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Limerick sees success with online and phone voting

Election results in the little municipality of Limerick show the shifting nature of who’s voting in cottage country elections.

A report going to its council says that 55 per cent of those eligible casted a vote in October’s municipal election. That’s well higher than the provincial average of just 36 per cent.

Limerick Clerk Victoria Tisdale says phone and online voting systems, like the one used in her municipality, are allowing more people to vote in cottage communities. 

And it seems like voters are now comfortable with online systems, as about 80 per cent of voters used the Internet to vote, compared to 20 per cent by phone.  

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“I think COVID assisted with that,” she says. “Everyone is used to digital technology now. So, I think that played a big role this time.”

“It seems to be pretty positive. There’s always a little bit of negative feedback. Some people prefer the traditional way, but overall it increases accessibility for people who don’t reside here. The election is in October and seasonal residents are back to wherever they came from.” 

Tisdale also says Limerick’s 2022 election turnout was about 23 per cent higher than in 2018. But she says staff can’t take the credit. She says it was a testament to candidates getting out and working for votes.

Limerick’s strong turnout comes despite the fact that there was only a race for mayor, as its entire council was acclaimed. The mayor’s seat was won by Kimberly Carson, who defeated incumbent Carl Stefanski. 

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