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Second Session, Thirty-Ninth Legislature

This version is based on the printed bill that was distributed in the Legislature after First Reading.   It is not the official version.   If accuracy is critical, you can obtain a copy of the printed bill from Statutory Publications or view the online bilingual version (PDF).

Bill 37

THE LOBBYISTS REGISTRATION ACT AND AMENDMENTS TO THE ELECTIONS ACT, THE ELECTIONS FINANCES ACT, THE LEGISLATIVE ASSEMBLY ACT AND THE LEGISLATIVE ASSEMBLY MANAGEMENT COMMISSION ACT


Table of Contents Explanatory Note

(Assented to                                         )

HER MAJESTY, by and with the advice and consent of the Legislative Assembly of Manitoba, enacts as follows:

Lobbyists Registration Act

1            The Lobbyists Registration Act set out in Schedule A is hereby enacted.

Elections Amendment Act

2           The Elections Amendment Act set out in Schedule B is hereby enacted.

Elections Finances Amendment Act

3           The Elections Finances Amendment Act set out in Schedule C is hereby enacted.

Legislative Assembly Amendment Act

4           The Legislative Assembly Amendment Act set out in Schedule D is hereby enacted.

Legislative Assembly Management Commission Amendment Act

5           The Legislative Assembly Management Commission Amendment Act set out in Schedule E is hereby enacted.

Coming into force

6(1)        Subject to subsection (2), this Act comes into force on the day it receives royal assent.

Coming into force of Schedules

6(2)        The Schedules to this Act come into force as provided in the coming into force section at the end of each Schedule.

SCHEDULE A

THE LOBBYISTS REGISTRATION ACT

TABLE OF CONTENTS

Section

1   Definitions

2   Purpose of this Act

3   Non-application of this Act

4   Filing a return: consultant lobbyist

5   Filing a return: in-house lobbyist

6   Content of return

7   Certification of return

8   Filing documents electronically

9   Documents as evidence

10  No lobbying by person paid by government to advise

11  Registrar

12  Registry

13  Registrar may verify information

14  Registrar may refuse to accept return

15  Registrar may remove return

16  Delegation

17  Advisory opinions and interpretation bulletins

18  Offence and penalty

19  Regulations

20  C.C.S.M. reference

21  Coming into force

THE LOBBYISTS REGISTRATION ACT

DEFINITIONS

Definitions

1(1)        The following definitions apply in this Act.

"client" means a person or organization on whose behalf a consultant lobbyist undertakes to lobby. (« client »)

"consultant lobbyist" means an individual who, for remuneration or other benefit, undertakes to lobby on behalf of a client. (« lobbyiste-conseil »)

"government agency" means a government agency as defined in The Financial Administration Act. (« organisme gouvernemental »)

"in-house lobbyist" means, subject to subsection (2), an employee, partner or sole proprietor of an organization who lobbies or has a duty to lobby

(a) on behalf of the organization; or

(b) if the organization is a corporation, on behalf of any corporation that controls it or is controlled by it. (« lobbyiste salarié »)

"lobby" means,

(a) in relation to either a consultant lobbyist or an in-house lobbyist, to communicate with a public official in an attempt to influence

(i) the development of a legislative proposal by the government of Manitoba or by a member of the Legislative Assembly,

(ii) the introduction of a bill or resolution in the Legislative Assembly or the amendment, passage or defeat of a bill or resolution that is before the Legislative Assembly,

(iii) the making or amendment of a regulation as defined in The Regulations Act,

(iv) the development, amendment or termination of a program or policy of the government of Manitoba or a government agency, or

(v) the awarding of a grant, contribution or other financial benefit by or on behalf of the Crown; and

(b) in relation only to a consultant lobbyist,

(i) to arrange a meeting between a public official and another person, or

(ii) to communicate with a public official in an attempt to influence the awarding of a contract by or on behalf of the Crown. (« lobbyisme »)

"organization" means any of the following, whether incorporated, unincorporated, a partnership or a sole proprietorship:

(a) a business, trade, industry, professional or voluntary organization;

(b) a union or labour organization;

(c) a chamber of commerce or board of trade;

(d) an association, a charitable or non-profit organization, a society, a coalition or an interest group;

