Nearly 25,000 people cast ballots in Chilliwack

Turnout 10,000 votes higher than in 2014

Nearly 25,000 people voted in Chilliwack’s municipal election on Oct. 20, shattering the total of 14,943 set in 2014.

Voter turnout was strong throughout the day Saturday, with polling stations reporting an average of 2,000 ballots cast hourly.

The busiest polling station was Evergreen Hall, followed by Watson elementary.

In the end, the final tally of preliminary results was 24,703 votes out of an estimated 63,427 eligible voters. That’s a turnout of 38.9 per cent more than the 25.6 per cent from 2014, and even more so the 16.1 per cent in 2011 when Sharon Gaetz was acclaimed.

Advance polls also drew strong numbers, with 965 people voting Oct. 10, and 1,569 taking the opportunity on Oct. 17.

And while it can be noted that even with such a record turnout, that means 61.1 per cent of eligible voters in Chilliwack did not cast a ballot, municipal elections historically have much lower turnouts that provincial or federal elections.

• RELATED: UFV poli sci professor says municipal elections are typically low but a ward system could help

There are multiple factors for this, according to experts, including a perception that municipal government is less important than higher levels, but also the lack of a distinct party system making it harder for voters to make easy choices.

Chilliwack’s 38.9 per cent is actually higher than the provincial average of 36 per cent. That latter number is typical B.C.-wide, but Chilliwack usually ranks well below that.

• READ MORE: Voter turnout at 36% in B.C.’s municipal election

Vancouver had 39 per cent, with Victoria hitting 45 per cent. Abbotsford had 36 per cent, which is about typical for that city.

• READ MORE: VIDEO: Ken Popove wins mayoralty race in Chilliwack


@PeeJayAitch
paul.henderson@theprogress.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

PHOTO: Add flavour to your weekend with the Chilliwack Garlic Festival

The annual garlicky event runs Saturday and Sunday at Fantasy Farms

Fleeing helicopter that landed in Chilliwack part of major cross-border drug bust: documents

The helicopter eventually landed at a rural property near Chilliwack

Vedder Rotary trail network in Chilliwack will be closed for five days on the south side

The upgrade will take until Friday so trail users asked to take alternate routes

Chilliwack encouraged to commemorate liberation of Holland

Planning already underway to mark the 75th anniversary of the event

UPDATE: RCMP confirm body of missing Chilliwack senior found

Ethel ‘Grace’ Baranyk had severe dementia

VIDEO: B.C. Mountie killed by drunk driver honoured by memorial playground

Sarah Beckett Memorial Playground opens with ceremony in Langford

Border crossings across Lower Mainland seeing lengthy delays

Sumas, Peace Arch and Surrey-Blaine border crossings seeing long wait times

Thousands cycle to conquer cancer

The 11th annual Ride to Conquer Cancer took place Saturday morning, Aug. 24 in Surrey, B.C.

PHOTOS: Brazil military begins operations to fight Amazon fires

Amazon fires have become a global issue, escalating tensions between Brazil and European countries

Racist confrontation in Richmond parking lot caught on camera

Woman can be heard yelling racial slurs, swear words at woman in apparent parking dispute

Groups ready campaign to help young voters identify ‘fake news’ in election

The media literacy campaign to focus on identifying misinformation and suspicious sources online

Big rally in northern B.C. draws attention to continuing lumber crisis

Mayor Joan Atkinson says about 400 workers have been directly affected by the closure of the Canfor mill

Orangeville Northmen take Minto Cup at Langley Events Centre

Swept best-of-five series 3-0 over Victoria Shamrocks

Expanded support to help B.C. youth from care attend university still falling short

Inadequate support, limited awareness and eligibility restrictions some of the existing challenges

Most Read