District Electoral Officer Don McMillan and Assistant Deputy Electoral Officer Lynn Christie are all smiles in anticipation of a smooth election day next May 14.

Eyes on the voters and ballots

The Stikine electoral district counts 23 general voting places, all under the supervision of District Electoral Officer Don McMillan.

From Atlin and Lower Post in the north, to Stewart and south to the Hazeltons, Smithers and Telkwa, the Stikine electoral district counts 23 general voting places, all under the supervision of District Electoral Officer Don McMillan.

There is much to be done between now and the May 14 election day, including making sure each voting place has enough voting booths and ballot boxes.

But the most important part is making sure voting takes place without a hitch.

To vote, McMillan explained, a person must be a Canadian citizen, 18-years-old and have resided in B. C. for at least six months.

Other than that only a handful of people are disqualified from voting, including the Chief and Deputy Chief Electoral Officers and persons convicted of offences under the B.C. Elections Act such as vote buying, voter intimidation and voting twice, McMillan explained.

Although the voting list closed April 23, McMillan said persons eligible to vote can still register on election day when they go to vote.

“You can register when you vote,” McMillan said.

“You must present two pieces of identification which identify who you are and your residential address.”

A B.C. Driver’s licence, B.C. Services card or Indian Status cards are all accepted as proof of identity and residential address.

In lieu of the above pieces of identification, eligible voters can register using combinations of a passport or care card for example, together with a hydro bill or other utility bill, McMillan explained.

In the event someone has lost their pieces of identification, they can be vouched for by a family member, a friend or a personal care professional.

Friends and health care professionals can only vouch for one person.

Family members can vouch for more than one person, so long as they reside in the same electoral district.

Persons with disabilities can also request help to mark their ballot, including a friend, so long as they sign a form swearing they will not divulge how the person voted.

For many, traveling to a voting station can be difficult, so Elections B.C. sends out special mobile voting stations, McMillan said.

“We send to a mobile team of voting officials to places like the Bulkley Lodge, The Meadows, the Bulkley Valley District Hospital, the Wrinch Memorial Hospital and Skeena Place,” McMillan said.

“We have all of that scheduled for May 13 and May 14.”

The mobile voting teams can administer voting for residents, patients, workers and visitors.

Once the polls close, the task of counting the votes falls to voting officers and voting clerks.

Normally, each team of voting officer and voting clerk deals with about 400 ballots, McMillan said and counting takes about an hour.

For information call 250-877-4510.



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