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The Evolution of the Duties to be Fulfilled by Poll Staff with Regards to Registration and Voting on Polling Day and Advance Polling Days, 1920 to 2012

APPENDIX 2: Duties of deputy returning officers and
poll clerks in 1920

Receiving Votes on Polling Day
Officer Duty or Power Sections of
the Dominion Elections Act
DRO Appoint poll clerk 26
DRO Receive from RO ballot papers, certified number thereof, material for voters to mark their ballots, directions for guidance of voters, etc. 45(1)
DRO Receive from RO ballot box, blank poll book, forms for oaths, sealing wax and other relevant stationery 45(4)
DRO Keep material supplied by RO locked in ballot box 46
DRO Furnish to RO name and occupation of poll clerk 47
DRO Procure ballot box whenever RO fails to provide one to DRO 49(4)
DRO or PC Administer oath of secrecy to agents of each candidate who helped a voter to mark his or her ballot 52(2)
DRO Receive applications for transfer certificates from electors entitled to vote under a transfer certificate 53(1)
DRO or PC Receive oath of persons voting under a transfer certificate 53(6)
PC Enter in poll book mention that voter voted under a transfer certificate, number of such certificate and position filled by voter at polling station 53(7)
DRO Upon request by agents and electors present, count ballot papers before opening of the poll 54(1)
DRO Receive votes of electors at polling station 55(6)
DRO At or before opening of poll, cause printed directions to voters to be posted up in conspicuous places in and outside polling station 55(7)
DRO and PC At hour fixed for opening poll, open ballot box and ascertain that there are no ballot papers or other papers therein, then lock box 56(1)
DRO Keep key of ballot box; place box on table in full view of people present 56(1)
DRO Call upon electors to vote 56(2)
DRO Secure admittance of electors into polling station and see that they are not impeded or "molested" (bothered) 56(3)
PC Enter in poll book name and occupation of each elector, with a number before each voter's name 56(4)
DRO and PC May require voters to be sworn in on valid disqualification grounds 58
PC Make additions, alterations and erasures to list of voters, as directed by DRO 59(a)
PC Enter "Voted" in poll book opposite name of each voter who has voted 59(b)
PC Enter "Sworn" or "Affirmed" opposite name of each voter to whom oath or affirmation has been administered, indicating nature of oath/affidavit 59(c)
PC Enter "Refused to be sworn/to affirm/to answer" opposite name of each voter who has done so 59(d)
DRO and PC Maintain and aid in maintaining secrecy of the vote 60
DRO Initial ballot paper, place on back of counterfoil a number corresponding to that placed opposite voter's name in poll book 62(1), 62(6)
DRO Hand ballot paper to voter 62(1)
DRO Instruct voter on how and where to mark ballot paper, fold ballot paper and direct voter to return it when marked 62(2)
DRO Receive marked ballot paper from voter, ascertain by examination of initials, official stamp and number that it is same ballot paper given 62(3)
DRO Remove and destroy counterfoil 62(3)
DRO Deposit ballot in ballot box 62(3)
DRO If counterfoil was not removed before depositing ballot in box, remove counterfoil at counting of ballots 62(3)
DRO Receive from voter ballot paper spoiled by voter, deface it, and deliver another ballot paper in its place 62(4)
DRO Allow a voter to vote if he or she has established to DRO's satisfaction that another voter has previously voted in his or her place 62(5)
DRO or PC Administer to such person appropriate oath, depending on whether name of voter is or is not on list of voters 62(5)
PC Enter in poll book name of voter who has established that another voter has previously voted under the same name 62(6)(a)
PC Note that such voter has voted on a second ballot paper issued under same name, and that oath of identity has been required and taken 62(6)(b)
PC Enter in poll book any objections made on behalf of any candidate, and indicate candidate 62(6)(c)
DRO Receive application from voter who is unable to read or is incapacitated by blindness or other physical cause from voting 62(7)
DRO Require such voter to make oath of his or her incapacity to vote without assistance 62(7)
DRO Assist such voter by marking his or her ballot paper in manner directed by such voter in presence of candidates' agents 62(7)
DRO Place such ballot in ballot box 62(7)
PC Enter in poll book opposite such voter's name reason why such ballot paper was marked for him or her 62(8)
DRO Swear an interpreter when DRO does not understand language spoken by voter 62(9)
DRO Prevent such voter from voting if no interpreter is found 62(9)
DRO In rural polling divisions, receive application from resident voter whose name is not on list of voters and is vouched for by other registered voter 63(1)
DRO or PC Administer oaths to such voter and to registered voter who vouches for such voter 63(1)
DRO Cause applicant's name to be added to list of voters 63(1)
PC Enter "Sworn" beside name of such person on list of voters 63(1)
DRO Be a conservator of the peace invested with all the powers appertaining to a justice of the peace 64(1)
DRO or PC Upon request on behalf of a candidate, take on oath affirmation of persons charging that personation or fraud has been committed 64(2)
DRO May detain or direct the detention of person charged with personation 64(3)
PC Exercise authority of a constable for carrying out provisions of Act respecting summary proceedings in cases of personation 64(7)
DRO Appoint a constable for carrying out provisions of Act respecting summary proceedings in cases of personation 64(7)
DRO May require any person within half a mile of polling station to deliver to him or her any offensive weapon in the hands of such person 65(1)

