Canada Elections Act (S.C. 2000, c. 9)

Act current to 2017-11-20 and last amended on 2016-01-01. Previous Versions

PART 12Counting Votes

Polling Stations

Marginal note:Counting the votes
  •  (1) Immediately after the close of a polling station, the deputy returning officer shall count the votes in the presence of the poll clerk, any person appointed under section 32.1 whose duties include being present at the count and any candidates or their representatives who are present or, if no candidates or representatives are present, at least two electors.

  • Marginal note:Tally sheets

    (2) The deputy returning officer shall supply the poll clerk and all the persons referred to in subsection (1) who are present and who so request with a tally sheet to keep their own score of the voting.

  • Marginal note:Steps to follow

    (3) The deputy returning officer shall, in the following order,

    • (a) count the number of electors who voted at the polling station, count the number of those to whom a certificate was given under subsection 161(4), make an entry at the end of the list of electors that states “The number of electors who voted at this election in this polling station is (stating the number). Of these, the number of electors to whom a certificate was given under subsection 161(4) is (stating the number).”, sign the list and place the list in the envelope supplied for that purpose;

    • (b) count the spoiled ballots, place them in the envelope supplied for the purpose, indicate on the envelope the number of spoiled ballots, and seal it;

    • (c) count the unused ballots that are not detached from the books of ballots, place them with the stubs of the used ballots in the envelope supplied for the purpose, indicate on the envelope the number of unused ballots, and seal it;

    • (d) total the number of electors indicated under paragraph (a) who voted at the polling station and the numbers arrived at in paragraphs (b) and (c) in order to ascertain that all ballots that were provided by the returning officer are accounted for;

    • (e) open the ballot box and empty its contents onto a table; and

    • (f) examine each ballot, show the ballot to each person who is present, and ask the poll clerk to make a note on the tally sheet beside the name of the candidate for whom the vote was cast for the purpose of arriving at the total number of votes cast for each candidate.

  • 2000, c. 9, s. 283;
  • 2014, c. 12, s. 61.
Marginal note:Rejection of ballots
  •  (1) In examining the ballots, the deputy returning officer shall reject one

    • (a) that has not been supplied by him or her;

    • (b) that has not been marked in a circle at the right of the candidates’ names;

    • (c) that is void by virtue of section 76;

    • (d) that has been marked in more than one circle at the right of the candidates’ names; or

    • (e) on which there is any writing or mark by which the elector could be identified.

  • Marginal note:Limitation

    (2) No ballot shall be rejected by reason only that the deputy returning officer placed on it any writing, number or mark, or failed to remove the counterfoil.

  • Marginal note:Counterfoils remaining attached

    (3) When a ballot is found with the counterfoil attached, the deputy returning officer shall, while concealing the number on it from all persons present and without examining it, remove and destroy the counterfoil.

Marginal note:Ballots not initialled by deputy returning officer

 If the deputy returning officer determines that he or she has failed to initial a ballot, the deputy returning officer shall, in the presence of the poll clerk and witnesses, initial and count the ballot if he or she is satisfied that

  • (a) the ballot was supplied by him or her; and

  • (b) all ballots that were provided by the returning officer have been accounted for, as described in paragraph 283(3)(d).

Marginal note:Objections to ballots
  •  (1) The deputy returning officer shall keep a record, in the prescribed form, of every objection to a ballot made by a candidate or his or her representatives, give a number to the objection, write that number on the ballot and initial it.

  • Marginal note:Decision of deputy returning officer

    (2) The deputy returning officer shall decide every question that is raised by an objection described in subsection (1), and the decision is subject to reversal only on a recount or on application under subsection 524(1).

Marginal note:Statement of the vote
  •  (1) The deputy returning officer shall prepare a statement of the vote, in the prescribed form, that sets out the number of votes in favour of each candidate and the number of rejected ballots and place the original statement and a copy of it in the separate envelopes supplied for the purpose.

  • Marginal note:Copies of the statement of the vote

    (2) The deputy returning officer shall give a copy of the statement of the vote to each of the candidate’s representatives present at the count.

Marginal note:Marked ballots
  •  (1) The deputy returning officer shall place the ballots for each candidate into separate envelopes, write on each envelope the name of the candidate and the number of votes he or she received, and seal it. The deputy returning officer and the poll clerk shall sign the seal on each envelope, and the witnesses may also sign them.

  • Marginal note:Rejected ballots

    (2) The deputy returning officer shall place into separate envelopes the rejected ballots, the registration certificates and the list of electors, and shall seal the envelopes.

  • Marginal note:Documents to be enclosed in a large envelope

    (3) The deputy returning officer shall seal in a large envelope supplied for the purpose

    • (a) the envelopes that contain the marked ballots for the candidates, any spoiled ballots, unused ballots or rejected ballots, and the official list of electors; and

    • (b) any other election documents, except for the envelopes that contain the statements of the vote and the registration certificates.

  • Marginal note:Documents to be placed in the ballot box

    (4) The large envelope described in subsection (3) and the envelope that contains the copy of the statement of the vote shall be placed in the ballot box.

  • Marginal note:Sealing ballot box

    (5) The ballot box shall be sealed by the deputy returning officer with the seals provided by the Chief Electoral Officer.

Marginal note:Oaths

 The deputy returning officer shall place the form for each oath taken under subsection 143(3) or paragraph 161(1)(b) or 169(2)(b) in an envelope supplied for the purpose.

  • 2014, c. 12, s. 62.
Marginal note:Periodic statements of electors who voted

 The deputy returning officer shall place a copy of each document prepared for the purpose of paragraph 162(i.1) in an envelope supplied for the purpose.

  • 2014, c. 12, s. 62.

Advance Polls

Marginal note:Counting of votes on polling day
  •  (1) The deputy returning officer of an advance poll shall, at the close of the polling stations on polling day, attend with the poll clerk at the place mentioned in the notice of advance poll in subparagraph 172(a)(iii) to count the votes.

  • Marginal note:Application of rules for counting votes

    (2) Subsections 283(1) and (2), paragraphs 283(3)(e) and (f) and sections 284 to 288 apply with any necessary modifications to the counting of the votes of an advance poll except that

    • (a) for the application of paragraph 283(3)(e), the deputy returning officer shall open the ballot boxes and empty their contents onto a table; and

    • (b) for the application of subsection 288(4), the large envelope and the envelope that contains the copy of the statement of the vote shall be placed in the ballot box used on the last day of advance polling.

  • Marginal note:Prohibition

    (3) No person shall make a count of the votes cast at an advance poll before the close of the polling stations on polling day.

  • 2000, c. 9, s. 289;
  • 2014, c. 12, s. 63.

Delivery of Ballot Boxes to Returning Officer

Marginal note:Sending ballot boxes and envelopes to returning officer
  •  (1) The deputy returning officer for a polling station or an advance polling station shall, without delay after sealing the ballot box, send the box, with the envelope that contains the original statement of the vote, the envelope that contains the registration certificates, the envelope referred to in section 288.01 and, in the case of the deputy returning officer for a polling station, the envelope referred to in section 288.1 to the returning officer.

  • Marginal note:Collection of ballot boxes

    (2) A returning officer may appoint persons to collect ballot boxes together with the envelopes referred to in subsection (1) from polling stations, and any person so appointed shall take the prescribed oath when he or she sends those materials to the returning officer.

  • 2000, c. 9, s. 290;
  • 2014, c. 12, s. 64.
 
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