Speculation about a fall election ended on Monday morning when Premier John Horgan asked Lieutenant Governor Janet Austin to dissolve the legislature.
B.C. voters will head to the polls on Saturday, Oct. 24. Mail-in ballots and expanded advance voting opportunities are expected to be used due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The election call came following a spate of government announcements about project funding and resignations of NDP cabinet ministers in the past two weeks.
“We can either delay that decision and create uncertainty and instability over the 12 months,” he said, “or we can do what I believe is always the right thing, and ask British Columbians what they think.”
A promise to not call an election until October of 2021 had been part of the agreement between the Greens and NDP that has allowed the NDP to govern with the support of the Green party.
Saanich North and the Islands MLA Adam Olsen was critical of the call.
“I am disturbed that we are going to be heading into an election — a snap election — in the middle of a pandemic,” he told the Driftwood. “I’m very wary of the case that has been made by the premier as to why we need to be doing that. I don’t agree. I don’t think the instability he referred to in the legislature exists.”
Olsen has been acclaimed the Green party candidate for his riding.
Stephen Roberts, who was the BC Liberal candidate in the 2017 and 2013 elections, confirmed Tuesday that he will run again in Saanich North and the Islands.
In the 2017 election, Olsen won the riding with 41.95 per cent of the popular vote. NDP incumbent Gary Holman had 30.56 per cent and Roberts had 26.46 per cent for the Liberals.