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AN ACT TO STRENGTHEN AND PROTECT DEMOCRACY IN ALBERTA

Bill 32

AN ACT TO STRENGTHEN AND PROTECT
DEMOCRACY IN ALBERTA

Chapter 29

(Assented to December 15, 2017)

HER MAJESTY, by and with the advice and consent of the Legislative Assembly of Alberta, enacts as follows:


Part 1
Election Act

Amends RSA 2000 cE‑1

1   The Election Act is amended by this Part.

 

2   Section 1 is amended

                            (a)    in subsection (1)

                                  (i)    in clause (b.1)

                                       (A)    in subclause (ii) by adding “and” after “polling day,”;

                                       (B)    by repealing subclause (iii);

                                 (ii)    by adding the following after clause (e):

                                    (e.1)    “community support centre” means a facility that provides services to people experiencing poverty or homelessness;

                                (iii)    by adding the following after clause (h):

                                   (h.1)    “Election Commissioner” means the Election Commissioner appointed under section 153.01;

                                (iv)    in clause (j) by striking out “, and has been for at least the immediately preceding 6 months,”;

                                 (v)    by adding the following after clause (k):

                                   (k.1)    “emergency shelter” includes short‑term housing for individuals experiencing homelessness, individuals escaping domestic violence, and other similar temporary housing;

                                (vi)    in clause (y) by striking out “in a polling subdivision”;

                               (vii)    by adding the following after clause (hh):

                                 (hh.1)    “special mobile poll” means a special mobile poll established under section 125.1;

                              (viii)    in clause (kk.1)(ii) by striking out “for 10 or more electors at any one location”;

                                (ix)    in clause (ll)(i) by striking out “, a sanatorium”;

                           (b)    by adding the following after subsection (4):

(5)  Where this Act requires a document or record to be filed, established, maintained, returned, transmitted, produced, submitted or served, the Chief Electoral Officer may specify whether that document or record must be in printed form or in electronic form, or both.

 

3   Section 3(4) and (5) are amended by striking out “disability, neglect of duty, misconduct or bankruptcy” and substituting “cause or incapacity”.

 

4   Section 3.1(1) is amended by striking out “, the Senatorial Selection Act”.

 

5   Section 4 is amended

                            (a)    in subsection (1) by striking out “and the Senatorial Selection Actwherever it occurs;

                           (b)    by repealing subsection (1.1);

                            (c)    by repealing subsection (2) and substituting the following:

(2)  The Chief Electoral Officer shall from time to time

                                 (a)    provide the public with information about the election process, the democratic right to vote, the right to be a candidate and, generally, about the operation of this Act and the Election Finances and Contributions Disclosure Act,

                                 (b)    implement public education and information programs to make the electoral process better known to the public, particularly to those persons and groups most likely to experience difficulties in exercising their democratic rights, and

                                 (c)    prepare educational materials for students who have reached voting age or will soon do so and make them available to a board of a school district or division or an operator of a private school or charter school for distribution to their students, including information on how to request access to information in the register about themselves and how to have their personal information removed or not included in the register.

(2.01)  For the purposes of subsection (2)(c), “charter school”, “private school” and “board” mean “charter school”, “private school” and “board” as defined in the School Act.

                           (d)    in subsection (2.1) by striking out “, the Election Finances and Contributions Disclosure Act or the Senatorial Selection Actand substituting “or the Election Finances and Contributions Disclosure Act”;

                            (e)    in subsection (3) by striking out “, an election under the Senatorial Selection Act”;

                            (f)    by adding the following after subsection (3):

(3.1)  Notwithstanding subsection (3), if, in the Chief Electoral Officer’s opinion, an emergency, disaster, or an unusual or unforeseen circumstance requires delaying the opening of a polling place or interrupting voting at a polling place, the Chief Electoral Officer may adjourn voting at that polling place to another time on the same day at the same polling place or to the same time or another time on the same day at a different polling place if the emergency, disaster, or unusual or unforeseen circumstance

                                 (a)    has a significant effect on the ability of the Chief Electoral Officer or a returning officer to conduct an election,

                                 (b)    has a significant effect on the ability of electors to attend a polling place, or

                                 (c)    puts or may put the health or safety of persons in an electoral division at risk.

(3.2)  The Chief Electoral Officer shall immediately notify registered political parties, registered candidates and registered candidates’ official agents in the affected electoral division about any change in voting hours or the location of a polling place made under subsection (3.1) and publish the change on the Chief Electoral Officer’s website and in any other manner the Chief Electoral Officer considers necessary.

(3.3)  If a different polling place is fixed under subsection (3.1), the returning officer shall cause a conspicuous sign that clearly and accurately states the location of the new polling place to be attached to the original place where the polling place was to be located.

(3.4)  Voting adjourned under subsection (3.1) must, when recommenced, continue so that the total number of hours the polling place is open for the purpose of voting is the same as that required under section 88(1)(c).

(3.5)  If the Chief Electoral Officer is of the opinion that an adjournment is insufficient to address the circumstances set out in subsection (3.1), the Chief Electoral Officer may apply to a judge of the Court to discontinue the election in any one or more electoral divisions and commence a new election at another day and time.

(3.6)  If the Court grants the application under subsection (3.5),

                                 (a)    the election for the electoral division that is the subject of the application shall be discontinued,

                                 (b)    a new election for the electoral division that is the subject of the application shall be commenced under section 39 as if the election were a by‑election within 6 months of the date of the application, and

                                 (c)    nominations of candidates previously filed remain valid for the new election.

(3.7)  The Chief Electoral Officer shall publish a notice that the election has been discontinued under subsection (3.5) on the Chief Electoral Officer’s website and in any other manner the Chief Electoral Officer considers necessary.

(3.8)  This Act applies to an election under subsection (3.5) as if it were a by‑election.

(3.9)  If voting is adjourned under subsection (3.1) or the election is discontinued under subsection (3.5), returning officers, deputy returning officers and election officers must make all reasonable efforts to ensure that the election materials are secured and that the integrity of the election is not compromised.

                           (g)    subsection (4) is amended by striking out “disability” and substituting “cause, incapacity”;

                           (h)    in subsection (5)

                                  (i)    by striking out “, election under the Senatorial Selection Actwherever it occurs;

                                 (ii)    in clause (c) by striking out “or the Senatorial Selection Act, as the case may be”;

                             (i)    by adding the following after subsection (6):

(7)  The Chief Electoral Officer shall after the end of each year prepare a report on the exercise of the Chief Electoral Officer’s functions under this Act, including any recommendations for amendments to this Act, and shall transmit the report to the Standing Committee on Legislative Offices, which shall, on its receipt, lay the report before the Assembly if it is then sitting or, if it is not then sitting, within 15 days after the commencement of the next sitting of the Assembly.

(8)  A report made under subsection (7) may be combined with a report made under section 4(2) of the Election Finances and Contributions Disclosure Act.

 

6   The following is added after section 4.1:

Directives issued by the Chief Electoral Officer

4.11(1)  If the Chief Electoral Officer determines that equipment referred to in section 4.12 will be used in an election, the Chief Electoral Officer shall, no later than 7 days after a writ of election is issued,

                                 (a)    make a directive

                                        (i)    describing in detail the procedures and equipment to be used at that election,

                                      (ii)    describing in detail how the Act will be modified in order to enable the use of the equipment at that election, and

                                     (iii)    referring to the provisions of this Act that will not be complied with and specifying the nature and extent of non‑compliance in each case,

                                 (b)    provide copies of the directive to the leader of each registered political party, to any member of the Legislative Assembly who is not a member of a registered political party and to any independent candidate, and

                                 (c)    publish the directive on the Chief Electoral Officer’s website.

(2)  The Chief Electoral Officer, with respect to voting at an advance poll or special mobile poll by electors who reside in an electoral division other than in the electoral division for which the advance poll or special mobile poll is established,

                                 (a)    may make a directive

                                        (i)    describing the procedures to be used for voting at the advance poll or special mobile poll, including

                                            (A)    providing for the form and printing of ballots for use at the advance poll or special mobile poll,

                                            (B)    providing for the delivery of votes to the location where they are to be counted, and

                                            (C)    providing for the counting of votes,

                                      (ii)    describing in detail how the Act will be modified for the purposes of this subsection, and

                                     (iii)    referring to the provisions of this Act that will not be complied with and specifying the nature and extent of non‑compliance in each case,

                                     and

                                 (b)    if a directive is made, shall

                                        (i)    provide copies of the directive to the leader of each registered political party, to any member of the Legislative Assembly who is not a member of a registered political party and to any independent candidate, and

                                      (ii)    publish the directive on the Chief Electoral Officer’s website.

(3)  The Chief Electoral Officer’s directive under subsection (1) may apply to any one or more of the following:

                                 (a)    one or more electoral divisions;

                                 (b)    voting at an advance poll;

                                 (c)    voting at a mobile poll;

                                 (d)    voting at a special mobile poll;

                                 (e)    voting by Special Ballot or Secured Special Ballot;

                                 (f)    voting at a poll held on polling day.

(4)  An election held in accordance with a directive made under this section is not invalid by reason of any non‑compliance with this Act where the non‑compliance is related to the procedures and equipment set out in the directive.

(5)  To the extent of any conflict between this Act and a directive made under this section, the directive prevails.

(6)  The Chief Electoral Officer shall include a summary of the use at an election of any equipment authorized by a directive issued under this section in the Chief Electoral Officer’s report under section 4(5).

(7)  For the purpose of section 4.12(2)(c), testing includes, without limitation, logic and accuracy testing.

Accessible voting equipment

4.12(1)  The Chief Electoral Officer may issue a directive in accordance with section 4.11 authorizing the use of accessible voting equipment during an election.

(2)  The following restrictions apply with respect to the use of accessible voting equipment:

                                 (a)    the equipment must allow the elector to vote privately and independently;

                                 (b)    the equipment must not be part of or connected to an electronic network, except that the equipment may be securely connected to a network after the close of polls for the purpose of transmitting information to the Chief Electoral Officer;

                                 (c)    the equipment must be tested,

                                        (i)    before the first elector uses the equipment to vote, and

                                      (ii)    after the last elector uses the equipment to vote;

                                 (d)    the information presented on a ballot made available to the elector through the equipment before voting must comply with section 83, with necessary modifications;

                                 (e)    the equipment must create a paper ballot that records the vote cast, is retained in the same way as ordinary ballots and includes the name of the electoral division;

                                 (f)    the equipment must, before the paper ballot is printed, allow the elector to verify the elector’s vote without the assistance of another person;

                                 (g)    the equipment or the process used must, after the paper ballot is printed but before casting the elector’s vote, allow the elector to verify the elector’s vote;

                                 (h)    the equipment must not be used in a way that enables the choice of an elector to be made known to an election officer or scrutineer.

(3)  Accessible voting equipment shall not be used unless an entity that the Chief Electoral Officer considers to be an established independent authority on the subject of voting equipment has certified that the equipment meets acceptable security and integrity standards.

(4)  In this section, “accessible voting equipment” means voting equipment and related vote-counting equipment that enables electors requiring assistance to vote independently.

 

7   Section 4.2 is amended

                            (a)    by repealing subsection (1) and substituting the following:

Inquiries

4.2(1)  For the purposes of carrying out an inquiry under this Act, the Chief Electoral Officer has all the powers of a commissioner under the Public Inquiries Act as though the inquiry were an inquiry under that Act.

                           (b)    in subsection (2)

                                  (i)    by striking out “or conducting an investigation”;

                                 (ii)    by striking out “the investigation” and substituting “the inquiry”;

                            (c)    by adding the following after subsection (2):

(2.1)  Before entering a private dwelling or a part of premises used as a private dwelling to carry out the powers described in subsection (2), a representative of the Chief Electoral Officer shall

                                 (a)    obtain the consent of the occupant or the legal representative of the occupant of the private dwelling or the part of the premises used as a private dwelling, or

                                 (b)    obtain an order from the Court.

