2010 Elections – Frequently Asked Questions

Who can vote?

You can vote in the Town of Collingwood municipal election if you are:

  • A Canadian citizen
  • At least 18 years old
  • A resident of the Town of Collingwood
  • A non-resident owner or tenant of land in the Town of Collingwood, or their spouse
  • Not prohibited from voting under any law

Note: You may only vote ONCE in the Town of Collingwood municipal election regardless of how many properties you own or rent within the Town.
 

What is a non-resident?

An individual who owns or rents properly in the Town of Collingwood and lives outside the City.


How do I vote?

The method of voting for the 2010 election is by 'mail in ballot', incorporating an accessible eletronic ballot marker and electronic tabluation equipment.

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Can a person in jail vote?

A person in jail, under sentence of imprisonment, is not entitled to vote.


What school board do I vote for?

Each elector is eligible to vote for school board representation. It is important that electors check their status on the Voter’s List to determine whether they have been listed as an elector for the correct school board and if not correctly listed, that they apply to the Clerk to amend the list prior to attending the voting place. If you are a non-resident elector as a result of being an owner of tenant or spouse or same sex partner of an owner or tenant of commercial or industrial property, you are not permitted to vote for school purposes in your municipality. You may only vote in one school board election.

  1. Public School Elector;
  2. English or French Roman Catholic Separate School Elector (Must be Roman Catholic, not just the spouse of a Roman Catholic).
  3. French Language Board Elector (Public or Separate) (Must have the right under the Canadian Charter of Rights to have their children receive primary or secondary education in the French language-not French immersion).


Where Do College and University Students Vote?

With respect to students, the place where a person’s family resides is also their residence unless they have moved with the intention of changing their permanent lodging. *Students who reside "away from home" may vote in BOTH PLACES - within the municipality where they attend school and also within the municipality where their family resides (their 'home') if it is their permanent resident.


Where Do Homeless People Vote?

If the person has no permanent lodging place, their residence shall be determined to be:

  1. The place to which the person most frequently returned to sleep or each during the five weeks preceding the determination
  2. If the person returns with equal frequency to one place to sleep and to another place to eat, then the place to which he or she returns to sleep is his or her residence
  3. Multiple returns to the same place during a single day, whether to eat or sleep, shall be considered one return.

In absence of evidence, a person’s affidavit is conclusive.


Can I be a proxy for a non-relative and a family member at the same time?

No. However, you may be a proxy for more than one family member at the same time, provided the family member is your spouse, sibling, parent, child, grandparent or grandchild.


If I do not have or forget to bring identification will I be able to vote?

An elector who is on the voters’ list but does not have the required identification may vote after signing a statutory declaration that they are the person shown on the list. A person who is not on the voters’ list will be required to show identification in order to get onto the list.


What is an oath?

An oath is a statement sworn in front of an official, attesting that whatever is stated is true.


What are the election sign requirements?

The Municipal Elections Act, 1996 does not address where campaign signs may be located. The regulation of signs generally falls within the jurisdiction of the local or upper-tier municipality or, when signs are placed near a provincial highway, the Ministry of Transportation. Candidates should check with the municipal clerk to determine any sign by-law requirements.


What is the term of office?

The term of office is four years for municipal council and school board trustees. The term of office begins on December 1, 2010. The term of office for a person elected in a by-election to fill a vacancy is the remainder of the term for that office.


What is a ballot?

A ballot is a piece of paper, or electronic form, containing the names of the candidates and the office they are running for. Electors will vote by filling in the box with a black marker to the right of the candidate(s) of their choice.


Who runs an election?

The Clerk of the Town of Collingwood is responsible for the conduct of municipal elections, by-elections and referendums.


What is the voter’s list?

The list of names and addresses of eligible electors used at the voting location.


Contributions

Can I contribute more than $750 to one candidate?

No, a maximum contribution of $750 can be made to one nominated candidate.


Can I contribute to more than one candidate?

Yes, you may make contributions to more than one candidate. However, your contributions to candidates running for office on the same council or the same school board may not exceed more than $5,000.


How can contributions of cash be made?

Cash contributions may only be accepted up to $25; contributions more than $25 must be made by cheque, money order or credit card.


Can a contribution be made anonymously?

No. The name and address of the contributor must be accompanied with the contribution.


Can a joint contribution be made to a candidate?

A contribution can only be made by one individual. If a cheque for a contribution is drawn from a joint bank account, a receipt is only issued to the individual who signed the cheque. If two individuals have signed the cheque, the candidate must determine who made the contribution and issue a receipt to that person only.


How are goods and services to be valued as contributions?

All contributions of goods or services the candidate receives are considered contributions and should be supported by an invoice from the contributor of the goods or services. The contribution must be recorded just as if it were money.

If part of the agreed upon fee for the purchase of a good or service is considered by a supplier to be a contribution, the supplier should render an account for the total amount and indicate on the statement of account the amount which he or she considers a contribution.

If a supplier charges the candidate less than the market value for the purchase of a good or service, the difference between the amount charged and the market value is a contribution.

If suppliers of goods or services are not paid or have agreed not to accept payment, such non-payment will constitute a contribution of a good or service and must be receipted as such.


Do the value of goods and services contributed count towards the $750 and $5,000 contribution limits?

Yes.


Who can accept campaign contributions?

Only the candidate and those persons authorized by the candidate can accept campaign contributions. Contributions can only be accepted during the campaign period and only from a person or entity entitled to make a contribution.


How are anonymous contributions handled?

An anonymous contribution cannot be accepted. It must be turned over to the clerk to become part of the general funds of the municipality.

The only exception to this rule is a donation received at a fund-raising function held on behalf of a candidate. Each of these donations must be $10 or less and the total revenue from this source must be reported on the candidate’s financial disclosure form. (These donations are not considered to be contributions.)


What are the consequences for contravention of contribution rules?

Candidates and to individuals who are found to have contravened the Municipal Elections Act, 1996 may face a fine of up to $25,000 and/or up to six months in prison if the offence was committed knowingly. For corporations and trade unions the fine may be up to $50,000.

Candidates who are found to have contravened certain provisions of the Act forfeit any office to which they were elected, and are ineligible to run until after the next regular election has taken place.


Do all municipalities give contribution rebates?

No, each municipality determines if it is to establish a rebate program.


Expenses


Who can incur a campaign expense?

Only the candidate and persons authorized by the candidate can incur campaign expenses. Expenses can only be incurred during the campaign period.
 

What is a campaign expense?

Any expense incurred for goods and services in relation to an election is a campaign expense.
Campaign expenses include the replacement value of any goods held in inventory by the candidate from a previous election and any contribution of goods and services to the candidate for use in whole or in part during the campaign period. Where a contribution of goods or services is received, an expense for equivalent value is considered to be incurred and must be reported.