The voting record–the best measure of city council’s performance



Here it is, the most comprehensive snapshot of the voting record of Victoria City Council you’re likely to get in advance of the October election. At The Record, we feel this is crucial information every resident should have.

When you stand in the ballot box the third Saturday of October, how can you decide which of the current council members deserve your vote if you don’t know how they voted?

We feel that any incumbent runs on his or her record, which includes votes, debates and other measures of their performance as our representatives.

During the campaign, they may want to focus on the future, which is to be expected, but they should be judged primarily on the hard facts of the last four years.

Non-incumbents have no council records, but they have other experience that is relevant to their suitability as civic elected officials. In the coming weeks, we’ll examine some of the challengers as well, to the best of our ability (there were 32 in the last election).

Now you may ask, why are you trying to drag me away from the last few precious days of summer with all this fuss over a fall election?

Because, as we write this in late August, we’d like you to imagine it’s really a month later.

That’s because civic elections have traditionally (and by law) been held in mid-November. This year, because of a change in that law, the date is Oct. 20.

But what doesn’t change is that for most of us, the campaign starts after Labour Day.

So there’s much less time this year for candidates to get their messages to you and for the rest of us to make our decisions.

This table on voting records tells a story, or many stories. We’d like you to draw your own conclusions by looking at these numbers, and then read our conclusions and a little about the methods we used to assemble this information.

NOTE: the total number of votes by each council member varies due to absences and withdrawals due to possible conflict of interest.

So go ahead and enjoy your last few games of beach volleyball or swims in the Gorge (great thanks to the City and everyone else who cleaned it up the last few years).

But then remember your part in taking care of this jewel of a city at the far end of the world: getting involved in the campaign and the issues, and of course voting on Oct. 20.

Voting record compiled by John Farquharson and Sid Tafler