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This Act is current to November 1, 2017
See the Tables of Legislative Changes for this Act’s legislative history, including any changes not in force.

Election Act

[RSBC 1996] CHAPTER 106

Part 6 — Voting

Division 1 — Voting Opportunities

Voting opportunities

73  A voter for an electoral district who meets the applicable requirements may vote in an election for the electoral district by one of the following:

(a) general voting under section 96 at the general voting opportunity for the voting area in which the individual is resident;

(b) advance voting under section 97 at an advance voting opportunity for the electoral district;

(c) voting under section 98 at a special voting opportunity for the electoral district, subject to any applicable restrictions referred to in section 77 (2);

(d) absentee voting

(i) under section 99 at a general voting opportunity for a different voting area in the electoral district,

(ii) under section 100 at a general voting opportunity for another electoral district for which an election is being conducted at the same time,

(iii) under section 101 at an advance voting opportunity for another electoral district for which an election is being conducted at the same time, or

(iv) under section 98 at a special voting opportunity for another electoral district for which an election is being conducted at the same time, subject to any applicable restrictions referred to in section 77 (2);

(e) alternative absentee voting under Division 5 of this Part.

Time off from work for general voting

74  (1) An employee who is entitled to vote in an election or who, on registration, will be entitled to vote in the election is entitled to have 4 consecutive hours free from employment during voting hours for general voting.

(2) If an individual's hours of employment do not allow for the consecutive hours referred to in subsection (1), the individual's employer must allow the individual time off from employment to provide those hours.

(3) The employer may set time off required by subsection (2) as best suits the convenience of the employer.

(4) An employer must not

(a) without reasonable justification, fail to grant to an employee sufficient time off as required by subsection (2), or

(b) make a deduction in pay for the time off or exact any penalty from the employee for the time off.

(5) The following are not entitled to time off under this section:

(a) election officials and individuals employed or retained by the chief electoral officer or a district electoral officer to work on general voting day;

(b) individuals who, by reason of employment, are in such remote locations that they would be unable to reasonably reach any voting place during voting hours.

General voting opportunities for an electoral district

75  (1) As soon as reasonably possible after an election is called for an electoral district, the district electoral officer must establish the voting places for general voting by specifying a voting place for each voting area within the electoral district.

(2) A voting place for a general voting opportunity must be in or near the voting area for which it is being conducted.

(3) The voting hours for general voting are from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Pacific Standard time or Pacific Daylight time, as applicable, on general voting day.

Advance voting opportunities for an electoral district

76  (1) Advance voting opportunities must be held on the following days:

(a) Saturday and Sunday of the week immediately preceding the week before general voting day for an election;

(b) Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday of the week before general voting day for an election.

(2) As soon as reasonably possible after an election is called for an electoral district, the district electoral officer must establish one or more voting places for advance voting opportunities such that voters in different parts of the electoral district have a reasonable opportunity to attend at least one advance voting opportunity.

(3) The voting hours for an advance voting opportunity are from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. on each day referred to in subsection (1).

Special voting opportunities

77  (1) In order to give voters who may otherwise be unable to vote an opportunity to do so, the district electoral officer may establish one or more special voting opportunities under this section.

(2) If a special voting opportunity is within a class established by the chief electoral officer by regulation, any restrictions established by the regulation on who may vote apply.

(3) For each special voting opportunity, the district electoral officer must establish

(a) the place where the voting opportunity is to be conducted,

(b) the date of the voting opportunity, and

(c) the voting hours for the voting opportunity, such that the time established does not extend later than the time set by section 75 (3) for the close of general voting.

(4) If a site-based voting area is established under section 80 (4), voting under this section for the voting area is deemed to be general voting for that voting area and a general voting opportunity under section 75 is not required.

(5) If authorized by the chief electoral officer, a special voting opportunity may be held outside the boundaries of the electoral district for which the district electoral officer is responsible.

(6) The chief electoral officer may establish different procedures for voting and for conducting the voting proceedings and voter registration at a special voting opportunity from those established under other provisions of this Act, in which case the procedures established by the chief electoral officer apply and the others do not.

(7) Without limiting subsection (6), if authorized by the chief electoral officer, the district electoral officer may limit the number of scrutineers who may be present at a special voting opportunity, subject to the requirement that at least 2 scrutineers must be allowed to be present.

(8) If the number of scrutineers permitted to be present is limited under subsection (7), the scrutineers must be selected

(a) by agreement among the candidates in the election, or

(b) if agreement cannot be reached, by lot conducted by the district electoral officer to select the candidates, who may each designate one scrutineer to attend the special voting opportunity.

Alternative absentee voting

78  As soon as reasonably possible after the district electoral officer establishes an office for use during an election,

(a) alternative absentee voting as described in section 104, and

(b) alternative absentee voting packages as described in section 105

must be available from that office until 4 hours before the time set by section 75 (3) for the close of general voting.

Notice of voting opportunities

79  (1) The chief electoral officer must arrange for notice regarding voting opportunities to be given to voters.

(2) Without limiting the discretion of the chief electoral officer, notice may be given by one or more of the following methods:

(a) mailing to individual voters a notice indicating where they are entitled to vote;

(b) publishing notice in newspapers or other media;

(c) providing a central telephone information service.

