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The November 7, 2021, municipal general elections: the Chief Electoral Officer is in favour of Bill 85, which aims to facilitate the conduct of the municipal general election in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic

26 March 2021

Categories: General election, Municipal

The next municipal general elections will be conducted in a few months. The rules that govern the conduct of the elections must be established quickly, even if we cannot know with certainty what the health situation will be next November. Certain provisions of the Act respecting elections and referendums in municipalities (AERM) must be amended to adapt the electoral process to the context of the pandemic. To that end, on February 10, 2021, the Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing, Ms. Andrée Laforest, tabled Bill no. 85, Act to facilitate the conduct of the 7 November 2021 municipal general election in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic

In particular, Bill no. 85 gives the Chief Electoral Officer the power to amend provisions of the AERM by regulation. The Bill also proposes to increase the length of the election period by one week, starting on September 17, 2021.  

The Chief Electoral Officer, Mr. Pierre Reid, spoke on March 10th during the particular consultations on this Bill. He supported this proposal, which provides the flexibility and safeguards required to preserve the accessibility of the vote, the integrity of the election, and the health of electors, candidates and election officers. Mr. Reid stressed the importance of passing the Bill as soon as possible, as more than 1,100 returning officers are preparing to conduct a general election in their municipality. He indicated that his team will be prepared to introduce a regulation to clarify the election process once the Bill is passed.

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