 

8   Sections 4.3 and 4.4 are repealed.

 

9   Section 9 is amended

                            (a)    in subsection (1)

                                  (i)    by striking out “, 2 years after a general election,”;

                                 (ii)    by striking out “and elections under the Senatorial Selection Act”;

                           (b)    in subsection (1.1)

                                  (i)    by striking out “under this Act or an election under the Senatorial Selection Act”;

                                 (ii)    by striking out “or the election under the Senatorial Selection Act”;

                            (c)    in subsection (2) by striking out “a resident elector of that electoral division and” and substituting “an elector”;

                           (d)    by repealing subsection (2.1);

                            (e)    in subsection (4)

                                  (i)    by striking out “publish in The Alberta Gazette the name and address” and substituting “publish the name and electoral division”;

                                 (ii)    by adding “on the Chief Electoral Officer’s website and in any other manner the Chief Electoral Officer considers appropriate” after “electoral division”.

 

10   The following is added after section 9:

Hiring policy

9.1(1)  The Chief Electoral Officer shall establish a hiring policy, including policies surrounding conflicts of interest, relating to the hiring of election officers, enumerators and employees on the basis of merit.

(2)  The policy established under subsection (1) must be published on the Chief Electoral Officer’s website and in any other manner determined by the Chief Electoral Officer.

 

11   Section 11 is repealed and the following is substituted:

Remuneration of election officers and enumerators

11   All election officers and enumerators shall, on performance of their duties at the request of the Chief Electoral Officer or at the request of a returning officer, be paid remuneration, fees and expenses as established by the Chief Electoral Officer.

 

12   Section 13(1) is amended by striking out “, elections under the Senatorial Selection Act”.

 

13   Section 13.1 is amended

                            (a)    by adding the following after subsection (3):

(3.1)  At the request of the Chief Electoral Officer, the Department, as defined in the Health Information Act, may in the manner that the Department considers appropriate, provide personal health numbers and the information set out in section 13(2)(a) to (f) of this Act with respect to persons ordinarily resident in Alberta who are electors or will be eligible to be electors that is in the custody or under the control of the Department to the Chief Electoral Officer, for the purpose of maintaining and revising the register.

                           (b)    by adding the following after subsection (5):

(6)  At the request of the Chief Electoral Officer, the Minister of Education, a board of a school district or division or an operator of a private school or charter school shall disclose to the Chief Electoral Officer the information referred to in section 13(2)(a) to (f) with respect to students who are at least 16 years of age enrolled in a school operated by a board or operator for use by the Chief Electoral Officer for the purpose of maintaining and revising the register.

(7)  For the purposes of subsection (6), “charter school”, “private school” and “board” mean “charter school”, “private school” and “board” as defined in the School Act.

 

14   Section 16 is amended

                            (a)    in clause (b) by adding “and” after “age,”;

                           (b)    by repealing clause (c).

 

15   Section 18(1)(b) is repealed.

 

16   Section 21 is repealed and the following is substituted:

Enumerations

21(1)  Prior to the general election to be held following the 2015 general election, the Chief Electoral Officer shall conduct a door‑to‑door enumeration of every electoral division, including an enumeration of Indian reserves and Metis settlements.

(2)  The Chief Electoral Officer shall give reasonable notice in writing to the council of each Indian band and to the settlement council and settlement administrator of each Metis settlement prior to an enumeration of the electors on the Indian reserve or on the Metis settlement, respectively, providing notice that enumerators will be conducting an enumeration in the area.

(3)  The Chief Electoral Officer shall consult with the council of each Indian band and with the council and settlement administrator of each Metis settlement with respect to the manner in which the enumeration can most effectively be conducted.

(4)  Following the enumeration referred to in subsection (1), the Chief Electoral Officer shall table a report with the Standing Committee that includes the following information:

                                 (a)    the number of residences contacted during an enumeration;

                                 (b)    the percentage of persons who responded to the enumeration;

                                 (c)    the number of Indian reserves and Metis settlements contacted by the Chief Electoral Officer for the purposes of conducting an enumeration;

                                 (d)    the number of Indian reserves and Metis settlements that participated in the enumeration;

                                 (e)    any challenges encountered in hiring persons to conduct door‑to‑door enumerations and the impact of door‑to‑door enumerations on other election officers;

                                 (f)    the cost of conducting the enumeration;

                                 (g)    any other matter the Chief Electoral Officer considers appropriate.

(5)  The Standing Committee shall lay the report before the Legislative Assembly if it is then sitting or, if it is not then sitting, not more than 15 days after the commencement of the next sitting of the Assembly.

(6)  The Lieutenant Governor in Council may make regulations respecting the manner in which an enumeration, if any, may be conducted following the enumeration referred to in subsection (1).

(7)  Notwithstanding anything in this section, the Chief Electoral Officer may, at any time the Chief Electoral Officer considers it advisable, conduct an enumeration of all or some of the electoral divisions, or within an electoral division.

(8)  In this section and section 52.1,

                                 (a)    “council” means the “council of the band” within the meaning of the Indian Act (Canada);

                                 (b)    “Indian band” means a band within the meaning of the Indian Act (Canada);

                                 (c)    “settlement administrator” means the person appointed by the settlement council as the senior administrative officer of the settlement, within the meaning of the Metis Settlements Act;

                                 (d)    “settlement council” means the council of a Metis settlement within the meaning of the Metis Settlements Act.

17   Section 24(a) is repealed.

 

18   Section 25 is amended

                            (a)    by repealing subsection (1) and substituting the following:

Enumerators for subdivisions

25(1)  Each returning officer shall, in accordance with the directions of the Chief Electoral Officer, appoint an enumerator for each subdivision in an electoral division.

                           (b)    in subsection (2) by striking out “as an enumerator for a subdivision a 2nd resident elector for the” and substituting “a 2nd enumerator for a”;

                            (c)    by repealing subsection (7).

 

19   Section 30 is amended

                            (a)    in subsection (2)

                                  (i)    in clause (b) by adding “and” after “age,”;

                                 (ii)    by repealing clause (c);

                           (b)    in subsection (4) by adding “unless the returning officer or the Chief Electoral Officer is of the opinion that there are a sufficient number of electors who are residing in the institution” after “similar institutions”;

                            (c)    by adding the following after subsection (10):

(11)  Notwithstanding anything in this section, the Chief Electoral Officer may direct an enumerator not to visit an assigned residence if, in the Chief Electoral Officer’s opinion, the safety of an enumerator may be at risk.

 

20   Section 34 is repealed.

 

21   Section 35 is repealed.

 

22   Section 36 is repealed.

 

23   Section 37 is repealed.

24   Section 38.1(2) is amended by striking out “a general election shall be held within the 3‑month period beginning on March 1, 2012 and ending on May 31, 2012, and afterwards,”.

 

25   Section 42 is amended by adding “, or as soon as practicable after transmitting the writ to a returning officer” after “returning officer”.

 

26   Section 43 is amended

                            (a)    by striking out “a person is eligible to vote at an election if that person is an elector and ordinarily resident on polling day in the polling subdivision in which the person seeks to vote, and” and substituting “an elector is eligible to vote for a candidate in the electoral division where the elector is ordinarily resident if”;

                           (b)    in clause (a) by striking out “person’s” and substituting “elector’s”;

                            (c)    in clause (b) by striking out “person” and substituting “elector”;

                           (d)    in clause (c) by striking out “person’s” and substituting “elector’s”.

 

27   Section 46 is repealed and the following is substituted:

Persons ineligible to be election officers

46(1)  The following persons shall not be appointed or act as returning officers or election clerks:

                                 (a)    persons who are not electors;

                                 (b)    members of the Parliament of Canada;

                                 (c)    members of the Legislative Assembly;

                                 (d)    councillors under the Municipal Government Act;

                                 (e)    trustees of a board of trustees under the School Act;

                                 (f)    candidates;

                                 (g)    official agents;

                                 (h)    judges of federal or provincial courts;

                                  (i)    persons who have, within the immediately preceding 10 years, been convicted of an indictable offence where the penalty that may be imposed for that offence is greater than 2 years’ imprisonment.

(2)  The persons listed in clauses (b) to (i) shall not be appointed or act as an election officer.

 

28   Section 47 is amended

                            (a)    in subsection (1) by striking out “elector of the electoral division as”;

                           (b)    by repealing subsection (4).

 

29   Section 47.1 is amended

                            (a)    in subsection (1) by striking out “elector of the electoral division as”;

                           (b)    by repealing subsection (2.1).

 

30   Section 49 is amended

                            (a)    in subsection (1) by adding “or any election officer designated by the Chief Electoral Officer” after “electoral division”;

                           (b)    in subsection (2) by adding “or any election officer designated by the Chief Electoral Officer” after “electoral division”.

 

31   Section 50 is amended

                            (a)    in subsection (1) by striking out “, together with a notice in the prescribed form designating the dates, time and place for consideration of application for revisions to the list of electors”;

                           (b)    in subsection (2)

                                  (i)    by repealing clauses (a) and (b);

                                 (ii)    in clause (c) by adding “at 4 p.m.” before “on the Saturday”;

                            (c)    in subsection (3) by striking out “Section 37” and substituting “Section 13.1”;

                           (d)    by repealing subsection (4).

 

32   Section 52 is amended

                            (a)    by repealing subsection (3) and substituting the following:

(3)  Every polling place must, where practicable, be located in premises with barrier‑free accessibility.

                           (b)    in subsections (6) and (6.1) by striking out “or polling station”.

 

33   The following is added after section 52:

Location of polling places on Indian
reserves and Metis settlements

52.1(1)  In preparation for an election, the Chief Electoral Officer shall consult with the council of each Indian band and with the settlement council and settlement administrator of each Metis settlement to determine whether a suitable building located on the Indian reserve or Metis settlement may be used as a polling place for electors who are residents on the Indian reserve or Metis settlement.

(2)  If the council of an Indian band or the settlement council of a Metis settlement agrees to the use of a suitable building located on the Indian reserve or Metis settlement, the Chief Electoral Officer shall use the building as a polling place.

 

34   Section 53(1) is amended

                            (a)    by striking out “If by reason of some emergency” and substituting “Subject to section 4(3.1) and (3.5), if”;

                           (b)    by striking out “by telephone, confirmed by written notice” and substituting “and publish the change on the Chief Electoral Officer’s website and in any other manner the Chief Electoral Officer considers necessary”.

 

35   Section 55 is amended

                            (a)    in subsection (1)

                                  (i)    by repealing clause (a);

                                 (ii)    in clause (e) by striking out “place,”;

                                (iii)    by repealing clause (f) and substituting the following:

                                       (f)    the name of the returning officer and the contact information for the returning officer’s office.

                           (b)    in subsection (2)

                                  (i)    in clause (d) by striking out “level access” and substituting “barrier‑free accessibility”;

                                 (ii)    by repealing clause (e);

                            (c)    by repealing subsection (2.1) and substituting the following:

(2.1)  The Chief Electoral Officer shall, as soon as possible, publish the information in the proclamation referred to in subsection (1)(b) to (f) and the information referred to in subsection (2)(b) and (d) on the Chief Electoral Officer’s website and in any other manner determined by the Chief Electoral Officer that provides electors with adequate notice of the election.

                           (d)    by repealing subsection (3);

                            (e)    in subsection (4)

                                  (i)    by striking out “for any reason, the returning officer” and substituting “, the Chief Electoral Officer”;

                                 (ii)    by repealing clause (a) and substituting the following:

                                       (a)    publish details of the correction on the Chief Electoral Officer’s website and in any other manner in which the Chief Electoral Officer has published the information under subsection (2.1), and

                            (f)    by repealing subsection (5).

 

36   Section 56(d) is amended by striking out “or the Senatorial Selection Act”.

 

37  Section 59 is amended

                            (a)    in subsection (1) by striking out “campaign period” and substituting “period referred to in subsection (1.01)”;

                           (b)    by adding the following after subsection (1):

(1.01)  The period for the purpose of subsection (1) is as follows:

                                 (a)    in the case of a general election held in accordance with section 38.1(2), the period commencing on February 1 in the year in which the general election is held and ending on nomination day;

                                 (b)    in the case of a general election held other than in accordance with section 38.1(2), the period commencing with the issue of a writ for the general election and ending on nomination day;

                                 (c)    in the case of a by‑election, the period commencing with the issue of a writ for the by‑election and ending on nomination day;

                                 (d)    where a nomination contest is held by a registered party or a registered constituency association under the Election Finances and Contributions Disclosure Act, the period commencing as soon as the nomination contestant, as defined in the Election Finances and Contributions Disclosure Act, is selected for endorsement as the official candidate of the registered party for the electoral division, and ending on nomination day.

 

38   Section 60(1) and (4) are amended by striking out “, address and telephone number” and substituting “and contact information”.