Division 2 — Arrangements for Voting

Voting areas

80  (1) The chief electoral officer must establish voting areas for each electoral district.

(2) In establishing voting areas, the chief electoral officer must

(a) consider the boundaries of municipalities, regional districts and federal electoral districts,

(b) consider any geographic or other factors that might affect the convenience of voters, and

(c) include in each voting area no more than 400 voters, as shown on the Provincial list of voters, unless the chief electoral officer considers that including a greater number will facilitate conducting voting proceedings for the voters.

(3) Without limiting the authority under subsection (1), a voting area may be established consisting of one or more areas that are not immediately adjacent to each other.

(4) The chief electoral officer may establish a site-based voting area for the purposes of section 77 (4) if satisfied that the voters for the voting area will have an adequate opportunity to vote under that section.

(5) If there is doubt as to the voting area to which a voter should be assigned, the voter registration official or election official authorized by the chief electoral officer must decide the matter having regard to the convenience of the voter and must inform the district registrar of voters of this decision.

(6) Voting areas may be established by the use of maps or otherwise.

(7) Notice of the boundaries of the voting areas, or of where an individual may inspect materials to determine those boundaries, must be published in the Gazette.

(8) Maps of the voting areas and, if these have been prepared under the direction of the chief electoral officer, indexes to residential addresses within the voting areas must be available for public inspection at the office of the chief electoral officer during its regular office hours.

Voting places

81  (1) So far as reasonably possible, a voting place must be in a convenient location for a majority of the voters and must be easily accessible to individuals who have a physical disability or whose mobility is impaired.

(2) A voting place must be in the electoral district unless the district electoral officer considers that another location will be more convenient for a majority of the voters.

(3) If requested by a district electoral officer,

(a) accommodation in a school that is the property of a board of school trustees under the School Act must be made available by the board for use as a voting place, and

(b) accommodation in a facility that is owned by a francophone education authority as defined in the School Act or leased by a francophone education authority from a board of school trustees must be made available by the francophone education authority for use as a voting place.

Voting stations

82  (1) A voting station is a location where an individual may vote at a voting opportunity.

(2) For each voting station there must be a ballot box, a voting officer responsible for the ballot box and another election official.

(3) For general voting, the district electoral officer must designate the voting station at which specific voters are entitled to vote at general voting, based on the voting area in which they are resident according to the list of voters for the electoral district, such that no more than 400 voters are assigned to each voting station.

(4) For a voting opportunity other than general voting, the district electoral officer must establish sufficient voting stations to accommodate the number of voters that are anticipated to attend to vote at the opportunity.

Voting screens

83  (1) For each voting place there must be one or more voting screens.

(2) The election official responsible must ensure that the voting screens are arranged in such a manner that voters may mark their ballots screened from observation by others and without interference.

(3) A notice to provide directions for voting, in the form directed by the chief electoral officer, must be at each voting screen in use.

Voting books

84  (1) The chief electoral officer must arrange for the preparation of voting books and their delivery to the district electoral officer.

(2) Separate voting books must be used for each of the following:

(a) general voting for each voting area;

(b) advance voting for the voters of the electoral district, although the same voting book may be used at more than one advance voting opportunity;

(c) absentee voting, other than alternative absentee voting, although the same voting book may be used for absentee voting at more than one voting opportunity;

(d) voting at special voting opportunities, although the same voting book may be used at more than one special voting opportunity;

(e) alternative absentee voting.

(3) A voting book for general voting must be based on the list of voters for the voting area for which it is to be used, showing the name, residential address and voter number of each voter and providing a space opposite this information for the voter's signature.

(4) A voting book, other than for general voting, must provide spaces for recording the required information.

Ballot boxes

85  (1) A ballot box must be constructed so that ballots can be inserted into it, but cannot be withdrawn unless the box is opened.

(2) Separate ballot boxes must be used for an election as follows:

(a) to keep the ballots used to vote at general voting for any one voting station separate from all other ballots used in the election;

(b) to keep ballots used to vote at advance voting for the electoral district separate from all other ballots used in the election, although the same ballot box may be used at different advance voting opportunities;

(c) to keep ballots used to vote at special voting opportunities for the electoral district separate from all other ballots used in the election, although the same ballot box may be used at different special voting opportunities;

(d) to keep ballots used for alternative absentee voting separate from all other ballots used in the election.

(3) For absentee voting other than alternative absentee voting, either a separate ballot box may be used or the ballot box used for the general, advance or special voting at that time may be used.

Ballots

86  (1) A ballot must not include any of the following:

(a) an indication that a candidate is holding or has held an elected office;

(b) a candidate's occupation;

(c) an indication of a title, honour, degree or other decoration received or held by a candidate.

(2) Ordinary ballots must be prepared in Form 2 as set out in the Schedule to this Act and must include the following:

(a) the full name of each candidate in the election or, if a candidate specified a different usual name in the nomination documents, this usual name;

(b) in the case of a candidate nominated as a representative of a registered political party, the identification of the political party filed with the chief electoral officer under section 155 (3) (c);

(c) if requested by an independent candidate in his or her nomination documents, an indication that the candidate is independent.

