Information for Candidates
Over the course of the next few months, candidates will receive information from the Township Clerk's office. Please ensure that you are checking this website regularly for the most current information.
Voting will be by Mail-in Ballot
The Township will use the convenient mail-in-ballot method as it has in past elections. Eligible electors will receive an election kit by mail prior to Election Day. The kit includes an election ballot and all the necessary information to complete and return the ballot.
- 2010 Municipal Election Information for Candidates (Township of Smith-Ennismore-Lakefield)
- 2010 Municipal Elections Guide (Ministry of Municipal Affairs & Housing)
- Ministry of Education Information Guides for Trustee Candidates and Communities:
- Nomination Form (Form 1)
- Candidate's Guide to Accessible Elections
- Contact Information
- Summary - 2010 Municipal Election Act Changes
- Key Dates
- What voting method has been used in the past by the Township?
- What are the Offices for Smith-Ennismore-Lakefield Council?
- What are the Offices for School Board Trustee?
- How do I know if I am Eligible to hold an office as a member of Council?
- How do I know if I am an Eligible Elector?
- How many electors are there in the Township of Smith-Ennismore-Lakefield?
- What was the voter turn out from past elections?
- Nomination Process
- Candidates - Helpful Checklist for Nominations
- As a candidate, how much may I spend to run a campaign?
- What are the regulations governing election signs?
- What kind of remuneration is paid to a Township Councillor?
- What are my financial responsibilities as a candidate?
- Accessibility Provisions within the Municipal Elections Act
This guide is prepared for candidates seeking candidacy in the 2010 Municipal and School Board election. This guide is intended to highlight some of the processes in the upcoming election. For a comprehensive overview, candidates are urged to review the Municipal Election Act 1996 (MEA), as amended, including applicable Regulations (www.e-laws.gov.on.ca) to fully understand all the legislative requirements. It is imperative that candidates satisfy themselves, through their own research or with the assistance of legal counsel, of the various legal and financial requirements related to their candidacy.
Bill 212, The Good Government Act, was passed by the Provincial Legislature on December 3, 2009 which resulted in several revisions to the MEA. Please refer to the Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing website for details on the amendments (www.mah.gov.on.ca). The site also contains the Municipal Candidates Guide which is also available from the Township Clerk's office. Page 4-5 of this guide highlights some of the changes to the MEA.
P.O. Box 270,
Bridgenorth, Ontario, K0L 2H0
1310 Centre Line, Smith Ward
Toll Free: 1-877-213-7419
705-292-9507, ext. 221
email Angela Chittick
Deputy Returning Officer
email Tania Goncalves
Deputy Returning Officer
email Suzanne Kirk
- Nominations must by filed by 2 p.m. on the second Friday in September -September 10, 2010.
- Candidates wishing to withdraw their nomination must do so by 2 p.m. on the second Friday in September - September 10, 2010.
- Voting day is the fourth Monday in October - October 25, 2010.
- A contributor is limited to a maximum of $5,000 in total contributions to candidates running for office on the same council or board. Contributors who exceed this limit may be liable to penalties under the Municipal Elections Act, 1996, as amended.
- Municipalities may use information held by the municipality to revise and update the voters' list.
- Every clerk must ensure that all voting places are accessible to electors with disabilities.
- Electors voting at a voting place must show identification prior to obtaining a ballot - not applicable where vote by mail is used.
- Penalties for contravening the Municipal Elections Act, 1996, as amended, have been increased. An individual who contravenes the contribution rules may face a fine of up to $25,000 ($50,000 for corporations and trade unions) and/or up to six months in prison if the offence was committed knowingly. Candidates who are convicted of contravening certain provisions of the Act also forfeit any office to which they were elected, and are ineligible to run until after the next regular election has taken place.
- The nomination filing fee and interest on loans are now expenses subject to the campaign spending limit.
- Expenses relating to a compliance audit are not subject to the spending limit.
- Expenses incurred by a candidate with a disability that are directly related to the candidacy are not subject to the spending limit.
