Local Government Governance & Powers

Municipalities and regional districts in B.C. are empowered by provincial legislation to govern in a wide range of areas. Local government governance and powers focus specifically on how municipal councils and regional district board of directors organize, operate, provide services and make themselves accountable to their communities.

The processes involved in local government governance and powers include:

  • General local elections
  • Service provision
  • Establishment and enforcement of bylaws and other regulations
  • Collaboration and relationship-building between local governments, other levels of government and with First Nations

Local government governance and powers are established by provincial legislation such as the Local Government Act and Community Charter, which set out on the regulatory and administrative structures, powers and abilities of municipalities and regional districts to provide services that reflect their communities' needs and desires.

General Local Elections

General local elections in B.C. are held every four years on the third Saturday in October. The next general local elections will be held on Saturday, October 20, 2018.

General local elections (and by-elections) are the most direct way for the public to influence their local government, school district or other local governance body by determining the individuals who then make decisions and govern on their behalf following general voting day.

Conduct of Locally Elected Officials

Legislation sets out key roles and responsibilities of locally elected officials. How those officials conduct themselves as individuals and as part of a collective of decision-making bodies is key to carrying out those responsibilities.