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August 18, 2008 – Advanced Polling

SEPTEMBER 22, 2008 BY-ELECTION
in the ELECTORAL DISTRICT of
DON VALLEY WEST



ADAPTATION OF THE CANADA ELECTIONS ACT
PURSUANT TO SUBSECTION 17(1) OF THAT ACT
FOR THE PURPOSES OF ADVANCE POLLING



WHEREAS a by-election was called on August 17, 2008 in the electoral district of Don Valley West;

WHEREAS the Canada Elections Act provides for fewer election officers at advance polls than for ordinary polls on polling day;

WHEREAS the Act did not foresee that a growing number of electors are choosing to vote at advance polls;

WHEREAS certain advance polling stations may consequently have a very high number of ballots to count;

WHEREAS the deputy returning officer and poll clerk are responsible for the counting of votes;

WHEREAS the Act does not provide for the appointment of additional election officers where necessary to effectively conduct an advance poll;

AND WHEREAS subsection 17(1) of the Act prescribes the following:

17. (1) During an election period or within 30 days after it, if an emergency, an unusual or unforeseen circumstance or an error makes it necessary, the Chief Electoral Officer may adapt any provision of this Act and, in particular, may extend the time for doing any act, subject to subsection (2), or may increase the number of election officers or polling stations.

THEREFORE, pursuant to subsection 17(1) of the Act, the Chief Electoral Officer hereby adapts the Canada Elections Act as follows for the purposes of conducting an advance poll:

1. Section 32 is adapted by adding immediately after paragraph 32(b) the following additional paragraphs (b.1) and (b.2):

(b.1) such additional poll clerks, with the prior approval of the Chief Electoral Officer, to assist, as required, the deputy returning officer and the poll clerk mentioned in paragraph (b) at advance polling stations in the electoral district;

(b.2) additional deputy returning officers and poll clerks working in pairs to assist the deputy returning officer and the poll clerk referred to in paragraph (b) in the counting of votes at advance polls in an electoral district in which more than 750 electors voted;

2. Section 39 is adapted by adding immediately after subsection 39(2) the following additional subsection (2.1):

(2.1) The returning officer may appoint, for each registration desk established for an advance polling station, one or more registration officers, in accordance with the instructions of the Chief Electoral Officer and notwithstanding subsections (3) and (4), to receive, on advance polling days, the applications for registration of electors whose names are not on the list of electors.

3. The Act is adapted by adding immediately after section 168 the following additional section:

168.1 (1) When a returning officer establishes an advance polling station, the returning officer may appoint, with the prior approval of the Chief Electoral Officer, one or more information officers to provide information to the electors and to collect the voter information cards.

(2) For each advance polling station, the returning officer may appoint, with the prior approval of the Chief Electoral Officer, one or more central poll supervisors, to attend at the advance polling station on advance polling days to supervise proceedings and keep the returning officer informed of any matter that adversely affects, or is likely to adversely affect, the proceedings.