 

39   Section 61 is amended

                            (a)    in subsection (1)

                                  (i)    in the portion preceding clause (a) by striking out “filed with” and substituting “accepted for filing by”;

                                 (ii)    by adding the following after clause (a):

                                    (a.1)    it is signed by the candidate,

                                (iii)    in clause (d) by striking out “written communication” and substituting “affidavit”;

                                (iv)    by adding the following after clause (d):

                                   (d.1)    the person being nominated provides the returning officer with identification in a form prescribed by the Chief Electoral Officer,

                                 (v)    by adding “and” at the end of clause (e);

                           (b)    by adding the following after subsection (3):

(4)  The deposit of $500 referred to in subsection (1)(e) may be made during the time period referred to in section 59(1.01)(d) notwithstanding section 9(1.1) of the Election Finances and Contributions Disclosure Act.

 

40   Section 67 is amended

                            (a)    in subsection (1)

                                  (i)    in clause (c) by striking out “address” and substituting “contact information”;

                                 (ii)    by repealing clause (d) and substituting the following:

                                       (d)    announce the polling date and the date and time at which the official results will be announced.

                           (b)    by repealing subsection (2)(b) and substituting the following:

                                 (b)    publish the names and contact information of the candidates’ official agents in the form and manner directed by the Chief Electoral Officer.

                            (c)    in subsection (3) by striking out “address” and substituting “contact information”.

 

41   Section 69(1) is amended by striking out “be printed” and substituting “appear”.

 

42   Section 70(a) is repealed and the following is substituted:

                           (a)    publish within the 7 days immediately preceding polling day, in the form and manner directed by the Chief Electoral Officer,

                                  (i)    a copy of the map of the electoral division setting out the polling subdivisions,

                                (ii)    a list of the locations of the polling places, and

                               (iii)    a statement of the availability of barrier‑free accessibility to the office of the returning officer and to the advance polling places,

 

43   Section 71(3) and (4) are repealed.

 

44   Section 73(3) and (4) are repealed.

 

45   Section 76(3) is repealed.

 

46   Section 77.1(3) is repealed.

 

47   Section 77.2 is amended

                            (a)    by renumbering it as section 77.2(2);

                           (b)    by adding the following before subsection (2):

Use of election officers

77.2(1)  Subject to sections 71(5), 73(5) and 75, this section applies to election officers who are requested or required by the Chief Electoral Officer, a returning officer or their supervisor to perform the duties of another election officer.

                            (c)    by adding the following after subsection (2):

(3)  If an election officer is unable or unwilling to act or neglects the election officer’s duties, the Chief Electoral Officer or returning officer may appoint another person in that election officer’s place.

(4)  Any election officer may perform the duties of another election officer, other than the duties of a returning officer or election clerk, if required or requested by the Chief Electoral Officer, returning officer or the election officer’s supervisor.

(5)  If an election officer is required to perform the duties of another election officer, the election officer is not required to take another oath.

 

48   Section 81(2) is amended

                            (a)    by repealing clause (a);

                           (b)    in clause (b) by striking out “a sufficient number of appropriate seals” and substituting “sealing material”;

                            (c)    in clause (c) by striking out “seals after they have been attached” and substituting “seal after it has been applied”.

 

49   Section 82 is amended

                            (a)    by repealing subsection (1) and substituting the following:

Provision of ballots

82(1)  The Chief Electoral Officer shall ensure a sufficient number of ballots are available for use in an election.

                           (b)    by repealing subsection (2).

 

50   Section 83 is amended

                            (a)    in subsection (1)

                                  (i)    by striking out “On each ballot shall be printed” and substituting “Each ballot shall set out”;

                                 (ii)    by striking out “in a type of 10 point” and substituting “in a type of at least 12 point”;

                           (b)    in subsection (3)

                                  (i)    by striking out “printed” and substituting “set out”;

                                 (ii)    in clause (a)

                                       (A)    in subclause (iii) by adding “, subject to subsection (3.2)” after “nickname”;

                                       (B)    by striking out “in a type of 10 point” and substituting “in a type of at least 12 point”;

                            (c)    by repealing subsection (3.2) and substituting the following:

(3.2)  The Chief Electoral Officer may disallow the use of a name, other than a person’s legal name, or nickname having regard to the integrity of the election.

                           (d)    by repealing subsection (4) and substituting the following:

(4)  Every ballot shall include a stub and there shall be a line of perforations between the ballot and the stub.

                            (e)    by repealing subsection (5) and substituting the following:

(5)  The ballot and stub shall be in the prescribed form and shall be bound or stitched in books in quantities that the Chief Electoral Officer considers appropriate.

                            (f)    in subsection (6) by striking out “both the stub and counterfoil” and substituting “the stub”;

                           (g)    in subsection (7) by adding “legible and” after “shall be”;

                           (h)    in subsection (9) by striking out “printed on its back”.

 

51   Section 85(a) is amended by striking out “one copy” and substituting “a copy”.

 

52   Section 86(1) is amended

                            (a)    by adding “the Chief Electoral Officer or” after “If”;

                           (b)    by striking out “following the revision under section 50”;

                            (c)    by adding “the Chief Electoral Officer or” before “the returning officer may”.

 

53   Section 88 is amended

                            (a)    in subsection (1)

                                  (i)    in clause (b) by adding “in accordance with section 120” after “held”;

                                 (ii)    by adding the following after clause (b):

                                   (b.1)    at a special mobile poll held in accordance with section 125.1, during the hours fixed by the Chief Electoral Officer;

                           (b)    in subsection (3) by adding “or in line to enter the polling place” after “inside the polling place”.

 

54   Section 88.1 is repealed.

 

55   Section 89(1) is amended by striking out “30 minutes” and substituting “60 minutes”.

 

56   Section 90(1) is amended by adding the following after clause (b):

                             (b.1)    such other bulletins required by the Chief Electoral Officer to assist in the effective conduct of the election.

 

57   Section 96 is amended

                            (a)    in subsection (1) by striking out “due to a physical incapacity or inability to read the ballot”;

                           (b)    in subsection (1.1) by striking out “incapacity” and substituting “disability”;

                            (c)    in subsection (3)(b)

                                  (i)    by striking out “is a blind voter and”;

                                 (ii)    in subclause (i) by striking out “Blind”.

 

58   Section 97 is amended by striking out “one copy” and substituting “a copy”.

 

59   Section 98 is amended

                            (a)    in subsection (1) by striking out “in the electoral division in which those electors ordinarily reside”;

                           (b)    in subsection (1.1)

                                  (i)    by striking out “authorize” and substituting “require”;

                                 (ii)    by adding “if the Chief Electoral Officer considers it necessary” after “4 polling places”;

                            (c)    by repealing subsection (3) and substituting the following:

(3)  The polling places for advance polling shall be open from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. on each of the Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday of the full week preceding polling day.

                           (d)    by adding the following after subsection (6):

(6.1)  If electronic documents are used for the purposes of an advance poll, each day after the close of a polling place for an advance poll, a copy of a record of electors who voted that day shall be made in printed and electronic form.

(6.2)  A copy of the record referred to under subsection (6.1) shall be provided to registered political parties or registered candidates on request.

(6.3)  The record referred to in subsection (6.1) shall include each elector’s electoral division, polling subdivision number and sequence number assigned to the elector by the Chief Electoral Officer or an election officer and any other information the Chief Electoral Officer considers appropriate.

                            (e)    by repealing subsection (7) and substituting the following:

(7)  Sealing material applied to a ballot box shall not be broken from the time it is applied until the close of the polling places on polling day, except as may be necessary at the opening of the polling place for the advance poll on the Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday to permit the deposit of ballots.

                            (f)    in subsection (8) by striking out “seals have been affixed” and substituting “seal has been applied”.

 

60   Section 99(1) is amended

                            (a)    by striking out “presents himself or herself” and substituting “attends”;

                           (b)    in clause (a) by striking out “the list of electors for the polling subdivision in which the elector ordinarily resides” and substituting “a list of electors”;

                            (c)    in clause (b) by striking out “the list of electors for the polling subdivision in which the elector ordinarily resides” and substituting “any list of electors”.

 

61   Section 101 is amended

                            (a)    in subsection (1)(b) by striking out “and the number on the back of the counterfoil”;

                           (b)    by repealing subsection (2) and substituting the following:

(2)  The deputy returning officer shall, without unfolding the ballot and in full view of the voter and all present, ascertain by examining the initials that it is the same ballot the deputy returning officer provided to the voter, and return the ballot to the voter so that the voter may place the ballot in the ballot box.

 

62   Section 111 is amended

                            (a)    in subsection (1) by striking out “and then seal it”;

                           (b)    by repealing subsection (7).

 

63   Section 112(h) is amended by striking out “with the seal provided for that purpose and with the seals of those candidates or their official representatives who also desire to seal the ballot box”.

 

64   Section 116 is amended

                            (a)    in subsection (2) by adding “or to the Chief Electoral Officer in accordance with subsection (2.1)” after “polling day”;

                           (b)    by adding the following after subsection (2):

(2.1)  An application referred to in subsection (2) may be made to the Chief Electoral Officer

                                 (a)    in the case of a general election held in accordance with section 38.1(2),

                                        (i)    no earlier than January 1 in the year in which the election is held, and

                                      (ii)    no later than

                                            (A)    if the elector applies in person, at the end of polling day, and

                                            (B)    in any other case, 6 p.m. on the day before advance polls open,

                                      and

                                 (b)    in the case of a general election held other than in accordance with section 38.1(2) or a by‑election, no later than

                                        (i)    if the elector applies in person, at the end of polling day, and

                                      (ii)    in any other case, 6 p.m. on the day before advance polls open.

                            (c)    in subsection (3)

                                  (i)    by striking out “or election clerk” and substituting “, election clerk or person designated by the Chief Electoral Officer”;

                                 (ii)    in clause (b) by adding “after the writ of election has been issued,” before “cause”.

 

65   Section 118 is amended

                            (a)    in subsection (3) by adding “or the person designated by the Chief Electoral Officer” after “returning officer”;

                           (b)    in subsection (4) by striking out “or election clerk” and substituting “, election clerk or person designated by the Chief Electoral Officer”;

                            (c)    in subsection (5)

                                  (i)    by striking out “or election clerk,” wherever it occurs and substituting “, election clerk or person designated by the Chief Electoral Officer”;

                                 (ii)    by repealing clause (a)(v) and substituting the following:

                                       (v)    remove the sealed ballot envelope from the certificate envelope, remove the Special Ballot from the sealed ballot envelope and place the Special Ballot in a sealed ballot box marked “special ballot”,

                           (d)    in subsection (6) by striking out “, and the authorized election officers shall proceed in accordance with section 113 as if the ballot box were from an advance poll”;

                            (e)    by inserting the following after subsection (6):

(6.01)  Counting of Special Ballots shall proceed

                                 (a)    in the case of ballot boxes delivered under subsection (6), in accordance with section 113 as if the ballot box were from an advance poll,

                                 (b)    in the case of Special Ballots in the sealed ballot box referred to in subsection (5)(a)(v) in the possession of the person designated by the Chief Electoral Officer, in the following manner:

                                        (i)    the authorized election officers shall, in the presence of any candidates or their official agents or scrutineers who attend, open the ballot box and proceed to count the votes;

                                      (ii)    sections 111 and 112 apply, with all necessary modifications, to the count.

 

66   Section 120 is amended

                            (a)    in subsection (1)

                                  (i)    in clause (a) by striking out “in‑patients who are electors, and” and substituting “electors who are in‑patients,”;

                                 (ii)    in clause (b) by striking out “residents who are electors” and substituting “electors who are residents”;

                                (iii)    by adding the following after clause (b):

                                       (c)    any shelters, including emergency shelters, having not fewer than 10 electors who are residents, and

                                       (d)    any community support centres having not fewer than 10 electors who are receiving support or services from that community support centre.