(3) The names of the candidates must be arranged on an ordinary ballot alphabetically by their surnames and, if 2 or more candidates have the same surname, must be arranged alphabetically in order of their first given or usual names to be used on the ballot.

(4) If 2 or more candidates

(a) have the same surnames and given names, or

(b) have names so similar that, in the opinion of the chief electoral officer, they are likely to cause confusion,

the chief electoral officer may modify the names or include additional information to assist voters to identify the candidates, subject to the restrictions under subsection (1), and may establish their order on the ballot.

(5) Write-in ballots must be prepared in Form 3 as set out in the Schedule to this Act to permit the voter to vote by writing in the name or political party of the candidate for whom the individual wishes to vote.

(6) If an election by voting is still required after a candidate withdraws under section 64 or an order is made under section 66 (8) (b) and the ordinary ballot papers for the electoral district have been prepared, the district electoral officer must notify each voting officer as soon as possible and, as time allows,

(a) have ballot papers prepared without the name of the individual,

(b) indicate on the ballots that the individual has ceased to be a candidate, or

(c) have posted at each voting station a notice that the individual has ceased to be a candidate.

(7) If the ordinary ballot papers for the electoral district have been prepared before an order is made under section 66 (8) (c) or (d), the district electoral officer must notify each voting officer as soon as possible and, as time allows,

(a) have ballot papers prepared in accordance with the order of the court,

(b) indicate on the ballot, as applicable, the status or usual name of the candidate in accordance with the order of the court, or

(c) have posted at each voting station a notice of the order of the court.

(8) No ballot is invalid by reason that it includes the name of an individual who is not a candidate or a name or status that is not as ordered by a court under section 66.

(9) Subject to this section, the decision of the chief electoral officer respecting the form and content of a ballot is final and may not be the subject of an application under Part 8.

Ballot papers, certification envelopes and other materials

87  (1) The chief electoral officer is responsible for arranging the preparation of ballot papers, certification envelopes and other election materials required for the conduct of voting and for their delivery to the district electoral officer.

(2) A ballot paper must be prepared in such a manner that it can be divided for use into

(a) a ballot by which an individual may vote,

(b) a numbered counterfoil to identify the ballot before it is deposited in a ballot box, and

(c) a numbered stub to provide a record of the ballots used.

(3) Ballot papers must be prepared in books of a number of ballot papers specified by the chief electoral officer.

(4) Advance voting certificates must be prepared in the form established by the chief electoral officer and must be consecutively numbered.

(5) Certification envelopes must be prepared with spaces in which the full name and residential address of the individual voting are to be recorded and with a printed declaration required of the individual who is voting that the individual

(a) is registered as a voter for the electoral district for which the individual is voting or is applying to register as such in conjunction with voting,

(b) has not previously voted in the election and will not afterwards vote again in the same election, and

(c) if applicable, is eligible to vote by alternative absentee voting.

(6) For the purpose of voting under section 106, alternative absentee voting packages must be prepared containing the following:

(a) a write-in ballot;

(b) a secrecy envelope;

(c) a certification envelope;

(d) an outer envelope on which is printed the address of the office of the election official to whom the envelopes are to be returned;

(e) instructions on how to vote by alternative absentee voting.

Assignment of election official responsibilities

88  (1) For each voting station at a voting place, the district electoral officer must assign a voting officer as the election official responsible for the ballot box and must assign another election official to assist the voting officer.

(2) As required, the district electoral officer may assign voting officers and other election officials necessary for special voting opportunities and alternative absentee voting.

(3) If a voting officer is absent from election proceedings for which the individual is responsible, the election official assigned to assist the voting officer must perform the duties and has the powers of the voting officer and, for these purposes, may appoint another individual to act as an election official for those proceedings.

(4) If an election official is absent from the applicable election proceedings, the voting officer may appoint another individual to act as an election official for those proceedings.

(5) For a voting place at which there is more than one voting station, the district electoral officer may appoint a voting officer as supervising voting officer with additional responsibilities regarding supervision of the voting place.

Division 3 — Voting Proceedings

Each individual may vote only once in an election

89  An individual must not vote more than once in the same general election or by-election.

Voting to be by secret ballot

90  (1) Voting at an election must be by secret ballot.

(2) Each individual present at a place at which a voter exercises the right to vote, including individuals present to vote, and each individual present at the counting of the vote must preserve the secrecy of the ballot and, in particular, must not do any of the following:

(a) interfere with an individual who is marking a ballot;

(b) attempt to discover how an individual voted;

(c) communicate information regarding how another individual voted or marked a ballot;

(d) induce an individual, directly or indirectly, to show the ballot in a way that reveals how the individual voted.

(3) A voter may not be required in any legal proceedings to reveal how he or she voted in an election.

How to mark a ballot

91  (1) In the case of an ordinary ballot, an individual votes by making a cross or a tick mark in the blank space provided on the ballot opposite the name of the candidate for whom the individual wishes to vote.

(2) In the case of a write-in ballot, an individual votes by writing in the blank space provided on the ballot either

(a) the name of the candidate for whom the voter wishes to vote, or

(b) the name of the registered political party of the candidate for whom the individual wishes to vote.

