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Returning Officer's Manual

Chapter 20 – Candidate and Political Party Materials

This Chapter contains the lists, checklists, forms and other documents you are to use when working with candidates and political parties.

20.1 Pre-writ Consultation with Political Parties

Prior to the issue of the Writ of Election, Elections Canada (EC) will ask you, as the returning officer (RO), to hold an information session with political parties to update them on the following items:

Pre-event work

New initiatives

Recruitment of election officials

Nomination paper

How to file

Joint meeting of political parties and candidates

Remote polling stations

Miscellaneous

20.2 Invitation Letter – Pre-writ Consultation with Political Parties (sample)

Date

Priority courier

Designation Name Surname
Representative
Name of political party
Address
City, Province
Postal Code

Subject: Pre-writ consultation with political parties by the returning officer

Dear [Designation Surname]:

I would like to take this opportunity to introduce myself as the ["newly appointed" or " re-appointed "] returning officer for the federal electoral district of [name of ED] ([ED number]). My goal is to ensure an optimal degree of preparedness for the upcoming election. The close cooperation of the local representatives of political parties is one of many key factors that contribute to a successful election.

I would therefore like to invite you, along with the representatives of all parties, to take part in an information session on the following topics:

This session will be held on [Date] at [Name of Place], [Address of Place]. The meeting will start at [Time] and is expected to end at [Time]. I invite you to bring along any information you have gathered on behalf of your party since the last general election to include in our discussions. Please confirm your attendance with me no later than [one week before the meeting] at the following phone number: [Your phone number] or by email at [Email Address].

Thank you for your cooperation. I look forward to meeting you soon.

Yours truly,

Your signature

Your name and surname
Returning officer for [your ED name]
Encl.

20.3 Agenda – Pre-writ Consultation with Political Parties (sample)

Agenda

Pre-writ consultation with political parties by the returning officer for "name of ED" ("ED number")

Table 20a: Agenda - Pre-writ Consultation with Political Parties (sample)

Meeting date and time:

" Month day, year " at " time " a.m. or p.m.

Place

Room name and number
Civic address
City, Province
Postal Code

9:00 Welcoming remarks and overview of meeting objectives
9:20 Round table – presentation of participants
9:40 Overview of pre-event assignments
10:00 Overview of new initiatives
10:20 Joint meeting of political parties and candidates
10:40 Break
11:00 Discussion on the recruitment of election officials and timelines
11:20 Discussion on the filing of nomination papers
11:40 Discussion on remote polls, if applicable
12:00 Other comments and suggestions
13:00 Adjournment

20.4 Follow-up Report – Pre-writ Consultation with Political Parties

Sample – Follow-up Report – Pre-writ Consultation with Political

20.5 Summary – Pre-writ Consultation with Political Parties

Sample – Summary – Pre-writ Consultation with Political Parties

20.6 Nomination of Candidates: Preliminary Verification Checklist

Photocopy and complete one checklist for each candidate filing a Nomination Paper (EC 20010), in the presence of the witness to the consent.

Candidate's name:

Candidate's political affiliation:

Check the following items:

Page 1: DETAILS CONCERNING THE CANDIDATE, THE OFFICIAL AGENT AND THE AUDITOR
Page 5: CANDIDATE'S CONSENT TO NOMINATION AND DESIGNATION OF OFFICIAL AGENT AND AUDITOR
Page 6: DECLARATION OF THE OFFICIAL AGENT
Page 7: OATH OF WITNESS TO CONSENT OF CANDIDATE (Does not have to be completed when the nomination paper is sent electronically)
Pages 13 to 28: ELECTORS CONSENTING TO CANDIDACY
Request the following documents:
Page 9 RECEIPT FOR NOMINATION PAPER AND FOR DEPOSIT

Accepting the deposit:

Elections Canada

Each time a nomination paper is received, immediately scan and send a copy of the following to EC using the online form in your public folders (Quality ControlUploads, 02 – Nomination Paper Pages 1 & 9):

Deposits

20.7 Nomination of Candidates: Detailed Verification Checklist

Photocopy one checklist for each Nomination Paper (EC 20010) to be verified. You have 48 hours from the time the nomination paper is filed to conclude this verification.