- To avoid arguments that expenses incurred in holding a fundraising function may not be exempt from the spending limit, candidates should ensure that raising money is the primary purpose of the function. Events or materials promoting the candidate in which fundraising is incidental do not qualify as fundraising functions and are therefore not exempt from the spending limit.
- The candidate's spending limit formula is the base amount, which varies by office, plus $0.85 cents per elector.
- A candidate will receive an initial spending limit estimate when filing their nomination, and will receive a final spending limit after the close of nominations. Whichever of these two amounts is higher becomes the candidate's official spending limit.
- There is only one type of Financial Statement to be completed by all candidates (Form 4)
- The deadline for filing financial statements is 2 p.m. on Friday, March 25, 2011. If a candidate does not file by this deadline, and has not applied to the courts for an extension, the candidate forfeits any office won in the election, is ineligible to be elected and may not be appointed to any office until after the next regular election.
- A candidate who has a deficit may extend their campaign to June 30. A candidate who incurs expenses related to a recount, controverted election or compliance audit after their campaign has ended on December 31 may re-open their campaign. All campaigns end on June 30.
- All surplus funds must be turned over to the Clerk to be held in trust. A candidate may access his or her surplus if he or she subsequently incurs expenses related to a recount, controverted election or compliance audit.
- Surplus funds not required for such expenses become the property of the municipality or school board. Surplus funds may not be carried forward for use by the candidate in a subsequent election.
- Financial filing forms have been revised. All candidates must now use the most up-to-date version of Form 4.
- Every council and school board must appoint a compliance audit committee by October 1.
- Voting Day is Monday, October 25, 2010.
Nomination Period: January 4, 2010 - September 10, 2010
Nominations may be filed by candidates between Monday and Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. at Municipal Office and on September 10, 2010 until 2:00 p.m.
Campaign Period: When Nomination is Filed - December 31, 2010
The campaign period begins whenever a candidate files a nomination paper and ends on December 31, 2010 (unless the candidate withdraws the nomination, the Clerk rejects the nomination, or the candidate files to extend his or her campaign to erase a deficit). Candidates shall not receive contributions outside of their campaign period.
Certificate of Maximum Campaign Spending Limits: Nomination Filing
The Clerk will provide preliminary notice of the maximum campaign spending limits to all certified candidates based on the voters' list as of Nomination Day in 2006 (Head of Council = $7,500 + $.85 per elector and all other offices = $5,000 + $.85 per elector). On September 20, 2010 the Clerk will determine a final limit by applying this formula to the number of voters appearing on the voters' list as of Nomination Day in 2010. The greater of the two limits shall apply.
Voters' List: September 10 - 20, 2010
The interim voter's list will be made available to all registered candidates who complete a declaration form during this time period.
Revision Period: September 7, 2010 - October 25, 2010
Eligible voters whose names do not appear on the voters' list or are identified incorrectly may file a revision application with the Clerk's office using the prescribed form.
Nomination Day: September 10, 2010
Last day in which nominations may be filed by candidates at the Clerk's Office (between the hours of 9:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m.).
Withdrawal of Nomination: September 10, 2010
Last day to withdraw nominations. The prescribed form must be submitted to the Clerk's Department in writing before 2:00 p.m.
Removal of Another Elector's Name from Voters' List: September 7, 2010 - September 10, 2010
Certification of Nomination: September 13, 2010
The Clerk will certify nomination papers before 4:00 p.m. and notify, as soon as practicable, any candidate deemed ineligible for office.
Acclamation of Candidates: September 13, 2010
After 4:00 p.m., the Clerk will declare all candidates to be duly elected if they are the only qualified individuals seeking candidacy for a respective office.
Voting Day: Monday, October 25, 2010 until 8:00 p.m.
End of Campaign Period: December 31, 2010
This is the last day a candidate can raise funds for his or her campaign unless an extension is granted by the Clerk (the campaign period begins when nomination is filed). The end of a campaign period can also occur on the date in which a candidate withdraws his or her nomination or on the day it is rejected by the Clerk.
Notification to Extend a Campaign Period: December 31, 2010
Last day for candidates to provide notification, using the prescribed form, in order to extend their campaign in order to reduce a deficit.
