KAMLOOPS — Numbers for advance voting in Kamloops are slightly up from last year, but it will take a while to know how voter turnout is impacted in general.
Scott Redgrove is the chief election officer with the City of Kamloops, and he says there was a modest increase of about 20 votes compared to last election's two-day advance voting turnout. There's still one more advance voting day leading up to the general election on Oct. 20, and Redgrove believes some voters are waiting to know more about the candidates before casting their ballots.
"We think this is an important election... we'd really like to see people participate," Redgrove says. "I can remind everybody of the candidates forum that'll be up at TRU on Monday. I've spoken to a lot of people about whether they've voted yet and many of them are saying they're waiting because they want to get more information about the candidates in particular by going up to the forum."
"I think that's a primary challenge for voter turnout is that the people feel they don't know who these folks are, then they're less likely to go out and cast their ballot. So getting that information out or finding a way for voters to get that info is important."
So far, 1,237 Kamloops residents have cast their ballots, up from 1,216 for two advance voting days in 2014.
A good turnout for advance voting doesn't necessarily mean numbers will be up in general for the election, Redgrove explains. Officials are trying to figure out if advance voting days add to the number of voters, or simply glean off of the general voting day.
"I would say it's a good sign if voter turnout is up generally, but it remains to be seen at the end of day on the 20th what the total is, then we'll know if we're up or down," Redgrove says.
Although there's just one advance voting station, Redgrove says the presiding election official reported very minor lineups in the first two advance voting days, with people being processed and voting within about five minutes.
You can cast your ballot on Oct. 17 between 8:00 a.m. and 8:00 p.m. at the Heritage House at 100 Lorne Street, or wait until general voting day. You can find a list of voting stations for Oct. 20 here.
To learn more about City of Kamloops candidates, click here.
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