Candidate's name:

Candidate's political affiliation:

Date and time verification undertaken:

Date and time verification completed:

Instructions to returning officers

Follow sections 1 to 5 below very carefully. You have 48 hours from the time the nomination paper is filed to complete this detailed verification. Check each confirmation box on the side of this checklist as you go along as soon as any criterion is satisfied. If a nomination does not meet any of the criteria set out in these steps, do not tick the confirmation box. You may have to refuse the nomination, once you have received approval from the Electoral Coordination Help Desk, because of the missing criteria. Advise the candidate by following the instructions in section 4 below.

In verifying the names of electors consenting to the candidate's nomination, use your judgment in accepting names that may be incomplete or similar to other names. If you are satisfied that the elector is the same person as on a list of electors (e.g., Joe instead of Joseph, or L.P. Smith instead of Lucy Patricia Smith), accept the name.

Inform all potential candidates regularly of the progress made in verifying their nomination paper. Candidates should be given every possible opportunity to correct their nomination paper by 2:00 p.m. on Day 21, including adding the names of other electors consenting to their nominations.

Section 1: Verify the name of the candidate in accordance with subsections 66(2) and (3) of the Canada Elections Act

Section 2: Verify the occupation of the candidate

Check that the candidate's occupation is not a title, such as "Member of Parliament". The candidate may use "parliamentarian" instead. If you are unsure whether the occupation provided is acceptable, call the Electoral Coordination Help Desk for guidance.
par. 66(1)(a)(i) and (2)(d)

Section 3: Verify that the electors, who signed pages 13 to 28, consenting to the candidacy, reside in the ED. URGENT.

Section 4: Complete the Notice of Confirmation or Refusal of the Nomination. Refer to the Nomination Paper, page 11.
s. 71

Section 5: Repeat the verification process for any corrected or replaced nomination paper that a candidate provides before 2:00 p.m. on Day 21.
ss. 71(2) and (3)

20.8 List of Candidates Verification Report Checklist

  1. EC produces List of Candidates Verification Report, listing all confirmed candidates exactly as they will appear on the ballot, and sends it to RO (Day 19, after 2:00 p.m.).
    • Locate List of Candidates Verification Report, prepared by EC, in the public folder named RO – DS Documents, [provincial subfolder] [ED number].
    • Check that the ED name and number are correct. If there is a mistake, call the Electoral Coordination Help Desk.
    • Save a copy of the report on your computer in your My Documents folder.
    • Print a copy of the report.
  2. RO verifies each candidate's name, party affiliation and gender.
    • Name is spelled EXACTLY as it appears in Part 1 of the nomination paper.
    • Surname is in UPPERCASE letters and given name is in lowercase letters.
    • Accents, special upper and lowercase letters, and spaces in the name are correct (e.g. Di TOMÈSO).
    • Superscript or subscript letters are correct (e.g. MacNALLY or McNALLY).
    • The party affiliation of the candidate is correct and in both official languages, if applicable.
    • The name and status of the political party has been verified against the final
      List of Political Parties sent from EC to the RO.
    • Candidate's gender is indicated.
    • Candidates' surnames are in strict alphabetical order.
  3. RO finds errors in the report.
    • All errors are corrected directly on the report.
    • A missing candidate's name or information is added directly on the report.
    • Scan and send pages 1, 9 and 11 of the Nomination Paper for any missing candidates to EC using the appropriate online forms in your public folders.
    • Any candidate's requests for changes (5:00 p.m. Day 21) are corrected directly on the report.
    • Scan and send to EC all documentation concerning a candidate's requests for changes.
    • After corrections are made, approve and sign beside each candidate's name.
    • Fill in the total number of confirmed candidates.
    • Sign and certify at the bottom of the report.
    • Scan and send the report to EC.
    • Wait for EC to email the revised report with your corrections and then repeat the above steps until the report is error free.
  4. RO finds no errors in the report.
    • Sign or initial beside each candidate's name, fill in the total number of candidates confirmed, sign the bottom of the form, and scan and send it to EC.
    • Wait for EC to provide camera-ready files by email (to your RO email account) by Day 18.

