Local Elections

General local elections in B.C. are held every four years on the third Saturday in October. The next municipal election is scheduled for October 20th, 2018 (advance voting takes place on October 10th). 

Tofino voters will elect one (1) Mayor and six (6) Councillors to serve four-year terms.

Voting will take place in the Council Chamber, Municipal Office, at 380 Campbell Street.

Important Dates

2018 General Location Election Key Dates (Comprehensive List)

Forms

Electors:

Voters

During the election process, candidates generally outline their platforms and objectives if they were to be elected. By choosing the candidates with the ideals and qualities that are most acceptable to the electors, citizens can directly influence the nature of the community where they reside or own property.

In order to be eligible to vote locally as a resident or non-resident property elector, a person must:

  • Be 18 years of age or older when they register to vote, or 18 years or older on general voting day,
  • Be a Canadian citizen,
  • Have been a resident of B. C. for at least six months before they register to vote,
  • Have either lived or owned property in the jurisdiction in which they intend to vote for at least 30 days before they register to vote, and
  • Not be disqualified under the Local Government Act, or any other enactment, or by law from voting in a local election

Voting rights are granted to citizens based on residency or property ownership. There is no corporate or business vote in local elections.

Notices

Advance Registration & Voters List (PDF) 

Frequently Asked Questions - Voter's

Please refer to the "Voter's Guide to Local Elections in B.C." for more information. 

When is General Voting Day?

General Voting Day for local government elections in the province of British Columbia is held every four years on the third Saturday in October. 

The next municipal election is scheduled for Saturday October 20, 2018 (advanced voting takes place on Wednesday October 10, 2018).

The voting place is the Municipal Council Chamber, located at 380 Campbell Street. The voting place will be open from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m.

Am I eligible to vote?

You are eligible to vote in the District of Tofino municipal election as a resident elector if you:

  • are a Canadian citizen;

  • are 18 years of age or more on general voting day;

  • have lived in British Columbia for at least six months before you register to vote (since at least April 19th, 2018); and

  • have lived in the District of Tofino for 30 days or more before you register to vote (since at least September 19th, 2018) ; and,

  • are not disqualified by the Local Government Act, any other enactment, or the Courts from voting in a local election.

You may be eligible to vote in the District of Tofino municipal election as a non-resident property elector if you:

  • are eligible to vote as a resident elector in another municipality, regional district or school district; and,

  • own property in the District of Tofino for 30 days or more before you register to vote.

What if I own property with someone else?

Only one non-resident property elector may vote for each property. In other words, if two or more individuals own a single piece of property, the majority of the owners must designate, in writing, one owner as the non-resident property elector for that property. In this instance, a completed Consent of Registered Owners for Non-Resident Property Elector Registration form must be submitted before registration can take place.

What if I own property with someone else and that person is living on the property?

The person living on the property may qualify as a resident elector because he or she is a resident of Tofino. As a non-resident property owner, you are also eligible to vote for that property, but you will still need the written consent of the other owner.

What if I own more than one piece of property?

You may only vote as a non-resident property elector for one piece of property in any municipality, regional district or school district regardless of how many properties you own. In other words, even if you own two pieces of property in one municipality, you may vote only once. If, however, you own one piece of property in one municipality that you are not a resident in, and a second piece of property in another municipality that you are not a resident in, you may vote in both of those jurisdictions as a non-resident property elector and vote as a resident elector in the jurisdiction that you reside in.

How do I know if I’m registered to vote in Tofino? Am I on the list if I voted in the Provincial or Federal Election?

The District of Tofino uses its own list of registered electors, separate from the list maintained by Elections B.C. or Elections Canada. Just because you’ve registered for provincial or federal elections does not mean that you’re on Tofino’s list for local government elections.

If you are not sure whether you’re registered in Tofino, you can find out by calling or visiting the District Office at 121 Third Street, 250-725-3229. The office is open from 8:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., Monday to Friday (excluding holidays).

How can I register?

Advance registrations will be accepted at the District of Tofino Office at 121 Third Street until August 28, 2018. Elector registrations will not be accepted between August 28 and October 22, 2018, but you can still register at the poll on voting days. You do not need identification to register in advance.

If you decide to register on voting day (or advance voting day) please bring two pieces of identification (ID). The ID must show your residential address and one of them must have your signature.

Do I need identification in order to vote?

If you appear on the list of registered electors, it is not necessary to produce ID at the time of voting. Please contact Elyse Goatcher-Bergmann, Chief Election Officer, at elysegb@tofino.ca or 250-725-3229 ext. 610 to confirm your registration status.

If you are registering to vote on the day of voting, you must have two pieces of identification (ID). The ID must show your residential address and one of them must have your signature. If your ID doesn’t show your residential address, you can make what is called a “solemn declaration” as to your residence. The voting clerk will have the form you need to make that declaration.

