Waterloo rejects online voting, ranked ballot.. ( Why is Doug Craig fighting so hard for this questionable way to cast your ballot?

By  | April 8, 2018 | 5 Comments | Filed under: uncategorized

City will use paper ballots and stick with first-past-the-post system for the 2018 municipal election

NewsNov 21, 2016by Paige Desmond Waterloo Region Record

WATERLOO — Waterloo council will stick with tradition and use paper ballots and the first-past-the-post system for the 2018 municipal election.

Politicians voted Monday not to pursue online voting or use ranked ballots.

“Voting shouldn’t necessarily be that simple,” Coun. Brian Bourke said. “It shouldn’t just be the click of a button.”

Region of Waterloo Coun. Jane Mitchell appealed against Internet voting, citing concerns about confidentiality.

“The secret ballot will always be a problem,” she said.

She said polling locations are the most reliable way to keep ballots secret, the “old school” way.

Resident Dave Suffling said he has about eight years of experience in the computer security industry. He outlined a long list of possible threats to the integrity of online voting and asked council not to proceed with online voting.

“Security is really difficult to get right,” Suffling said.

A previous council voted against using online voting to conduct the last municipal election but staff told council in January they wanted to have another look at the idea.

Scott Witmer was a councillor at the time and spoke Monday.

“It’s pretty hard under our system to force someone to vote for someone they don’t want to … our system also ensures that no one is able to vote more than once,” he said. “Under an electronic system, there is that risk.”

In 2013, when council rejected online voting, a staff report showed few benefits to the move.

The staff report at the time said research from Burlington, Markham, Peterborough and Stratford showed no link between online voting and turnout. They also noted several concerns, including:

• additional costs, estimated at $110,000 at the time;

• inability to recreate ballots in a recount and to audit;

• security risks from hackers;

• inability for candidates or the public to scrutinize the voting process and ensure there’s no coercion or fraud;

• a lack of evidence the system would increase voter turnout or encourage young people to vote;

• several European countries stopped using electronic voting due to transparency and security concerns.

The City of Cambridge was the first local municipality to test Internet voting in 2014.

About 5,100 people, or 20 per cent of the total 25,679 voters, used online voting, according to a Waterloo staff report.

A Cambridge staff report post-election estimated costs related to the new technology at about $60,000.

Also Monday, council voted not to pursue ranked-ballot voting for the 2018 municipal contest.

“We’ve had the first-past-the-post for 149 years for a reason,” Coun. Mark Whaley said.

pdesmond@therecord.com , Twitter: @DesmondRecord




5 Responses to Waterloo rejects online voting, ranked ballot.. ( Why is Doug Craig fighting so hard for this questionable way to cast your ballot?

  1. Terry McAllister April 9, 2018 at 5:56 am

    I noticed that in the opinion section of The Record, a person by the name of Rande Keffer has a good article in there regarding online voting.
    I sure need to come to Council meeting to be made more aware of what they do down there

  2. lvann_11@sympatico.ca'
    Tom Vann April 9, 2018 at 7:43 am

    I read it as well. Good job to inform people of what is happening here. It’s funny how he told Rande that he was in favor of paper ballots then blows up on film. So can one trust what he says? Another nail in the coffin for council members that vote for this style of voting and I think they know it. All over the world, online voting has been revealed as hackable. When the largest city in Canada (Toronto) with all the money to secure a safe online voting system they reject it due to the fact it isn’t secure…but we want it??????? What does that tell you about this council and mayor if it gets used? Is it not strange I have only found 2 people in years that voted for Doug. I think he needs online to win. Council had the courage to let Alex speak to learn and they did learn. That seems why Bush charged at Alex with the fire chief in toe. Houston….we got a problem.

  3. Terry McAllister April 9, 2018 at 8:45 am

    Oh wow…sure does sound like there is a problem down at City Hall…what can citizens do about it?

  4. Very Interested April 9, 2018 at 9:02 am

    Maybe this article needs to be forwarded to all Councillors as well as City Staff…oh wait a minute..they won’t read it because they have their minds set on this system
    My question is why and again I ask why would they want to mess with a tried and true system that both our Federal and Provincial government uses when we vote??
    Is it a case that they have something to hide?
    We really do need to Drain the Swamp in 2018

  5. ltvann@rogers.com'
    Tom Vann May 10, 2018 at 7:25 pm

    Nearly everyone on this planet knows why Doug needs to have online voting. Doug knows better than the stupid Feds and Province right. No way he gets rid of online voting. We saw the mess in 2010 the city did, and all his puppets got re-elected in 2014. Go figure. A month to go before the cops sex case comes up.

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