Fernand (left) and Doreen Desroches stand just outside of the advance voting location at Parksville Elementary School (330 Craig St.) after voting Wednesday, May 3. This location remains open for voting until 8 p.m. Tuesday, May 9. — Adam Kveton Photo

Race is neck-and-neck as election day arrives

Polls open until 8 p.m. May 9

A month of non-stop campaigning wraps up tonight when polls close at 8 p.m. on the 2017 B.C. provincial election.

Elections B.C. on Monday reported record turnout for advance voting across the province, including on Vancouver Island. More than 10,500 voters in the Parksville-Qualicum riding cast their ballots in advance of today’s general election vote, nearly a quarter of the registered voters in the riding.

Elections B.C. increased the number of advance voting days to six from the four early voting days available in the last election in 2013.

Entering the final weekend of the campaign, the B.C. Liberal Party and the B.C. NDP were locked in a neck-and-neck race provincewide. Polling through May 7 showed the NDP with a slender edge in overall voting, but projected the Liberals winning a narrow majority of seats in the provincial legislature.

On Vancouver Island, the NDP boasted a strong edge overall, with the party projected to win 10 seats and the Liberals and the B.C. Green Party two each.

Local polling spots for the Parksville-Qualicum riding, open today from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., are the Christian Fellowship Centre, 825 Village Way, and the Qualicum Beach Civic Centre, 747 Jones St., in Qualicum Beach; Nanoose Place, 2925 Northwest Bay Rd. in Nanoose Bay; Parksville Elementary School, 330 Craig St., Parksville Fellowship Baptist Church, 550 Pym St. N., St. Columba Presbyterian Church, 921 Wembley Rd., in Parksville; and the Lasqueti Community Hall, 206 Main Rd. on Lasqueti Island.

Local polling places for the Mid Island-Pacific Rim Riding include the Bradley Centre, 975 Shearme Rd. in Coombs; the Lighthouse Community Centre, 240 Lions Way in Bowser; and Fanny Bay Community Hall, 7793 Island Hwy. S. in Fanny Bay.

The Parksville Qualicum Beach News will have its team out Tuesday night gathering results and reaction from local candidates, and will team with our Island partners at the Alberni Valley News to provide regular updates on the Mid Island-Pacific Rim riding.

Be sure to follow along at www.pqbnews.com and @parksvillenews at www.twitter.com, #PQelection17.

— NEWS Staff