Deadline for Filing Financial Statements: March 25, 2011
Candidates must file their financial statements in person at the Clerk's Office no later than 2:00 p.m. Penalties will apply immediately following March 25, 2011 if a financial statement has not been submitted. A candidate may, before this day but after December 31, 2010, apply to the Ontario Court of Justice in order to extend the time to file his or her financial statement. The Court may grant an extension of no more than 90 days.
Deadline for Compliance Audit Requests: June 23, 2011
Last day for a compliance audit request to be submitted with respect to a reporting period that ended on December 31, 2010.
End of Supplementary Reporting Period: June 30, 2011
A 6-month supplementary reporting period is permitted only if a candidate has submitted proper notification to extend his/her campaign by December 31, 2010
Deadline for Filing Financial Statements for the Supplementary Reporting Period: September 30, 2011
Candidates who were granted an extension to their campaign must file their financial statements in person at the Clerk's Office no later than 2:00 p.m. Penalties will apply immediately following September 30, 2011 if a financial statement has not been submitted.
Deadline for Compliance Audit Requests for Supplementary Reporting Period: December 28, 2011
Last day for a compliance audit request to come forward with respect to a reporting period that ended on June 30, 2011.
The Township has used the convenient mail-in-ballot method in past elections. Eligible electors received an election kit by mail prior to Election Day. The kit included an election ballot and all the necessary information to complete and return the ballot.
The Township of Smith-Ennismore-Lakefield has a five (5) member Council consisting of:
Election by General Vote:
Deputy Reeve (1)
Election by Ward Electors Only:
Councillor (1) Ennismore Ward (Ward 10)
Councillor (1) Smith Ward (Ward 20)
Councillor (1) Lakefield Ward (Ward 30)
The Council will serve term of four (4) years commencing December 1, 2010 until November, 2014. The Reeve and the Deputy Reeve also serve on the upper tier County of Peterborough Council. Council members will also be appointed to various Boards and Committees.
Trustee (1), Kawartha Pine Ridge District School Board for the Township's of Galway-Cavendish Harvey, North Kawartha and Smith-Ennismore-Lakefield.
Ontario Public School Boards' Association (OPSBA) - Ministry of Education Candidates Guide
Trustee(1), Peterborough, Victoria, Northumberland and Clarington Catholic District School Board for the Township's of Asphodel-Norwood, Douro-Dummer, Cavan- Monaghan, Galway-Cavendish and Harvey, Havelock-Belmont-Methuen, Otonabee-South Monaghan, North Kawartha and Smith-Ennismore-Lakefield.
Ontario Catholic School Trustees' Association (OCSTA) - Ministry of Education Candidates Guide
In accordance with the Municipal Act, as amended, every person is qualified to be elected or to hold office as a member of a Council,
a) who is entitled to be an elector in the municipality under section 17 of the Municipal Elections Act 1996, as amended (see definition below) ; and
b) who is not disqualified by this or any other Act from holding the office
A person is entitled to vote if, on voting day, he or she (Section 17 (2) of the Municipal Elections Act 1996, as amended),
a) resides in the local municipality or is the owner or tenant of land there, or the spouse of such owner or tenant;
b) is a Canadian citizen; and
c) is at least 18 years old.
Eligibility is determined by a person's relationship to property, specifically ownership and / or occupancy. In other words, a person is entitled to one vote in every municipality and school board jurisdiction in which they own or occupy property. This is not the case in a provincial or federal election where, irrespective of the number of properties owned in different municipalities, a person is entitled to only one vote, based on the location of their primary residence.
