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Fair Vote Canada-NEWSLETTER -- Conference Report, April 5, 2001 (FWD)

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  • Demorep1@aol.com
    Fair Vote Canada NEWSLETTER -- Conference Report April 5, 2001 CONTENTS: 1) FVC on CPAC 2) National Launch Sets Positive Tone 3) Executive Committee Named 4)
    Message 1 of 1 , Apr 5, 2001
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      Fair Vote Canada

      NEWSLETTER -- Conference Report

      April 5, 2001


      CONTENTS:

      1) FVC on CPAC

      2) National Launch Sets Positive Tone

      3) Executive Committee Named

      4) Our Purpose

      5) Relationships with Other Organizations

      6) Guidelines for Local Chapters

      7) National Council Elections

      8) Membership Development

      9) NDP Bill on Proportional Representation

      -----------------------------------------------


      1) FVC on CPAC


      On Friday, April 6, CPAC (Canadian Parliamentary Affairs Channel) will

      air portions of FVC's "Make Votes Count" conference, which was held

      in Ottawa last weekend.


      Five hours of the speeches and discussions from the conference will

      be shown on a program called The Public Record beginning at 2 pm

      Eastern, 11 am Pacific.


      CPAC's schedule is available at <www.cpac.ca>.


      2) National Launch Sets Positive Tone


      "Making Votes Count", the March 30-31 national launch of Fair Vote

      Canada, was declared a major success by conference organizers after

      participants completed two days of informative and engaging sessions.


      Based on the constructive discussions and lively exchange of ideas on

      campaign strategies, the National Council of Fair Vote Canada followed

      up with a number of key decisions that will lay the groundwork for

      organizational development and the launch of the national campaign.


      Featured speakers at the conference included Judy Rebick, author of

      Imagine Democracy; Jean-Pierre Kingsley, directory general of

      Elections Canada; Paul Howe, research director, Institute for Research

      on Public Policy; Henry Milner, political scientist and editor of Making

      Every Vote Count; and Lorne Nystrom, NDP MP.


      The event was attended by 75 participants, many of whom have

      extensive experience, related expertise and personal contact networks

      that will help build the Fair Vote Canada campaign.


      The conference received media coverage from CPAC, the Sun

      newspapers, Ottawa X Press, CFRA Radio, CHED Radio, Saturday

      Night, the Calgary Herald and others.


      3) Executive Committee Named


      At a meeting in Ottawa on April 1, the National Council nominated and

      approved by consensus the formation of an executive committee, as

      follows:


      -- Larry Gordon, president

      -- Doris Anderson, vice president

      -- Troy Lanigan, executive committee member

      -- Gail Turner, executive committee member

      -- Julian West, executive committee member


      4) Our Purpose


      The National Council approved the following as Fair Vote Canada's

      statement of purpose:


      The primary purpose of FVC is to gain broad support for a national

      process to enable Canadian voters to choose which voting system

      shall be used to elect their representatives.


      FVC believes that Canadians must have an opportunity to learn about

      and compare today’s voting systems with those which would better

      meet such objectives as: 1) broad proportionality, 2) extended voter

      choice, 3) stable and responsive government, and 4) maintaining a link

      between representatives and geographic constituencies.


      FVC will raise funds, develop a national membership base and institute

      a series of education and action programs to meet these goals.


      5) Relationships with Other Organizations


      The National Council discussed the issue of relationship with other

      organizations and businesses. Should they endorse us, or become

      associate members, or become full members? What privileges (if any)

      should they be entitled to?


      Council members Julian West, Richard Swift and Matt Gloyd will

      review the issue, survey potential group supporters as to what they

      would expect from us, and make a recommendation regarding relations

      with other groups.


      6) Guidelines for Local Chapters


      The issue of local chapters was also discussed at the National Council

      meeting.


      -- FVC and the National Council will develop guidelines for the

      chapters. Chapters must apply to the National Council for recognition.


      -- Guidelines are of paramount importance as they will be aimed at

      keeping the chapter focused on our agenda.


      -- The membership fees will go to the national budget. Local chapters

      will be able to keep all funds from local fundraising.


      Council members Brian Gibb, Dan Biocchi and Gail Turner will develop

      guidelines addressing the above concerns to be tabled by mid-May.


      7) National Council Elections


      The National Council agreed that the first election for the council would

      be held once FVC has 1000 dues-paying members -- an increase form

      the original proposal for a threshold of 250 members. The threshold

      was increased to ensure that the elections would involve a wider-range

      of supporters across the country.


      The election will be for all 15 positions on the Council, with 5 people

      elected to 3-year terms; 5 elected to 2-year terms and 5 elected to

      1-year terms. All subsequent annual elections will be for 5 positions for

      3-year terms.


      The Elections Committee tabled its proposal for how nominations,

      campaigns and balloting would be conducted. It recommends that the

      vote be cast using a Single Transferable Vote.


      8) Membership Development


      FVC is developing a brochure to promote memberships and donations.

      The cost of membership will be an annual fee of $25, or $10 for those

      of limited means.


      9) NDP Bill on Proportional Representation


      NDP electoral reform critic Lorne Nystrom took another step in his

      ongoing campaign to modernize Canada's electoral system by

      introducing in the House of Commons a private member's bill calling for

      proportional representation.


      The introduction of the bill on March 29 coincided with FVC's "Making

      Votes Count" conference which was held on Parliament Hill under Mr.

      Nystrom's sponsorship.


      Mr. Nystrom's bill would initiate a process of public consultation that

      might lead to a national referendum on proportional representation.


      -----------------------------------------------


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      Visit us at: http://www.fairvotecanada.org


      Fair Vote Canada

      26 Maryland Blvd.

      Toronto, ON

      M4C 5C9

      Ph: 416-410-4034
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