(CMR) The Cruise Port Referendum Cayman group formally submitted it's verified petition this morning to the Cayman Islands Cabinet via Cabinet Secretary, Samuel Rose one week after the Election's office confirmed that the constitutionally required verification threshold has been met.
The 727-page petition contained 5,305 verified signatures of registered voters and a total of 5,862 signatures. Despite the petition exceeded the constitutionally required 25% the Elections Office stopped verification once that threshold was satisfied.
In a press release, CMR confirms that they are looking forward to the process moving forward:
“We now look forward to the issuance of the Referendum Bill by Cabinet which will outline the referendum date, question, and other important procedural matters such as campaign finance limits, observers, agents and the referendum day public holiday.”
The government has not stated when the referendum will take place but CPR is anticipating a January 2020 date. They shared:
“If the Referendum Bill were to be issued on 23rd September 2019, the earliest date the referendum could be held is 23rd December 2019, therefore effectively January 2020.”
They believe that the 21-day publishing requirement for bills and the issuance of the writ would mean that a 10-week process would be feasible.
Cabinet has not made any indication of a precise date of the process that they intend to follow for the referendum. However, Wesley Howell, Election's Supervisor has indicated that he is already preparing his staff/office for the event so that they stand ready.
CPR is also calling on the government to ensure the question is drafted fairly and an educational campaign is carried out to ensure the general public understand the question and the entire process. They are also asking for a deployment timeframe that will be mindful of postal ballots.