Municipal elections will be held in Sooke and throughout BC on Saturday, October 20, 2018.
For those curious about possibly maybe tentative running for elected office, here’s a cursory 101 of what you need to know. The information was extracted from The Candidate’s Guide to Local Government Elections in B.C. Please note this is very bare bones. If you have previously run for office, feel free to share. If there are factual errors in this document, please contact SPN and let us know. We will update the information promptly.
To be eligible to run for office you must:
- be 18 years of age or older on general voting day;
- be a Canadian citizen;
- have been a resident of British Columbia for six months prior to filing nomination documents; and,
- not be disqualified under the Local Government Act, or any other enactment from being nominated for, being elected to or holding the office, or be otherwise disqualified by law
Local government employees, or salaried officers who are paid for their services, are eligible to run for elected office. They must take a leave of absence to run and resign their employment when elected.
You may be ineligible to run for a variety of reasons, which are listed at the bottom of this article. This will not be relevant to most.
A candidate is one who runs for office. To officially solidify your candidacy, you have to be
- nominated by eligible electors and
- declared a candidate by the local Chief Election Officer
Every Candidate has to have a Financial Agent, who has the financial responsibilities of your campaign. You can be your own Financial Agent.
Prospective candidates for local government office must be nominated by at least two eligible electors from the local government where the person is seeking election. More nominations can be registered.
The nomination period is the only time during which the local Chief Election Officer is permitted to accept nomination documents and deposits (where applicable) from nominees for office. The nomination period begins at 9 a.m. local time on the 46th day before general voting day (Tuesday, September 4, 2018) and ends at 4 p.m. local time on the 36th day before general voting day (Friday September 14, 2018).
Nomination packages are generally available from local government offices during regular business hours two to four weeks before the nomination period begins and remain available until the nomination period ends.
Nomination documents must be submitted in writing to the local Chief Election Officer – or a person designated by the local Chief Election Officer. This information should be included in the nomination package.
The nomination documents must also include supporting information that demonstrates the person’s consent and preparedness to run in the general local election, and include a statement, a financial disclosure, the name of the Financial Agent, and a solemn declaration.
In the 2014 election, Sooke did not require a Nomination Deposit. Local governments may require prospective candidates to pay a refundable nomination deposit of up to $100 when they submit their nomination documents – the deposits are fully refunded when candidates file their candidate disclosure statement with Elections BC within 90 days following the local election.
An election campaign is a connected series of actions (e.g. advertising, meetings and speeches) designed to elect a candidate or a slate of candidates to a municipal council or regional district board.
Typically, an election campaign involves candidates and/or elector organizations communicating with the electorate, through appearances and speeches, advertisements (including social media), brochures, newsletters, buttons, etc.
An election campaign may be undertaken by a candidate or an elector organization during a local election.
Campaign period and Election Proceedings period
- The Campaign period for a general local election begins at the start of the calendar year in which the general local election is held and ends at the close of voting on general voting day. So, for the 2018 election, the campaign period begins on January 1, 2018.
- The Election Proceedings period runs from the 46th day before general voting day (Tuesday, September 4, 2018) until the close of voting on general voting day (Saturday, October 20, 2018).
Election advertising (signs, billboards, print ads, radio and television spots, Internet sites, Facebook pages, Twitter pages and YouTube pages and videos) must include information about who sponsored the advertisement during the Election proceedings period. Generally, the election advertising sponsor is the person or organization that paid for the advertising or that is liable to pay for the advertising.
Third Party Advertising
Third party advertising undertaken by third party sponsors is election advertising, other than election advertising undertaken by a candidate or elector organization as part of their election campaign.
Candidates who intend to sponsor third party advertising in a jurisdiction other than the one in which they are running for office must register with Elections BC and file a third party sponsor disclosure statement.
Recording and Disclosing
Sponsorship contributions and information about sponsored third party advertising must be recorded and disclosed by third party sponsors. Third party sponsors are required to file a disclosure statement with Elections BC within 90 days following general voting day. Late filing requires a $500 filing fee.
- The current annual salary (2014 rate) paid to the Mayor of the District of Sooke is $20,320.
- The current annual salary (2014 rate) paid to the Councillors of the District of Sooke is $10,160
References (all from the 2014 election)
- District of Sooke Nomination Package 2014 election
- District of Sooke Nomination Package letter from Elections Canada
- Candidate’s Guide to Local Government Elections in B.C. (.PDF, 862 KB)
- Elector Organization Guide to Local Government Elections in B.C. (.PDF, 828 KB)
- Guide to Supporting a Candidate for Local Government Elections in B.C. (.PDF, 767 KB)
- Local Elections in B.C.: What Every Candidate Needs to Know (.PDF 1,6 MG)
- The Local Elections Campaign Financing Act separates the rules that regulate election advertising and campaign financing disclosure from the more procedural rules that apply generally to local elections administration.
- How to run for council in Sooke, in the 2018 municipal elections
- District of Sooke presents Paperless Agendas
FINAL NOTE: You are ineligible to run if you
- have been convicted of an indictable offence and are in custody;
- are involuntarily committed to a psychiatric or other institution;
- are judges of the Provincial Court, Supreme Court or Court of Appeal;
- are employees or salaried officers of the local government or related local government (e.g. the regional district), including volunteers who are paid for their services – unless they have taken a leave of absence to run for office and agree to resign when elected;
- are federal employees – unless they have requested and obtained prior permission from Public Service Commission of Canada (PSC) to run for office;
- have been found guilty of an election offence, such as intimidation or vote
buying, and are prohibited from holding office; or,
- have been disqualified for failing to:
- file a candidate disclosure statement in the previous election;
- make an oath of office; or,
- attend meetings for 60 consecutive days or four consecutive regularly scheduled meetings, without being granted permission by the municipal council or regional district board, unless the absence is due to illness or injury.
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