QUEBEC CITY, Nov. 1, 2013 /CNW Telbec/ - In the wake of the advance poll
last Sunday, which featured high voter turnout in certain Québec
municipalities, the Chief Electoral Officer has used the special powers
conferred upon him by law to allow, under certain conditions, counting
of advance poll ballots to start at 6:00 p.m. on November 3, 2013. We
should recall that under the Act respecting elections and referendums
in municipalities (AERM), vote counting must begin at 8:00 p.m. after
polling stations close. In cases where one or several ballot boxes used
during the advance poll contain more than 300 ballots, the returning
officer may, when appropriate, allow vote counting to begin two hours
earlier. This reduces the wait for final results of elections.
However, in order to protect against an early disclosure of results,
returning officers must take the necessary steps to ensure that vote
counters do not have any contact with the outside world before polls
close at 8:00 p.m. To do so, they must choose a location that allows
for vote counting to take place behind closed doors and take steps to
ensure that those present do not use mobile devices or any other means
of communication. All those assigned to the vote count will also take
an oath pledging not to communicate the results of the advance poll to
anyone before 8:00 p.m.
Under the AERM, the Chief Electoral Officer may, under exceptional
circumstances, adapt a provision of the Act if the situation warrants
it, and he is using this power to authorize an early counting of
advance poll ballots on November 3.
By contacting the municipality's returning officer, it is possible to
find out whether he or she intends to take advantage of the possibility
being offered by the Chief Electoral Officer.
SOURCE: Directeur général des élections
For further information:
(418) 644-3320 or 1-888-870-3320