20.9 Materials to Provide to Confirmed Candidates

Multimedia Kits (K.00003-C) are given to confirmed candidates. Other documents are given on request. Inform confirmed candidates which documents are available.

Once confirmed, a candidate may receive the following documents:

  1. A copy of the Canada Elections Act, in both official languages. Note: an electronic version is available on the Department of Justice website at
    http://laws-lois.justice.gc.ca/eng/acts/e-2.01/.
  2. Give to either the candidate or the official agent, and to no one else, the Multimedia Kit for Federal Political Entities (K.00003-C).

    Each candidate or the official agent is entitled to receive official receipts for contributions. Official receipts are available electronically through Electronic Financial Return (EFR), or in hard copy in packages of 50, by request to EC by the candidate or official agent.
  3. A sufficient quantity of these documents:
    • Authorization of a Candidate's Representative (EC 20020) for appointing representatives at polling stations throughout the ED
    • Guidelines for Candidates' Representatives (EC 20045), detailing the rights and responsibilities of representatives
    • SVR Authorization Form of a Candidate Representative (EC 78057) for appointing representatives at the special ballot coordinator (SBC) office and at the counting of the special ballots in the office
    • SVR Guidelines for Candidates' Representatives (EC 78058), detailing rights and responsibilities of representatives observing the Special Voting Rules (SVR) registration and voting processes (in the SBC office) and during the counting of the special ballots in the RO office
  4. If necessary, copies of the job descriptions of deputy returning officers (DROs), poll clerks and registration officers
  5. Not earlier than Day 31, up to 10 copies of the poll key from REVISE
    ss. 64(4)
  6. A set of polling division maps (one paper copy and one electronic version on a CD) to each candidate (additional copies on request only)
  7. Up to five copies (of each size) of Returning Officer's Aide-Mémoire
    • one copy (paper and USB key) of
      • Preliminary List of Electors
      • Day 19 Lists of Electors (on USB key)
      • Revised List of Electors
      • Official List of Electors
        (up to four additional paper copies may be provided upon request)
    • list of DROs and poll clerks for election day
  8. Refer the confirmed candidate to the EC website to consult the different manuals EC produces.

20.10 Distribution of the Multimedia Kit and Official Tax Receipts to Confirmed Candidates Checklist

20.11 Liaison with Political Parties and Candidates – Joint Meeting

At the latest, on Day 17

Hold a joint meeting of political parties, confirmed candidates and their representatives to update them on the following items:

Polling locations
Rules governing special voting rules (voting by special ballot)
Revision process
Candidates' representatives at polling stations and RO office
Documentation for candidates
Registration process at the polls
The procedure to follow on advance poll days and on election day
Posting or displaying partisan materials
The results on election night
The validation of results
Miscellaneous

Answer possible questions concerning

20.12 Invitation Letter – Joint Meeting of Political Parties and Candidates (sample)

Date

Priority courier

Designation Name Surname
Representative
Name of political party
Address
City, Province
Postal Code

Subject: Joint meeting of political parties and candidates/representatives convened by the returning officer for [name of ED] ([ED number])

Dear [Designation Surname]:

I wish to invite you to a meeting for the political parties, their confirmed candidates and their representatives to allow me, as returning officer for your electoral district, to provide an update on various issues concerning the current election.

The following topics will be discussed:

Your participation will help to ensure the smooth conduct of the election. The meeting will be held on [date] at [name of place], [address of place]. Please refer to the attached agenda and confirm your attendance with me no later than [one week before the meeting] at the following phone number: [RO phone no.] or by email at [Email Address].

Sincerely,

RO signature

RO name and surname
Returning officer for [your ED name]
Encl.

20.13 Agenda – Joint Meeting of Political Parties and Candidates (sample)

Agenda

Sample – Agenda

20.14 Follow-up Report – Joint Meeting of Political Parties and Candidates

Complete one form for each political party or candidate invited to participate.

Sample follow up report

20.15 Summary – Joint Meeting of Political Parties and Candidates

Sample joint meeting of political parties and candidates

20.16 Return of Official Tax Receipts Checklist

The deadline for candidates/official agents to submit their official tax receipts to Elections Canada is a month after polling day.