Refer to Elections BC list of acceptable pieces of identification for voting.

How will my registration information be used? Is my information made public?

In accordance with the Local Government Act, the List of Registered Electors (Voters List) for the District of Tofino will be available for public inspection at the District Office at 121 Third Street between 8:30 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. on weekdays excluding statutory holidays commencing Tuesday, September 4, 2018 until the close of general voting on October 20, 2018.

Anyone wishing to inspect the information included in the Voters List will be required to sign a statement that they will not inspect the List, or use the information included in the List, except for election purposes. Each person who has been nominated as a candidate is also entitled to a copy of the Voters List for election purposes.

In order to protect personal privacy and security, you have the right to request that your personal information (name/address) be omitted from or obscured on the Voters List which is made available for public inspection and provided to candidates.

Contact Elyse Goatcher-Bergmann, Chief Election Officer, at elysegb@tofino.ca or 250-725-3229 ext. 610 if you wish to have your personal information omitted.

Do I get time off work to vote in a local government election?

There is no legislated requirement that employers must provide time off work so that employees can vote in a local government election. The voting place is open on voting day, Saturday, October 20, 2018, 8:00 a.m. - 8:00 p.m. (Council Chamber, 380 Campbell Street) to provide time to vote. 

In addition, one advanced voting day will be held, Wednesday, October 10, 2018, 8:00 a.m. – 8:00 p.m. (Council Chamber, 380 Campbell Street) so that people who are unable to vote on general voting day have another chance to vote.

I am a member of a First Nation, living on reserve. Can I vote in a local government election?

Eligible electors who live on a First Nations reserve can vote in local government elections; however where you vote depends on whether the reserve is located within the boundaries of the District of Tofino or in the Alberni-Clayoquot Regional District (ACRD).

I moved here two weeks before General Voting Day. Can I vote?

No, you must have resided in the District of Tofino for 30 days to be eligible to vote.

I won’t be here on General Voting Day; how can I vote?

The District of Tofino provides one advanced voting opportunity on October 10, 2018, 8 a.m. – 8 p.m. in the Council Chamber at 380 Campbell Street.

I don’t have access to a vehicle and I live too far to walk to the Voting Place. How do I vote?

Any qualified voter can vote during the advance poll we are offering on October 10th. Alternatively, it is acceptable for candidates or others to provide rides to the voting place.

Can I vote by mail or through the Internet?

No, the District of Tofino does not offer mail-ballot voting, and internet voting is not currently an option in B.C.

I own a company in the District of Tofino; do I get an extra vote?

No. Local government voting rights are granted to citizens, on the basis of residency or property ownership. There is no corporate vote in British Columbia.

Can someone who has a physical disability or other difficulty receive assistance in voting?

Yes, a solemn declaration will be required and election officials are able to assist you with voting. Check with an election official at the time of voting.

Can a candidate help me vote if I need assistance?

No. Candidates and their representatives and agents are prohibited from assisting electors.

Can I look at a candidate’s financial disclosure statements?

Yes. They are available at the District Office at 121 Third Street between 8:30 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. Monday to Friday excluding statutory holidays, from the time of filing until 7 years after the election to which they relate.

How many people can I nominate to run in the local election?

7 – Six Councillors and a Mayor. A person entitled to make a nomination may subscribe to as many nomination documents as there are persons to be elected to fill the office for which the election is being held.

What was the estimated voter turnout for the 2014 Municipal Election in Tofino?

There were 1,417 estimated eligible voters (this includes registered electors and non-resident property electors).  519 ballots were cast.  Voter turnout was 37%.

The numbers of votes cast for the 6 elected councillors in the 2014 election were as follows:

Councillor

Valid Votes

1

344

2

324

3

321

4

317

5

281

6

263

 

Candidates

To be eligible to run for local government office, a person must have been a resident of BC for at least 6 months before filing their nomination documents.  They do not have to live or own property in the District of Tofino.

In addition, a person must:

  • Be 18 years of age or older on General Voting Day
  • Be a Canadian Citzen
  • Not be disqualified under the Local Government Act or any other enactment from being nominated for, being elected to or holding office, or be otherwise disqualified by law

A person is ineligible to run for office in a general local election if they:

  • Have been convicted of and sentenced for an indictable offence and are in custody
  • Have been found guilty of an election offence, such as intimidation or vote-buying, and are prohibited from holding office
  • Are judges of the Provincial Court, Supreme Court or Court of Appeal
  • Are involuntarily confined to a psychiatric facility or other institution
  • Have been disqualified for specified reasons such as failing to file a candidate disclosure statement in a previous election, failing to make an oath of office, or failing to attend local government meetings in the manner and frequency required by the Community Charter
  • Have been otherwise disqualified from being nominated for, elected to or holding office under the Local Government Act, Community Charter, Local Elections Campaign Financing Act or any other enactment or law

Provincial legislation sets out the nomination process, public access to nomination documents, how candidates may run their election campaigns and conduct election advertising as well as campaign financing recording and disclosure rules and certain campaign financing restrictions.