                           (b)    in subsection (2)

                                  (i)    by striking out “subsection (1)” and substituting “subsection (1)(a) or (b)”;

                                 (ii)    by striking out “immediately after nomination day,”;

                                (iii)    in clause (b)

                                       (A)    in subclause (i) by striking out “and”;

                                       (B)    by adding the following after subclause (i):

                                          (i.1)    determine whether a mobile poll will be held on any one or more days fixed for an advance poll and, if so, fix the hours when that mobile poll will operate at the facility, and

                            (c)    by adding the following after subsection (2):

(3)  If a returning officer determines that there are facilities as described in subsection (1)(c) or (d), the returning officer shall

                                 (a)    determine, in consultation with an official of each facility, whether a mobile poll should be held at the facility,

                                 (b)    in consultation with an official of each facility where a poll is to be held

                                        (i)    fix the hours on polling day when a mobile poll will operate at the facility,

                                      (ii)    determine whether a mobile poll will be held on any one or more days fixed for an advance poll and, if so, fix the hours when that mobile poll will operate at the facility, and

                                     (iii)    determine the number of mobile polls to be established within the facility and the format that each mobile poll is to take,

                                      and

                                 (c)    appoint a deputy returning officer and poll clerk for each mobile poll so required.

(4)  An official of a facility referred to in subsection (1)(c) or (d) shall not unreasonably withhold consent to hold a mobile poll in that facility.

(5)  If the official referred to in subsection (4) withholds consent to hold a mobile poll in a facility, the official shall provide the returning officer with written reasons for the withholding of consent.

 

67   Section 121 is amended by striking out “a treatment centre or a supportive living facility” and substituting “a facility referred to in section 120(1)”.

 

68   Section 122 is amended

                            (a)    in subsection (1)(e) by striking out “treatment centre or supportive living”;

                           (b)    in subsection (2)

                                  (i)    by adding “or an emergency shelter” after “treatment centre”;

                                 (ii)    in clause (d) by adding “or emergency shelter” after “treatment centre”.

 

69   Section 123 is amended

                            (a)    in subsection (1) by striking out “treatment centre or supportive living”;

                           (b)    by adding the following after subsection (3):

(3.1)  An elector eligible to vote who is a resident of an emergency shelter or is receiving services or support from a community support centre

                                 (a)    shall, if the elector’s name does not appear on the list of electors, sign the required declaration before voting, and

                                 (b)    may, if necessary, vote in accordance with section 96.

                            (c)    in subsection (4) by striking out “treatment centre or supportive living”;

                           (d)    in subsection (6)

                                  (i)    by striking out “Seals placed on a ballot box” and substituting “Sealing material on a ballot box”;

                                 (ii)    by striking out “they are placed on it” and substituting “it is applied”;

                            (e)    in subsection (7) by striking out “the seals have been affixed” and substituting “the seal has been applied”.

 

70   Section 125 is amended by striking out “treatment centre and every supportive living”.

 

71   The following is added after section 125:

Special mobile polls

125.1(1)  A returning officer, in consultation with the Chief Electoral Officer, may establish one or more special mobile polls in accordance with this section.

(2)  Facilities at which a special mobile poll may be established include the following:

                                 (a)    facilities on the campuses of public post‑secondary institutions;

                                 (b)    facilities on Indian reserves;

                                 (c)    facilities on Metis settlements;

                                 (d)    work camps;

                                 (e)    correctional institutions under the Corrections Act, penitentiaries under the Corrections and Conditional Release Act (Canada) and places of custody under the Youth Justice Act or the Youth Criminal Justice Act (Canada);

                                 (f)    any public building determined by the Chief Electoral Officer to be secure and suitable for the purposes of a special mobile poll.

(3)  A returning officer, in consultation with the Chief Electoral Officer, shall not establish a special mobile poll in a facility if the Chief Electoral Officer determines that the facility does not meet safety, security and any other standards established by the Chief Electoral Officer for polling places.

(4)  A returning officer shall

                                 (a)    determine, in consultation with an official of each facility set out in subsection (2)(a), (b), (c), (d) and (e), whether a special mobile poll should be held at the facility,

                                 (b)    in consultation with an official of each facility where a special mobile poll is to be held, fix the hours on any one or more days fixed for advance polling when a special mobile poll will operate at the facility, and

                                 (c)    appoint a deputy returning officer, poll clerk and other election officers if required for each special mobile poll.

(5)  When a person who is an elector attends to vote at the special mobile poll, the deputy returning officer shall

                                 (a)    if the person’s name appears on a list of electors, enter opposite the name of that person on the list of electors in the appropriate column a check mark or other annotation indicating that the elector voted in the special mobile poll, or

                                 (b)    if the person’s name does not appear on any list of electors,

                                        (i)    require the person to comply with section 95(1) or (2), and

                                      (ii)    enter the person’s name and address on the list of electors and enter in the appropriate column in the poll book a check mark or other annotation indicating that the voter signed a declaration in accordance with section 95(1) or signed a declaration and was vouched for in accordance with section 95(2), and voted in the special mobile poll.

(6)  The deputy returning officer shall advise the returning officer of the names and electoral divisions of all electors who voted at the deputy returning officer’s special mobile poll, and the Chief Electoral Officer shall, prior to polling day, advise each returning officer of the names of the electors for their respective electoral division who have so voted.

Voting at a special mobile poll

125.2   An elector at a special mobile poll may only vote for a candidate in the electoral division where the elector is ordinarily resident.

Application of Act to special mobile polls

125.3   Every facility at which one or more special mobile polls are established is a polling place under this Act and all relevant provisions of this Act apply with all necessary modifications.

 

72   Section 133(1) is amended by adding “and section 133.1” after “this section”.

 

73   The following is added after section 133:

Canvassing in a multiple dwelling site
before the campaign period

133.1(1)  For the purposes of section 133, as soon as a candidate is selected for endorsement as the official candidate of a registered party for an electoral division, the candidate and one campaign worker for that candidate are eligible to canvass in a multiple dwelling site.

(2)  A campaign worker may canvass in a multiple dwelling site under this section only if the campaign worker is accompanied by the candidate.

(3)  For the purposes of this section, a candidate under subsection (1) is not required to file nomination papers or pay the $500 deposit under section 61.

(4)  As soon as a registered party has submitted the full name of the person selected for endorsement as the official candidate of the registered party for an electoral division to the Chief Electoral Officer under section 9.3 of the Election Finances and Contributions Disclosure Act, the Chief Electoral Officer shall on the request of a candidate, provide the candidate with identification stating that the candidate is the official candidate for the registered party.

(5)  The candidate referred to in subsection (4) shall request identification from the Chief Electoral Officer for the campaign worker who will be canvassing with or on behalf of the candidate.

(6)  This section applies as soon as a candidate is selected for endorsement as the official candidate of a registered party for an electoral division and ends at the start of a campaign period.

 

74   The following is added after section 134:

Restrictions on government advertising

134.1(1)  In this section and section 134.2,

                                 (a)    “by‑election period” means the period commencing with the issue of the writ for a by‑election and ending at the end of polling day;

                                 (b)    “department” means a department established under section 2 of the Government Organization Act;

                                 (c)    “election period” means the period commencing with the issue of the writ for a general election and ending at the end of polling day;

                                 (d)    “Provincial corporation” means a Provincial corporation as defined in the Financial Administration Act.

(2)  During an election period, a department or a Provincial corporation shall not advertise or publish any information about its programs or activities unless the advertisement or publication

                                 (a)    is required by law,

                                 (b)    is required at that time

                                        (i)    to solicit proposals or tenders for contracts or applications for employment, or

                                      (ii)    because it relates to important matters of public health or safety,

                                      or

                                 (c)    is a continuation of earlier publications or advertisements and is required for ongoing programs of a department or a Provincial corporation.

(3)  During a by‑election period, a department or a Provincial corporation shall not advertise or publish any information about its programs or activities that has a disproportionate impact on voters in the electoral division in which the by‑election is being held unless the advertisement or publication

                                 (a)    is required by law,

                                 (b)    is required at that time

                                        (i)    to solicit proposals or tenders for contracts or applications for employment, or

                                      (ii)    because it relates to important matters of public health or safety,

                                 (c)    is a continuation of earlier publications or advertisements and is required for ongoing programs of a department or a Provincial corporation, or

                                 (d)    deals with a matter before the Legislative Assembly such as the Speech from the Throne, the budget, the introduction or passage of a Bill or an order or resolution of the Assembly.

(4)  During an election period, the name, voice or image of a candidate who was a member of the Legislative Assembly immediately before the writ of election is issued for that election shall not appear in the advertising or publication by a department or a Provincial corporation of any information about its programs or activities.

(5)  During a by‑election period, the name, voice or image of a candidate who was a member of the Executive Council, but not a member of the Legislative Assembly, immediately before the writ of election is issued for that by‑election shall not appear in the advertising or publication by a department or a Provincial corporation of any information about its programs or activities.

Complaints to Election Commissioner

134.2(1)  Any person who believes that a department or Provincial corporation has contravened section 134.1 may file a complaint with the Election Commissioner.

(2)  If the Election Commissioner finds that a department or a Provincial corporation has contravened section 134.1, the Election Commissioner may do one or both of the following:

                                 (a)    cause the advertisement or publication to be removed or discontinued, and in the case of an advertisement or publication displayed on a sign, poster or other similar format, neither the Election Commissioner nor any person acting under the Election Commissioner’s instructions is liable for trespass or damage resulting from the removal of the advertisement or publication;

                                 (b)    publish the particulars of the violation.

(3)  If the Election Commissioner finds that a department or a Provincial corporation has contravened section 134.1, the Election Commissioner shall include the particulars of the violation in the Election Commissioner’s report under section 153.092.

 

75   Section 135(1) is amended by adding “, or within the boundaries of the land on which the building is located,” after “polling day”.

 

76   Section 137 is amended

                            (a)    in subsection (6) by adding “and submit it to the Chief Electoral Officer” after “Statement of Official Results”;

                           (b)    by adding the following after subsection (6):

(7)  The returning officer shall retain a copy of the Statement of Official Results for a period of 7 days after submitting it to the Chief Electoral Officer to allow for a possible judicial recount under this Part.

 

77   Section 138 is amended

                            (a)    in subsection (1) by striking out “attend at the place, date and time stated in the election proclamation and announce the results of the official count and”;

                           (b)    by repealing subsection (2) and substituting the following:

(2)  After the returning officer declares the candidate elected under subsection (1), the Chief Electoral Officer shall announce the results of the official count.

 

78   Section 141(3) is repealed.

 

79   Section 144(3) is amended by striking out “returning officer” and substituting “Chief Electoral Officer”.

 

80   Section 145(3) is amended by adding “shall be given notice and” after “following”.

 

81   Section 146 is amended

                            (a)    in subsection (6) by adding “or the person designated by the Chief Electoral Officer” after “returning officer”;

                           (b)    by repealing subsection (7).

 

82   Section 147 is amended

                            (a)    by renumbering it as section 147(1);

                           (b)    in subsection (1)

                                  (i)    by adding “submit the results to the Chief Electoral Officer and” after “certification,”;

                                 (ii)    in clause (a) by striking out “returning officer is” and substituting “Chief Electoral Officer and the returning officer are”;

                            (c)    by adding the following after subsection (1):

(2)  After the returning officer declares the candidate elected under subsection (1), the Chief Electoral Officer shall announce the results of the recount.

(3)  The judge shall retain the ballots for 3 days after certifying the result under subsection (1) and

                                 (a)    if there is an appeal under section 148, forward the ballots to the Court of Appeal, or

                                 (b)    if there is no appeal under section 148, return the ballots to the Chief Electoral Officer.

 

83   Section 148 is amended

                            (a)    in subsections (1) and (6) by adding “Chief Electoral Officer and” before “returning officer”;

                           (b)    by adding the following after subsection (8):

(9)  After the returning officer declares the candidate elected under subsection (8)(a), the Chief Electoral Officer shall announce the results of the recount.

(10)  No later than 60 days after the Court of Appeal declares the results of the election under subsection (7), the Court of Appeal shall return the ballots to the Chief Electoral Officer.

 

84   Section 151(1) is amended by striking out “section 142(1)” and substituting “sections 142(1) and 148(9)”.

 

85   Section 152 is amended

                            (a)    by adding “registered” before “candidate” wherever it occurs;

                           (b)    by adding “registered” before “candidate’s official agent” wherever it occurs;

                            (c)    by adding “registered” before “political party” wherever it occurs.

 

86   The following is added after section 153:

Part 4.1
Investigations

Division 1
Election Commissioner

Appointment of Election Commissioner

153.01(1)  There shall be appointed pursuant to this Act an Election Commissioner.

(2)  The Election Commissioner is an officer of the Legislature.

Term of office

153.02(1)  Subject to subsection (2), the Lieutenant Governor in Council shall appoint the Election Commissioner on the recommendation of the Assembly.