Examples of those ineligible to seek candidacy include:
- individuals that did not file their financial statements from the 2006 Election
- employees of the municipality (Council position) ** Exception - leave of absence effective the date of nomination
- employees of the school board (School Board position) ** Exception - leave of absence effective the date of nomination
- judge of any court
- Senator ** Exception - must resign as of Nomination Day, September 10th
- MP ** Exception - must resign as of Nomination Day, September 10th
- MPP ** Exception - must resign as of Nomination Day, September 10th
- A corporation
- A person serving a sentence of imprisonment
- A person acting as executor or trustee
The approximate number of electors is as follows (based on the 2006 number of eligible electors as of Nomination Day - September 29, 2006):
38% in 2006
34% in 2003
41% in 2000
Candidates must complete the Nomination Form 1 in full and sign before an authorized Election Official or Commissioner of Oaths. Nominations must be submitted in person by either the candidate or an agent filing on behalf of a candidate. If the Nomination Form is filed by an agent on behalf of the candidate, the form which includes the candidate's declaration must already be commissioned (if the form is not signed by an authorized commissioner it cannot be accepted). It is the responsibility of the candidate to satisfy himself or herself that he or she is qualified to be nominated for an office.
A fee is required at the time the Nomination Form is filed. Filing fees are $200 for the Head of Council (Reeve) and $100 for all other offices, including School Board Trustee positions and must be paid by cash, certified cheque, money order or interac.
Nominations are unofficial until formal certification by the Clerk on September 13, 2010.
The deadline for submission of a nomination is Friday, September 10, 2010 at 2:00 p.m. The deadline for the withdrawal of a nomination is Friday, September 10, 2010 at 2:00 p.m.
Identification will be required to be produced by all candidates (including incumbents) and agents filing on behalf of a candidate.
Examples of acceptable identification:
An original copy of a document listed below if the document shows the person's name, qualifying address and signature:
- Ontario driver's licence (photo card).
- Ontario health card (photo card).
- Ontario motor vehicle permit (plate portion).
- A mortgage, lease or rental agreement.
- An insurance policy.
- A loan or financial agreement with a financial institution
Note: a passport alone is not considered acceptable identification as the address is added by hand. A passport must be accompanied by one of the above noted documents to verify the qualifying address.
- Neatly print or type out the on-line Nomination Form 1. The name that appears on the Nomination Form is the name that will appear on the ballot. With the agreement of the Clerk some flexibility can be allowed for first names e.g. Tony for Anthony. Last names cannot be amended.
- Are you a Canadian citizen?
- Are you at least 18 years old?
- Verify your qualifying address. Do you own, or are the tenant of land, or the spouse of an owner or tenant of land, in the municipality?
- Confirm office being nominated for. e.g. Reeve.
- Have you read the Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing Municipal Candidates Guide or the applicable School Board Guide to ensure that you understand your obligations as a candidate?
- Can you produce the appropriate identification. If an agent is filing on your behalf you must provide a certified copy of your identification and ensure that the agent can produce appropriate identification for themselves. Copies of identification, including the agent's will be retained on file.
- Provide confirmation to the Clerk's Office the contact information you wish to be made public (e.g. email address? business phone?).
- Can you provide the appropriate filing fee in the form of cash, certified cheque, money order or interac.
The maximum spending limit for candidates to run their election campaign is based on a base amount plus the number of electors eligible to vote for the particular office for which the candidate is running. The final spending limit will be confirmed on Monday, September 20, 2010. Below represents the preliminary spending limit:
Preliminary Election Spending Limits (Base amount plus $0.85/elector)
Base Amount Reeve - $7,500
Base Amount all other offices - $5,000
Number of Electors
* Preliminary Maximum
Deputy Reeve Candidate
Ennismore Ward Candidate
Smith Ward Candidate
Lakefield Ward Candidate
Trustee Kawartha Pine Ridge District School Board
Trustee, Peterborough Victoria, Northumberland and Clarington Catholic District School Board
* Preliminary election limits are based on the 2006 number of eligible electors as of Nomination Day (September 29, 2006).
The Lakefield Ward has a Sign By-law that governs election signs. Signs are to be placed on private property during the election campaign and are to be removed 3 days following the date of the election.
Smith and Ennismore Ward
Where possible, election signs should be placed on private property with the permission of the property owner. Any signs placed on a road allowance should not obstruct the roadway or pose any kind of safety hazard (e.g. block a site line) to vehicles or pedestrians. Public Works has the authority to remove any signs deemed to cause a safety hazard.
Council meetings are generally held on the second and fourth Tuesday of each month. The remuneration noted below provides compensation for two (2) regular Council meetings, plus one special meeting (if required) per month.
