Elections BC is a non-partisan office of the British Columbia legislature responsible for conducting provincial and local elections, by-elections, petitions, referenda, plebiscites in the Canadian province of British Columbia. Its federal equivalent is Elections Canada.
|Jurisdiction||Provincial Elections in BC|
|Headquarters||100-1112 Fort Street, Victoria, British Columbia|
|Employees||44 (Permanent) up to 32,000 (election period)|
|Annual budget||$8,961,000 |
Elections BC (formally, the Office of the Chief Electoral Officer of British Columbia) is a non-partisan office of the British Columbia Legislature responsible for conducting provincial and local elections, by-elections, petitions, referenda, plebiscites in British Columbia. Elections BC compiles and maintains a list of eligible voters as well as sets and adjusts the boundaries of electoral districts.
Elections BC is also responsible for regulating campaign financing and advertising and the registration of political parties. To retain their official status, political parties must file annual financial reports with Elections BC. Registration entitles parties to have their name on the ballot where they run candidates, issue tax receipts and spend on election campaigns. As of 4 November 2015[update], 22 political parties are registered in British Columbia.
In advance of elections, a District Electoral Officer (DEO) and a Deputy District Electoral Officer (DDEO) represent Elections BC in each electoral district and establish a temporary office to conduct the election, often shortly before the writ of election is dropped by the government.
Elections BC is subject to the following legislation: Election Act (1996), Financial Disclosure Act (1996), Local Government Act (1996), the Local Elections Campaign Financing Act (2014)., and the Recall and Initiative Act (1996).
Scheduled election datesEdit
British Columbia was the first province to legislate fixed dates for elections. The next provincial election is set for October 16, 2021.
In 2015, Elections BC spent $5,372,380 to administer the 2015 Metro Vancouver Transportation and Transit Plebiscite, a cost of about $3.44 per voter. A total of 1,572,861 voting packages were issued and 798,262 (51 per cent) returned to Elections BC. About 62 per cent of Metro Vancouver voters rejected a proposal for a half-per-cent sales tax increase to fund a 10-year, $7.5-billion upgrade to transportation by TransLink. About 290,000 voted yes, while 467,000 voted no. About 38,393 ballot packages received by deadline were rejected because they did not meet the requirements of the plebiscite.
Candidacy fees and requirementsEdit
A candidate is required under the Election Act to gather the signatures of 75 valid voters in their electoral district. A nomination deposit of $250 per candidate is required. Candidates who receive 15 per cent of the total vote receive a full refund. All others forfeit the deposit.
Chief Electoral OfficersEdit
Chief Electoral Officers forfeit their right to vote in elections they oversee. They may not be a member of a political party or contribute to candidate campaigns.
The position of Chief Electoral Officer was created in 1947. Prior to that time, the responsibility for overseeing elections had been assigned to the Registrar of the Supreme Court from 1871-1899, then to the Deputy Provincial Secretary from 1899-1940. In 1940, the position of Registrar General of Voters was created to take over some of the Deputy Provincial Secretary’s duties. In 1950, the Chief Electoral Officer was also appointed Registrar General of Voters. The positions were subsequently held jointly until the position of Registrar General of Voters was abolished in 1995. In 1995, the Chief Electoral Officer became an independent Officer of the Legislature.
- Dr. Keith Archer (September 21, 2011 – present)
- Harry Neufeld (November 7, 2002 - June 5, 2010)
- Robert A. Patterson (May 2, 1990 - June 6, 2002)
- Harry Morris Goldberg (April 15, 1980 - May 2, 1990)
- Kenneth Loudon Morton (June 1, 1968 - October 1, 1979)
- Frederick Harold Hurley (April 1, 1947 - June 1, 1968)
Note: Enumeration or voter registration expenses were included in total election expenses up to the 2001 Election. As of 2005, Elections BC excluded enumeration expenses from its calculation of total election expenses.
Candidates per electionEdit
- Elections BC 2007-2008 Annual Report
- http://www.elections.bc.ca/index.php/about/what-we-do/ Elections BC What We Do web page. Accessed October 21, 2015.
- http://www.elections.bc.ca/index.php/about/ About Elections BC web page. Accessed October 21, 2015.