Counting and Reporting the Vote
Officer Duty or Power Sections of
the Dominion Elections Act
DRO After close of poll, place all spoiled ballots in envelope and seal it 66(1)
DRO Count number of voters whose names appear in poll book as having voted 66(1)
DRO Enter such number in poll book below name of voter who voted last, and sign his or her name thereto 66(1)
DRO Open ballot box and proceed to count number of votes given for each candidate, giving to those present opportunity to examine each ballot 66(1)
DRO Reject ballot papers which have not been supplied by him or her 66(2)(a)
DRO Reject ballot papers marked for more candidates than are to be elected 66(2)(b)
DRO Reject ballot papers upon which there is a mark by which voter could be identified 66(2)(c)
DRO Take a note of objections to ballot papers found in ballot box; number such objections 66(3)
DRO Address any question arising from such objections 66(3)
DRO On back of ballot paper objected to, place number corresponding to the objection 66(3)
DRO Count number of votes for each candidate, number of rejected votes 66(4)
DRO Put ballot papers marked for each candidate into separate envelopes 66(4)
DRO Put rejected, spoiled and unused ballot papers into separate envelopes 66(4)
DRO Identify contents of each envelope 66(4)
DRO Seal each envelope 66(4)
DRO and PC Take and subscribe to oaths in forms 42 and 43, respectively 66(5)
DRO Prepare the statement, in triplicate, of results from the counting of the vote 66(6)
DRO Keep 1 of the 3 copies of this statement 66(6)
DRO Enclose 1 of the 3 copies in a special envelope, to be sealed and deposited in the ballot box 66(6)
DRO Fill blank expense voucher, have it signed by officials entitled to fees, certify the same, place it into envelope to be deposited in ballot box 66(6)
DRO Deliver to each candidate's agents a certificate of the number of votes given for each candidate and number of rejected ballot papers 66(6)
DRO Mail such certificates to each candidate by registered letter to his or her address 66(6)
DRO and PC Place poll book, envelopes and all documents in a large envelope and seal the envelope 66(7)
DRO Place large envelope and 2 other envelopes in ballot box, lock ballot box and seal it 66(7)
DRO Deliver ballot box to RO 66(7)

Advance Polls
Officer Duty or Power Sections of
the Dominion Elections Act
DRO Receive from voter certificate of his or her right to vote 100(9)
DRO Attend signature by voter of statement of identification (Form 53) 100(9)
DRO Receive declaration from voter (Form 54) 100(9)
PC Assist DRO as required, preserving each certificate deposited and marking thereon such notations that would be made in poll book 100(12)
DRO Check whether certificate in Form 53 has been issued by a registrar or revising officer of another electoral district 100(13)
DRO Reject application to vote at advance poll based on such certificates 100(13)
DRO At close of poll each day, unseal and open ballot box 100(14)(a)
DRO Empty ballots (not opened) into special envelope and seal such envelope 100(14)(b)-(c)
DRO Count unused ballots and Form 53 certificates which up to that time have been presented 100(14)(d)
DRO Place unused ballots and Form 53 certificates in another envelope, and seal that envelope 100(14)(f)-(g)
DRO Place both envelopes in ballot box, lock and seal box 100(14)
DRO At re-opening of poll each day, open ballot box, take out and open envelope containing unused ballots 100(14)
DRO Lock the ballot box 100(15)
DRO and PC At the end of regular polling day, open ballot box and sealed envelopes 100(15)
DRO and PC Count votes, etc. in ballot box 100(16)

DRO = deputy returning officer

PC = poll clerk

RO = returning officer