When are municipal elections?
The next general municipal election will be held on Monday, November 5, 2018. The municipal council for the Resort Municipality was elected by acclamation on August 3, 2018.
What are the rules for running a municipal elections
Election processes are the same for all municipalities and the procedures for general elections are guided by the Municipal Government Act (MGA), the Municipal Election Regulations, the Campaign Contributions and Election Expenses Bylaw Regulations, and the Plebiscite Regulations.
All municipalities must adopt a Campaign Contributions and Election Expenses Bylaw. Municipalities can include other election related rules in their Election Bylaw. Be sure to check your municipality's election bylaw for additional rules.
Who can run for municipal office?
You can run for municipal office if you*:
- Are a Canadian citizen
- Are at least 18 years of age or older
- Have been ordinarily a resident in the municipality for a period of at least six months before the election
I am a municipal employee – can I run for office?
Municipal employees may run for office after seeking and receiving a leave of absence from the municipality. If elected, that employee must resign from their employment immediately upon termination of their leave of absence.
What is the timeline for nominating candidates?
For the 2018 municipal elections, the nomination period is from October 10 to October 19, 2018. Nominations must be received by 2:00 pm on October 19th.
If not enough candidates are nominated to fill the council positions, the nomination period will be extended by an additional 7 days. There will be immediate electronic notice in the municipality if this is the case.
How do I know who is running for office in my municipality?
Contact your municipality’s election office to find out who is running for office. Public notice of the nominated candidates will be issued by the Municipal Electoral Officer. A notice of nominated candidates must be displayed in the municipality’s election office.
Do I have to live in the ward where I wish to run?
If your municipality has established wards through a bylaw, you are not required to live in that ward but you must be nominated by residents of that ward.
How do I become nominated?
Five or more qualified electors within the municipality (or the ward if the municipality is divided into wards) may nominate a candidate during the nomination period or extended nomination period.
A municipality can, by bylaw, increase the number of nominators, so long as it is not more than 10.
A nomination has to be in writing on a Municipal Nominations Form
. The nominated candidate must file their nomination with the Municipal Electoral Officer or Returning Officer for their municipality by the nominations deadline, which is the 3rd Friday before the election.
A municipality, can require by bylaw, that a nomination deposit be paid. If a municipality does have a bylaw for a nomination deposit, the maximum is $200 and the bylaw must describe if the deposit is refundable and under what circumstances it is refundable, in accordance with the regulations.
What do I do if I want to remove myself as a candidate?
If a candidate wants to be deemed as not officially nominated, they must withdraw from the municipal election before 2:00 pm on nomination day (October 19, 2018).
An officially nominated candidate can withdraw from the election after nomination day until the end of the close of polls by filing a Candidate Withdrawal Form (Post Nomination Day)
with the MEO. If the ballots cannot be changed in time for the election, the votes for that candidate are not counted.
When a candidate withdraws, their nomination deposit (if one was required) will stay with the municipality.
Are there rules for election campaign fundraising?
Yes, the rules for fundraising and campaign expenses are set out in the Campaign Contributions and Election Expenses Bylaw Regulations and the municipality's election bylaw. Visit Municipal Election Campaigns for more information.
Are there resources available for women who want to run for municipal council?
View the following resources for more information on women in municipal government:
How do I run for office if I am a federal public servant?
There are steps you need to take with the Public Service Commission of Canada if you plan to seek nomination. For more information visit the Government of Canada website.
Can I have an agent?
A candidate can appoint one or more agents to represent themselves at the election or any election proceeding. The Candidate Agent Form
must be filled out prior to appointing an agent.
How many agents can I appoint?
A candidate may appoint up to two agents to represent them at any one polling station.
How much do I get paid as an elected official?
Wages or honoraria for elected officials are different from municipality to municipality. Council wages and honoraria must be set out through municipal bylaw. Contact your municipality for more information.
What do I do when I am elected?
Meet with the chief administrative officer (CAO) in your municipality
- The CAO for your community will be able to provide you with important information on all topics affecting the municipality.
- The CAO will also give you information on taking the oath of office, meeting schedules and any plans for a council orientation.
Review minutes of prior council meetings
- This will help you jump into discussions on current issues and help you understand recent discussions on these issues.
Attend the municipal orientation session for newly-elected officials
- The Municipal Affairs branch will host an orientation session on December 1, 2018. The session reviews your responsibilities on council and other requirements of councils under the Municipal Government Act.
- The session will also allow you to meet and network with other newly-elected or returning officials from other municipalities.
Review the Municipal Government Act (MGA) and Regulations
- The MGA regulates how municipalities are operated. A good understanding of the MGA will help in your role as an elected official.
- Review the Local Government Resource Handbook for an overview of how a municipality functions the general roles and responsibilities of a municipal council
Note: This page is prepared for information purposes only and should not be relied upon as a substitute for specialized legal or professional advice.