If you want to vote in Monday’s federal election and haven’t already done so in the advance polls, there’s only one way to do it now.
Show up at your assigned polling station with a valid piece of identification that shows your address between the hours of 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. on Monday.
Most registered voters will have already received voter identification card in the mail which will direct you where to go. Polling stations correspond to postal codes and you must go to your designated station. That’s to avoid the possibility of voters filling out ballots more than once.
To find out where to vote, go to the Elections Canada website at www.elections.ca. After clicking on the Where To Vote box, the site will ask you to input your postal code or street address. Once you do that, the correct polling station address will appear.
For voters who do not have a computer, Elections Canada returning offices can be reached by phone and staff will direct you to the correct polling station. The returning office can also find out if you are a registered voter. If not, that can be done at the polling station, provided the proper government-issued identification is shown.
In Cariboo-Prince George, the number to call is 1-866-499-8023.
In Prince George-Peace River-Northern Rockies, call 1-866-546-7616.
“Call the offices and they will tell you exactly where to go, should you not have a voter identification card,” said Cariboo-Prince George returning officer Lorraine Grant. “If you’re not on the voters’ list then, of course, you need to register first and you can do that while you’re voting.”
To register to vote you must be a Canadian citizen, be at least 18-years of age on election day and prove your identity and address.
Unlike the provincial election in May, there is no curbside voting in the federal election for handicapped voters or people with mobility issues. In the provincial election, a team would bring out a ballot box right to the person’s vehicle, but that service is not available on Monday.
“Federally, it’s a no-no, and that came through on our paperwork,” said Prince George-Peace River-Northern Rockies returning officer Linda Smerychynski. “So if they have a problem with that type of voting they should talk to whoever gets elected because it’s too late to call Ottawa about it.”
Smerychynski said voters living near the boundary lines that divide the two electoral districts in Prince George can get confused and it’s important to know which riding they live in. Prince George-Peace River Northern Rockies includes the downtown area and residential neighbourhoods east of Highway 97 and north of 15th Avenue, as well the area north of the Nechako River. The riding also includes Pineview, Ferndale, Willow River and Salmon Valley.
The rest of Prince George is in Cariboo-Prince George.
In Prince George and the surrounding rural communities there are eight Prince George-Peace River-Northern Rockies polling stations, while in Cariboo-Prince George there are 10 places to vote in close proximity to the city.
Buses in Prince George and other communities around the province will be free on Monday. The fares have been waived to help make it easier for residents to get to the polls to cast their ballots. The free rides also include the handy dart service.
In Prince George-Cariboo, six candidates are on the ballot. The list includes incumbent Todd Doherty, Conservative; Garth Frizzell, Liberal; Jeremy Gustafson, People’s Party of Canada; Leigh Hunsinger-Chang, Green Party; Audrey McKinnon, New Democrat Party; and Henry Thiessen, Christian Heritage Party.
In Prince George-Peace River-Northern Rockies, there are seven candidates, including incumbent Bob Zimmer, Conservative; Ryan Dyck, People’s Party of Canada; Phil Hewkin, Canada’s Fourth Front; David Jeffers, Maverick Party; Catharine Kendall, Green Party; and Cory Longley, New Democratic Party.
- With files from the Citizen