Canada Elections Act

Part 17

Third Party Election Advertising

Definitions

349. The definitions in this section apply in this Part.

"election advertising"
« publicité électorale »

"election advertising" has the same meaning as in section 319.

"election advertising expense"
« dépenses de publicité électorale »

"election advertising expense" means an expense incurred in relation to

"expenses"
« dépenses »

"expenses" means

"group"
« groupe »

"group" means an unincorporated trade union, trade association or other group of persons acting together by mutual consent for a common purpose.

"third party"
« tiers »

"third party" means a person or a group, other than a candidate, registered party or electoral district association of a registered party.

Spending limit

350. (1) A third party shall not incur election advertising expenses of a total amount of more than $150,000 during an election period in relation to a general election.

Spending limit – electoral district

(2) Not more than $3,000 of the total amount referred to in subsection (1) shall be incurred to promote or oppose the election of one or more candidates in a given electoral district, including by

Expenses re party leader

(3) The limit set out in subsection (2) only applies to an amount incurred with respect to a leader of a registered party or eligible party to the extent that it is incurred to promote or oppose his or her election in a given electoral district.

Spending limit – by-election

(4) A third party shall not incur election advertising expenses of a total amount of more than $3,000 in a given electoral district during the election period of a by-election.

Third party inflation adjustment factor

(5) The amounts referred to in subsections (1), (2) and (4) shall be multiplied by the inflation adjustment factor referred to in section 414 that is in effect on the issue of the writ or writs.

No combination to exceed limit

351. A third party shall not circumvent, or attempt to circumvent, a limit set out in section 350 in any manner, including by splitting itself into two or more third parties for the purpose of circumventing the limit or acting in collusion with another third party so that their combined election advertising expenses exceed the limit.

Advertising must name third party

352. A third party shall identify itself in any election advertising placed by it and indicate that it has authorized the advertising.

Registration requirement for third parties

353. (1) A third party shall register immediately after having incurred election advertising expenses of a total amount of $500 and may not register before the issue of the writ.

Application for registration

(2) An application for registration shall be sent to the Chief Electoral Officer in the prescribed form and shall include

Declaration of financial agent to accompany application

(3) An application under subsection (2) must be accompanied by a declaration signed by the financial agent accepting the appointment.

New financial agent

(4) If a third party's financial agent is replaced, it shall, without delay, provide the Chief Electoral Officer with the new financial agent's name, address and telephone number and a declaration signed by the new financial agent accepting the appointment.

Trade union or corporation

(5) If the third party is a trade union, corporation or other entity with a governing body, the application must include a copy of the resolution passed by its governing body authorizing it to incur election advertising expenses.

Examination of application

(6) The Chief Electoral Officer shall, without delay after receiving an application, determine whether the requirements set out in subsections (1) to (3) and (5) are met and shall then notify the person who signed the application whether the third party is registered. In the case of a refusal to register, the Chief Electoral Officer shall give reasons for the refusal.

Application rejected

(7) A third party may not be registered under a name that, in the opinion of the Chief Electoral Officer, is likely to be confused with the name of a candidate, registered party, registered third party or eligible party.

Registration ends

(8) The registration of a third party is valid only for the election period during which the application is made, but the third party continues to be subject to the requirement to file an election advertising report under subsection 359(1).

Appointment of financial agent

354. (1) A third party that is required to register under subsection 353(1) shall appoint a financial agent who may be a person who is authorized to sign an application for registration made under that subsection.

Financial agent – ineligible persons

(2) The following persons are not eligible to be a financial agent of a third party:

S.C. 2001, c. 27, s. 212.

Requirement to appoint auditor

355. (1) A third party that incurs election advertising expenses in an aggregate amount of $5,000 or more must appoint an auditor without delay.

Eligibility criteria

(2) The following are eligible to be an auditor for a third party:

Ineligibility criteria

(3) The following persons are not eligible to be an auditor for a third party:

Notification of appointment

(4) Every third party, without delay after an auditor is appointed, must provide the Chief Electoral Officer with the auditor's name, address, telephone number and occupation and a signed declaration accepting the appointment.

New auditor

(5) If a third party's auditor is replaced, it must, without delay, provide the Chief Electoral Officer with the new auditor's name, address, telephone number and occupation and a signed declaration accepting the appointment.

Registry of third parties

356. The Chief Electoral Officer shall maintain, for the period that he or she considers appropriate, a registry of third parties in which is recorded, in relation to each third party, the information referred to in subsections 353(2) and 355(4) and (5).

Authorization by financial agent for expenses, etc.

357. (1) Every contribution made during an election period to a registered third party for election advertising purposes must be accepted by, and every election advertising expense incurred on behalf of a third party must be authorized by, its financial agent.

Delegation

(2) A financial agent may authorize a person to accept contributions or incur election advertising expenses, but that authorization does not limit the responsibility of the financial agent.

Prohibited use of certain contributions

(3) No third party shall use a contribution for election advertising if the third party does not know the name and address of the contributor or is otherwise unable to determine within which class of contributor referred to in subsection 359(6) they fall.

Prohibition – use of foreign contributions

358. No third party shall use a contribution for election advertising purposes if the contribution is from

S.C. 2001, c. 27, s. 213.

Election advertising report

359. (1) Every third party that is required to be registered in accordance with subsection 353(1) shall file an election advertising report in the prescribed form with the Chief Electoral Officer within four months after polling day.

Contents of report

(2) An election advertising report shall contain

When no expenses

(3) If a third party has not incurred expenses referred to in paragraph (2)(a) or (b), that fact shall be indicated in its election advertising report.

Contributions

(4) The election advertising report shall include

Loans

(5) For the purpose of subsection (4), a contribution includes a loan.

Categories

(6) For the purposes of paragraphs (4)(a) and (b), the following are the classes of contributor:

Names must be provided

(7) If the third party is unable to identify which contributions were received for election advertising purposes in the period referred to in paragraph (4)(a), it must list subject to paragraph (4)(b.1) the names and addresses of every contributor who donated a total of more than $200 to it during that period.

Declaration

(8) An election advertising report shall include the signed declarations of the financial agent and, if different, of the person who signed the application made under subsection 353(2) that the report is accurate.

Bills, receipts

(9) A third party shall, at the request of the Chief Electoral Officer, provide the original of any bill, voucher or receipt in relation to an election advertising expense that is in an amount of more than $50.

S.C. 2001, c. 21, s. 20.

Auditor's report

360. (1) The election advertising report of a third party that incurs $5,000 or more in election advertising expenses must include a report made under subsection (2).

Auditor's report

(2) The third party's auditor shall report on the election advertising report and shall make any examination that will enable the auditor to give an opinion in the report as to whether the election advertising report presents fairly the information contained in the accounting records on which it is based.

Statement

(3) An auditor shall include in the report any statement that the auditor considers necessary, when

Right of access

(4) The auditor shall have access at any reasonable time to all of the documents of the third party, and may require the third party to provide any information or explanation, that, in the auditor's opinion, is necessary to enable the auditor to prepare the report.

Corrections to election expenses report

361. The Chief Electoral Officer may make a correction in a report referred to in subsection 359(1) if the error does not materially affect the substance of the report.

Publication

362. The Chief Electoral Officer shall, in the manner he or she considers appropriate,



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