Information for Voters

The following information was for voters in the 2020 municipal by-election.

On Saturday, December 12, 2020, a by-election was held to fill one (1) vacancy for the position of Councillor in the City of Victoria. 

What You Needed to Know to Vote 

There were many ways to vote in Victoria's 2020 By-Election. You could vote in person on General Voting Day on Saturday, December 12 at any of the six voting places or at any of the eight advance voting opportunities at Crystal Garden.

For those with accessibility challenges, curbside voting was offered at all in-person voting places. An accessible voting machine was available at Crystal Garden on General Voting Day and at advance voting opportunities.

NOTE: All voting places were scent free. Only service animals were allowed to enter voting places. 

You could also request a mail ballot.

Read the Candidate Profile Guide which includes profiles submitted by each candidate. 

Read Victoria's 2020 By-Election Fact Sheet. (Accessible version.)  

Watch this helpful video to learn about ways to vote in Victoria's 2020 By-Election. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Please click on the links below. 

  1. What is on the Ballot?

    The ballot will include one section:

      • Opportunity to vote for one Councillor
  2. Who are the Candidates?

    The following candidates will be on the ballot for Victoria's 2020 By-Election to elect ONE vacant Councillor position:

    ANDREW, Stephen
    DUNCAN, Rob
    GODRON, Riga
    HARDMAN, Stefanie
    HEFLIN, Bill
    HEIT, Jason
    LEITENBERG, Sean
    MCLEOD, Hailey
    ROSENBERG, Keith
    SCHMID, Alexander
    VICKERY, Roshan

    Read the Candidate Profile Guide that contains profiles submitted by each candidate.

  3. COVID-19 Safety Measures

    The City of Victoria is committed to delivering a safe and physically distanced by-election during the COVID-19 pandemic. Following public health, Elections BC and WorkSafeBC directives, the City’s COVID-19 safety plan for each voting place will make sure the by-election is safe for voters, candidates and election staff.

    • All voting places will have protective measures in place, including physical distancing, capacity limits, hand sanitizing stations, plexiglass protective barriers, election officials wearing personal protective equipment (masks or face-visors), and frequent cleaning of voting stations and frequently touched surfaces. 
    • You will be asked to sanitize your hands before and after voting. 
    • Pens will be provided for voting and will be sanitized in between use. You may choose to use your own pen.
    • You will personally feed your marked ballot into an electronic voting machine.
    • Please do your part to vote safely. Follow election officials’ instructions and signage in the voting place to maintain physical distancing.
    • You are encouraged to wear a mask when entering the voting location and will not be asked to remove your mask while voting.

    • If you are ill or self-isolating, do not visit a voting place. Request a mail ballot by emailing Legislative Services at elections@victoria.ca or calling 250.361.0571.

  4. Voting Places

    Eligible voters can vote at ANY of the following locations on General Voting Day, Saturday, December 12, 8 a.m. – 8 p.m.:

    • James Bay, Community School,140 Oswego Street 
    • Oaklands Elementary School, 2827 Belmont Avenue
    • Sir James Douglas Elementary School, 401 Moss Street 
    • Da Vinci Centre, 195 Bay Street
    • Crystal Garden, 713 Douglas Street*
    • Victoria High School at SJ Willis Education Centre, 923 Topaz Avenue

    *An accessible voting machine will be available at Crystal Garden on General Voting Day, December 12, 2020.

    Crystal Garden Parking
    The first hour of parking will be free for Victoria voters at the parking lot located under the Victoria Conference Centre. Voters must bring their parking ticket to the Crystal Garden for validation when voting on advance voting days and General Voting Day.

    Two free, 30-minute on-street parking spaces will be available for voters in front of Crystal Garden. The first hour of parking is also free at Broughton Street Parkade, located under the Greater Victoria Public Library

  5. Advance Voting Opportunities

    Eight advance voting opportunities will be held at the Crystal Garden at 713 Douglas Street and will be open to all voters. An accessible voting machine will be available.

    • Tuesday, December 1, 9 a.m. - 4 p.m.
    • Wednesday, December 2, 8 a.m. - 8 p.m.
    • Thursday, December 3, 9 a.m. – 4 p.m.
    • Friday, December 4, 9 a.m. -  4 p.m.
    • Saturday, December 5, 9 a.m. – 4 p.m.
    • Monday, December 7, 8 a.m. - 8 p.m.
    • Tuesday, December 8, 9 a.m. - 4 p.m.
    • Wednesday, December 9, 9 a.m. - 4 p.m.

    Crystal Garden Parking
    The first hour of parking will be free for Victoria voters at the parking lot located under the Victoria Conference Centre. Voters must bring their parking ticket to the Crystal Garden for validation when voting on advance voting days and General Voting Day.

