Candidate Information for Municipal Elections

Who can run for municipal office?

You can run for municipal office if you are:

  • 18 years of age or older
  • a resident of your municipality for one year or more prior to the nomination date, and
  • a Canadian citizen.

What is the deadline for nominating candidates?

Contact your municipality to find the nomination deadline as some municipalities do not have one. 

How do I know who is running for office in my municipality?

Contact your municipality to find out who is running for office. The nominees for office must be announced to the public after the municipality or town has a nomination day.

If your community does not have a nomination day, the candidates are nominated just before the general election and you will not learn who the candidates are until the day of the election.

Are there resources available for women who want to run for municipal council?

Visit the following resources for more information on women in municipal government:

How do I run for office in my municipality?

Contact the chief administrative officer of your municipality for more information about running for office. If you still need help, contact:

  • Municipal Affairs section at (902) 620-3558
  • Elections PEI at 1-888-234-Vote (toll-free)

How do I run for office if I am a federal public servant?

If you are a federal public servant and you want to run for office in a federal, provincial, or municipal election, you must get permission from the Public Service Commission of Canada (PSC), and, if necessary, obtain a leave of absence without pay during the election period. Find out more about your legal rights and responsibilities for political activities.

How much do I get paid as an elected official?

Contact the elected officials in your community to find out what the pay would be, if any, if you were elected. Wages or honoraria for elected officials are different from municipality to municipality. The level of wages or honoraria is set out through a municipal bylaw that should be available through your municipality. You should not be interested in becoming an elected official for the pay.

How do I organize an election campaign?

  • Ask yourself what you have to offer to your community: When canvassing, you will likely be asked how you feel about certain issues, what you have to offer residents, and why you make the best candidate. You will have success if you are prepared for these questions.
  • Think about what your role will be on municipal council: Be prepared to explain to voters how familiar you are with your role as an elected official, and the goals that you want to achieve while sitting on municipal council.
  • Explain the purpose of your campaign: You should be able to clearly explain what your views are on issues affecting your community, as well as letting residents get to know you on a personal level.
  • Create a dedicated campaign team – You don’t have to have a campaign team to run a successful campaign, but having a few trusted people to help with campaign finances, public relations, and other tasks can be important.
  • Recognize your opponents and their platforms: You should recognize your main opponents in the election and their major platform ideas and show/speak about how you are different from them.
  • Know your voters: You will be able to discuss issues that are important to your voters if you are familiar with them. 
  • Get out the vote: Organize a group of drivers for Election Day and contact your supporters to see if they need information on the election or if they need a drive to the poll.
  • Fundraise: You don’t have to fundraise to win an election campaign, but if you want to do any advertising or have any special events, you may need funds. 

What do I do when I am elected?

  • Review minutes of prior council meetings: This will help you jump into discussions on current issues and help you determine the position of any returning council members on these issues.
  • Attend the municipal orientation session for newly-elected officials: The Municipal Affairs section will host an orientation session soon after the election. The session reviews your responsibilities on council and other requirements of councils under the Municipalities Act. The session will also allow you to meet and network with other newly-elected officials from other municipalities.
  • Review the Municipalities Act: This act regulates how municipalities are operated. You don’t have to know every part of the Act, but a good understanding will help in your role as an elected official.
  • Meet with the chief administrative officer in your municipality: The chief administrative officer for your community will be able to provide you with important information on all topics affecting the municipality.

Are there resources for potential candidates?

For more in-depth information on Municipal Elections, visit Elections PEI. If there is a conflict between the information on this page and that of Elections PEI, Elections PEI's information takes precedence.

Published date: 
June 29, 2015
Communities, Land and Environment department logo

General Inquiries

Department of Communities, Land and Environment
4th Floor, Jones Building
11 Kent Street
PO Box 2000
Charlottetown, PE   C1A 7N8

Phone: (902) 368-5044
Toll-free: 1-866-368-5044
Fax: (902) 368-5830