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Duncan supports fall ballot to measure voters' amalgamation wishes

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Duncan voters will be asked during this fall's vote if they favour amalgamation with North Cowichan.

That question was recommended by Duncan's committee of the whole after the city's joint meeting with North Cowichan councillors Monday, Mayor Phil Kent said.

In respect for the city, North Cowichan councillors decided last week against putting the amalgamation question on its Nov. 15 civic-election ballot until discussing the idea with their Duncan colleagues.

Kent said the question's exact wording will be penned by staff of both municipalities, then go to their respective councils for debate in the coming weeks.

"I hope it's the same wording on both ballots," he said.

The non-binding polls would simply gauge public appetite for melding the two municipalities.

If supported, Duncan and North Cowichan would do studies and public-opinion sessions toward a referendum about amalgamation. The marriage could potentially end duplication of services and unnecessary taxes, usher efficiencies, and offer other benefits.

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