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September 19, 2008 – Elector who marked their special ballot incorrectly on the basis of erroneous information provided by an election officer

ADAPTATION BY INSTRUCTION
PURSUANT TO SECTION 179 OF THE CANADA ELECTIONS ACT

PROVISION OF NEW BALLOT TO LOCAL ELECTOR
AND SETTING ASIDE OF OUTER ENVELOPE OF SPECIAL BALLOT
IMPROPERLY MARKED ON THE BASIS OF ERRONEOUS INFORMATION
PROVIDED BY ELECTION OFFICER

WHEREAS sections 227 and 238 of the Canada Elections Act provide that an elector voting by special ballot shall write the name of the candidate of his or her choice on the special ballot;

WHEREAS paragraph 279(1)(c) of the Canada Elections Act provides that a special ballot shall be rejected if it is marked with a name other than the name of a candidate;

AND WHEREAS there is no provision in the Canada Elections Act that allows for the setting aside of an outer envelope and for another ballot to be given to an elector in the particular circumstance where, pursuant to the erroneous information given by an election officer, a special ballot has been marked improperly with the name of a political party or with the name of someone other than the candidate who represents the elector's choice;

THEREFORE, pursuant to section 179 of the Canada Elections Act, the Chief Electoral Officer adapts the Act as follows:

1. The following section is added immediately after section 242:

242.1 (1) Where an elector has voted by special ballot at an office of the returning officer for that elector's electoral district, and further to erroneous information from an election officer, has marked the special ballot with a name other than the name of a candidate who reflects his or her choice, that elector may at any time up to the close of polls on polling day ask for another special ballot from the returning officer for his or her electoral district.

(2) Where an elector requests another special ballot pursuant to subsection (1), an election officer shall, with the prior approval of the special voting rules administrator, give that elector another special ballot, inner envelope and outer envelope, and that elector's original outer envelope containing that elector's original special ballot shall not be opened or counted but shall be marked as spoiled and placed in the envelope supplied for that purpose at the time of verification of outer envelopes.

(3) An elector shall not be given more than one special ballot under subsection (2).

2. The following paragraph is added immediately after paragraph 277(1)(d):

(e) the outer envelope that is marked as spoiled pursuant to section 242.1.


September 19, 2008




Marc Mayrand
Chief Electoral Officer of Canada