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Official Proponent - NO to the Single Transferable Vote - May 2009 Referendum

NEWS RELEASE Tuesday May 5, 2009

NO STV welcomes support from both business and labour in saying No to the Single Transferable in May 12 referendum; Vancouver Board of Trade and Canadian Union of Public Employees-BC both oppose STV

VANCOUVER - NO STV, the group opposing the Single Transferable Vote, today welcomed support from both business and labour organizations who are advising their members to reject STV in the May 12 provincial referendum on electoral systems.

NO STV President Bill Tieleman said today it is very encouraging that both the Vancouver Board of Trade and the BC division of the Canadian Union of Public Employees have publicly stated their opposition to STV.

"The fact that groups representing both employers and workers are rejecting the Single Transferable Vote sends a clear message to BC voters," Tieleman said. "These two organizations often have very different perspectives on public policy issues but when it comes to STV, business and labour both agree - it's a bad idea for BC."

In a letter sent to all Vancouver Board of Trade members, Chair and CEO Dr. Don Rix said the organization studied the implications of STV and recommends voting to reject it and keep the existing First Past The Post system.

Rix said the Board is concerned that reducing 85 one-member ridings to just 20 large multiple-member ridings for all of BC under STV would result in "less effective local representation" and that in major cities the number of names on election ballots "would be "enormous".
Rix also says the Board is concerned that STV would create political instability, minority governments, more frequent elections, and that: "Constant coalition governments could threaten sound public and economic policy in our province."

"The STV process likely compromises the clarity of the voting process, the impact of a citizen's vote and the stability of our political process and provincial governance. As a result, The Board of Trade does not support the STV vote as being in the best interest of our members, your businesses or our province," Rix writes, while adding that the Board does support electoral reform.

CUPE BC reminds members that its 2005 convention passed a resolution
" encouraging members to oppose the STV" and that " the resolution expressed concern over the complexity of the system, the loss of access to local elected officials and the possibility that one part of a large riding could dominate the whole riding."

The Vancouver Board of Trade letter to members is online at:

The CUPE -BC position is online at:



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