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Election 2018 Candidate Information

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The 2018 Municipal Election will take place on Monday, October 22, 2018 using a paper ballot system and optical scan vote tabulator machines for counting.

New Composition of Council

During this election, voters will elect both the Mayor and Deputy Mayor at large. Ward boundaries remain unchanged, as do the number of Councillors to be elected in each ward:

  • Ward 1: Two (2) Councillors
  • Ward 2: One (1) Councillor
  • Ward 3: Two (2) Councillors
  • Ward 4: One (1) Councillor

The following information includes some of the changes to the Municipal Elections Act. This information is provided to assist you in deciding whether to run for a position on Essex Town Council. For more detailed information, please contact the Clerk's Department at 519-776-7336 ext. 0.

Candidate Forms and Resources

AMO "So you want to run for Council" course

The Association of Municipalities Ontario (AMO) provides a paid online course for people interested in running in the Municipal Election.

For more information and to register for the course, visit MunicipalEducation.ca

Election Calendar

May 1, 2018 Nomination and campaign period begins.
Preliminary expense limits to be provided to candidates.
Registration period for third party advertisers begins.

July 27, 2018 Nomination Day (9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.)
Nominations to be filed or withdrawn by 2:00 p.m.

July 30, 2018 Nominations certified by 4:00 p.m.
Acclamations declared after 4:00 p.m.

July 31, 2018 Default date for the Municipal Property Assessment Corporation (MPAC) to deliver preliminary list of electors.

September 4, 2018 Voters' List available to certified candidates.
Revision period for voters' list begins.

September 25, 2018 Final expense limits to be provided to candidates.

October 19, 2018 Last day to register as a third party advertiser.

October 22, 2018 Election Day (10:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m.)

December 3, 2018 Term of office commences.

March 29, 2019 Deadline for filing financial statements.

Nomination and Eligibility

A person is entitled to be a candidate if he or she is a qualified elector. A candidate must be qualified as of the day he or she is nominated and must remain qualified throughout the election period and, if elected, throughout the term of office.

A person is entitled to be a candidate if you:

  • are a resident of the Town of Essex, or an owner or tenant of land in the Town of Essex, or the spouse of such an owner or tenant;
  • are a Canadian citizen;
  • are at least 18 years old on Voting Day; and
  • are not prohibited from voting by law.

If entitled to be a candidate, you can run in any ward - you do not have to live in a particular ward in order to be its councillor. However, if you run in a ward where you do not live, you will not be able to vote for yourself. Having a campaign office or a business in a ward where you would not otherwise be eligible to vote does not make you eligible to vote in that ward.

Getting Nominated

Changes to the Municipal Elections Act require that each candidate for Council submit the signatures of 25 voters supporting the nomination.

Each supporter must sign a declaration stating their eligibility to vote in the municipality.

Nomination Papers and Signature Forms will be available on or after May 1, 2018.

Filing Fees

Candidates must pay a filing fee when they submit their Nomination Papers. The following fees must be paid at the time of filing:

  • Head of Council: $200
  • All other offices: $100

Nomination filing fees are refundable if the nomination is withdrawn. Candidates are also entitled to a refund of the filing fee if they submit their campaign financial statement by the deadline.

Withdrawal of Nomination

A candidate who wishes to withdraw his or her nomination must notify the Clerk in writing before 2:00 p.m. on July 27, 2018.

Campaign Finance

A candidate does not have to open a bank account if they do not raise or spend money.

The Clerk provides all candidates with estimated and final spending limits.

Contributions to candidates from unions and corporations are prohibited in municipal elections, but unions and corporations may participate as third party advertisers and contribute to third party advertisers. The same contribution rules will apply to third party advertiser campaigns as to candidates.

Anonymous and cash contributions cannot exceed $25. Contributions over $25 must be made in a way that links the contributor's name and account with the payment. Candidates must inform contributors of contribution limits.

If goods sold to raise funds are sold for $25 or less, that amount is considered campaign income, not a contribution. Donations under $25 received at fundraising events are not contributions.

Third Party Advertising

Individuals, corporations and unions may register to be third party advertisers. Registration begins on the first day for filing nominations and ends on the Friday before voting day. There is no registration fee.

Third parties may advertise in support of or in opposition to any candidate being elected by voters in the municipality and are required to identify themselves and provide mandatory information on all advertising.

Third party advertisers are required to follow the same campaign finance rules as candidates.

Financial Filings

Candidates for office are required to submit financial details of their campaign. Candidates are entitled to a refund of the filing fee if they submit their campaign financial statement by the deadline.

A candidate who misses the filing deadline may file within a 30-day grace period, provided a $500 late filing fee is paid to the municipality. A candidate may resubmit a financial statement to correct an error up until the filing deadline.

The Clerk is required to make public a report of which candidates filed financial statements and which did not.