(e) a government other than the government of Manitoba. (« organisation »)

"public official" means

(a) a member of the Legislative Assembly and any person on the member's staff;

(b) an employee of the government of Manitoba;

(c) a person who is appointed to an office or body by or with the approval of the Lieutenant Governor in Council or a minister of the government, other than

(i) a judge or a justice of the peace, or

(ii) a person appointed on the recommendation of the Legislative Assembly or a committee of the Legislative Assembly; and

(d) an officer, director or employee of a government agency. (« titulaire d'une charge publique »)

"registrar" means the person appointed as registrar under section 11. (« registraire »)

"senior officer", in relation to an organization, means the most senior officer of the organization who is compensated for performing his or her duties. (« cadre dirigeant »)

"undertaking" means an undertaking by a consultant lobbyist to lobby on behalf of a client. (« engagement »)

Lobbying must constitute significant part of duties

1(2)         An individual is an in-house lobbyist only if

(a) the individual's lobbying or duty to lobby constitutes a significant part of his or her activities as an employee or partner or sole proprietor, determined in accordance with the regulations; or

(b) the individual's lobbying or duty to lobby, together with the lobbying or duty to lobby of

(i) other employees of the organization, or

(ii) if applicable, the partners or the sole proprietor of the organization,

would, if performed by one employee, constitute a significant part of his or her activities as an employee, determined in accordance with the regulations.

Officer as in-house lobbyist

1(3)        An officer or director who is compensated for performing his or her duties is considered to be an employee for the purpose of the definition "in-house lobbyist".

PURPOSE

Purpose of this Act

2           The purpose of this Act is to recognize that

(a) free and open access to government is an important matter of public interest;

(b) lobbying public officials is a legitimate activity when appropriately conducted;

(c) it is desirable that public officials and the public be able to know who is attempting to influence government; and

(d) a system for registering paid lobbyists should not impede access to government.

NON-APPLICATION OF THIS ACT

Non-application of this Act

3(1)        This Act does not apply to any of the following persons when acting in their official capacity:

(a) members of the House of Commons or Senate of Canada or persons on their staff;

(b) members of the Legislative Assembly of another province or territory or persons on their staff;

(c) employees in the civil service of the province;

(d) employees of the Government of Canada or the government of another province or territory;

(e) officers, directors or employees of a charitable or not-for-profit organization, unless the organization

(i) is constituted to serve management, union or professional interests, or

(ii) has a majority of members that are for-profit organizations or representatives of for-profit organizations;

(f) members of a municipal council, school board or other local government body, or persons on their staff, or officers or employees of a municipality, school board or other local government body;

(g) officers or employees of bodies representing municipal councils, school boards or other local government bodies;

(h) officers, directors or employees of an organization that represents governmental interests of a group of aboriginal people, including

(i) the council of a band as defined in the Indian Act (Canada), and

(ii) an organization representing one or more bands;

(i) diplomatic agents, consular officers or official representatives in Canada of a foreign government;

(j) officials of a specialized agency of the United Nations in Canada or officials of any other international organization to whom privileges and immunities are granted by or under an Act of the Parliament of Canada;

(k) any other person or class of persons specified in the regulations.

Act does not apply to certain submissions

3(2)        This Act does not apply in respect of an oral or written submission made as follows:

(a) made in proceedings that are a matter of public record to a committee of the Legislative Assembly or to a body or person having jurisdiction or powers conferred by or under an Act;

(b) made to a public official by an individual on behalf of a person or organization, concerning

(i) the enforcement, interpretation or application of an Act or regulation by the public official with respect to the person or organization, or

(ii) the implementation or administration of a program, policy, directive or guideline by the public official with respect to the person or organization;

(c) made to a public official by an individual on behalf of a person or organization, in direct response to a written request from a public official for advice or comment on a matter;

(d) made to a member of the Legislative Assembly by or on behalf of a constituent of the member respecting a personal matter of the constituent;

(e) made to a public official by a union relating to

(i) the administration or negotiation of a collective agreement with the government or a government agency, or

(ii) the representation of a member or former member of a bargaining unit who is or was employed by the government or a government agency.

