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Province asks Elections BC to look into Internet voting

VANCOUVER (NEWS1130) – Internet voting could be a step closer to reality here. The government is getting Elections BC to look into it.

Nola Western, Deputy Chief Electoral Officer for funding and disclosure, says Justice Minister Shirley Bond asked for this to happen. “The Attorney General and Minister of Justice has requested that the Chief Electoral Officer convene a panel that he will chair.”

It could mean “the possibility of Internet voting in British Columbia both at the provincial level and the local government level.”

Western says the panel will come together this fall.

“We expect to have the panel formed and their first meeting in late September or early October and then once the panel has met and established a work plan, that panel will determine a target date for the report,” she tells us.

The panel will identify any possible technological or logistical barriers over security, safety, privacy, and anonymity before considering implementation. She adds there will be a public consultation process as well.

“The independent panel review will help to start a broader conversation about modernizing BC’s electoral process,” reads a release from the Ministry of Justice. “Internet voting is a topic of interest for many British Columbians, as well as a number of BC municipalities.”

Western emphasizes Internet voting is not a sure thing; for now, it’s just a possibility.