For a healthy and more transparent democracy, everybody– electors, candidates, and parties alike – must respect the rules of the game. Recent measures adopted by the National Assembly will change the existing rules. This summary explains the main changes for the municipal election of November 3, 2013.
The Act to amend the Act respecting elections and referendums in municipalities in matters of financing (Bill 26) introduces a transitional regime for political financing at the municipal level, in force for the municipal general elections of November 3, 2013.
The new provisions of the Act apply from June 21, 2013.
The new law reduces the maximum allowed contribution and the maximum allowed amount of election expenses. On the other hand, the legislation provides for an increase in the percentage of election expenses that can be reimbursed by the treasurer from the general fund of the municipality.
As regards contributions, the new provisions also apply to races for the leadership of municipal political parties.
The Act to amend the Act respecting elections and referendums in municipalities in matters of financing primarily concerns municipalities with a population of 5,000 or more. These municipalities are subject to Chapter XIII of the Act respecting elections and referendums in municipalities (AERM) concerning the authorization and financing of political parties and independent candidates, the control of election expenses, and races for the leadership of political parties.
In addition, the legislative amendments add new rules for political financing as regards municipalities with a population of less than 5,000 (subject to Chapter XIV the AERM), and penal offences are also included therein.
You can verify if you live in one of the municipalities subject to Chapter XIII of the AERM. If this is not the case, your municipality is subject to the Chapter XIV of the Act.