Council Meetings Year 2010
Deputy Reeve $18,261
Serving as a member of a Committee or Board (e.g. Library Board)
Year 2010 $626
Members are also compensated for mileage.
All candidates are urged to review the Municipal Elections Act, 1996, as amended, (www.e-laws.gov.on.ca) and the Municipal Affairs and Housing's Candidates Guide available on their website (www.mah.gov.on.ca) or at the Clerk's office to fully understand all the legislative requirements. The onus of responsibility is on candidates to satisfy themselves, through their own determination, or with professional assistance, of the various legal and financial requirements relating to their candidacy. It is important to fully reference Sections 66-82, MEA, as well as other relevant sections within the Act as there have been significant amendments made by Bill 212 with respect to the regulation and control of election campaign financing. Although this guide provides a summary of the provisions, it does not account for all of the financial responsibilities associated with the candidacy.
All candidates will complete the same Financial Statement, Form 4 (exception is where an extension to the campaign period has been granted which requires, in addition to Form 4, that Form 5 be completed).
Pursuant to Section 66, MEA, contributions are monies, goods or services given to a candidate for his or her campaign which include:
- The amount charged for admission to a fund-raising function.
- The difference between the amount paid and the market value of a good or service sold at a fund-raising function.
- The difference between the amount paid and the market value of a good or service purchased for the campaign.
- Any unpaid but guaranteed balance of a campaign loan.
Candidates should advise contributors to their campaign that the contributor's name, address and contribution amount will posted as public information electronically (i.e. posted on the Township website) and that every contribution made (not just those >$100) will be posted.
Goods & Services Donated and Deemed Not to be Contributions
The following are deemed not to be contributions:
- The value of services provided by voluntary unpaid labour
- The value of services provided voluntarily by employees of an entity as long as they do not receive extra compensation from their employer
- An amount of $10 or less that is donated at a fund-raising function
- The value of free political advertising provided it is in accordance with the Broadcasting Act (Canada) and is made available to all candidates
- The amount of a campaign loan obtained by the candidate or the spouse of the candidate
Timing of Contributions
Contributions can be solicited by, or accepted on behalf, of a person seeking local municipal office, if that person has been duly nominated as a candidate. Contributions may only be accepted during a candidate's campaign period (in the event of a campaign that was not extended this occurs from the time with which the nomination is filed up until December 31, 2010). Any contributions received outside the campaign period that cannot be returned to the contributor including any anonymous contributions must be turned over to the Clerk. Candidates must make reasonable efforts to satisfy themselves that a contributor is entitled to make contributions.
Pursuant to Section 70(3), MEA, only the following may make contributions:
- An individual who is normally a resident in Ontario
- A corporation that carries on business in Ontario
- A trade union that holds bargaining rights for employees in Ontario
- A candidate and his or her spouse (subject to Section 70(5), MEA, if not normally a resident in Ontario, a candidate and his or her spouse may make contributions only to the candidate's election campaign)
Pursuant to Section 71(1), MEA, a contributor shall not make contributions exceeding a total of $750 to any one candidate in an election. This limit is never to be exceeded regardless of the number of offices a candidate may have been nominated for during an election period. In addition to this, a contributor shall not make contributions exceeding a total of $5,000 to multiple candidates for office on the same council or local board. It is also important to note that cash contributions of $25 or more are not to be accepted by or on behalf of a candidate (Section 70(8), MEA).
Candidate's Own Funds
A candidate and/or his or her spouse may contribute to a candidate's campaign. There is no limit on any such contribution but it is important to note that Section 74(1), MEA, provides that a contributor shall not make a contribution of money that does not belong to the contributor. Any contribution made by the candidate and/or his or her spouse is still considered a contribution and must be identified and reported as such. Pursuant to Section 79(6), MEA, if a candidate has a surplus and he or she has contributed to his or her own campaign and/or his or her spouse has made a contribution, the candidate may, after the election campaign period ends but before filing the financial statement or supplementary financial statement refund to himself or herself, or to his or her spouse, an amount that does not exceed the lesser of the relevant contributions or the surplus. The remaining surplus following any such refunds and/or any appropriate expenditures with respect to campaign extensions, becomes the property of the Township.