Disclosure not required if threat to safety

3(3)        This Act does not require identifying information about a person to be disclosed if the registrar is satisfied that disclosure could reasonably be expected to threaten the person's safety.

WHEN RETURNS MUST BE FILED

When return must be filed: consultant lobbyist

4(1)        A consultant lobbyist must file a return with the registrar within 10 days after entering into an undertaking to lobby on behalf of a client.

Only one return

4(2)        A consultant lobbyist need file only one return under subsection (1) for each undertaking even though he or she, in connection with the undertaking,

(a) communicates with more than one public official on more than one occasion; or

(b) arranges more than one meeting between a public official and any other person.

Transitional

4(3)        If a consultant lobbyist is performing an undertaking when this section comes into force, he or she must file a return within 30 days after this section comes into force.

When return must be filed: in-house lobbyist

5(1)        The senior officer of an organization that has an in-house lobbyist must file a return with the registrar

(a) within two months after the date on which an individual in that organization becomes an in-house lobbyist; and

(b) within two months after the end of each six-month period after the date of filing the previous return.

Transitional

5(2)        If an organization has an in-house lobbyist when this Act comes into force, the senior officer of the organization must file a return within two months after this section comes into force, and after that in accordance with clause (1)(b).

CONTENT OF A RETURN

Content of return

6(1)         A return under this Act must be in a form acceptable to the registrar and must include the following information:

1.  The name and business address of the consultant lobbyist or senior officer required to file the return.

2.  If the return is filed by a consultant lobbyist,

(a) the name and business address of the firm, if any, where the consultant lobbyist is engaged in business;

(b) the name and business address of the client and of each person or organization that, to the consultant lobbyist's knowledge, controls or directs the client's activities and has a direct interest in the outcome of the consultant lobbyist's activities on the client's behalf;

(c) the date the consultant lobbyist entered into the undertaking; and

(d) the name of any government or government agency that funds or partly funds the client, and the amount of the funding.

3.  If the return is filed by the senior officer of an organization,

(a) the name and business address of the organization;

(b) a brief description of the organization's business or activities, and any other information required by the registrar to identify its business or activities;

(c) a general description of the membership of the organization, the name of each of its officers and, if the organization is a corporation, the name of each of its directors;

(d) if the organization is a corporation, the name and business address of each corporation controlled by it that, to the knowledge of the senior officer, has a direct interest in the outcome of the lobbying on the organization's behalf;

(e) if the organization is a corporation, the name and business address of each other corporation that controls it;

(f) the name of each in-house lobbyist in the organization; and

(g) the name of any government or government agency that funds or partly funds the organization and the amount of the funding.

4.  Particulars to identify the subject matter about which

(a) the consultant lobbyist named in the return has undertaken to lobby; or

(b) each in-house lobbyist named in the return has lobbied or expects to lobby during the relevant period.

5.  Particulars to identify any relevant legislative proposal, bill, resolution, regulation, program, policy, contract or financial benefit.

6.  A statement as to whether the consultant lobbyist or in-house lobbyist has lobbied or expects to lobby a member of the Legislative Assembly in his or her capacity as a member, or a person on the staff of a member of the Legislative Assembly.

7.  The name of any department of the government of Manitoba or any government agency in which a public official is employed or serves whom the consultant lobbyist or an in-house lobbyist has lobbied or expects to lobby during the relevant period, and the name of the public official or officials.

8.  Any other information prescribed in the regulations respecting the identity of the consultant lobbyist, a client, an in-house lobbyist, the employer of an in-house lobbyist or the senior officer of an organization, or a department or government agency referred to in item 7.

Other information

6(2)        A person who files a return must give the registrar the following information within the applicable period:

(a) particulars of any change to the information in the return, within 30 days after the change occurs;

(b) any information required to be supplied under subsection (1) but which the person did not know about until after the return was filed, within 30 days after the knowledge is acquired;

(c) any information requested by the registrar to clarify any information supplied by the person under this section, within 30 days after the request is made.

Completion of undertaking

6(3)        Within 30 days after an undertaking for which a return was filed is completed or terminated, the consultant lobbyist who filed the return must inform the registrar that the undertaking has been completed or terminated.

