The advance voting period for the Saskatoon Meewasin by-election has come to a close. Tomorrow, voters will attend their assigned polling place to cast their ballot and choose their representative in the Legislative Assembly. Thank you for your cooperation thus far. Please refer to the items below for some important information.   

By-Election Day and Results Reporting

Polls will be open for by-election day voting tomorrow from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. You should all have information on polling locations already, but if you have questions, please do not hesitate to be in touch.

If your candidates or their representatives encounter any issues during by-election day voting, please contact the returning office or our head office as is appropriate. We look forward to working with you to facilitate this process.

If I need to contact you with information tomorrow, it will be done formally through a By-Election Communique.

By-Election Day and Results Reporting

As results begin coming into our office, they will be posted online at http://results.elections.sk.ca/. The page should be active if you want to have a look in advance. Results should begin coming in around 9 p.m. tonight.

You will see that the results page lists 50 ballot boxes. These 50 ballot boxes consist of:

  • 44 “regular” or election day ballot boxes
  • 1 mobile ballot box (for five mobile poll locations)
  • 4 advance ballot boxes
  • 1 homebound ballot box

This figure of 50 ballot boxes does not include the Absentee ballot box or the HRT ballot box (Hospital/Remand/Temporarily Displaced). By legislation, these ballots are counted at the Final Count which will be held on Tuesday, March 14 at the returning office.

Advance Voting – Picking up copies of the E-317

As mentioned in my Communique to you dated February 21, 2017, copies of the “E-317 – Poll Book for Voters who Voted at Advance” will be available for pickup after 1 p.m. today.

Please ensure that the person who picks up this document (if it is not the candidate) has a signed copy of the E-417 “Appointment of Candidate’s Representative” form with them. We need this form as verification that the information is being released to an authorized representative of the candidate. If the individual picking up the E-317 has not been designated as a candidate’s representative, blank E-417A forms can be found at http://www.elections.sk.ca/candidates-political-parties/forms-and-guides/e-417a.pdf. The form must be completed in advance of picking up the E-317. If the E-417A is only be used for someone to pick up the E-317, the bottom portion of the document, labeled “For Use By A Deputy Returning Officer Within A Polling Place” does not need to be completed.

Advance Voting – Additional Counter

During the last general election, due to high advance voter turnout in some locations, I authorized an additional poll clerk to assist with counting ballots (refer to my GE28 Communique for Chief Official Agents dated April 3, 2016 for more information).

While the advance voting numbers for this by-election are not as high, I have authorized the addition of an extra poll clerk to assist with the counting at one of the advance polls in the Soccer Centre. By adding this person to only one of the advance teams, we hope to get a better sense of how effective an additional poll clerk can be in speeding up the counting process.

I expect that, come the next general election, we will once again see an increase in advance voting turnout. Counting upwards of 1,000 or more ballots by hand, and providing results in a timely fashion will continue to be a challenge. By testing the additional poll clerk alongside poll which do not have an extra counter, our aim is to gain data on how effective of an approach this is.

All the best tomorrow.

Dr. Michael Boda
Chief Electoral Officer
Province of Saskatchewan

 

For additional information on the Saskatoon Meewasin by-election, including a link to all CEO Communiques, visit http://www.elections.sk.ca/voters/meewasin-by-election/.