(3) When providing a ballot, an election official may explain the proper method for voting by ballot and must explain this if requested by a voter or an individual assisting a voter under section 109.

Individuals who must be present at voting proceedings

92  A voting officer and another election official must be present at all times at each voting station while voting proceedings are being conducted at the voting station.

Individuals who may be present at voting proceedings

93  (1) Except as provided in this section, an individual must not be present at a voting place while voting proceedings are being conducted.

(2) The following individuals may be present at a voting place while voting proceedings are being conducted:

(a) election officials authorized to be present at the voting place;

(b) individuals who are present at the voting place for the purpose of voting, individuals in the care of an individual attending to vote or individuals assisting in voting under section 109;

(c) individuals acting as translators under section 269 at the voting place;

(d) for each candidate,

(i) the official agent of the candidate,

(ii) one scrutineer at each voting station at the voting place,

(iii) one additional scrutineer at the voting place, and

(iv) candidate representatives temporarily present at the voting place for the purpose of conveying information to and from scrutineers, to a maximum number equal to the number of voting stations;

(e) other individuals permitted to be present at the voting place by the district electoral officer or an election official authorized by the district electoral officer.

(3) Other than for the purpose of voting, a candidate must not be present while voting proceedings are being conducted.

(4) Other than an individual attending to vote, an individual in the care of an individual attending to vote or a peace officer assisting the voting officer under section 273, each individual present at a voting place while voting proceedings are being conducted and each candidate representative present at a special voting opportunity must make a solemn declaration to preserve the secrecy of the ballot in accordance with section 90.

Only one individual at a time may use a voting screen

94  (1) While a voter is using a voting screen to mark a ballot, no other individual may observe or be in a position to observe the ballot being marked.

(2) As exceptions to subsection (1),

(a) an individual assisting a voter to mark a ballot under section 109 may be present with the voter, and

(b) if the election official responsible permits, an individual who is under the care of a voter may be present with the voter.

Sealing of ballot boxes

95  (1) Before a ballot box is used for ballots, the election official responsible, in the presence of at least one witness, must inspect the ballot box to ensure that it is empty and seal it in such a manner that it cannot be opened without breaking the seal.

(2) At the end of voting for a voting opportunity, or if a ballot box becomes full while voting proceedings are being conducted, the election official responsible must seal the ballot box in a manner to prevent the addition or withdrawal of ballots.

(3) In addition to sealing by the election official responsible, candidate representatives are entitled to sign or otherwise mark the seal for the purposes of this section.

(4) A ballot box that has been sealed under subsection (2) must remain sealed and unopened until the ballots are to be counted, unless it is a ballot box for alternative absentee voting or unless it is to be used for another voting opportunity in accordance with section 85 (2).

(5) If a ballot box sealed under subsection (2) is to be used again in the election, the election official responsible must break the seal in the presence of at least one witness.

(6) A ballot box used for alternative absentee voting may be locked rather than sealed, so long as the purposes of this section are reasonably met.

(7) If, at any time that a ballot box is required to be sealed or locked under this section, it appears that there may have been tampering with the seal or lock, this must be reported to the district electoral officer and must be recorded on the ballot account for the ballot box, together with any reasons for this known to the election official responsible.

Division 4 — Voting at a Voting Opportunity

General voting

96  (1) For general voting in accordance with this section, an individual must attend to vote at the general voting opportunity established for the voting area in which the individual is resident.

(2) In order to obtain a ballot for general voting, the following requirements must be met:

(a) the individual voting must sign a written declaration that he or she is entitled to vote in the election;

(a.1) the individual voting must provide the documents described in section 41 (3), or, if the individual does not have sufficient documentation, have the individual's identity and place of residence confirmed in accordance with section 41.1 and, for this purpose, section 41.1 (4) and (5) applies;

(b) the individual voting must sign in the voting book opposite his or her name, residential address and voter number;

(c) if the individual is registering as a voter for the electoral district in conjunction with voting, the election official responsible must add the individual's name and residential address to the list of voters being used at the voting station;

(d) if the individual requires assistance to vote, the requirements of section 109 must also be met;

(e) if the individual is challenged under section 111, the individual must also meet the requirements of that section;

(f) if it appears that another individual has already voted using the individual's name, the individual must also meet the requirements of section 112.

(3) Once the requirements referred to in subsection (2) have been met, the election official responsible must

(a) announce the name and voter number of the individual,

(b) mark the voter number of the individual

(i) on the stub and counterfoil of an ordinary ballot paper, and

(ii) on a list prepared in accordance with the directions of the chief electoral officer,

(c) remove the stub from the ballot and its counterfoil,

(d) fold the ballot, and

(e) hand to the individual the folded ballot with its counterfoil still attached.

(4) To vote after receiving a ballot, an individual must

(a) go directly to a voting screen provided,

(b) while the ballot is screened from observation, mark it in accordance with section 91,

(c) refold the ballot to conceal the names of the candidates and any mark made on the ballot by the individual,

(d) directly return the folded ballot to the election official responsible who must, without opening the ballot, confirm from the attached counterfoil that the ballot is the one that was given to the individual, and then remove and discard the counterfoil, and

(e) at the voter's choice, either

(i) accept the ballot back and deposit it in the appropriate sealed ballot box while observed by the election official, or

(ii) observe the election official deposit the ballot in the appropriate sealed ballot box.

