Wednesday, December 19, 2018

Ranked Choice Voting

Ranked choice voting (RCV) allows voters to rank candidates in order of choice. If your top candidate can't win, your vote counts for your next choice, until someone wins with a majority. Utah passed legislation earlier this year to allow cities to pilot ranked choice voting. A presentation was given at the September 25 work meeting. Cities can opt into an RCV pilot program. The opt-in is nonbinding, but cities must declare their intent in a letter to the Lieutenant Governor by December 31, 2018.


After discussion in the December 18 work meeting (shown in the video above), Council issued the following statement of intent:

We, the Municipal Council of Provo City, declare our intent to explore the use of ranked choice voting (RCV) for the 2021 municipal elections. Earlier this year, the Utah Legislature authorized municipalities to use RCV in upcoming nonpartisan municipal elections. We are interested in the possible benefits of RCV, including shorter, less expensive, and more civil campaigns; more reflective and representative results; and less expensive elections. We are also wary of possible negative impacts.

After preliminary study and discussions, we have decided that there is insufficient time to properly engage with the public on the question of RCV before the state-imposed decision deadline for the 2019 elections. Furthermore, since the County is still learning how to effectively administer vote-by-mail elections, we feel that now is not the best time to introduce an additional change.

We look forward to engaging with the voters of Provo to explore whether RCV will be a good fit for the 2021 municipal elections.

- The City Council of Provo


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