(2)  If a vacancy occurs while the Legislature is not in session, the Lieutenant Governor in Council, on the recommendation of the Standing Committee, may appoint an Election Commissioner to fill the vacancy, and unless that office sooner becomes vacant, the person so appointed holds office until an Election Commissioner is appointed under subsection (1), but if an appointment under subsection (1) is not made within 30 days after the commencement of the next session, the appointment under this subsection lapses and there is deemed to be another vacancy in the office of Election Commissioner.

(3)  Except as provided in subsections (4) and (5), the Election Commissioner holds office for a term not exceeding 5 years and is eligible for reappointment.

(4)  The Lieutenant Governor in Council, on an address of the Assembly, may suspend or remove the Election Commissioner from office for cause or incapacity.

(5)  If the Legislature is not then sitting, the Lieutenant Governor in Council may suspend the Election Commissioner from office for cause or incapacity proved to the satisfaction of the Lieutenant Governor in Council, but the suspension shall not continue in force beyond the end of the next sitting of the Legislature.

(6)  The Election Commissioner may resign that office by filing a written notice with the Speaker of the Assembly or, if there is no Speaker or the Speaker is absent from Alberta, with the Clerk of the Assembly.

Oath of office

153.03(1)  Before beginning the duties of office, the Election Commissioner shall take an oath to perform the duties of the office faithfully and impartially and, except as provided in this Act or the Election Finances and Contributions Disclosure Act, not to disclose any information received by the Office of the Election Commissioner under this or any other Act.

(2)  The oath referred to in subsection (1) shall be administered by the Speaker of the Legislative Assembly or the Clerk of the Assembly.

Office of Election Commissioner

153.04(1)  There shall be a department of the public service of Alberta called the Office of the Election Commissioner, consisting of the Election Commissioner and those officers and employees appointed pursuant to the Public Service Act who are required to assist the Election Commissioner in carrying out the duties and functions of the Election Commissioner under this Act and the Election Finances and Contributions Disclosure Act.

(2)  On the recommendation of the Election Commissioner, the Standing Committee may order that

                           (a)    any regulation, order or directive made under the Financial Administration Act,

                           (b)    any regulation, order, directive, rule, procedure, direction, allocation, designation or other decision under the Public Service Act, or

                           (c)    any regulation, order, determination, direction or other decision under the Public Sector Compensation Transparency Act

be inapplicable to, or be varied in respect of, the Office of the Election Commissioner or any particular employee or class of employees in the Office of the Election Commissioner.

(3)  An order made under subsection (2)(a) in relation to a regulation, order or directive made under the Financial Administration Act operates notwithstanding that Act.

(4)  An order made under subsection (2)(c) in relation to a regulation, order, determination, direction or other decision under the Public Sector Compensation Transparency Act operates notwithstanding that Act.

(5)  The Regulations Act does not apply to orders made under subsection (2).

(6)  The chair of the Standing Committee shall lay a copy of each order made under subsection (2) before the Assembly if it is then sitting or, if it is not then sitting, within 15 days after the commencement of the next sitting.

Immunity

153.05   No proceedings lie against the Election Commissioner, or against a person acting for or under the direction of the Election Commissioner, for anything done, or omitted to be done, in good faith in the exercise or performance or the intended exercise or performance of a power, duty or function under this Act or the Election Finances and Contributions Disclosure Act.

Salary of Election Commissioner

153.06   The salary of the Election Commissioner shall be in an amount fixed by the Standing Committee at the time of appointment, and shall be reviewed at least once a year by the Standing Committee.

Annual estimates

153.07(1)  The Election Commissioner shall submit to the Standing Committee in respect of each fiscal year an estimate of the sum that will be required to be provided by the Legislature to defray the various charges and expenses of the Office of the Election Commissioner in that fiscal year.

(2)  The Standing Committee shall review each estimate submitted pursuant to subsection (1) and, on completion of the review, the chair of the Committee shall present the estimate to the President of Treasury Board, Minister of Finance for presentation to the Assembly.

(3)  If at any time the Legislative Assembly is not in session, the Standing Committee, or if there is no Standing Committee, the President of Treasury Board, Minister of Finance,

                           (a)    reports that the Election Commissioner has certified that in the public interest an expenditure of public money is urgently required in respect of any matter pertaining to the Office of the Election Commissioner, and

                           (b)    reports that either

                                  (i)    there is no supply vote under which an expenditure with respect to that matter may be made, or

                                (ii)    there is a supply vote under which an expenditure with respect to that matter may be made but the authority available under the supply vote is insufficient,

the Lieutenant Governor in Council may order a special warrant to be prepared to be signed by the Lieutenant Governor authorizing the expenditure of the amount estimated to be required.

(4)  When the Legislative Assembly is adjourned for a period of more than 14 days, then, for the purposes of subsection (3), the Assembly is deemed not to be in session during the period of the adjournment.

(5)  When a special warrant is prepared and signed under subsection (3) on the basis of a report referred to in subsection (3)(b)(i), the authority to spend the amount of money specified in the special warrant for the purpose specified in the special warrant is deemed to be a supply vote for the purposes of the Financial Administration Act.

(6)  When a special warrant is prepared and signed under subsection (3) on the basis of a report referred to in subsection (3)(b)(ii), the authority to spend the amount of money specified in the special warrant is, for the purposes of the Financial Administration Act, added to and deemed to be part of the supply vote to which the report relates.

(7)  When a special warrant has been prepared and signed pursuant to this section, the amounts authorized by it are deemed to be included in, and not to be in addition to, the amounts authorized by the Act, not being an Act for interim supply, enacted next after it for granting to Her Majesty sums of money to defray certain expenditures of the Public Service of Alberta.

Records management

153.08   On the recommendation of the Election Commissioner, the Standing Committee may, subject to section 153, make an order

                           (a)    respecting the management of records in the custody or under the control of the Office of the Election Commissioner, including their creation, handling, control, organization, retention, maintenance, security, preservation, disposition, alienation and destruction and their transfer to the Provincial Archives of Alberta;

                           (b)    establishing or governing the establishment of programs for any matter referred to in clause (a);

                           (c)    defining and classifying records;

                           (d)    respecting the records or classes of records to which the order or any provision of it applies.

Division 2
Duties and Powers of
Election Commissioner

Duties and powers of the Election Commissioner

153.09(1)  The Election Commissioner may, on the Election Commissioner’s own initiative or at the request of the Chief Electoral Officer or another person or organization, conduct an investigation into any matter that might constitute an offence under this Act.

(2)  For the purpose of conducting an investigation under this Act, the Election Commissioner has all the powers of a commissioner under the Public Inquiries Act as though the investigation were an inquiry under that Act.

(3)  For the purpose of conducting an investigation under this Act, a representative of the Election Commissioner, on production of the representative’s authorization from the Election Commissioner, may at any reasonable time enter any premises referred to in the authorization in which books or documents of a political party, constituency association or candidate relevant to the subject‑matter of the investigation are kept and may examine and make copies of the books or documents or remove them temporarily for the purpose of making copies.

(4)  Before entering a private dwelling or a part of premises used as a private dwelling to carry out the powers described in subsection (3), a representative of the Election Commissioner shall

                           (a)    obtain the consent of the occupant or the legal representative of the occupant of the private dwelling or the part of the premises used as a private dwelling, or

                           (b)    obtain an order from the Court.

(5)  A registered political party, registered constituency association or registered candidate shall, within 30 days after receiving a written request from the Election Commissioner or within an extended period that the Election Commissioner may determine, provide any information with respect to the affairs of the registered political party, registered constituency association or registered candidate that is reasonably required by the Election Commissioner in the course of the Election Commissioner’s duties under this Act.

Notice of investigation and conclusion

153.091(1)  At any time before completing an investigation referred to in section 153.09(1), the Election Commissioner shall notify any person or organization who is the subject of an investigation that the person or organization is being investigated and the nature of the matter being investigated before completing the investigation, unless the Election Commissioner believes that notification would compromise or impede the investigation.

(2)  The Election Commissioner may refuse to conduct an investigation, or may cease an investigation, if the Election Commissioner believes that

                           (a)    the matter is frivolous or vexatious, or

                           (b)    there are no or insufficient grounds to warrant an investigation or the continuation of an investigation.

(3)  The Election Commissioner shall not make an adverse finding against a person or organization unless that person or organization has had reasonable notice of the substance of the allegations and a reasonable opportunity to present his or her or its views.

(4)  If the Election Commissioner refuses to conduct or ceases an investigation under subsection (2) or determines that no offence was committed, the Election Commissioner

                           (a)    shall provide notice of that decision to

                                  (i)    every person or organization who

                                      (A)    is the subject of the investigation, or

                                      (B)    would have been the subject of an investigation if the Election Commissioner had not refused to conduct an investigation,

                                      and

                                (ii)    every person or organization who requested an investigation, if any,

                                and

                           (b)    may, as the Election Commissioner considers to be appropriate, provide notice of that decision to any other person or organization involved in the matter referred to in section 153.09(1).

Annual report

153.092(1)  The Election Commissioner shall after the end of each year prepare a report on the exercise of the Election Commissioner’s functions under this Act and the Election Finances and Contributions Disclosure Act, and shall transmit the report to the Standing Committee on Legislative Offices, which shall on its receipt lay the report before the Assembly if it is then sitting or, if it is not then sitting, within 15 days after the commencement of the next sitting of the Assembly.

(2)  The annual report must set out the following in respect of the previous year: 

                           (a)    the number of complaints and allegations received by the Chief Electoral Officer or the Election Commissioner and, with respect to each complaint or allegation,

                                  (i)    the nature of the complaint or allegation, and

                                (ii)    if and how the complaint or allegation was resolved;

                           (b)    the number of investigations commenced pursuant to this Act or the Election Finances and Contributions Disclosure Act and, with respect to each investigation,

                                  (i)    the nature of the act or omission giving rise to the investigation,

                                (ii)    the outcome of the investigation, including any findings and decisions of the Election Commissioner, and

                               (iii)    if the Election Commissioner recommends a prosecution be instituted, the outcome of the prosecution, including any fine imposed;

                           (c)    the number of compliance agreements entered into pursuant to this Act or the Election Finances and Contributions Disclosure Act and, with respect to each compliance agreement, the nature of the act or omission giving rise to the compliance agreement;

                           (d)    the number of injunctions sought by the Election Commissioner under this Act or the Election Finances and Contributions Disclosure Act and, with respect to each injunction, the nature of the act or omission giving rise to the injunction;

                           (e)    the number of administrative penalties imposed or letters of reprimand issued under the Act or the Election Finances and Contributions Disclosure Act and, with respect to each administrative penalty or letter of reprimand, the nature of the act or omission giving rise to the administrative penalty or letter of reprimand;

                            (f)    any recommendations for improvement that the Election Commissioner considers appropriate;

                           (g)    any other matters that the Election Commissioner considers appropriate.

(3)  Where, in the opinion of the Election Commissioner, it is in the public interest to do so, the Election Commissioner shall publish a special report on the Election Commissioner’s website relating to any matter within the scope of the Election Commissioner’s responsibilities under this Act or the Election Finances and Contributions Disclosure Act, including a report referring to and commenting on any particular matter investigated by the Election Commissioner.

 

87   Section 153.1 is amended

                            (a)    by striking out “Chief Electoral Officer” wherever it occurs and substituting “Election Commissioner”;

                           (b)    in subsection (4) by striking out “161” and substituting “163”.

 

88   The following is added after section 153.1:

Time limit

153.2(1)  A letter of reprimand or a notice of administrative penalty may not be served more than 3 years after the date on which the alleged contravention occurs.

(2)  A disclosure under section 206.1(3)(a) may be made with respect to an alleged contravention that occurred before the coming into force of this section, but may not be made with respect to an alleged contravention that occurred more than 3 years before the coming into force of this section.

Appeal of administrative penalty

153.3(1)  A person or entity who is served with a notice of administrative penalty under section 153.1 may appeal the Election Commissioner’s decision by filing an application with the Court within 30 days from the date the notice was served.

(2)  The application must be accompanied with a copy of the notice of administrative penalty and state the reasons for the appeal.

(3)  A copy of the application must be served on the Election Commissioner not less than 30 days before the appeal is to be heard.

(4)  The Court may, on application either before or after the time referred to in subsection (1), extend that time if it considers it appropriate to do so.

