Municipal Election Officials
A number of elections officials are required to run a municipal election or by-election. PEI Municipal Election website
What are the election official positions?
- Municipal Electoral Officer (MEO) – oversees the entire municipal election process
- Deputy Municipal Electoral Officer (Dep. MEO) – acts in place of the MEO if they are not available
- Returning Officer (RO) – administers the election
- Deputy Returning Officer and Poll Clerk – takes votes at the advance poll and on election day.
There are other election official positions that municipalities may have, especially municipalities with a large elector population.
The number of election officials will depend on the size of the municipality.
How are election officials appointed?
The MEO and Deputy MEO are appointed by council resolution. In a general election year, a municipality must appoint these officials before the second Monday in May. The MEO and Deputy MEO will be appointed for a by-election as required. The Chief Administrative Officer can be appointed as the MEO and municipalities can share MEOs.
The MEO will appoint the Returning Officer (RO). The MEO can appoint the RO when it is appropriate for the municipality. The months before the election will be a very busy time for an MEO, so in most cases, the RO would be appointed one to two months before the election or by-election.
The Returning Officer will appoint the other election officials required to run the election. These election officials must be appointed by the 14th day before the election.
Do I have to live in the municipality to be an election official?
The eligibility requirement for all election officials (except the Municipal Electoral Officer) is that they must be a resident of Prince Edward Island. (Election Regulations section 18)
- (a) is a Canadian citizen or is legally entitled to work in Canada;
- (b) is at least 18 years of age; and
- (c) has been ordinarily resident in the province for at least the six-month period immediately preceding the appointment.
I have been appointed as an Election Official, what now?
The procedures for general elections and by-elections are guided by the Municipal Government Act, the Municipal Election Regulations, the Campaign Contributions and Election Expenses Bylaw Regulations, and the Plebiscite Regulations.
There are two courses for election officials online and two courses for election officials in-person. Please contact Municipal Affairs to sign up or register online here.
All election officials (except the MEO and Deputy MEO) must make a declaration that they will faithfully and impartially perform their duties in the administration of the election (or by-election):
Contact Municipal Affairs if municipal election officials require information and training sessions on municipal elections and the voting process.
What materials are required for the voting and counting process?
The Poll Clerk uses the Official List of Electors (provided by the Returning Officer) and maintains the Election Record during the voting process.
The Deputy Returning Officer must complete the Statement of the Vote at the end of the count for each council position (Mayor and Councillor) and each poll. The Poll Clerk and other counters will use a Tally Sheet to mark the votes for each candidate.
- Template Statement of the Vote (Councillor)
- Template Statement of the Vote (Mayor)
- Template Tally Sheet
After the initial vote count, the Returning Officer will prepare a Recap Sheet from the information in the Statements of the Vote. The Municipal Electoral Officer will verify the Recap Sheet.
Where can I find more information?
- Candidate Information for Municipal Elections – information for individuals who are interested in being nominated as a municipal candidate
- Municipal Election Campaigns – information about campaign fundraising and election expenses
- Voter Information for Municipal Elections – information for electors in a municipality
- Municipal Elections – general information about municipal elections
- Municipal Election Documents – summary of all the required forms for a municipal election
- Municipal By-Election Key Dates – a general overview of the main election processes