Pursuant to Section 70(4), MEA, the following shall not contribute to a campaign:
- A federal political party registered under the Canada Elections Act or any federal constituency association or registered candidate in a federal election.
- A provincial political party, constituency association, registered candidate or leadership contestant registered under the Election Finances Act.
- The Crown in right of Canada or Ontario, a municipality or local board.
Where the candidate learns a contribution has been made or accepted in contravention to any provision of the Act, the candidate must immediately return the contribution. If this is not possible, any such contribution should be paid to the Clerk. The following are examples of a contribution which must be returned or paid to the Clerk:
- Issued/received outside a candidate's campaign period.
- Issued/received from anonymous sources (except for cash donations less than $10 received as part of the fundraising event e.g. "pass-the-hat").
- Issued/received from ineligible sources (e.g. individuals not residents of Ontario).
- Issued/received in excess of the $750 per contributor limit.
- Issued/received a cash contribution in excess of $25.
- Issued/received from funds not belonging to the contributor.
Frequently Asked Questions Regarding Campaign Contributions
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.
What is the definition of contributions of goods and services?
All contributions of goods or services the candidate receives are considered contributions and should be supported by an invoice from the contributor of the good or service. 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.
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. The only exception to this rule is a donation received at a fund-raising function held on behalf of a candidate (eg. "pass-the-hat" donations). Each of these donations must be $10 or less. However, the total revenue from any such donation source must be reported as part of the candidate's financial statement. Any anonymous contribution received that cannot be returned must be paid to the Clerk.
Fundraising activities are to only be held for a candidate and must occur within his or her campaign period. The MEA defines a fund-raising function as "an event or activity held by or on behalf of a candidate for the purpose of raising funds for his or her election campaign". An account of all revenues and expenses generated from each fundraising function must be included in a candidate's financial statement. The price of admission to a fundraising function and/or any amount paid for a good or service (offered for sale in excess of fair market value) is to be considered and treated as a campaign contribution.
Section 67(2.1) provides that a fundraising function does not include costs related to:
a) events or activities that are organized for the purpose of promoting public awareness of a candidate and at which the soliciting of contributions is incidental; or
b) promotional materials in which the soliciting of contributions is incidental.
Any costs incurred for goods or services by or on behalf of a person wholly or partly for use in his or her election campaign are considered expenses. (Sections 67 and 76(5), MEA). Most expenses are subject to a maximum campaign expense limit. Bill 212 amended Section 76(5) to make interest on loans and the nomination fee subject to the expense limit. The amendments also resulted in an exemption for costs associated with a candidate's disability and/or those related to a compliance audit.
Campaign expenses include the value of any goods held in inventory by a candidate from a previous campaign for use in the 2010 Municipal Election campaign period (Section 67, MEA, can be referenced for further information). The inventory of reusable campaign materials remaining on hand at the end of a campaign becomes the property of the candidate and must be valued and reported as closing inventory on his or her financial statement.
Deadline for Claiming Expenses
The 2010 Municipal Election campaign period ends on Friday, December 31, 2010 (a campaign is also deemed to end on September 13, 2010 if a nomination is rejected by the Clerk or on the date a candidate submits his or her withdrawal). Pursuant to Section 68(1) (4), MEA, if a candidate decides to extend his or her campaign for the purposes of paying down a deficit, he or she must submit an application to the Clerk, using the prescribed form, by 4:30 p.m. on Friday, December 31, 2010. If the application to extend a campaign period is received by this time, a candidate's campaign is deemed to have run continuously from the date of nomination until June 30, 2011.
