2020 Victoria By-election Advertising Rules in Effect November 14

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
November 10, 2020

VICTORIA – Advertising rules for the 2020 Victoria By-election come into effect on Saturday, November 14, 2020, with the start of the campaign period. The by-election will be held on Saturday, December 12.

Elections BC administers campaign financing, advertising and disclosure rules for local elections under the Local Elections Campaign Financing Act. For more information on the rules for media, candidates and third party advertising sponsors, see the backgrounder below.

Elections BC does not administer candidate nominations or voting for local elections. For more information on candidate nominations or voting in the 2020 Victoria By-election, contact the City of Victoria.

For more information on Elections BC’s role and who does what in local elections, visit elections.bc.ca/lecf.

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Contact:

Andrew Watson
Director, Communications
Elections BC
Phone: 250-387-1709
Email: Andrew.Watson@elections.bc.ca
Website: elections.bc.ca

Elections BC is the independent, non-partisan Office of the Legislature responsible for administering electoral processes in British Columbia under provincial legislation, including the Election Act, Local Elections Campaign Financing Act, Recall and Initiative Act and Referendum Act.

 

BACKGROUNDER November 10, 2020

2020 VICTORIA BY-ELECTION ADVERTISING RULES

Third Party Advertising Rules

The 2020 Victoria By-election is on December 12 and there are rules that third party advertisers must follow.

Third party advertising is any election advertising not sponsored by a candidate or elector organization.

Those who advertise as a third party between November 14 and December 12 must:

  • register with Elections BC before conducting any advertising,
  • include their name and B.C. contact information on all advertising, as well as a statement that they are a registered third party sponsor under the Local Elections Campaign Financing Act,
  • be independent and not sponsor advertising on behalf of, or together with, a candidate or elector organization,
  • not spend more than the expense limit, and
  • file a disclosure statement.

There are two types of third party advertising: directed advertising and issue advertising. Directed advertising is third party advertising that identifies a candidate, includes a photo or likeness of a candidate or identifies a candidate by voice or physical description. Directed advertising also includes advertising that names an elector organization or includes a logo or likeness of a logo used by the elector organization. Issue advertising is third party advertising about an issue of public policy that a candidate or elector organization is associated with, but does not name the candidate or elector organization.

There is a directed advertising limit of $2,706.08. Directed and issue advertising cannot exceed a cumulative expense limit of $150,000.

Registration forms for third parties and the Guide for Local Elections Third Party Sponsors in B.C. are available at elections.bc.ca/sponsors.

Media Advertising Rules

Media outlets must not publish or transmit election advertising on General Voting Day, Saturday, December 12, 2020. This includes newspaper, television or radio advertising, and internet and social media advertising to promote candidates or elector organizations.

Media may publish, without charge, news, editorials, interviews, columns, letters, debates, speeches or commentaries within their bona fide publications, television programs and radio shows. This includes interviews and stories about candidates.

Candidate and Elector Organization Advertising Rules

Between November 14 and December 12, candidate and elector organization advertising must include an authorization statement that identifies who they are and provides contact information.

On General Voting Day, candidates, elector organizations and advertising sponsors must not:

  • sponsor newspaper, television, radio advertising or internet ads
  • use automated dialers (e.g., robo-calls) to promote or oppose candidates and/or elector organizations

They are allowed to do:

  • free posts on social media (including on General Voting Day)
  • paid or unpaid communications on the internet that only encourage voters to vote in the election
  • campaigning activities including door-to-door canvassing, handing out brochures, placing election or advertising signs or posters, and “mainstreeting” and “sign-and-wave”

Candidates have a total campaign expense limit of $27,416.40 and must file financial disclosure statements and contribution information with Elections BC by March 12, 2021. This information will be published on Elections BC’s website in the Financial Reports and Political Contributions system.

Elections BC’s Role

Elections BC is an independent, non-partisan Office of the Legislature responsible for administering electoral processes in B.C. under the Election Act, Local Elections Campaign Financing Act, Recall and Initiative Act, and Referendum Act.

Elections BC administers campaign financing, advertising and disclosure rules for local elections under the Local Elections Campaign Financing Act. Elections BC does not administer candidate nominations or voting for local elections.

Elections BC does not regulate the placement of election signs or canvassing around local voting places. Any concerns about campaigning activity around a voting place should be addressed to the Local Chief Election Officer.

For more information on who does what in local elections, visit elections.bc.ca/lecf.

For questions about voting and candidate nominations, contact the City of Victoria.

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Contact:

Andrew Watson
Director, Communications
Elections BC
Phone: 250-387-1709
Email: Andrew.Watson@elections.bc.ca
Website: elections.bc.ca

Elections BC is the independent, non-partisan Office of the Legislature responsible for administering electoral processes in British Columbia under provincial legislation, including the Election Act, Local Elections Campaign Financing Act, Recall and Initiative Act and Referendum Act.