    Two free, 30-minute on-street parking spaces will be available for voters in front of Crystal Garden. The first hour of parking is also free at Broughton Street Parkade, located under the Greater Victoria Public Library.

    NOTE: If you have requested a mail ballot, you will not be able to vote in person at an advance voting opportunity or on General Voting Day. You can return your completed mail ballot to one of the scheduled advance voting opportunities, to a voting place on General Voting Day, or to the drop box located at the Pandora Avenue entrance to City Hall before 8 p.m. on Saturday, December 12, 2020. 

     

  6. Curbside Voting

    Curbside voting is for those who have accessibility challenges and cannot access a voting location.

    For those with accessibility challenges, curbside voting will be available at all voting places on General Voting Day and at all advance voting opportunities.

    Accessible parking spaces outside each voting place will be designated for curbside voting. Signs will identify the parking spaces and will include a phone number to call. By-election staff will come out to assist voters with voting from their vehicle.                

  7. Accessible Voting

    An accessible voting machine will be located at the Crystal Garden at 713 Douglas Street for all eight advance voting opportunities and on General Voting Day.

    A voter with disabilities will be provided with headphones and their preferred selector device (i.e. a hand-held vote selector, paddles, or sip-and-puff) via an audio voting session. The headphones have disposable sanitary coverings. All devices will be sanitized between use. 

    The election administrator will then initiate the accessible voting session via an LCD screen on the tabulator, select the appropriate ballot style for the voter, and insert the paper ballot into the printer tray.

    The voter is then led via audio instructions through the ballot. They will select their ballot choice via their chosen vote selector device. When the voter has finished making their ballot selection, the vote choice will be read back to the voter via the same audio interface, and the voter will have a chance to either confirm or reject the vote confirmation. 

     

  8. Voting by Mail

    Anyone can vote by mail in the City of Victoria’s 2020 By-Election.

    Request a Mail Ballot

    To request a mail ballot package, fill out an online form or call 250.361.0571.

    You may apply for a mail ballot package up to and including General Voting Day (December 12).

    • Your package will include helpful instructions on how to complete and return your mail ballot. Mail ballot packages will be mailed out starting the week of November 23. 

    • Completed mail ballots should be placed in the mail by Friday, December 4 at the latest. Postage is included for mail ballot packages mailed within Canada.

    • After December 4, completed mail ballots can be returned:

      • to the drop box outside the Pandora Avenue entrance of City Hall

      • at an advance voting opportunity at Crystal Garden

      • or before 8 p.m. at one of the six voting places on General Voting Day

    • All mail ballots requested after December 4 are to be picked up at Victoria City Hall. 

    • Mail ballots must be received by the City of Victoria before 8 p.m. (Pacific Time) on Saturday, December 12, 2020 to be counted.

    • If you have requested a mail ballot but have not received one by General Voting Day, please contact City of Victoria Legislative Services at 250.361.0571.

    • NOTE: If you request a mail ballot, you will not be able to vote in person at an advance voting opportunity or on General Voting Day. 

    • If you incorrectly mark your ballot or your mail ballot is damaged, please call City of Victoria Legislative Services at 250.361.0571 for a replacement ballot. You must return the spoiled mail ballot to receive a replacement ballot.  

  9. Am I Registered to Vote?

    The Provincial Voters List from Elections BC is being used to create Victoria's Voters List of eligible voters by name and address. Check to see if you're on the Voters List here

    Or you can call Legislative Services at Victoria City Hall on weekdays between 8 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. (except statutory holidays) at 250.361.0571.

    If You Are Registered to Vote
    If you are on the Voters List, you are not required to register again, but you will need to bring one piece of valid ID on voting day. Please see Identity Documents for acceptable identification.

    How to Register to Vote? 
    If you qualify as a resident elector but are not on the Voters List, you can register at the voting place when you vote in person at an Advance Voting Opportunity or on General Voting Day

    Please see Voter Qualifications below to find out if you are eligible to vote and Identify Documents to know what two identity documents to bring with you to register at the voting opportunity you attend.

    NOTE: Advance registration to be on the Provincial Voters List is closed and will re-open on December 14, 2020.

