Candidates reminded to steer clear of the polls, except to vote

Elk Valley election candidates have been reminded they must steer clear of polling booths on voting days.

It comes after a Fernie mayoral candidate was reported at the Senior Citizens Drop-In Centre on the first advance voting day on October 10.

Chief Election Officer for the City of Fernie Kevin Allen has confirmed he received an elector complaint that incumbent Mayor Mary Giuliano was having lunch at the centre while voting took place in another room. By the time Allen arrived, Giuliano had already left.

“In our subsequent communications, I explained that it was an election offense to be present at the polling site as voting was occurring in the back room of the centre,” Allen told The Free Press.

“She explained that she was attending a previously planned function, was not campaigning and sincerely believed she was at an acceptable distance.

“She assured me it would not happen again. I was satisfied with that conclusion and will not be pursuing it further,” he said.

According to Allen, candidates are not allowed to be at the polls on voting days (or 100 metres around it) except to vote themselves or to attend the ballot count once the polls close.

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