to conduct initiative advertising must register with Elections BC as an advertising sponsor. The proponent must file a financing report with the Chief Electoral Officer within 28 days of submitting the petition.

When the petition is submitted, if it appears that there may be enough signatures to meet the requirements of the Recall and Initiative Act, Elections BC will verify the petition to ensure that those who signed it were entitled to do so. Normally, Elections BC has 42 days to verify a petition after it is submitted. For this petition, per the Recall and Initiative Act, the verification period will be postponed until after the provincial general election scheduled for May 9, 2017.

If verification confirms that the petition has enough valid signatures, and the legislated financing requirements are met by the proponent, the Chief Electoral Officer will send a copy of the initiative petition and the draft Bill to the Select Standing Committee on Legislative Initiatives.

The Select Standing Committee must meet within 30 days of receiving the initiative petition and draft Bill. Within 90 days of their first meeting, the Committee must either table a report recommending introduction of the Bill or refer the initiative petition and the draft Bill to the Chief Electoral Officer for an initiative vote. The next scheduled date for an initiative vote is September 30, 2017.

Initiative legislation came into force with the Recall and Initiative Act, 1995. Ten previous initiative petition applications received approval in principle by the Chief Electoral Officer.

For more information, visit the Elections BC website here.

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Andrew Watson
Communications Manager
Elections BC
Phone: 250-387-1709

Elections BC is an independent, non-partisan Office of the Legislature responsible for administering electoral processes in British Columbia in accordance with the Election Act, Local Elections Campaign Financing Act, Recall and Initiative Act and Referendum Act.