Nomination packages for those interested in running for Mayor or Councillor will be available at 8:30 a.m. July 27, 2018 until 4:00 p.m. September 14, 2018.  Packages can be picked up from the District Office at 121 Third Street by asking to speak with the Chief Elections Officer (Elyse Goatcher-Bergmann).  Elector Organization Endorsement packages will also be available during this time. 

GUIDES and FACT SHEETS

Frequently Asked Questions - Candidates

Please refer to the "Candidates Guide to Local Elections in B.C." for more information. 

Can I run for office?

A candidate for mayor, councillor, or electoral area director must:

  • be 18 years of age or older on general voting day;
  • be a Canadian citizen;
  • have been a resident of British Columbia for at least six months prior to filing nomination documents (since at least March 13th, 2018); and,
  • not be disqualified under the Local Government Act or any other enactment from being nominated for, being elected to or holding office, or be otherwise disqualified by law.

Prospective candidates for local office must be nominated by at least two eligible electors from the jurisdiction where the person is seeking election.

Do I have to live in the District of Tofino to run for Mayor or Council?

No.

Can I run for Councillor in the District of Tofino and for electoral area director in the Alberni Clayoquot Regional District?

Yes.

Can I be both a local government representative (Mayor, Councillor, electoral area director, islands trustee or school trustee) & a Member of the Legislative Assembly or Member of Parliament?

Yes, however there is a considerable amount of time involved in filling any of these offices; you may choose to do just one.

Can I run for office if I work for the District of Tofino holding the election?

No, there is a specific restriction against both working for, and holding office in, the same local government.  However, if you were to take a leave of absence from your job, you could run in the election.  If elected, you would have to resign your job.

When can I start campaigning?

The start of the campaign period is September 22, 2018 and the end of the campaign period is October 20, 2018.  

Where can I get some information on campaign financing disclosure requirements?

Candidates must be familiar with the Local Elections Campaign Financing Act (LECFA) and its requirements. The Act is available online at BC Laws www.bclaws.ca.

Please contact Elections BC with any questions you or your campaign has about financing or advertising rules.

Elections BC is the non-partisan and independent Office of the Legislature responsible for the administration of the provincial electoral process in B.C. and the campaign financing and third party advertising rules for local elections and non-election assent voting events under LECFA.

You can also refer to Elections BC’s guides for candidates available online at: www.elections.bc.ca/lecf

Is there a limit to what I can spend on my campaign?

Yes. Please contact Elections BC for more information about Campaign Finance legislation.

All candidates in the 2018 General Local Elections have expense limits that apply during the campaign period, September 22, 2018 to October 20, 2018.

Below are the expense limits for the District of Tofino:

Mayor - $10,000

Councillor - $5,000

How many people need to nominate me to run for office?

The minimum number of people is two, but it’s wise to have more in case it turns out that one of them is not an eligible nominator.

Do I have to pay a fee to run for office?

No.

Are there any other requirements for me as a candidate?

You must open a separate bank account for all campaign contributions and expenses.  You should open that account as soon as you receive your first election contribution, or before you spend any money on your campaign.

What if I receive no contributions and spend nothing on my campaign, do I still have to open a separate account?

No, however you must open one or more accounts before incurring a campaign expense or as soon as possible after receiving a campaign contribution.

If I don’t win the election, do I still have to file disclosure documents?

Yes. This applies not only to candidates but to elector organizations and campaign organizers as well.

Can the public view my campaign financing disclosure statement?

Yes. They are available at the District Office at 121 Third Street between 8:30 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. Monday to Friday excluding statutory holidays, from the time of filing until 7 years after the election to which they relate.

Can I have campaign signs at the voting place on voting day?

No, there can be no campaign material (signs, buttons, brochures, etc.) within 100 metres of a voting place or advance voting opportunity.

Can I advertise on the day of the election?

No, there can be no election campaigning advertising in newspapers or on radio or television on the day of the election, and there must be no campaign material (signs, buttons, brochures, etc.) within 100 metres of a voting place.  If you advertise in a weekly newspaper that is distributed on a Saturday be sure that your ad does not appear on Election Day.

Resources

Elections BC

Ministry of Education

Ministry of Municipal Affairs & Housing


Contacts

Chief Election Officer
Elyse Goatcher-Bergmann
(T) 250-725-3229 ext. 610
(F) 250-725-3775
(E) egoatcher-bergmann@tofino.ca