(5)  On hearing the appeal, the Court may confirm, rescind or vary the amount of the administrative penalty.

Compliance agreements

153.4(1)  In this Part, “contracting party” means a person with whom the Election Commissioner enters into a compliance agreement under this Act.

(2)  If the Election Commissioner believes on reasonable grounds that a person has committed, is about to commit or is likely to commit an act or omission that could constitute a contravention of this Act, except a contravention under Part 6, the Election Commissioner may enter into a compliance agreement with that person for the purpose of ensuring compliance with this Act.

(3)  A compliance agreement may contain any terms and conditions that the Election Commissioner considers necessary to ensure compliance with this Act.

(4)  Before entering into a compliance agreement, the Election Commissioner shall require the consent of the prospective contracting party to the publication of a notice under section 153.5.

(5)  A compliance agreement may include a statement by the contracting party that the contracting party admits responsibility for the act or omission that constitutes a contravention of this Act.

(6)  The fact that a compliance agreement was entered into, and any statement referred to in subsection (5), is not admissible in evidence against the contracting party in any civil or criminal proceedings.

(7)  When a compliance agreement is entered into, a prosecution of the contracting party for an act or omission that led to the agreement shall not be instituted and any prosecution already instituted is suspended.

(8)  The Election Commissioner and the contracting party may renegotiate the terms of the compliance agreement at the request of the Election Commissioner or contracting party at any time before it is fully executed.

Notice of compliance agreement

153.5(1)  When, in the opinion of the Election Commissioner, the compliance agreement has been complied with, the Election Commissioner shall give a notice to that effect to the contracting party.

(2)  On the giving of a notice under subsection (1), any prosecution of the contracting party that is based on the act or omission in question terminates and no further prosecution shall be instituted based on that act or omission.

Failure to comply

153.6   If the Election Commissioner is of the opinion that a contracting party

                                 (a)    failed to disclose all material facts when the compliance agreement was entered into, or

                                 (b)    has failed to comply with a term of the compliance agreement,

the Election Commissioner shall give notice of the failure to the contracting party, informing the contracting party that the Election Commissioner may serve a notice of administrative penalty or a letter of reprimand under section 153.1, or may consent to a prosecution in respect of the original act or omission or, if a prosecution has been suspended by section 153.4(7), that those proceedings are no longer suspended.

Publication of notice

153.7   The Election Commissioner may publish a notice on the Election Commissioner’s website that sets out the contracting party’s name, the act or omission in question and a summary of the compliance agreement.

Application for injunction

153.8(1)  If the Election Commissioner has reasonable grounds to believe that a person has committed or is likely to commit an act or omission that is contrary to this Act, the Election Commissioner may, during an election period, after taking into account the nature and seriousness of the act or omission, the need to ensure fairness of the electoral process and the public interest, apply by originating application to the Court for an injunction described in subsection (2).

(2)  If the Court, on application by the Election Commissioner under subsection (1), is satisfied that there are reasonable grounds to believe that a person has committed or is likely to commit an act or omission that is contrary to this Act, and that the nature and seriousness of the act or omission, the need to ensure fairness of the electoral process and the public interest justify the issuing of an injunction, the Court may issue an injunction ordering any person named in the application to do one or both of the following:

                                 (a)    refrain from committing any act that appears to the Court to be contrary to this Act;

                                 (b)    do any act that appears to the Court to be required by this Act.

(3)  No injunction may be issued under subsection (2) unless at least 48 hours’ notice is given to each person named in the application, or the urgency of the situation is such that service of notice would not be in the public interest.

 

89   Section 154 is amended

                            (a)    in subsection (1)

                                  (i)    in clause (a) by striking out “161” and substituting “163”;

                                 (ii)    by striking out “$500” and substituting “$5000 or to imprisonment for a term of not more than one year or to both fine and imprisonment”;

                           (b)    in subsection (2) by striking out “the summary conviction procedure” and substituting “under the procedure set out in the Provincial Offences Procedure Act”.

 

90   The following is added after section 154:

Contravention of compliance agreement

154.1   A contracting party who enters into a compliance agreement under this Act and

                                 (a)    failed to disclose all material facts when the compliance agreement was entered into, or

                                 (b)    fails to comply with the compliance agreement

is guilty of an offence and liable to a fine of not more than $5000 or to imprisonment for a term of not more than one year or to both fine and imprisonment.

 

91   Section 155 is amended

                            (a)    in clause (a) by striking out “$500” and substituting “$5000 or to imprisonment for a term of not more than one year or to both fine and imprisonment”;

                           (b)    in clause (b) by striking out “$200” and substituting “$2000 or to imprisonment for a term of not more than one year or to both fine and imprisonment”.

 

92   Section 157 is amended by striking out “$1000” wherever it occurs and substituting “$10 000 or to imprisonment for a term of not more than one year or to both fine and imprisonment”.

 

93   Section 158 is amended by striking out “$1000” and substituting “$10 000 or to imprisonment for a term of not more than one year or to both fine and imprisonment”.

 

94   Section 159 is amended

                            (a)    in clause (a) by striking out “$1000” and substituting “$10 000 or to imprisonment for a term of not more than one year or to both fine and imprisonment”;

                           (b)    in clause (b) by striking out “$200” and substituting “$2000 or to imprisonment for a term of not more than one year or to both fine and imprisonment”.

 

95   Section 160 is amended by striking out “$2000” and substituting “$10 000 or to imprisonment for a term of not more than one year or to both fine and imprisonment”.

 

96   Section 161 is amended

                            (a)    in clause (a) by adding “or attempts to procure” after “procures”;

                           (b)    in clause (a.1) by adding “procures or attempts to procure an appointment as an election officer when the person” before “knows”;

                            (c)    by striking out “$1000” and substituting “$10 000 or to imprisonment for a term of not more than one year or to both fine and imprisonment”.

 

97   Section 162(1) is amended by striking out “$500” and substituting “$10 000 or to imprisonment for a term of not more than one year or to both fine and imprisonment”.

 

98   Section 163(d) is amended by adding “19.1 or” after “section”.

 

99   Section 163.1(1) is amended by striking out “Chief Electoral Officer” and substituting “Election Commissioner”.

 

100   The following is added after section 164:

Tampering with equipment

164.1   A person commits a corrupt practice who wilfully interferes, or attempts to interfere, in any way with any equipment used to record votes, to count votes or to record who has voted in an election.

 

101   Section 177 is amended 

                            (a)    in subsection (1) by striking out “$5000” and substituting “$50 000”;

                           (b)    in subsection (2) by striking out “under the summary conviction procedure” and substituting “under the procedure set out in the Provincial Offences Procedure Act”.

 

102   Section 178 is amended

                            (a)    in subsection (2) by adding “and the Election Commissioner” after “Chief Electoral Officer”;

                           (b)    in subsection (4) by striking out “Chief Electoral Officer receives” and substituting “Chief Electoral Officer and the Election Commissioner receive”.

 

103   Section 179(1) is amended by adding “and the Election Commissioner” after “Chief Electoral Officer”.

 

104   Section 185(2) is amended

                            (a)    in clause (a)(ii) by striking out “of the election”;

                           (b)    in clause (b) by striking out “149” and substituting “150”.

 

105   Section 188(1) is amended by adding “and the Election Commissioner” after “Chief Electoral Officer”.

 

106   Section 195(1) is amended by adding “and the Election Commissioner” after “Chief Electoral Officer”.

 

107   Section 197(2) is amended by adding “and the Election Commissioner” after “facts to the Chief Electoral Officer”.

 

108   Section 200 is amended by adding “and the Election Commissioner” after “send to the Chief Electoral Officer”.

 

109   The following is added after section 206:

Disclosure

206.1(1)  Except as provided in subsections (2) and (3), the Chief Electoral Officer, the Election Commissioner, any former Chief Electoral Officer, any former Election Commissioner, every person who is or was employed or engaged by the Office of the Chief Electoral Officer to carry out the duties of the Chief Electoral Officer and every person who is or was employed or engaged by the Office of the Election Commissioner to carry out the duties of the Election Commissioner shall maintain the confidentiality of all information, complaints and allegations that come to their knowledge.

(2)  Information, complaints and allegations to which subsection (1) applies may be

                                 (a)    disclosed by the Chief Electoral Officer to the Election Commissioner for the purpose of carrying out the Election Commissioner’s powers, duties and functions under this Act,

                                 (b)    disclosed by the Election Commissioner to the Chief Electoral Officer for the purposes of carrying out the Chief Electoral Officer’s powers, duties and functions under this Act,

                                 (c)    disclosed to the person or organization whose conduct is the subject of proceedings under this Act,

                                 (d)    disclosed to a registered political party if a constituency association, a registered candidate, a nomination contestant or a leadership contestant of that registered political party is the subject of an investigation under this Act,

                                 (e)    disclosed by a person conducting an investigation to the extent necessary to enable that person to obtain information from another person,

                                 (f)    disclosed in the course of an appeal to the Court under section 153.3,

                                 (g)    adduced in evidence at an inquiry, or

                                 (h)    disclosed where the Election Commissioner believes on reasonable grounds that the disclosure is necessary for the purpose of advising the Minister of Justice and Solicitor General or a law enforcement agency of an alleged offence under this Act or any other enactment of Alberta or an Act or regulation of Canada.

(3)  Findings and decisions, and any additional information that the Election Commissioner considers to be appropriate, shall be published on the Election Commissioner’s website in the following circumstances:

                                 (a)    if an administrative penalty is imposed or a letter of reprimand is issued under section 153.1;

                                 (b)    if the Election Commissioner has provided notice under section 153.091(4) and receives a written request for disclosure from a person or organization who received the notice.

Duty to provide document or information

206.2(1)  On the request of the Election Commissioner, the Chief Electoral Officer shall disclose to the Election Commissioner any document or information that the Chief Electoral Officer obtained under this Act that the Election Commissioner considers necessary for the purposes of carrying out his or her powers, duties and functions under this Act.

(2)  On the request of the Chief Electoral Officer, the Election Commissioner shall disclose to the Chief Electoral Officer any document or information that the Election Commissioner obtained under this Act that the Chief Electoral Officer considers necessary for the purposes of carrying out his or her powers, duties and functions under this Act.

Duty to refer complaints and allegations
and to report acts or omissions

206.3   The Chief Electoral Officer shall within a reasonable time

                                 (a)    refer any complaint or allegation received by the Chief Electoral Officer under this Act to the Election Commissioner, and

                                 (b)    report any act or omission that in the Chief Electoral Officer’s opinion likely constitutes an offence under this Act to the Election Commissioner.

Judicial review

206.4   An application for judicial review of a decision or order of the Chief Electoral Officer or the Election Commissioner under this Act must be filed with the Court and served on the Chief Electoral Officer or the Election Commissioner, as the case may be, no later than 30 days from the date of the decision or order.

 

110   Section 207 is amended by repealing clauses (a) and (b).

 

111   Section 208 is repealed and the following is substituted:

Fees and expenses

208   The Chief Electoral Officer shall establish, in respect of services and expenses under this Act,

                                 (a)    the amounts of remuneration and fees,

                                 (b)    the rates of payment for expenses, and

                                 (c)    the method and procedure of applying for payment.

Amends RSA 2000 cF‑25

­­112   The Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act is amended in section 1(m) by adding “the Election Commissioner,” after “the Chief Electoral Officer,”.

Amends SA 2003 cP‑6.5

113   The Personal Information Protection Act is amended in section 4(3)(g) by adding the following after subclause (iii):

                            (iii.1)    the Election Commissioner;

Amends SA 2008 cS‑4.7

114   The Security Services and Investigators Act is amended in section 10(o) by adding “the Election Commissioner,” after “the Chief Electoral Officer,”.

Part 2
Election Finances and
Contributions Disclosure Act

Amends RSA 2000 cE‑2

115   The Election Finances and Contributions Disclosure Act is amended by this Part.

 

116   Section 1(1) is amended

                            (a)    by repealing clauses (b)(iii) and (c)(ii);

                           (b)    by repealing clause (f) and substituting the following:

                                 (f)    “election” means an election of a person as a Member of the Legislative Assembly conducted under the Election Act;

                            (c)    by adding the following after clause (f):

                            (f.01)    “Election Commissioner” means the Election Commissioner appointed under the Election Act;

                           (d)    in clause (i) by striking out “and includes an election under the Senatorial Selection Act”;

                            (e)    in clause (k) by striking out “or the Senatorial Selection Act”.

