Following the 2014 election, the Ministry of Municipal Affairs made changes to the Municipal Elections Act that are fully in effect for the election in 2018.
For detailed information about campaign spending and contribution rules, please refer to the resources listed on the Candidates Resources page.
Summary of changes to campaign finance rules:
- Corporations and trade unions cannot contribute to municipal election campaigns (candidates) for City/Regional Council and school board elections.
- A new spending limit for post-election parties and expressions of appreciation after voting day.
- A candidate who does not accept any contributions of money, or incur any expenses, is not required to open a bank account.
- If a candidate sells items for $25 or less to raise campaign funds, the money is considered campaign income rather than a contribution. In this case, the candidate does not have to issue a receipt or make sure that the person buying the item is eligible to make a campaign contribution.
- There is a 30-day grace period for candidates and third party advertisers who miss the deadline to file a financial statement and auditor’s report, provided that the candidate or third party advertiser pays a $500 late filing fee to the municipality.
- If a candidate or third party advertiser files their financial statement before the deadline and then discovers an error, a corrected financial statement and auditor’s report can be provided up until the filing deadline.
- It is an offence to give, lend, offer, or promise someone an office or employment in order to convince a person to run for office, not to run for office, or withdraw from running for office.
- It is an offence to give, lend, offer, or promise someone money or other compensation in order to induce a person to run for office, not run for office or withdraw from running for office.