(5) On request, an election official must provide to a candidate representative, without charge and in the manner and at the times directed by the chief electoral officer, a copy of the list prepared under subsection (3) (b) (ii).

Advance voting for an electoral district

97  (1) For advance voting in accordance with this section, an individual must attend to vote at a voting place established for advance voting for the electoral district for which the individual is a voter.

(2) In order to obtain a ballot for advance voting, the following requirements must be met:

(a) the individual voting must obtain an advance voting certificate from the election official responsible at the voting place, which must be signed and dated by that election official and signed by the individual receiving the certificate;

(b) the individual must deliver the advance voting certificate to the election official responsible for issuing ballots;

(c) the individual must sign a written declaration that he or she is entitled to vote in the election;

(d) the name, residential address and advance voting certificate number of the individual must be recorded in the voting book and the individual must sign the voting book opposite this information;

(e) the requirements referred to in section 96 (2) (a.1) and, if applicable, the additional requirements referred to in section 96 (2) (d) to (f) must be met.

(3) An advance voting certificate is only effective for the day it is issued.

(4) Once the requirements referred to in subsection (2) have been met, the election official responsible must

(a) announce the name of the individual,

(b) mark the advance voting certificate number on the stub and counterfoil of a ballot paper,

(c) remove the stub from the ballot and its counterfoil,

(d) fold the ballot,

(e) hand to the individual the folded ballot with its counterfoil still attached,

(f) if the ballot is a write-in ballot, provide the individual with a copy of the list of candidates, indicating the names of the candidates for the electoral district for which the individual is a voter and, as applicable, the status of the candidates as representatives of specific registered political parties or as independent candidates, and

(g) note on the advance voting certificate that it has been used to obtain a ballot.

(5) In order to vote after receiving a ballot, an individual must proceed in accordance with section 96 (4).

(6) A copy of an advance voting certificate used to vote under this section must be forwarded to the district electoral officer, who must arrange for a note of the certificate to be made in the applicable voting book to be used for general voting against the name of the individual to whom it was issued.

(7) On request, after the end of each advance voting opportunity, the district electoral officer must provide to a candidate, without charge and in the manner and at the times directed by the chief electoral officer, the following information in relation to each voter who voted at the advance voting opportunity:

(a) the voter number unless paragraph (b) applies;

(b) if the voter registered or updated his or her voter registration information in conjunction with voting at the advance voting opportunity, the information that the chief electoral officer considers appropriate.

Voting at a special voting opportunity

98  (1) For voting at a special voting opportunity in accordance with this section, an individual must

(a) attend to vote at the time and place where the voting opportunity is being conducted, and

(b) be entitled to vote at the special voting opportunity, if any restrictions referred to in section 77 (2) on who may vote at the voting opportunity apply.

(2) Unless the time for voting is extended under section 114 or the voting opportunity is adjourned under section 272, an individual may not vote under this section after the time set by section 75 (3) for the close of general voting for the election in which the individual is voting.

(3) In order to obtain a ballot at a special voting opportunity, the following requirements must be met:

(a) the individual voting must sign a written declaration that he or she is entitled to vote in the election and, if restrictions referred to in subsection (1) (b) apply, that he or she is entitled to vote at the special voting opportunity;

(b) the name and residential address of the individual must be recorded in the voting book and the individual must sign the voting book opposite this information;

(c) except for an individual who is voting as a voter of a special voting area under section 80 (4) for which the voting opportunity is being conducted, the individual must sign the declaration printed on a certification envelope prepared for the purposes of this section;

(d) the requirements referred to in section 96 (2) (a.1) and, if applicable, the additional requirements referred to in section 96 (2) (d) to (f) must be met.

(4) Once the requirements of subsection (3) have been met, unless other procedures have been established under section 77, the election official responsible must

(a) announce the name of the individual,

(b) initial the stub and counterfoil of a ballot paper,

(c) remove the stub from the ballot and its counterfoil,

(d) fold the ballot,

(e) hand to the individual the folded ballot with its counterfoil still attached, and

(f) if the ballot is a write-in ballot, provide the individual with a copy of the list of candidates, indicating the names of the candidates for the electoral district for which the individual is a voter and, as applicable, the status of the candidates as representatives of specific registered political parties or as independent candidates.

(5) In order to vote after receiving a ballot, unless other procedures have been established under section 77, an individual must proceed in accordance with section 96 (4) except that, if the individual is voting in an election for another electoral district than the one for which the voting opportunity is being held, the ballot must be dealt with in accordance with section 99 (4).

Absentee voting on general voting day in a different voting area

99  (1) For absentee voting in accordance with this section, an individual must attend to vote at a general voting opportunity for another voting area in the same electoral district as the voting area in which the individual is resident.

(2) In order to obtain a ballot, the following requirements must be met:

(a) the individual voting must sign the declaration printed on a certification envelope prepared for this purpose;

(b) the name and residential address of the individual must be recorded in the voting book and the individual must sign the voting book opposite this information;

(c) the requirements referred to in section 96 (2) (a.1) and, if applicable, the additional requirements referred to in section 96 (2) (d) to (f) must be met.