 

117   Section 4(1) is amended

                            (a)    by striking out “this Act, the Election Act and the Senatorial Selection Actand substituting “this Act and the Election Act”;

                           (b)    in clause (b) by striking out “or conduct periodic investigations of”;

                            (c)    by repealing clause (b.1).

 

118   Section 5 is amended

                            (a)    by repealing subsection (1) and substituting the following:

Powers of Chief Electoral Officer

5(1)  For the purposes of carrying out an examination or inquiry referred to in section 4(1), the Chief Electoral Officer has all the powers of a commissioner under the Public Inquiries Act as though the examination or inquiry were an inquiry under that Act.

                           (b)    in subsection (2)

                                  (i)    by striking out , or conducting an investigation,”;

                                 (ii)    by striking out “examination, inquiry or investigation” and substituting “examination or inquiry”;

                            (c)    by adding the following after subsection (2):

(2.1)  Before entering a private dwelling or a part of premises used as a private dwelling to carry out the powers described in subsection (2), a representative of the Chief Electoral Officer shall

                                 (a)    obtain the consent of the occupant or the legal representative of the occupant of the private dwelling or the part of the premises used as a private dwelling, or

                                 (b)    obtain an order from the Court.

 

119   Section 5.1 is repealed.

 

120   Section 5.2 is repealed and the following is substituted:

Disclosure

5.2(1)  Except as provided in subsections (2) and (3), the Chief Electoral Officer, the Election Commissioner, any former Chief Electoral Officer, any former Election Commissioner, every person who is or was employed or engaged by the Office of the Chief Electoral Officer to carry out the duties of the Chief Electoral Officer and every person who is or was employed by the Office of the Election Commissioner to carry out the duties of an Election Commissioner shall maintain the confidentiality of all information, complaints and allegations that come to their knowledge.

(2)  Information, complaints and allegations to which subsection (1) applies may be

                                 (a)    disclosed by the Chief Electoral Officer to the Election Commissioner for the purpose of carrying out the Election Commissioner’s powers, duties and functions under this Act,

                                 (b)    disclosed by the Election Commissioner to the Chief Electoral Officer for the purposes of carrying out the Chief Electoral Officer’s powers, duties and functions under this Act,

                                 (c)    disclosed to the person or organization whose conduct is the subject of proceedings under this Act,

                                 (d)    disclosed to a political party if a constituency association, a registered candidate, a nomination contestant or a leadership contestant of that political party is the subject of an investigation under this Act,

                                 (e)    disclosed to the Minister responsible for the Alberta Personal Income Tax Act where a contribution has been made or accepted in contravention of this Act for which a receipt has been issued under section 33,

                                 (f)    disclosed by a person conducting an investigation to the extent necessary to enable that person to obtain information from another person,

                                 (g)    disclosed in a report made by the Chief Electoral Officer under section 44(1),

                                 (h)    disclosed in the course of an appeal to the Court of Queen’s Bench under section 51.03,

                                  (i)    adduced in evidence at an inquiry, and

                                  (j)    disclosed where the Election Commissioner believes on reasonable grounds that the disclosure is necessary for the purpose of advising the Minister of Justice and Solicitor General or a law enforcement agency of an alleged offence under this Act or any other enactment of Alberta or an Act or regulation of Canada.

(3)  Findings and decisions, and any additional information that the Election Commissioner considers to be appropriate, shall be published on the Election Commissioner’s website in the following circumstances:

                                 (a)    subject to section 51.02(2), if an administrative penalty is imposed or a letter of reprimand is issued under section 51 or 51.01;

                                 (b)    if the Election Commissioner has provided notice under section 44.97(4) and receives a written request for disclosure from a person or organization who received the notice.

Duty to provide document or information

5.3(1)  On the request of the Election Commissioner, the Chief Electoral Officer shall disclose to the Election Commissioner any document or information that the Chief Electoral Officer obtained under this Act that the Election Commissioner considers necessary for the purposes of carrying out his or her powers, duties and functions under this Act.

(2)  On the request of the Chief Electoral Officer, the Election Commissioner shall disclose to the Chief Electoral Officer any document or information that the Election Commissioner obtained under this Act that the Chief Electoral Officer considers necessary for the purposes of carrying out his or her powers, duties and functions under this Act.

Duty to refer complaints and allegations
and to report acts or omissions

5.4   The Chief Electoral Officer shall within a reasonable time

                                 (a)    refer any complaint or allegation received by the Chief Electoral Officer under this Act to the Election Commissioner, and

                                 (b)    report any act or omission that in the Chief Electoral Officer’s opinion likely constitutes an offence under this Act to the Election Commissioner.

 

121   Section 9(2)(b) is repealed.

 

122   Section 10 is amended

                            (a)    in subsection (1.1) by striking out “unless that registered party had endorsed a candidate at the most recent election under the Senatorial Selection Act”;

                           (b)    by repealing subsection (2) and substituting the following:

(2)  If a registered candidate who was nominated in accordance with the Election Act withdraws the candidate’s candidacy in accordance with that Act, that person shall so notify the Chief Electoral Officer in writing and the Chief Electoral Officer shall cancel the registration of that person.

                            (c)    by repealing subsection (4).

 

123   Section 12(5) is repealed.

 

124   Sections 18, 20 and 21 are repealed.

 

125   Section 32(5) is amended by striking out “and those made in respect of an election under the Senatorial Selection Act”.

 

126   Sections 37 and 39 are repealed.

 

127   The following is added after section 41.4:

Activities by third parties

41.41(1)  A third party shall not incur expenses to engage in any of the following activities that support the work of registered parties, registered candidates, registered nomination contestants or registered leadership contestants:

                                 (a)    selling memberships for a registered party;

                                 (b)    fundraising for a registered party, registered candidate, registered leadership contestant or registered nomination contestant;

                                 (c)    collecting or compiling information about electors or potential electors, including data and lists, where that information is shared with registered parties, registered candidates, registered leadership contestants or registered nomination contestants;

                                 (d)    any other activity that would otherwise be part of the administrative activity of a registered party, registered candidate, registered nomination contestant or registered leadership contestant.

(2)  Subsection (1) does not apply to

                                 (a)    volunteer labour provided by a person, so long as that person does not receive any compensation to volunteer,

                                 (b)    a petition tabled in the Legislative Assembly in accordance with the Standing Orders of the Legislative Assembly of Alberta,

                                 (c)    a contribution by a third party who is eligible to make a contribution under section 16(1), or

                                 (d)    an activity where the expense incurred for that activity is an election expense under this Part.

Collusion

41.42(1)  A registered party, registered candidate, registered nomination contestant or registered leadership contestant shall not circumvent, or attempt to circumvent, an expense limit set out in this Part or a contribution limit under Part 3 by colluding with a third party.

(2)  A third party shall not collude with a registered party, registered candidate, registered nomination contestant or registered leadership contestant to circumvent, or attempt to circumvent, an expense limit set out in this Part or a contribution limit under Part 3.

 

128   Section 44.1 is amended

                            (a)    in subsection (1)

                                  (i)    in clause (d)

                                       (A)    in the portion preceding subclause (i) by adding “, subject to subsection (1.1),” before “the transmission”;

                                       (B)    in subclause (iii) by adding “or the communication” after “document”;

                                 (ii)    by adding the following after clause (d):

                                   (d.1)    “election advertising period” means

                                             (i)    in the case of a general election held in accordance with section 38.1(2) of the Election Act, the period commencing December 1 in the year immediately preceding the year in which a general election is held and ending at the end of the polling day, or

                                            (ii)    in the case of a general election held other than in accordance with section 38.1(2) of the Election Act, the period commencing with the issue of a writ for the election and ending at the end of the polling day;

                                (iii)    in clause (g)

                                       (A)    in the portion preceding subclause (i) by adding “, subject to subsection (1.3),” before “the transmission”;

                                       (B)    in subclause (iii) by adding “or the communication” after “document”;

                           (b)    by adding the following after subsection (1):

(1.1)  For the purposes of subsection (1)(d), “election advertising” includes

                                 (a)    canvassing for the benefit of a registered party or registered candidate, and

                                 (b)    organizing events where a significant purpose of the event is to promote or oppose a registered party or registered candidate.

(1.2)  In determining a significant purpose of an event under subsection (1.1)(b), the following factors, in addition to any other relevant information, shall be used:

                                 (a)    whether it is reasonable to conclude that the event was specifically planned to coincide with an election;

                                 (b)    whether the formatting or branding of promotional materials for the event is similar to the formatting, branding or election material used by a registered party or registered candidate;

                                 (c)    the extent to which an election or any registered party or registered candidate is referred to, either directly or indirectly, in promotional materials for the event or at the event;

                                 (d)    whether the event is consistent with previous events held by that third party;

                                 (e)    whether messages conveyed at the event are political messages associated with a registered party or registered candidate.

(1.3)  For the purposes of subsection (1)(g), “political advertising” includes

                                 (a)    canvassing for the benefit of a registered party, the leader of a registered party, a member of the Legislative Assembly, a registered nomination contestant, a registered leadership contestant or a registered candidate, and

                                 (b)    organizing events where a significant purpose of the event is to promote or oppose a registered party, the leader of a registered party, a member of the Legislative Assembly, a registered nomination contestant, a registered leadership contestant or a registered candidate.

(1.4)  In determining a significant purpose of an event under subsection (1.3)(b), the following factors, in addition to any other relevant information, shall be used:

                                 (a)    whether it is reasonable to conclude that the event was specifically planned to coincide with an election;

                                 (b)    whether the formatting or branding of promotional materials for the event is similar to the formatting, branding or election material used by a registered party, the leader of a registered party, a member of the Legislative Assembly, a registered nomination contestant, a registered leadership contestant or a registered candidate;

                                 (c)    the extent to which an election or any registered party, the leader of a registered party, member of the Legislative Assembly, registered nomination contestant, registered leadership contestant or registered candidate is referred to, either directly or indirectly, in promotional materials for the event or at the event;

                                 (d)    whether the event is consistent with previous events held by that third party;

                                 (e)    whether messages conveyed at the event are political messages associated with a registered party, the leader of a registered party, a member of the Legislative Assembly, a registered nomination contestant, a registered leadership contestant or a registered candidate.

 

129   Section 44.11 is amended

                            (a)    by repealing subsection (1) and substituting the following:

Election advertising spending limit

44.11(1)  A registered third party shall not incur election advertising expenses,

                                 (a)    if the general election is held in accordance with section 38.1(2) of the Election Act,

                                        (i)    in an amount of more than $150 000 in the aggregate, as adjusted in accordance with section 41.5 in relation to the period commencing on December 1 in the year immediately preceding the year in which a general election is held and ending at the end of the day preceding the day the writ is issued, and

                                      (ii)    in an amount of more than $150 000 in the aggregate, as adjusted in accordance with section 41.5 in relation to the period commencing on the day the writ is issued and ending at the end of the polling day, and

                                 (b)    if the general election is held other than in accordance with section 38.1(2) of the Election Act, in an amount of more than $150 000 in the aggregate, as adjusted in accordance with section 41.5 in relation to the period commencing on the day the writ is issued and ending at the end of the polling day.

                           (b)    by repealing subsections (2) and (3) and substituting the following:

(2)  A registered third party shall not incur election advertising expenses to promote or oppose the election of one or more registered candidates in a given electoral division that exceed the following, as adjusted in accordance with section 41.5:

                                 (a)    in the case of a general election held in accordance with section 38.1(2) of the Election Act, $3000 of the amount referred to in subsection (1)(a)(i) and $3000 of the amount referred to in subsection (1)(a)(ii), or

                                 (b)    in the case of a general election held other than in accordance with section 38.1(2) of the Election Act, $3000 of the amount referred to in subsection (1)(b).

(2.1)  For the purpose of subsection (2), promoting or opposing the election of a registered candidate in a given electoral division includes

                                 (a)    naming that candidate,

                                 (b)    showing that candidate’s likeness,

                                 (c)    identifying that candidate by political affiliations, or

                                 (d)    taking a position on an issue with which that candidate is particularly associated.

(3)  The limits set out in subsection (2)(a) and (b) apply to an amount incurred with respect to the leader of a registered party only to the extent that it is incurred to promote or oppose his or her election in a given electoral division.