When in-house lobbyist ceases to act

6(4)        Within 30 days after an in-house lobbyist named in a return ceases to act as an in-house lobbyist or ceases to be an employee of the organization, the senior officer of the organization must inform the registrar of the event.

Form of return

6(5)        A return or other information required under this section must be supplied to the registrar in a form and manner acceptable to the registrar.

Definition

6(6)        In this section, "relevant period" means,

(a) for a return filed by a consultant lobbyist, the period beginning on the date of entering into the undertaking for which the return was filed and ending on the date the undertaking is completed or terminated; and

(b) for a return filed by the senior officer of an organization that has an in-house lobbyist, the financial year of the organization in which the return is filed or, if the organization does not have a financial year, the calendar year in which the return is filed.

CERTIFICATION

Certification of returns or documents

7           A person who files a return or other document with the registrar must certify that the information contained in it is true to the best of the person's knowledge and belief

(a) on the return or document itself; or

(b) if it is filed electronically or in another form under section 8, in the manner specified by the registrar.

DOCUMENTS AND EVIDENCE

Filing documents electronically or in other form

8(1)        Subject to the regulations, a return or other document that is required to be filed with the registrar under this Act may be filed electronically or in another form, in a manner specified by the registrar.

Time of receipt

8(2)        When a return or other document is filed electronically, it is deemed to be received by the registrar at the time determined in accordance with the regulations.

Use of documents as evidence

9           In a prosecution for an offence under this Act, a copy of a return or other document that is filed under this Act and certified by the registrar as a true copy

(a) is admissible in evidence without proof of the appointment or signature of the person appearing to have signed the copy; and

(b) has, in the absence of evidence to the contrary, the same evidentiary value as the original would have if it were proved in the ordinary way.

CERTAIN CONTRACTS PROHIBITED

No lobbying if person also paid for advice

10(1)       A person must not act as a consultant lobbyist or an in-house lobbyist on a subject matter if he or she holds a contract for providing paid advice on the same subject matter.

No contract if person also lobbying

10(2)       A person must not enter into a contract for providing paid advice on a subject matter if he or she acts as a consultant lobbyist or an in-house lobbyist on the same subject matter.

Interpretation

10(3)       In this section, "contract for providing paid advice" means an agreement or other arrangement under which a person directly or indirectly receives or is to receive payment for providing advice to the government or a government agency.

REGISTRY

Registrar

11          The Lieutenant Governor in Council must appoint a registrar for the purpose of this Act.

Registry

12(1)       The registrar must establish and maintain a registry of lobbyists in which a record of all returns and other documents filed with the registrar under this Act are to be kept.

Form of registry

12(2)       The registry is to be organized and kept in the form that the registrar determines.

Public access to registry

12(3)       The registry must be available for public inspection in the manner and at the times the registrar determines.

Internet access

12(4)       The registrar may make the registry available electronically, including through the Internet.

Registrar may verify information

13          The registrar may verify the information contained in a return or other document filed under this Act.

Registrar may refuse to accept a return

14(1)       The registrar may refuse to accept a return or other document that does not comply with this Act or the regulations, or that contains information not required to be supplied or disclosed.

Extending the time to file

14(2)       If the registrar refuses to accept a return or other document, the registrar must

(a) inform the person who filed it of the refusal and the reason; and

(b) allow a reasonable extension of the time set under this Act for filing the return or document, if it is not reasonable to expect the person to be able to file another return or document within the set time.

Deemed filing date

14(3)       When the registrar accepts another return or document within the extended time referred to in clause (2)(b), the return or document is deemed to have been filed on the day the registrar received the one that was refused.

Registrar may remove return

15(1)       The registrar may remove a return from the registry if the person who filed it

(a) does not comply with clause 6(2)(c) (duty to provide clarifying information); or

(b) fails to give the registrar any requested information relating to the return within the period specified by this Act.

Effect of removal

15(2)       If the registrar removes a return from the registry,

(a) the registrar must inform the person who filed the return of its removal and the reason; and

(b) the person is deemed, for the purpose of his or her obligations under this Act, not to have filed the return.

Delegation of registrar's powers and duties

16          The registrar may delegate any of his or her powers or duties under this Act to a person employed in the registrar's office.