Financial Statements and Disclosure
It is the responsibility of the candidate to file a complete and accurate Form 4 Financial Statement in person at Township Office by the deadline applicable to their respective campaign. All nominated candidates for the 2010 Municipal Election (including those who have withdrawn or were not elected) must disclose their contributions and expenses, using the prescribed form, no later than 2:00 p.m. on March 25, 2011. In the event of a campaign that was extended to June 30, 2011 pursuant to Section 68, MEA, a Form 5 Financial Statement must also be submitted no later than 2:00 p.m. on September 30, 2011. Further information can be found by referencing Sections 78 and 79.1, MEA. This extension notice must be filed in person using the prescribed form. If any further extension to a candidate's campaign is required it must be sought from the court prior to the regular or supplementary filing deadline. The court cannot extend the filing deadline by more than 90 days. If the financial statement is not filed by the deadline and no extension through the courts has been sought, the penalties (removal from office etc.) are to take effect immediately (Section 89, MEA, can be referenced for further information related to offences, penalties and enforcement).
If a candidate files for an extension to his or her campaign, he or she is still required to submit a Form 4 Financial Statement by March 25, 2011 to account for all finances related to their campaign period up to December 31, 2010. Additionally, they must also file a Form 5 Financial Statement by September 30, 2011 accounting for all subsequent finances related to their campaign up to June 30, 2011.
The Form 4 and Form 5 are available from the Township's website or upon request from the Clerk's office. Pursuant to Section 78, MEA, an auditor's report shall accompany a candidate's financial statement and be prepared by an auditor licensed under the Public Accounting Act, 2004. No auditor's report is required if the total contributions received and total expenses incurred in a candidate's election campaign, up to the end of the relevant period, are each equal or less than $10,000.
Note: Candidate's financial statements are deemed to be public documents and will be posted to the Township's website in their entirety. The documents will be available to the public until the new council or local board takes office following the next regular election.
Campaign Surplus and Deficits
Pursuant to Section 79, MEA, a candidate has a surplus if the total credit exceeds the total debits, and a deficit if the reverse is true (details fully qualifying credits and debits are provided for by Section 79(2)(3), MEA). If a candidate's financial statement or supplementary financial statement shows a surplus and the election campaign period has ended at the time the statement is filed, he or she shall pay the surplus to the Clerk (reduced by the amount of any refund - see below).
According to Section 79(6), MEA, a candidate who has a surplus and has made a contribution to his or her campaign and/or his or her spouse has made a contribution, may, after the election campaign period ends but before filing the financial statement or supplementary financial statement, refund to himself or herself or the spouse an amount that does not exceed the lesser of the relevant contribution(s) and the surplus. If a candidate's campaign reconvenes due to reasons provided for by Sections 68, 81 and 83, MEA, (ie. recount, compliance audit, controverted election), the amount held in trust by the Clerk shall be paid to the candidate with interest. However, pursuant to Section 79(8), MEA, when a campaign has ended and it is no longer possible to recommence the campaign period due to a recount, compliance audit or controverted election, the surplus becomes the property of the municipality (as per Section 79.1(10)).
Record Keeping/Accounting System
Consulting with an auditor (specifically one with experience in campaign financing) on an election campaign accounting system is advisable. This will ensure that a candidate's record keeping and accounting procedures are followed in a satisfactory manner, allowing any necessary audits to be carried out at minimal cost. The auditor is required to examine and to report as to whether the financial statement presents fairly the information contained in the accounting records on which the financial statement is based. Further information regarding campaign accounting requirements can be found in the MEA.
The following is an excerpt from Section 69, MEA:
(1) A candidate shall ensure that,
(a) one or more campaign accounts are opened at a financial institution, exclusively for the purposes of the election campaign and in the name of the candidate's election campaign;
(b) all contributions of money are deposited into the campaign accounts;
(c) all payments for expenses, except for a nomination filing fee, are made from the campaign accounts;
(d) contributions of goods or services are valued;
(e) receipts are issued for every contribution and obtained for every expense;
(f) records are kept of,
(i) the receipts issued for every contribution,
(ii) the value of every contribution,
(iii) whether a contribution is in the form of money, goods or services, and
(iv) the contributor's name and address;
(g) records are kept of every expense including the receipts obtained for each expense;
(h) records are kept of any claim for payment of an expense that the candidate disputes or refuses to pay;
(i) records are kept of the gross income from a fund-raising function and the gross amount of money received at a fund-raising function by donations of $10 or less;
(j) records are kept of any loan and its terms under section 75 (ie. a candidate and his or her spouse may obtain a loan from a bank or other recognized lending institution in Ontario, to be paid directly into the candidate's campaign account.);
(j.1) the records described in clauses (f), (g), (h), (i) and (j) are retained by the candidate for the term of office of the members of the council or local board and until their successors are elected and the newly elected council or local board is organized;
(k) financial filings are made in accordance with section 78 and 79.1
(l) proper direction is given to the persons who are authorized to incur expenses and accept or solicit contributions on behalf of the candidate;
(m) a contribution of money made or received in contravention of this Act is returned to the contributor as soon as possible after the candidate becomes aware of the contravention;
(n) a contribution not returned to the contributor under clause (m) is paid to the clerk with whom the candidate's nomination was filed; and
(o) an anonymous contribution is paid to the clerk with whom the candidate's nomination was filed. 1996, c. 32, Sched., s. 69 (1); 2002, c. 17, Sched. D, s. 26.