(3) Once the requirements of subsection (2) have been met, the election official responsible must

(a) announce the name of the individual,

(b) initial the stub and counterfoil of an ordinary ballot paper,

(c) remove the stub from the ballot and its counterfoil,

(d) fold the ballot, and

(e) hand to the individual the folded ballot with its counterfoil still attached.

(4) In order to vote after receiving a ballot, an individual must proceed in accordance with section 96 (4) except that, after removing the counterfoil and before the ballot is placed in a ballot box, the election official responsible must

(a) place the ballot in a secrecy envelope,

(b) place the secrecy envelope in the certification envelope under subsection (2) (a), and

(c) mark the certification envelope as having been used to vote under this section.

Absentee voting at general voting for a different electoral district

100  (1) For absentee voting in accordance with this section, an individual must attend to vote at a general voting opportunity for another electoral district for which an election is being conducted at the same time as the election in which the individual is voting.

(2) Unless the time for voting is extended under section 114 or the voting opportunity is adjourned under section 272, an individual may not vote under this section after the time set by section 75 (3) for the close of general voting for the election in which the individual is voting.

(3) Section 99 (2) to (4) applies to voting under this section, except that

(a) the ballot to be provided is a write-in ballot, and

(b) the election official responsible must also provide the individual with a copy of the list of candidates, indicating the names of the candidates for the electoral district for which the individual is a voter and, as applicable, the status of the candidates as representatives of specific registered political parties or as independent candidates.

Absentee voting at an advance voting opportunity for a different electoral district

101  (1) For absentee voting in accordance with this section, an individual must attend to vote at an advance voting opportunity for another electoral district for which an election is being conducted at the same time as the election in which the individual is voting.

(2) Unless the time for voting is extended under section 114 or the voting opportunity is adjourned under section 272, an individual may not vote under this section after the time set by section 75 (3) for the close of general voting for the election in which the individual is voting.

(3) Section 99 (2) to (4) applies to voting under this section, except that

(a) the ballot to be provided is a write-in ballot, and

(b) the election official responsible must also provide the individual with a copy of the list of candidates, indicating the names of the candidates for the electoral district for which the individual is a voter and, as applicable, the status of the candidates as representatives of specific registered political parties or as independent candidates.

Division 5 — Alternative Absentee Voting

Who may vote by alternative absentee voting

102  In order to vote under this Division, an individual must come within at least one of the following circumstances:

(a) the individual expects to be absent from British Columbia on general voting day;

(b) the individual has a physical disability, illness or injury or is an individual whose mobility is impaired;

(c) the individual expects that attending at general voting or advance voting for the election will not reasonably be possible

(i) because the individual will be in a location that is remote from a voting place,

(ii) because of weather or other environmental conditions, or

(iii) for another reason beyond the individual's control.

When an individual may vote by alternative absentee voting

103  (1) Voting under this Division must be available as soon as reasonably possible after an election is called.

(2) In order to vote under this Division, an individual who is entitled to do so must

(a) attend to vote in accordance with section 104 at the office of a district electoral officer during its regular office hours, or

(b) obtain an alternative absentee voting package in accordance with section 105 and deliver the completed materials to the district electoral officer in accordance with section 106.

Voting at the office of the district electoral officer

104  (1) An individual may attend to vote under this section

(a) at the office of the district electoral officer of the electoral district for which the individual is a voter, or

(b) at the office of the district electoral officer of another electoral district for which an election is being conducted at the same time.

(2) Voting under this section may be done at any time up until 4 hours before the time set by section 75 (3) for the close of general voting for the election in which the individual is voting.

(3) In order to vote under this section, the following requirements must be met:

(a) the individual voting must sign the declaration printed on a certification envelope prepared for this purpose;

(b) the name and residential address of the individual must be recorded in the voting book and the individual must sign the voting book opposite this information;

(c) the requirements referred to in section 96 (2) (a.1) and, if applicable, the additional requirements of section 96 (2) (d) to (f) must be met.

(4) Once the requirements of subsection (3) are met, section 100 (3) applies to the voting.

Obtaining an alternative absentee voting package

105  (1) To vote under this Division other than at the office of the district electoral officer under section 104, an individual must apply in accordance with this section to the district electoral officer of the electoral district for which the individual is a voter or of another electoral district for which an election is being conducted at the same time.

(2) An application under subsection (1) may be made at any time up until 4 hours before the time set by section 75 (3) for the close of general voting for the election in which the individual is voting.

(3) An individual must not apply for more than one alternative absentee voting package for an election.

(4) An application under subsection (1) must include the following:

(a) the name and residential address of the individual;

(b) a statement of the circumstances under section 102 that qualify the individual to vote under this Division;

(c) an address at which the individual can be reached and to which the alternative absentee voting package is to be sent, if this is different from the residential address of the individual;

(d) if the application is made in the 10 days before general voting day and this is available, a telephone number at which the individual can be contacted.

(5) The election official responsible must mail or otherwise provide an alternative absentee voting package prepared under section 87 (6) to an applicant if satisfied that the applicant

(a) is a voter for the electoral district for which the individual is applying to vote or is entitled to register as such, and

(b) comes within at least one of the circumstances referred to in section 102.