     

  10. Voter Qualifications

    In order to be eligible to vote as a resident elector on Voting Day in the 2020 municipal by-election you must satisfy all of the following criteria:

    • age 18 or older when registering to vote or on voting day.
    • Canadian citizen
    • resident of British Columbia for at least 6 months before registering to vote or on voting day
    • resident of the City of Victoria for at least 30 days before registering to vote or on voting day
    • not disqualified by any enactment from voting in an election or otherwise disqualified by law
  11. Identity Documents

    The following are valid identity documents for proving voter identity. At least one document presented to prove identity must include the applicant's signature. If you are registering to vote at a Voting Place, you will be required to present two pieces. Please be prepared to present two of the identity documents noted below:

    • BC Driver's Licence
    • BC Identification Card
    • Photo BC Services Card
    • Certificate of Indian Status as issued by the Government of Canada
    • Non-photo BC Services Card
    • Student card issued by a post-secondary institution
    • Owner's Certificate of Insurance and Vehicle Licence issued by ICBC
    • BC CareCard or BC Gold CareCard
    • Ministry of Social Development and Economic Security Request for Continued Assistance Form  SDES8
    • Social Insurance Card
    • Canadian Citizenship Card
    • City of Victoria Property Tax Notice
    • Statement of Employment Insurance Benefits
    • BC Government cheque
    • Income Tax Assessment Notice
    • Canadian Forces Identification
    • Old Age Security Identification Card
    • Canadian Passport
    • Birth Certificate
    • Credit card or debit card or statement
    • Utility bill
    • Library card issued by the Greater Victoria Public Library
  12. Residency Requirements

    The Greater Victoria area is made up of many municipalities, so you may be unsure whether you are a City of Victoria resident or resident of another municipality. Only Victoria residents and non-resident property owners are eligible to vote in Victoria's 2020 by-election.

    If you are uncertain about your municipality of residence, you can check the CRD Regional Map. A check of your property tax receipt will also provide you with information about your municipality of residence. If you are still uncertain, please contact the Legislative Services office at 250.361.0571 for assistance.

     

  13. Non-Resident Property Elector

    If you own property in Victoria but live elsewhere, you might be eligible to vote in the City of Victoria by-election as a non-resident property elector. The owners must be individuals, not corporations.

    In order to be eligible to vote as a non-resident property elector you must satisfy all of the following criteria:

    • age 18 or older
    • Canadian citizen
    • resident of British Columbia for at least 6 months immediately before registering to vote or on voting day
    • registered owner of real property in the City of Victoria for at least 30 days immediately before registering to vote or on voting day
    • not entitled to register as a resident elector
    • not disqualified by any enactment from voting in an election or otherwise disqualified by law
    • only persons who are registered owners of the real property, either as joint tenants or tenants in common, are individuals who are not holding the property in trust for a corporation or another trust
    • if there is more than one registered owner of the property, only one of those individuals may, with the written consent of the majority of the owners, register as a non-resident property elector

    If you are not on the City's Voters List and qualify as a non-resident property elector, you may register at the time of voting. Registering as a non-resident property elector at the time on voting day requires documentation proving your identity, place of residence and proof of property ownership.

    To prove your identity and your eligibility to register, please bring with you:

    • Two pieces of personal identification - one with residential address, and one with your signature; and
    • Property title deed or current City of Victoria property tax receipt; and
    • Application Form (see below)
    • Consent Form, if the property is owned jointly with other individuals - available at Legislative Services or below.

    If a property is owned in whole or in part by a corporation, you are ineligible to register as a non-resident property elector with regard to that property. There is no corporate vote in BC.

    For further information about registering to vote as a non-resident property elector, please contact Legislative Services at 250.361.0571.

  14. List of Registered Electors

    Beginning October 27, 2020 until the close of general voting on December 12, 2020, the List of Registered Electors will be available for public inspection at Legislative Services, Victoria City Hall, 1 Centennial Square, Victoria, B.C., during regular office hours, 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday to Friday (excluding statutory holidays). Due to COVID-19, City Hall remains closed to the public. If you wish to inspect the List of Registered Electors, please call 250.361.0571 or email elections@victoria.ca to make an appointment.

    Before inspecting the list, a person must sign a statement that they will not inspect the list or use the information included in the list except for the purposes of Part 3 – Electors and Elections of the Local Government Act. An elector may request that personal information about them be omitted from or obscured on the List of Electors. 

  15. Objection to Registration of an Elector

    An objection to the registration of a person appearing on the List of Registered Electors may be made in writing in accordance with Section 79 of the Local Government Act, until 4:00 p.m. on November 6, 2020.

    An objection:

    • must be made in writing
    • may only be made by a person entitled to be registered as an elector of the City of Victoria
    • can only be made on the basis that the person whose name appears has died or is not qualified to be registered as an elector of the City of Victoria
    • must include the name and address of the person making the objection.

    For further information on these matters, please contact: Chris Coates, Chief Election Officer Christine Havelka, Deputy Chief Election Officer Monika Fedyczkowska, Deputy Chief Election Officer Sonia Santarossa, Deputy Chief Election Officer at 250.361.0571.

  16. Counting the Ballots

    City of Victoria voters mark a paper ballot that is processed through an electronic vote tabulator that counts the votes cast for each candidate in each section. Election results are generated by the electronic vote tabulators and the paper ballots are retained in the event that a recount is required. Final results will be available on the City's website after the polls are closed on Voting Day.