- http://www.bclaws.ca/civix/document/LOC/complete/statreg/--%20E%20--/Election%20Act%20%5BRSBC%201996%5D%20c.%20106/00_Act/96106_09.xml#part9 Election Act, Part 9 — Registration of Political Parties and Constituency Associations
- http://www.elections.bc.ca/docs/fin/Registered-Political-Parties-Information.pdf Registered Political Parties
- http://www.bclaws.ca/civix/document/id/complete/statreg/96106_00 Election Act legislation
- http://www.bclaws.ca/civix/document/id/complete/statreg/96139_01 Financial Disclosure Act legislation
- http://www.bclaws.ca/civix/document/LOC/complete/statreg/--%20L%20--/Local%20Government%20Act%20%5BRSBC%201996%5D%20c.%20323/00_Act/96323_04.xml#section42 Local Government Act, Part 3
- http://www.bclaws.ca/civix/document/id/complete/statreg/14018 Local Elections Campaign Financing Act legislation
- Hui, Stephen (Sep 22, 2015). "Elections B.C. says transit referendum cost $5.4 million". The Georgia Straight. Retrieved 2016-03-03.
- Morton, Brian (2015-09-22). "Elections BC to review rejection of more than 38,000 Transit Plebiscite ballots". The Vancouver Sun. Retrieved 2016-03-03.
- http://www.bclaws.ca/civix/document/LOC/complete/statreg/--%20E%20--/Election%20Act%20%5BRSBC%201996%5D%20c.%20106/00_Act/96106_05.xml#part5 Election Act, Part 5 - Candidates
- http://www.bclaws.ca/civix/document/LOC/complete/statreg/--%20E%20--/Election%20Act%20%5BRSBC%201996%5D%20c.%20106/00_Act/96106_02.xml#section5 Election Act - Election and Other Officials
- "The Chief Electoral Officer". Retrieved 2016-03-03.
- http://www.elections.bc.ca/index.php/about/ceo/ Elections BC CEOs
- http://www.elections.bc.ca/docs/rpt/1996-SOVGeneralElection.pdf General Election Report 1996
- http://www.elections.bc.ca/docs/rpt/2001GEResults/2001-SOVGeneralElection.pdf General Election Results 2001
- http://www.elections.bc.ca/docs/rpt/2001_arep.pdf Elections BC Annual Report 2001
- http://www.elections.bc.ca/docs/rpt/ceofin2001.pdf Report of the Chief Electoral Officer on the 37th Provincial General Election
- http://www.elections.bc.ca/docs/rpt/2005GEResults/SOV-GEcomplete.pdf Elections BC, Statement of Votes, 38th Provincial General Election, May 17, 2005
- http://www.elections.bc.ca/docs/rpt/2005-CEOreportRefOnElectoralReform.pdf Report of the Chief Electoral Officer, 38th Provincial General Election, 2005 Referendum on Electoral Reform, May 17, 2005
- http://www.elections.bc.ca/docs/rpt/2005-TargetedEnumeration.pdf Report of the Chief Electoral Officer, Targeted Enumeration and Voter Registration
- http://www.elections.bc.ca/docs/rpt/2009GE/2009-GE-SOV.pdf Elections BC, Statement of Votes 39th Provincial General Election, May 12, 2009
- http://www.elections.bc.ca/docs/rpt/2009EnumerationReport.pdf Elections BC, Report of the Chief Electoral Officer on the 2009 Enumeration
- http://www.elections.bc.ca/docs/rpt/2013-General-Election-Report.pdf Elections BC, Report of the Chief Electoral Officer on the 40th Provincial General Election, May 14, 2013
- http://www.elections.bc.ca/docs/rpt/96_arep.pdf Elections BC 1995/1996 Annual Report
- http://www.elections.bc.ca/docs/rpt/2001GEResults/2001-SOVGeneralElection.pdf Elections BC, Statement of Votes, 37th Provincial General Election, May 16, 2001
- http://www.elections.bc.ca/docs/rpt/0405AnnualReport.pdf Elections BC Annual Report 2004/2005
- http://www.elections.bc.ca/docs/news/n_050504.pdf BC Chief Electoral Office News Release, 2005 Provincial General Election Nomination of Candidates, May 4, 2005
- http://www.elections.bc.ca/index.php/news/2009-candidates Elections BC news release, Your Candidates for the 2009 Provincial General Election
- http://www.elections.bc.ca/docs/rpt/0809-Annual-Report.pdf Elections BC Annual Report 2008/2009
- http://www.elections.bc.ca/docs/rpt/AR1213SP1316.pdf Elections BC Annual Report 2012/2013