(6) If an application under this section is made in the last 10 days before general voting day for the election in which the individual is voting, the individual requesting the package is responsible for arranging its delivery to the individual under subsection (5) unless the district electoral officer agrees otherwise.

(7) Before sending out an alternative absentee voting package, the election official responsible must

(a) remove the stub and counterfoil from the ballot paper and retain the counterfoil until the envelope is returned,

(b) record on the certification envelope

(i) the name of the applicant, and

(ii) the counterfoil number, and

(c) record in the voting book

(i) the information referred to in paragraph (b),

(ii) the residential address of the applicant, and

(iii) if this is different from the residential address, the delivery address for the applicant.

(8) The election official responsible may include and, if requested by the individual to whom the alternative absentee voting package is being provided, must include with an alternative absentee voting package an application for registration as a voter or for updating voter registration information and instructions on how to complete the application.

Voting using an alternative absentee voting package

106  (1) In order to vote using an alternative absentee voting package, an individual must do the following:

(a) mark the ballot in accordance with section 91;

(b) place the ballot in the secrecy envelope provided and seal this secrecy envelope;

(c) place the secrecy envelope in the certification envelope and seal this envelope;

(d) complete the certification envelope with the required information and, in the presence of a witness, sign the declaration printed on it for this purpose;

(e) have the certification envelope signed by the witness to the signing of the declaration under paragraph (d);

(f) place the certification envelope in the outer envelope provided;

(g) if the individual is registering as a voter in conjunction with voting or is updating voter registration information, enclose in the outer envelope

(i) the application form and documents required by section 41 (2) and (3) or copies permitted by subsection (2) of this section, or

(ii) the application form and solemn declarations required by section 41.1 (2) and (3);

(h) seal the outer envelope;

(i) forward the sealed outer envelope containing the materials referred to in the previous paragraphs to the election official address printed on it, so that it is received before the time set by section 75 (3) for the close of general voting for the election.

(2) For the purposes of satisfying the requirements referred to in subsection (1) (g), an individual may enclose copies rather than originals of documents with the application for registration or for updating voter registration information.

Receipt of alternative absentee voting packages

107  (1) An envelope that is received as required by section 106 (1) (i) before the time set by section 75 (3) for the close of general voting must be dealt with by the election official responsible as follows:

(a) immediately on receipt, the election official must open the outer envelope and record the date of receipt on the certification envelope and in the voting book opposite the information recorded under section 105 (7) (c);

(b) if, on the basis of an included application for registration, the election official is satisfied that the individual is entitled to be registered as a voter, the election official must accept the application for registration and proceed in accordance with the following paragraphs;

(c) if satisfied that the counterfoil number recorded on the certification envelope corresponds to the number recorded for that individual in the voting book, the election official must discard the counterfoil, initial the certification envelope and place it in the ballot box;

(d) if the election official is not satisfied as referred to in paragraph (b) or (c), the election official must note this on the certification envelope and in the voting book and must place the envelope in the ballot box.

(2) An envelope that is received under section 106 (1) (i) after the time set by section 75 (3) for the close of general voting must be dealt with by the election official responsible as follows:

(a) on receipt, the election official must open the outer envelope and record the date and time of receipt on the certification envelope and in the voting book opposite the information recorded under section 105 (7) (c);

(b) the election official must forward any enclosed application for registration as a voter or updating voter registration information to the applicable district registrar of voters to be dealt with as if it were received as part of general registration;

(c) the certification envelope must remain unopened and must not be considered in the initial count, the final count or any judicial recount for the election.

Special provision of alternative absentee voting packages for armed forces and others

108  (1) For the purposes of enabling voting by a group of members of the Canadian armed forces or of another specific class of individuals who, in the opinion of the chief electoral officer, are entitled to vote but are likely to be from a number of different electoral districts, the chief electoral officer may appoint a member of the group as an election official for the purposes of this section.

(2) The chief electoral officer may provide to the election official alternative absentee voting packages, a voting book, applications for registration as a voter and for updating voter registration information.

(3) The election official has the same duties and powers as a district electoral officer regarding the provision of alternative absentee voting packages, the recording of information regarding this and the acceptance of applications for voter registration and updating of voter registration information.

(4) As an exception to section 106 (1) (g), the election official has the authority to accept applications for voter registration and updating of voter registration information and the documents required under section 41 (3), or the solemn declaration required under section 41.1 (3), do not need to be enclosed with the certification envelopes.

(5) For a ballot issued under this section to be counted as a vote, the materials referred to in section 106 (1) (i) must be received by the chief electoral officer before the time set by section 75 (3) for the close of general voting for the election in which the individual is voting.

(6) On receiving the materials referred to in subsection (5), the chief electoral officer must deal with the package in accordance with section 107 so far as possible and must forward each certification envelope to the applicable district electoral officer in time for the final count for the election.

(7) The election official must return the voting book and any unused alternative absentee voting packages to the chief electoral officer in sufficient time that the chief electoral officer is able to provide information regarding the issued alternative absentee voting packages to the applicable district electoral officer before the final count.

Division 6 — Special Circumstances

Individuals needing assistance to mark their ballots

109  (1) This section applies to voters who are unable to mark a ballot because of physical disability or difficulties with reading or writing.

