This issue includes messages on:
- Homebound Voter Applications
- Office Hours – Nomination Day
- Returning Office Email Addresses
- Media Relations
- Election Night Media Correspondents
Homebound Voter Applications
Any eligible voter within your constituency who is unable to vote at an advance poll or on election day due to a disability can apply to be a homebound voter. An eligible voter who resides within your constituency who is providing care to the homebound voter can also apply for homebound voting.
Homebound Voter Applications are available in printed form and online on Elections Saskatchewan’s website. Remember, homebound voters can:
- mail, fax, or scan and email a completed Homebound Voter Application to the RO office; or
- have another person bring their application to the RO office.
In reviewing Homebound Voter Applications it is particularly important to ensure that:
- applicants are eligible voters within your constituency;
- applicants are registered in VoterView;
- applications are complete; and
- applications are signed by the voter.
Reminder: Homebound voters do not need to include a copy of their identification with their application. The Deputy Returning Officer (DRO) and Poll Clerk (PC) that you send will be able to see the identification when they visit the voter’s home to take their vote.
Deadlines: Monday March 28 is the deadline for emailed or personally delivered Homebound Voter Applications. Since there is no mail delivery on Easter Monday, you are also to accept Homebound Voter Applications that are received through the mail on Tuesday, March 29.
The RO will schedule appointments at an agreed upon time during the days of advance poll voting, March 29 – April 2, and a DRO/PC team will make the visits and take the vote.
Important: Don’t forget to inform candidates of the dates and times that your election officials intend to conduct homebound voting so that one representative for each candidate may attend. If a homebound voter refuses to allow a candidate’s representative into their home, they will still be permitted to vote. The PC will record that access was denied in the “Comments” column of the poll book.
Reminder: Don’t forget to send in updates of the number of homebound and absentee ballot applications you receive as requested in the task list within your ESPREE calendar. These are to be provided to your SRO who will forward them to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Office Hours – Nomination Day
As you know, returning office hours for Saturday are generally 10:00am – 4:00pm. However, since Nomination Day (March 19) falls on a Saturday, you are required to have your office open to the public at 9am on Nomination Day.
Returning Office Email Addresses
The Election Clerk’s (EC) email address should be treated as the shared office email account. Automation Coordinators, Administrative Assistants and ECs should be sharing all email communications that arrive in that mailbox.
Alias (alternate) email addresses have been created for the EC email account in each constituency. They use the 3-letter constituency abbreviation and are designed to make it easier for the public to send messages.
Example for Arm River: ARM@elections.sk.ca
These aliases have been posted on our website http://www.elections.sk.ca/workers/list-of-flt/. All emails sent to this new email address will go to the EC’s email Inbox.
If you have any questions regarding this, please contact the Support Desk at: 1-866-249-7186 and select option 1.
Elections SK Head Office has fielded more than 100 media inquiries so far in 2016. A reporter may call you or your office and ask for information, an opinion or request to take a photo. Here are some reminders and guidelines for dealing with the media if, or when, they call:
- If a reporter calls or emails, ask what questions they have and what their deadline is.
- Do not express your personal opinion on any topic and don’t be critical of a candidate, party or the election laws.
- Notify Tim Kydd at ESK Head Office at 306-537-9211. Tim will determine how to handle the request.
- If it’s a straightforward request (e.g. ways to vote, ID, voting hours, etc.), you may be asked to handle these types of questions. If so, Tim will provide some tips for the interview. If you are not comfortable dealing with the media, Tim will do the interview.
- If the interview is more involved (e.g. something in The Election Act, advertising rules, voter turnout, etc.), Tim will do the interview.
Any questions about media relations, please call Tim at 306-537-9211.
Election Night Media Correspondents
On election night, the media want to get results as fast as they can to the public via TV and radio. A few years ago the media established the Canadian Media Elections Consortium (CMEC). This benefits us by having only one CMEC correspondent physically located in each returning office on election night, rather than several news reporters.
Elections SK Head Office is working with the CMEC to ensure that the predetermined rules between ESK and the CMEC are established and adhered to on election night.
More details will be sent closer to the election, but the first thing for each returning officer to do is to identify one person to serve as the CMEC correspondent. The CMEC encourages 18-25 year olds to fill this role to encourage younger people to participate in the election process. This person will be situated in the returning office for the CMEC on election night, but they will not be part of ESK’s Returning Office staff and will not be on election duty for you. They are paid $150 by the CMEC (not your budget), and simply need a place to sit and use their own cell phone. Their job is to phone in results to the CMEC. For now, we ask that you simply identify who could fill this role. Tim will ask you for their contact details by March 22.