Liberals and NDP offer solutions to low voter turnout
Published Friday, February 26, 2010 2:16PM MST
Albeta opposition parties are suggesting ways to lure more people to the ballot box.
The provincial New Democratic Party wants to look at fining eligible voters who don't cast a ballot. "I think people have rights and obligations in our society and I think participating in the collective governance of our society is an obligation that all citizens should take seriously," says Brian Mason, the leader of the NDP.
The Liberals are suggesting a tax break for those who do vote. "I would be inclined to give people an incentive rather than a penalty for voting – maybe a tax deduction or some tax credit if you vote – that sort of thing," says David Swann, the leader of the Liberals.
Premier Stelmach has rejected both suggestions saying voting is a person's civic duty and that should be enough incentive.
Only 40 percent of eligible voters turned out in the last provincial election.
It was the lowest turn out in Alberta's provincial election history.
Following the last election, the former chief electoral officer made over 180 recommendations to improve the turnout.
The province has decided to accept less than a third of those recommendations.