Changes for the 2018 Election

 New Timelines to Municipal and School Board Elections
  • Nomination Period - The first day that nominations can be filed for a regular election will be May 1.  Nomination Day is the deadline to file nomination for a regular election will move to the fourth Friday in July (Friday, July 27, 2018)

  • Availability of Voters List - In order to provide greater clarity to candidates around the availability of the Voters List, September 4 is the first day the Voters List may be released.

  • Interim Changes to Voters List - Previously, the Municipal Clerk had until June 1 of the election year to establish procedures for voting and the use of vote counting equipment and alternative voting methods authorized by Council. Any policies, procedures and forms used to support voting, vote counting equipment and alternative voting methods must now be established by the Clerk before January 1, of an election year. The Ministry assists with many election forms and adhering to this date is contingent upon the Ministry fulfilling its role in providing the necessary and appropriate forms, i.e. Nomination Form.

  • Approval/Authorization of Ballot Question - Should Council deem it appropriate to place a question on the ballot, originally, the by-law authorizing the question must be passed on or before June 1 in the election year, the amendment sets a new deadline now of March 1 in the election year.

    • On February 20, 2018, Council approved By-law 28-18 authorizing and directing the City Clerk/Returning Officer to place the following question on the ballot for the 2018 Municipal Election in the City of Cambridge pursuant to the requirements of the Municipal Elections Act, 1996: 

                    "Are you in favour of the City of Cambridge using a ranked ballot system for the 2022

                    municipal election?"  

                                                           YES             NO

  • Authorization of Alternative Voting Methods - The option to employ vote counting equipment and alternative voting methods remains with the legislation; however, the deadline to adopt a by-law authorizing the use of such methods and technologies has been moved from June 1 to May 1 in the election year.

 Summary of Significant Changes to Candidates
  • Candidate Process Update - All candidates seeking office on Council will have to have their nomination paper endorsed by at least 25 individuals who are eligible to vote within the municipality. The nomination paper may only be accepted by the Municipal Clerk if it contains the specified amount of signatures as required. This new requirement will not impose the requirement of the Municipal Clerk to verify that the individuals endorsing the nomination paper are qualified electors; this responsibility is bestowed upon the candidate.

  • Advertising - Candidates will now be required to include specific information within their election advertising in order to make it clear who is responsible for the messages provided. These new requirements apply to all of the different methods of advertising by the candidate. Additionally, candidates or the third party will need to provide publishers and broadcasters with information including the name of the candidate and the name, business address and telephone number of the individual interacting with the broadcaster or publisher on behalf of the candidate. This information, along with a copy of the ad and the invoice will need to be retained and made available for public inspection for a period of at least two (2) years.

  • Financial Statement Updates - There are new requirements for the Municipal Clerk to review and report on campaign contributions made to candidates running for municipal Council. The report would identify any candidates who appear to exceed the campaign contribution limits and would be created for registered third party contributors. These reports would be referred to the Compliance Audit Committee to determine if any further action is to be taken. Consideration will be given to accept electronic filing of financial statements (and any accompanying documentation) however proper formal sign-off will still be required that certifies the documents.

  • Candidate Finances - Candidates are not required to open a bank account if they do not raise or spend money. Anonymous or cash donations cannot exceed $25 (no receipt is needed).  However, contributions over $25 would have to be made in a way that links the contributor’s name and account with the payment and a record should be taken. If goods sold to raise funds are sold for $25 or less, that amount would be considered campaign income, rather than a contribution. The Nomination Fee is no longer considered a campaign expense. Following the 2018 election, campaign deficits will not be carried forward from the previous campaign.

  • Refund of Filing Fee - In order to improve compliance with the requirement to file a financial statement, a candidate is only entitled to a refund if they file their financial statement on or before the deadline established by the Act. This would mean that before a candidate receives a refund, they must file their financial statements to the Municipal Clerk.

  • Late Filing Fee - If a candidate files a financial statement after the filing deadline pursuant to section 34 of the MEA, the candidate is automatically prohibited from being elected or appointed to any office to which the Act applies until after the next regular election is completed. No changes are proposed to the penalties; however a candidate could avoid the automatic imposition of the penalties if they were to file their financial statement within a thirty (30) day period after the deadline, accompanied with a $500 late filing fee to be paid to the Municipal Clerk.

  • Candidates’ Access to Residential Properties - In previous elections, candidates have highlighted challenges associated with campaigning in apartment buildings, condominiums, housing cooperatives and gated communities as the Act lacked language compelling managers to permit access to these facilities. The new changes address these issues by providing candidates with the right to access residential properties for campaign purposes between 9 a.m. and 9 p.m.


Guides and Information

 Guides and Information for Candidates, Third Party Advertisers and Voters

Election Policies and Procedures

Guide and Information for Candidates

Guide and Information for Third Party Advertisers

Guide and Information for Voters

Election Accessibility Plan

Alternate Vote Procedures

Guidelines for Corporate Resources during an Election Period

Sign Information for Candidates and Third Party Advertisers

Frequently Asked Questions

Help promote the election 

Help us promote the 2018 Municipal and School Board Election by spreading the word. Use the resources below to print out materials to share or to post digitally to your website or social media platform. When posting materials to social media, use the region-wide election hashtag #wrvotes.  



Forms for Candidates and Third Party Advertisers


Ward Maps


 By-laws pertaining to Election 2018
  • 191-03 - Being a By-law of the Corporation of the City of Cambridge to prohibit or regulate signs and other advertising devices or any class or classes thereof and the posting of notices on buildings or vacant lots within the City of Cambridge or on land abutting any defined highway or part of a highway
  • 120-10 - Amendment to By-law 191-03 (Prohibit and regulate signs and other advertising devices)
  • 63-17 - Being a By-law of the Corporation of the City of Cambridge to authorize the use of alternative voting methods for municipal elections
  • 162-17  - Being a By-law of the Corporation of the City of Cambridge to provide advance votes to be held prior to Voting Day for the 2018 municipal election

  • 163-17 - Being a By-law of the Corporation of the City of Cambridge to enter into Agreement with Dominion Voting for the use of optical scanning vote tabulators for the purpose of counting votes at the 2018 municipal election and the use of internet and telephone voting as an alternative method in the 2018 municipal election

  • 181-17 - Being a By-law of the Corporation of the City of Cambridge to provide for early voting and reduced hours of voting in institutions and retirement homes on Voting Day for the 2018 municipal election

  • 28-18 - Being a By-law of the Corporation of the City of Cambridge to submit to the electors a question pursuant to the Municipal Elections Act, 1996
  • 60-18 - Amendment to By-law 191-03 (Prohibit and regulate signs and other advertising devices)

Additional information

 For more information

Ranked Ballot Voting

Ministry of Municipal Affairs