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PostPosted: Tue Nov 14, 2017 2:31 pm    Post subject: Elections Canada no longer requires $1000 deposit Reply with quote

( apparently cause of a court decision elections Canada is no longer requiring the $1000 deposits to run for a federal nomination/election . it likely doesn't affect the liberals or conservatives much but might help the ndp and greens as well as many other fringe parties who might of had trouble raising money )

Elections Canada applies candidate deposit ruling to byelections

By Tim Naumetz. Published on Nov 14, 2017 8:44am

Elections Canada is applying a recent Alberta court ruling, which found a federal requirement for $1,000 candidate deposits unconstitutional, to four federal byelections scheduled for December.

The court ruling centres on the case of an Alberta elector who claimed the requirement for a $1,000 deposit ended his bid to run against Stephen Harper in the 2015 election and violated his constitutional rights.

Elections Canada announced its new policy on candidate deposits in a public statement last week and, as of Monday, continued to maintain online alerts for candidates and for a political financing handbook for candidates and official agents.

“Elections Canada is applying this change across the country in order to maintain consistent federal election rules,” the alert to potential candidates says on the Elections Canada web site. It warns potential candidates the nomination paper involving the deposit and other requirements “have not yet been updated to reflect this change.”

“The (court) decision is binding until it is stayed by a court or overturned on appeal,” the Elections Canada public statement says. It quotes acting Chief Electoral Officer Stephane Perrault, stating that “the deposit requirement provision will no longer be applied by Elections Canada, effective immediately.”

“As a result, prospective candidates will no longer have to pay the $1,000 deposit as part of their nomination requirements.”

“This means that the deposit is not required from prospective candidates in the federal by-elections currently underway,” the statement reads, adding the policy is “in keeping” with the agency’s policy on provincial court decisions that affect or invalidate provisions of the Canada Elections Act.

Justice Avril Inglis, named to the Alberta Court of Queen’s Bench by federal Justice Minister Jody Wilson-Raybould in 2016, found the $1,000 deposit “is in breach of the Charter right of each citizen to be able to participate meaningfully in the electoral process as a candidate and to be qualified for membership (in Parliament).”

The challenge was launched by Kieran Szuchewycz, an Edmonton resident who wanted to run against Harper in the electoral district of Calgary-Heritage. Szuchewycz was unable to run on several grounds.

Harper won handily and later resigned as Conservative leader and gave up his Commons seat.

Szuchewycz argued he and his family of three lived on only $2,000 a month, and countered federal arguments that a $1,000 deposit deters “frivolous” candidates by questioning whether the amount would “deter frivolous candidates that are affluent.”

Inglis noted Szuchewycz argued that the Rhinoceros Party fielded 27 candidates in the 2017 election and “apparently caused no harm to the integrity of the electoral process.”

Though Inglis struck down the requirement for a $1,000 deposit, she found a condition requiring 100 signatures of consent from local electors did not violate Charter protections, nor did witness signature provisions. everal other technical failings in the candidate application by Szuchewycz were not included as part of the ruling.

The deposit is refundable under certain conditions. “The deposit will be returned: if the nomination is refused; on compliance with post-election reporting requirements; or if the candidate dies before all polling stations close,” says a note to potential candidates in Election Canada’s online instruction pages.

Data from the 2015 election show a willingness to put up the deposit even among prospective candidates who might have little chance of winning.

Out of the entire candidate field that year, 301 candidates received less than one per cent of the votes in their electoral district. A total of 807 candidates received less than ten per cent.

Two of the December byelections, one in the Newfoundland and Labrador riding of Bonavista-Burin-Trinity and the other in Saskatchewan’s electoral district of Battlefords-Lloydminster, have featured competitive nomination races within the Liberal and Conservative parties.

A former Parliament Hill staffer with the Conservative party, Rosemarie Falk, won the party’s nomination for Battlefords-Lloydminster, which was left vacant after former agriculture minister Gerry Ritz retired from politics.

The widow of former Liberal MP Arnold Chan, Jean Yip, was nominated as the Liberal candidate in Chan’s former riding, Scarborough-Agincourt, on Sunday.

In the fourth byelection, to be held in the British Columbia electoral district of Surrey-White Rock, former provincial cabinet minister Gordon Hogg was acclaimed as the Liberal candidate after former Liberal MP Dianne Watts resigned to contest the leadership of the B.C. Liberal party.


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PostPosted: Mon Nov 27, 2017 5:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Liberals won't appeal court decision that struck $1,000 deposit requirement for federal election candidates

Rules remain in place to prevent so-called 'frivolous' candidates, including a requirement to gather signatures from riding residents

Minister of Democratic Institutions Karina Gould responds to a question during question period in the House of Commons on Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Friday, Feb. 3, 2017.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick

Marie-Danielle Smith

November 27, 2017
3:48 PM EST

Filed under
Canadian Politics

OTTAWA — Candidates will no longer have to pay a $1,000 deposit to stand in federal elections.

Citing “openness and fairness,” democratic institutions minister Karina Gould said Monday the government will not appeal an Alberta court decision last month that found the requirement unconstitutional.

“My mandate letter commits me to improving our democratic institutions and restoring Canadians’ trust and participation in our democratic processes,” Gould said in a statement provided to the National Post.

“I do not believe that appealing the Court of Queen’s Bench of Alberta’s decision in Szuchewycz v. Canada would be in line with these commitments, and accordingly, the government of Canada will not appeal the court’s decision in this matter. As a result, prospective candidates will no longer have to pay a $1,000 deposit as part of their nomination requirements.”

The Alberta Court of Queen’s Bench made the ruling in October.

Kieran Szuchewycz had filed a statement of claim in November 2015 weeks after the last federal election, arguing that the deposit, though refundable, constituted a kind of wealth test because some individuals would have difficulty coughing up a grand.

“I agree that the potential to prevent a serious and impressive candidate from running in an election, due to the financial pressure a $1,000 deposit could create, is a real risk of the requirement,” Justice Avril Inglis concluded in a judgment Oct. 25.

Running in elections is enshrined in the Charter of Rights and Freedoms: “Every citizen of Canada has the right to vote in an election of members of the House of Commons or of a legislative assembly and to be qualified for membership therein.”

A variety of other rules remain in place to prevent so-called “frivolous” candidates, including a requirement to gather signatures from riding residents as part of the nomination process.

Elections Canada was not party to the court case. It announced Nov. 8 that unless a court stayed or overturned the decision on appeal, it would stop requiring the deposits, including for four by-elections that are currently underway. Ridings in Newfoundland, Ontario, Saskatchewan and British Columbia will get new MPs Dec. 11.

Very little revenue will be lost as a result of the change. According to Elections Canada spokeswoman Melanie Wise, only about one per cent of candidates don’t get their deposits back due to compliance issues.

With 1,800 candidates participating in the 2015 federal election, only about $18,000 would be kept by the government. The deposits were paid out to the receiver general of Canada rather than to Elections Canada, so the agency itself did not financially benefit from the practice.

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Elections Canada no longer requires $1000 deposit

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