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Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Kawartha Lakes Election 2014 - Electoral Map Divides Rural Voters![editorial]

Kawartha Lakes Election 2014 - Hodge Podge Electoral Map Divides Rural Voters

Monday, October 27, 2014 City of Kawartha Lakes Regular Municipal Election will be held. Who will be the best candidate to serve our rural area? Perhaps someone who will fix the electoral map.
Why fix the electoral map?  Each person gets to cast one ballot for each of: mayor, school board trustee, and councillor no matter how many properties they own or rent. A person votes where their primary residence is, except in the case of non-residents who may choose one ward to vote in where they rent or own property. Which ward do you vote in? Our rural area has been divided rather oddly.

Kawartha Lakes Election 2014 - Ward Boundaries Impeding Rural Decisions? 

Kawartha Lakes Ward Boundaries Negatively Affecting Rural Voters?
Currently, no one from any wards in our area has put their hat in the ring for the position of Mayor. Who would best serve our rural area? Perhaps someone who would redraw the ward boundaries.
Current ward boundaries separate people with common concerns from each other by pigeonholing them into different wards. Being separated into different electoral wards makes it difficult for area residents to resolve common concerns. A farmer in former Ops township, for example, may need to deal with four different councillors to resolve an issue depending where his fields are located.
Whenever boundaries are drawn for electoral purposes, it is important to ask- whose purposes are being served by these boundaries? If voting boundaries are not serving citizens living within these areas, why are they not changed?
Let's examine the Electoral Map.

Kawartha Lakes Electoral Map

City of Kawartha Lakes is divided into 16 electoral wards. Many former townships are split apart in the current Kawartha Lakes electoral map. Ops Township has its residents split into 4 different wards - each quarter having its voters lumped in with the Town of Lindsay. Are the concerns of rural Ops voters the same as Lindsay residents? What do you think? Who do you think benefits from Ops Township voters being split apart and lumped with town of Lindsay voters?

City of Kawartha Lakes Electoral Map 2014
Since amalgamation, many Kawartha Lakes decisions have become Lindsay centric.
Did you know residents in Ops pay up to $600 on their tax bill for policing by City of Kawartha Lakes Police services while other rural areas like Coboconk served by OPP currently only pay $195?
Why care?
City of Kawartha Lakes Municipal Government provides Omemee, and much of our surrounding area with a multitude of services that affect our daily lives such as roads, water, sewer, landfill, fire, ambulance, home for the aged, social services, transit, licensing, parks, recreation, libraries, planning, building, by-law enforcement, economic development, business development, agricultural development, social housing, and municipal airport. Every 4 years, municipal elections are held in Kawartha Lakes. Eligible electors may vote for mayor, councillor, and school board trustee. Are you an eligible voter for this election? To vote in City of Kawartha Lakes 2014 Election you must:

  1. Be a Canadian citizen; and 
  2. Be at least 18 years old; and
  3. Live in the City of Kawartha Lakes; OR you or your spouse own or rent property in City of Kawartha Lakes; and
  4. Not be prohibited from voting under any law.

City of Kawartha Lakes Mayoral Candidates

The following people have declared their willingness to take home the mayor's pay check, so which of these job candidates will best represent you?

  •  Bill Denby 3900 Highway 35 N, Cameron, ON K0M 1G0 705-340-5309 H 705-359-1602 B 
  • Andy Letham 12 Northview Street, Cameron, ON K0M 1G0 705-928-4898 
  •  John Macklem 18 Suter Drive, Kirkfield, ON K0M 2B0 705-454-3043 H 705-879-3317 C 
  •  Donna Villemaire 41 Sugar Bush Trail Little Britain, ON K0M 2C0 705-928-1179 C 705-786-1370 H 
  •  Brenda Lee Karagiannis 81 Albert Street, South, Lindsay, ON K9V 3H5 705-341-2612 
What dare your opinions on this issue?
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