As per Section 81.1, MEA, a Compliance Audit Committee will be constituted and delegated full authority to address applications requesting an audit of a candidate's financial statement. The Committee's term will be equal to that of the elected council. A Terms of Reference will be established by the Clerk. The central role of the Committee will be to review applications and grant or reject audit requests. Where granted, the Committee will appoint an auditor to review the final statement and, where indicated, the Committee will decide whether legal proceedings shall be commenced.
Notice of Penalties
Further to 33.1, MEA, the Clerk must provide notice of the penalties under Sections 80(2) and 92(5), MEA, to all candidates prior to voting day. The following excerpts are to be considered as the provision of notice pursuant to the Act. 80.
(1) A candidate is subject to the penalties listed in subsection (2), in addition to any other penalty that may be imposed under this Act.
(a) if he or she fails to file a document as required under section 78 or 79 by the relevant date;
(b) if a document filed under section 78 shows on its face a surplus, as described in section 79, and the candidate fails to pay the amount required by subsection 79(4) to the clerk by the relevant date;
(c) if a document filed under section 78 shows on its face that the candidate has incurred expenses exceeding what is permitted under section 76; or
(d) if a document filed under section 79.1 shows on its face a surplus and the candidate fails to pay the amount required by subsection 79.1(7) by the relevant date.
2) In the case of a default described in subsection (1),
(a) the candidate forfeits any office to which he or she was elected and the office is deemed to be vacant; and
(b) until the next regular election has taken place, the candidate is ineligible to the elected or appointed to any office to which this Act applies.
(2.1) In the case of a default described in subsection (1), the clerk shall notify the candidate and the council or board in writing that the default has occurred.
90. (1) If, when a person is convicted of an offence under section 89, the presiding judge finds that the offence was committed knowingly, the offence also constitutes a corrupt practice
92. (5) A candidate is guilty of an offence and, on conviction, in addition to any other penalty that may be imposed under this Act, is subject to the penalties described in subsection 80 (2), if he or she,
(a) files a document under section 78 or 79.1 that is incorrect or otherwise does not comply with that section; or
(b) incurs expenses that exceed what is permitted under section 76. 1996, c. 32, Sched., s. 92 (5); 2002, c. 17, Sched. D, s. 35 (1).
Pursuant to Section 12.1, MEA, in providing for matters and procedures not otherwise covered by the Act, the Clerk shall have regard to the needs of electors and candidates with disabilities. Within 90 days after voting day, the Clerk shall submit a report to Council about the identification, removal and prevention of barriers that affect electors and candidates with disabilities.
Accessibility Resources for Candidates
Candidates must also have regard to the needs of electors with disabilities. Campaign offices, election materials and canvassing should all be reviewed in order ensure that they are accessible to all electors, including those with disabilities. Candidate's Guide to Accessible Elections.
The Ministry of Community and Social Services has developed several quick reference guides with respect to the overall management of an accessible election campaign. For more information candidates are urged to visit their Making Ontario Accessible Website.
The Township of Smith-Ennismore-Lakefield has developed Accessibility Standards for Customer Service. For more information on the provision of service to persons with disabilities please visit the Township's Accessibility Standards for Customer Service website page.