(2) A voter referred to in subsection (1) may be assisted in voting by an election official or by an individual accompanying the voter.

(3) An individual other than an election official must not act under this section to assist more than one voter in an election to mark a ballot under this section.

(4) As an exception to subsection (3), a voting officer may permit an individual to assist more than one member of the individual's family.

(5) In order to receive a ballot to be marked under this section, the following requirements must be met:

(a) if the individual assisting is not an election official, the individual must make a solemn declaration that he or she

(i) will preserve the secrecy of the ballot in accordance with section 90,

(ii) will mark the ballot in accordance with the wishes of the voter,

(iii) will refrain from attempting in any manner to influence the voter as to how the voter should vote, and

(iv) has not, except as permitted under subsection (4), assisted another individual under this section in the election;

(b) if assistance is needed because the voter needs a translator to be able to read the ballot and the instructions for voting, the individual assisting must make a solemn declaration in accordance with section 269 (4).

(6) The individual assisting must accompany the voter to the voting screen or other place to be used for voting and mark the ballot in accordance with the directions of the voter.

(7) Candidates and candidate representatives must not assist in marking a ballot.

(8) An individual does not vote by assisting under this section.

Individuals unable to enter a voting place

110  (1) This section applies to voters who come to a voting place to vote but who are unable to enter the voting place because of physical disability or impaired mobility.

(2) A voter referred to in subsection (1) may request to vote at the nearest location to the voting place to which the voter has access.

(3) If a request is made, the election official responsible must attend the voter at the nearest location to the voting place for the purpose of allowing the voter to meet the applicable requirements to obtain a ballot.

(4) The election official responsible must ensure that the voter's marked ballot is placed in the appropriate ballot box, taking whatever steps the official considers necessary to maintain the secrecy of the ballot.

(5) The election official responsible may temporarily suspend voting proceedings in order to allow a voter to vote under this section.

(6) Separate ballot boxes may be used for the purposes of this section.

Challenge of a voter

111  (1) An individual's right to vote at a voting opportunity or by alternative absentee voting under section 104 may be challenged in accordance with this section at any time during the procedures to obtain a ballot up until the time the individual receives the ballot.

(2) A challenge may be made

(a) only by an election official, a candidate representative or a voter for the electoral district, and

(b) only on the basis that the individual proposing to vote is not entitled to vote.

(3) In order to receive a ballot, an individual whose right to vote has been challenged must either

(a) provide evidence satisfactory to the election official responsible that the individual is entitled to vote, or

(b) make a solemn declaration before the election official responsible as to the individual's entitlement to vote.

(4) The solemn declaration required by subsection (3) (b) must state that the individual

(a) meets all the qualifications to be registered as a voter and is either registered as a voter of that electoral district or is applying to register in conjunction with voting,

(b) is entitled to vote in the election,

(c) is in fact the individual under whose name the individual is registered or registering as a voter,

(d) has not contravened section 255, and

(e) has not voted before in the same election and will not vote again in the same election.

(5) In relation to a challenge under this section, the election official responsible must record in the voting book

(a) that the individual was challenged,

(b) the name of the individual who made the challenge, and

(c) whether and how the individual challenged satisfied the requirement of subsection (3).

If another individual has already voted under a voter's name

112  (1) This section applies if a voter otherwise meets the requirements to obtain a ballot but the voting book or other election record indicates that an individual has already voted using the name of the voter.

(2) In order to obtain a ballot, the individual asserting the right to vote as the named voter must either

(a) provide evidence satisfactory to the voting officer that the individual is the named voter, or

(b) make a solemn declaration as to the individual's entitlement to vote as the named voter.

(3) The election official responsible must record in the voting book

(a) that a second ballot was issued in the name of the voter, and

(b) whether and how the individual asserting the right to vote satisfied the requirement of subsection (2).

Replacement of spoiled ballot

113  (1) If a voter spoils a ballot before it is deposited in a ballot box, the voter may obtain a replacement ballot by giving the spoiled ballot to the election official responsible.

(2) The election official responsible must immediately mark as spoiled a ballot replaced under subsection (1) and retain the spoiled ballot for inclusion with the election materials under section 126.

Time for voting extended

114  (1) If the start of voting, as set under this Act, is delayed at a location and the district electoral officer considers that a significant number of voters would not be able to vote without an extension under this section, the district electoral officer may extend the time for the end of the voting but the extension must not permit voting for a longer length of time than would have been permitted had voting not been delayed.

(2) As soon as possible, the district electoral officer must inform the chief electoral officer of an extension under subsection (1).

(3) If, at the time set under this Act for the end of voting at a location, there are individuals waiting in or in line outside the place in order to vote, those individuals are entitled to vote and the ballot box must remain unsealed until their ballots are deposited.

(4) No individuals other than those referred to in subsection (3) are entitled to vote after the time set for the end of the voting.

(5) The decision of the election official responsible as to who is or who is not entitled to vote under subsection (3) is final and may not be the basis of an application under Part 8.

Contents | Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3 | Part 4 | Part 5 | Part 6 | Part 7 | Part 8 | Part 9 | Part 10 | Part 11 | Part 12 | Part 13 | Schedule