Time to have your say

Published on October 28, 2016

As Islanders we have from noontime Saturday, Oct. 29 until Nov. 7 to have our say on electoral reform.

Do we stick with the current First Past the Post model or to we shift to one of the other four models that appear on the plebiscite ballot – First Past the Post plus leaders, Mixed Member Proportional, Dual Member Proportional or Preferential Vote? It’s our choice. If you already know the best option, by all means, cast a phone or online vote.

Not sure? Then take some time this weekend and consider the options. Online and phone voting goes Oct. 29 to Nov. 7 and in-person voting will be held across the province Nov. 4 and 5. Also, 16- and 17-year-olds are eligible to vote in this plebiscite.

The voting method, the age of some of the voters and the potential to change the circumstances for electing our political representatives make this an historic plebiscite, one that generating interest right across the country.

 

Halloween

There have been several cases of mischief reported across P.E.I. this month labeled as pre-Halloween activity.

That’s one kind of description for it. A more accurate description is criminal activity. Many of the pranks, and especially the ones involving fire, require an emergency response. Firefighters, many of them volunteers, have to drop whatever they are doing and respond to those activities. It takes them away from jobs, family and sleep. The criminal actions also put the public at risk. Fires can spread. Debris on roadways could cause drivers to lose control of their vehicles.

And if someone gets caught, ‘well, it was just a prank.’ No, it’s not just a prank. It’s an action that causes destruction and disruption. Repairing damaged property costs money, and those who cause damage need to know they are the ones who should be paying for the repairs. It’s not something that can be condoned on Halloween and there’s no such thing as pre-Halloween. Vandalism is vandalism. Arson is arson. They are crimes any day of the year.

 

Winter’s coming

The first snowflakes of the season fell on parts of Prince Edward Island this week. For most of us, especially at this time of the year, they were the right kind of flakes, the disappearing kind.

But we can’t get too cocky about that. Soon those flakes will start piling up. Roads will get slippery, then clogged. If we haven’t started already, it’s time to get thinking about winter and the need for winter tires, weather-proofing and, for some, warmer climates. Travel safely.

 

Congratulations to Diane Griffin

Congratulations to Diane Griffin on being recommended for appointment to the Canadian Senate. The next step seems to be merely a formality. Griffin has distinguished herself in natural area conservation and environmental sustainability. We trust that background will serve Islanders and Canadians well in the Senate. Like eight other Canadians recommended for Senate appointment by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on Thursday, Diane Griffin goes in as an independent senator. In short, she can put interests of Canadians ahead of party politics. Hurray for that.