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2015–16 Estimates – Report on Plans and Priorities

New Legislation

Legislation Enacted Within the Past Year

Bill Details and Impact
C-15 – An Act to replace the Northwest Territories Act to implement certain provisions of the Northwest Territories Lands and Resources Devolution Agreement and to repeal or make amendments to the Territorial Lands Act, the Northwest Territories Waters Act, the Mackenzie Valley Resource Management Act, other Acts and certain orders and regulations (Northwest Territories Devolution Act) In relevant part, this enactment changes the manner in which members of the legislative assemblies of the Northwest Territories, Yukon and Nunavut are referred to in certain sections of the Canada Elections Act. This amendment is purely technical and has no substantive effect on the relevant provisions. The Northwest Territories Devolution Act received Royal Assent on March 25, 2014.  
C-23 –An Act to amend the Canada Elections Act and other Acts and to make consequential amendments to certain Acts (Fair Elections Act) The Fair Elections Act makes substantial amendments to the Canada Elections Act affecting most areas of Elections Canada’s operations, including electoral operations and political financing. The Fair Elections Act moves the Commissioner of Canada Elections to the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions. Bill C-23 received Royal Assent on June 19, 2014.
C-37 – An Act to change the names of certain electoral districts and to amend the Electoral Boundaries Readjustment Act (Riding Name Change Act, 2014) This enactment changes the names of 30 electoral districts (in Quebec, Ontario, Saskatchewan, Alberta and British Columbia) and amends the Electoral Boundaries Readjustment Act to change the name of the electoral district of the Northwest Territories. The Riding Name Change Act, 2014 received Royal Assent on June 19, 2014.

Legislation Before Parliament

Among the bills currently before the House of Commons and the Senate, one government bill, 16 private members’ bills and one Senate public bill may have an impact on Elections Canada’s affairs. Several of the private members’ bills were introduced in the preceding parliamentary session and continued the legislative process in the present session.

Bill Details and Impact
C-50 – An Act to amend the Canada Elections Act Bill C-50 relates primarily to the Special Voting Rules under Part 11 of the Canada Elections Act. It would require special ballot applicants from abroad to prove their citizenship, while harmonizing and clarifying the rules governing proof of identity and residence. It would also allow Citizenship and Immigration Canada to share information on non-citizens with Elections Canada.
Private members' bills Nine private members' bills propose amendments to the Canada Elections Act: Bill C-355 and Bill C-450, changing voting hours; Bill C-368, lowering the voting age; Bill C-453, prohibiting fraudulent voice mail transmissions; Bill C-503, requiring that nomination papers be signed by executives of the candidate's electoral district association; Bill C-524, requiring election advertising taglines outside election periods; Bill C-559 and Bill C-586, amending the candidate nomination process; and Bill C-575, allowing all Canadian citizens to vote in a federal election, regardless of their place of residence.

A private member's bill (C-396) would amend the Electoral Boundaries Readjustment Act to ensure that Northern Ontario maintains a minimum of 10 electoral districts. Three other private members' bills (C-209, C-226 and C-332) propose changes to the names of electoral districts.

A private member's bill (C-470) would require the Government of Canada to negotiate with Quebec if that province's electors vote in favour of a constitutional change in a referendum.

A private member's bill (C-210) would amend the Parliament of Canada Act to trigger a by-election when an MP changes political parties (if elected as a member of another party) or joins a party (if elected as an independent).

A private member's bill (C-520) affects all agents of Parliament, including the Chief Electoral Officer. It provides that agents and their staff behave in a non-partisan manner and make public any past partisan activities.

S-215 – An Act to amend the Canada Elections Act (election expenses) This Senate public bill would amend the Canada Elections Act to extend the limits on election expenses to pre-election advertising expenses in the three-month period prior to an election period.