                            (c)    by adding the following after subsection (5):

(5.1)  A registered third party shall not circumvent, or attempt to circumvent, an expense limit set out in this Part by colluding with a registered party or registered candidate.

(5.2)  A registered party, registered candidate, registered nomination contestant or registered leadership contestant shall not collude with a third party to circumvent, or attempt to circumvent, an expense limit set out in this Part.

 

130   Section 44.81(3) is amended by striking out “2nd, 3rd and final weeks” and substituting “weeks following the first week”.

 

131   The following provisions are amended by striking out “election period” and substituting “election advertising period”:

section 44.1(d) and (g);
section 44.11(6);
section 44.81(2) and (3);
section 44.9;
section 44.92(1) and (2).

 

132   The following is added before Part 7:

Part 6.3
Election Commissioner

Duties of Election Commissioner

44.95   The Election Commissioner, in addition to the Election Commissioner’s powers and duties under the Election Act,

                           (a)    may conduct periodic investigations of the financial affairs and records of

                                  (i)    registered parties and registered constituency associations,

                                (ii)    registered candidates in relation to election campaigns,

                               (iii)    registered leadership contestants in relation to leadership contests,

                               (iv)    registered nomination contestants in relation to nomination contests, and

                                 (v)    registered third parties in relation to election advertising or political advertising under Part 6.1,

                                and

                           (b)    may, on the Election Commissioner’s own initiative or at the request of the Chief Electoral Officer or another person or organization, conduct an investigation into any matter that might constitute an offence under this Act.

Powers of Election Commissioner

44.96(1)  For the purpose of conducting an investigation referred to in section 44.95, the Election Commissioner has all the powers of a commissioner under the Public Inquiries Act as though the investigation were an inquiry under that Act.

(2)  For the purpose of conducting an investigation referred to in section 44.95, a representative of the Election Commissioner, on production of the representative’s authorization from the Election Commissioner, may at any reasonable time enter any premises referred to in the authorization in which books or documents of a political party, constituency association, candidate, nomination candidate, leadership contestant or third party relevant to the subject‑matter of the investigation are kept and may examine and make copies of the books or documents or remove them temporarily for the purpose of making copies.

(3)  Before entering a private dwelling or a part of premises used as a private dwelling to carry out the powers described in subsection (2), a representative of the Election Commissioner shall

                                 (a)    obtain the consent of the occupant or the legal representative of the occupant of the private dwelling or the part of the premises used as a private dwelling, or

                                 (b)    obtain an order from the Court.

(4)  A registered party, registered constituency association, registered candidate, registered nomination contestant, registered leadership contestant or registered third party shall, within 30 days after receiving a written request from the Election Commissioner or within an extended period that the Election Commissioner may determine, provide any information with respect to the financial affairs of the registered party, registered constituency association, registered candidate, registered nomination contestant, registered leadership contestant or registered third party that is reasonably required by the Election Commissioner in the course of the Election Commissioner’s duties under this Act.

Notice of investigation and conclusion

44.97(1)  At any time before completing an investigation referred to in section 44.95(b), the Election Commissioner shall notify any person or organization who is the subject of the investigation that the person or organization is being investigated and inform the person or organization of the nature of the matter being investigated, unless the Election Commissioner believes that doing so would compromise or impede the investigation.

(2)  The Election Commissioner may refuse to conduct or may cease an investigation if the Election Commissioner is of the opinion that

                           (a)    the matter is frivolous or vexatious, or

                           (b)    there are no grounds or insufficient grounds to warrant an investigation or the continuation of an investigation.

(3)  The Election Commissioner shall not make any adverse finding against a person or organization unless that person or organization has had reasonable notice of the substance of the allegations and a reasonable opportunity to present his or her or its views.

(4)  If the Election Commissioner refuses to conduct or ceases an investigation under subsection (2), or determines that no offence was committed, the Election Commissioner

                           (a)    shall provide notice of that decision to

                                  (i)    every person or organization who

                                      (A)    is the subject of the investigation, or

                                      (B)    would have been the subject of an investigation if the Election Commissioner had not refused to conduct an investigation,

                                      and

                                (ii)    every person or organization who requested an investigation, if any,

                                and

                           (b)    may, as the Election Commissioner considers to be appropriate, provide notice of that decision to any other person or organization involved in the matter referred to in section 44.95(b).

 

133   Section 48.2 is amended by adding “or the Election Commissioner” after “Chief Electoral Officer”.

 

134   The following is added after section 50:

Contravention of compliance agreement

50.1   A contracting party who enters into a compliance agreement under this Act and

                                 (a)    failed to disclose all material facts when the compliance agreement was entered into, or

                                 (b)    fails to comply with the compliance agreement

is guilty of an offence and liable to a fine of not more than $5000.

 

135   Section 51(1) and (2) are amended by striking out “Chief Electoral Officer” wherever it occurs and substituting “Election Commissioner”.

 

136   Section 51.01 is amended by striking out “Chief Electoral Officer” wherever it occurs and substituting “Election Commissioner”.

 

137   Section 51.03 is amended

                            (a)    in subsection (1) by striking out “Chief Electoral Officer’s” and substituting “Election Commissioner’s”;

                           (b)    in subsection (3) by striking out “Chief Electoral Officer” and substituting “Election Commissioner”. 

 

138   The following is added after section 51.03:

Compliance agreements

51.04(1)  In this Part, “contracting party” means a person with whom the Election Commissioner enters into a compliance agreement under this Act.

(2)  If the Election Commissioner believes on reasonable grounds that a person has committed, is about to commit or is likely to commit an act or omission that could constitute a contravention of this Act, the Election Commissioner may enter into a compliance agreement with that person for the purpose of ensuring compliance with this Act.

(3)  A compliance agreement may contain any terms and conditions that the Election Commissioner considers necessary to ensure compliance with this Act.

(4)  Before entering into a compliance agreement, the Election Commissioner shall require the consent of the prospective contracting party to the publication of a notice under section 51.07.

(5)  A compliance agreement may include a statement by the contracting party that the contracting party admits responsibility for the act or omission that constitutes a contravention of this Act.

(6)  The fact that a compliance agreement was entered into, and any statement referred to in subsection (5), is not admissible in evidence against the contracting party in any civil or criminal proceedings.

(7)  When a compliance agreement is entered into, a prosecution of the contracting party for an act or omission that led to the agreement shall not be instituted and any prosecution already instituted is suspended.

(8)  The Election Commissioner and the contracting party may renegotiate the terms of the compliance agreement at the request of the Election Commissioner or contracting party at any time before it is fully executed.

Notice of compliance agreement

51.05(1)  When, in the opinion of the Election Commissioner, the compliance agreement has been complied with, the Election Commissioner shall give a notice to that effect to the contracting party.

(2)  On the giving of a notice under subsection (1), any prosecution of the contracting party that is based on the act or omission in question terminates and no further prosecution shall be instituted based on that act or omission.

Failure to comply

51.06   If the Election Commissioner is of the opinion that a contracting party

                                 (a)    failed to disclose all material facts when the compliance agreement was entered into, or

                                 (b)    has failed to comply with a term of the compliance agreement,

the Election Commissioner shall give notice of the failure to the contracting party, informing the contracting party that the Election Commissioner may serve a notice of administrative penalty or a letter of reprimand under section 51.01, or may consent to a prosecution in respect of the original act or omission or, if a prosecution has been suspended by section 51.04(7), that those proceedings are no longer suspended.

Publication of notice

51.07   The Election Commissioner may publish a notice on the Election Commissioner’s website that sets out the contracting party’s name, the act or omission in question and a summary of the compliance agreement.

Application for injunction

51.08(1)  If the Election Commissioner has reasonable grounds to believe that a person has committed or is likely to commit an act or omission that is contrary to this Act, the Election Commissioner may, during an election period, after taking into account the nature and seriousness of the act or omission, the need to ensure fairness of the electoral process and the public interest, apply by originating application to the Court for an injunction described in subsection (2).

(2)  If the Court, on application by the Election Commissioner under subsection (1), is satisfied that there are reasonable grounds to believe that a person has committed or is likely to commit an act or omission that is contrary to this Act, and that the nature and seriousness of the act or omission, the need to ensure fairness of the electoral process and the public interest justify the issuing of an injunction, the Court may issue an injunction ordering any person named in the application to do one or both of the following:

                                 (a)    refrain from committing any act that appears to the Court to be contrary to this Act;

                                 (b)    do any act that appears to the Court to be required by this Act.

(3)  No injunction may be issued under subsection (2) unless at least 48 hours’ notice is given to each person named in the application, or the urgency of the situation is such that service of notice would not be in the public interest.

 

139   Section 51.1(1) is amended by striking out “Chief Electoral Officer” and substituting “Election Commissioner”.

 

140   Section 53 is amended by striking out “Chief Electoral Officer” and substituting “Election Commissioner”.

 

141   The following is added after section 53:

Judicial review

54   An application for judicial review of a decision or order of the Chief Electoral Officer or the Election Commissioner under this Act must be filed with the Court of Queen’s Bench and served on the Chief Electoral Officer or the Election Commissioner, as the case may be, no later than 30 days from the date of the decision or order.

Part 3
Transitional and Coming into Force

Transitional

142(1)  In this section and section 143,

                           (a)    “former Election Act” means the Election Act as it read immediately before the coming into force of this section;

                           (b)    “former Election Finances and Contributions Disclosure Act” means the Election Finances and Contributions Disclosure Act as it read immediately before the coming into force of this section;

                           (c)    “new Election Act” means the Election Act as amended by this Act;

                           (d)    “new Election Finances and Contributions Disclosure Act” means the Election Finances and Contributions Disclosure Act as amended by this Act;

                           (e)    “this Act” means An Act to Strengthen and Protect Democracy in Alberta.

(2)  Where the Chief Electoral Officer under the former Election Act has commenced an investigation that is not completed before the Election Commissioner is appointed under section 153.02 of the new Election Act, the Chief Electoral Officer shall continue the investigation to its conclusion, including, if applicable, the imposition of any administrative penalty or issuance of any letter of reprimand, in accordance with the former Election Act

(3)  Where the Chief Electoral Officer under the former Election Finances and Contributions Disclosure Act has commenced an investigation that is not completed before the Election Commissioner is appointed under section 153.02 of the new Election Act, the Chief Electoral Officer shall continue the investigation to its conclusion, including, if applicable, the imposition of any administrative penalty or issuance of any letter of reprimand, in accordance with the former Election Finances and Contributions Disclosure Act.

(4)  For greater certainty,

                           (a)    the former Election Act rather than the new Election Act continues to apply for all purposes with respect to an investigation referred to in subsection (2);

                           (b)    the former Election Finances and Contributions Disclosure Act rather than the new Election Finances and Contributions Disclosure Act continues to apply for all purposes with respect to an investigation referred to in subsection (3).

(5)  The Lieutenant Governor in Council may make regulations respecting any matter related to the continuation of investigations by the Chief Electoral Officer pursuant to subsection (2) or (3).

Transitional

143   Before the Election Commissioner is appointed under section 153.02 of the new Election Act, a reference in section 134.2 of the new Election Act to the Election Commissioner shall be read as a reference to the Chief Electoral Officer.

Transitional

144(1)  On the date Bill 32, An Act to Strengthen and Protect Democracy in Alberta, receives Royal Assent, the Standing Committee on Legislative Offices shall invite applications for the position of Election Commissioner and recommend to the Legislative Assembly the applicant it considers most suitable.

(2)  When the work referred to in subsection (1) has been completed, the Standing Committee on Legislative Offices shall report to the Legislative Assembly if it is then sitting or, if it is not then sitting, the Standing Committee on Legislative Offices may release its report by depositing a copy with the Clerk and forwarding a copy to each Member of the Legislative Assembly.

Application

145   This Act with respect to a by‑election applies only to a by‑election the writ for which is issued on or after January 1, 2018.

 

146(1)  Subject to subsection (2), this Act, except sections 1, 115, 144 and this section, come into force on January 1, 2018.

(2)  The following provisions come into force on Proclamation:

section 2(a)(iii);
section 5(g);
section 7;
section 8;
section 13;
section 86;
section 87(a);
section 88;
section 90;
section 99;
section 102;
section 103;
sections 105 to 109;
sections 112 to 114;
section 116(c);
section 117(b) and (c);
sections 118 to 120;
sections 132 to 142.