Comment 105607

By kevlahan (registered) | Posted October 24, 2014 at 14:55:25 in reply to Comment 105601

The participatory budget processes in wards 1 and 2 were very good first starts. This was not just a plebiscite on projects put forward by council, but the projects themselves were developed and promoted by residents.

One issue with a plebiscite alone is ensuring that those voting have sufficient information about the issues they are voting on. The PB processes put a lot of effort into providing ways for the public to influence the projects put forward (an initiation/consultation step) as well as to learn the details of how the projects would be implemented and the rationale for proposing them.

Hamilton does not have a tradition of "referenda" per se, but a referendum on a major issue would require sufficient time for for/against to campaigns and to generate interest in the question. Just folding a set of questions into another election (municipal or provincial) would not work well, and would not be necessary if internet voting were used (as in the PB's).

If PB became more widespread across Hamilton and repeated over many years then residents would get used to what is involved in directly voting on projects.

Comment edited by kevlahan on 2014-10-24 14:55:47

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