Advisory opinions and interpretation bulletins

17          The registrar may issue advisory opinions and interpretation bulletins about the interpretation, application or enforcement of this Act or the regulations.

OFFENCES

Offence and penalty

18(1)       A person who contravenes a provision of this Act commits an offence.

False or misleading information

18(2)       A person who supplies false or misleading information in a return or other document filed with the registrar under this Act commits an offence.

If person had no knowledge

18(3)       A person does not commit an offence under subsection (2) if, at the time the information was supplied, the person did not know that it was false or misleading and, with the exercise of reasonable diligence, could not have known that it was false or misleading.

Fine

18(4)       A person who commits an offence under subsection (1) or (2) is liable to a fine of not more than $25,000.

Prosecution within two years

18(5)       A prosecution under this Act may be commenced not later than two years after the commission of the alleged offence.

REGULATIONS

Regulations

19          The Lieutenant Governor in Council may make regulations

(a) for the purpose of subsection 1(2), respecting the determination of when an individual's lobbying activities or duty to lobby constitute a significant part of his or her activities;

(b) for the purpose of clause 3(1)(k), specifying persons or classes of persons to whom this Act does not apply;

(c) prescribing information for the purpose of item 8 of subsection 6(1);

(d) requiring fees to be paid when filing a return, or for any service performed or the use of any facility provided by the registrar, and prescribing the fees or the manner of determining them;

(e) respecting generally the establishment and operation of the registry;

(f) respecting the filing of returns and other documents with the registrar, including those that may be filed electronically or in another form under subsection 8(1), and the time at which they are deemed to be received by the registrar;

(g) respecting any other matter the Lieutenant Governor in Council considers necessary or advisable for the purpose of this Act.

C.C.S.M. REFERENCE AND COMING INTO FORCE

C.C.S.M. reference

20          This Act may be referred to as chapter L178 of the Continuing Consolidation of the Statutes of Manitoba.

Coming into force

21          This Act comes into force on a day to be fixed by proclamation.

SCHEDULE B

THE ELECTIONS AMENDMENT ACT

C.C.S.M. c. E30 amended

1           The Elections Act is amended by this Act.

2           Section 1 is amended by adding the following definition:

"fixed date election" means a general election held on a fixed date under section 49.1. (« élections à date fixe »)

3           Subsection 17(1) is replaced with the following:

When leave can begin

17(1)       A leave must not begin

(a) in the case of a fixed date election,

(i) until 75 days before election day, for a returning officer, assistant returning officer or enumerator,

(ii) until 40 days before election day, for a revising officer or revising agent, or

(iii) until the election is called, for a candidate or election volunteer, or for an election official other than a returning officer, assistant returning officer, revising officer or revising agent; or

(b) in the case of any other election, until the election is called.

4           Section 40 is repealed.

5(1)        Clause 49(1)(c) is replaced with the following:

(c) sets as election day a Tuesday

(i) that is at least 28 days but not more than 35 days after the date the writ is issued, in the case of a fixed date election, or

(ii) that is at least 32 days but not more than 39 days after the writ is issued, in the case of any other election.

5(2)        The following is added after subsection 49(2):

General election cancels by-election

49(3)       If a general election is called before election day for a by-election that is in progress, the by-election is cancelled and the election for that electoral division is to take place as part of the general election.

6           The following is added after section 49:

Powers of Lieutenant Governor preserved

49.1(1)      Nothing in this section affects the powers of the Lieutenant Governor, including the power to dissolve the Legislature at the Lieutenant Governor's discretion.

General election on second Tuesday in June

49.1(2)     Subject to subsection (1) and section 51.1,

(a) a general election must be held on Tuesday, June 14, 2011, unless a general election has been held between the coming into force of this section and June 13, 2011; and

(b) thereafter, a general election must be held on the second Tuesday in June in the fourth calendar year after election day for the last general election.

7           Subsection 51(1) is amended by replacing item 2 with the following:

2.  The deadline for receiving nominations, which is

(a) 1:00 p.m. on the Tuesday that is 21 days before election day, in the case of a fixed date election; or

(b) 1:00 p.m. on the Monday that is 15 days before election day, in the case of any other election.

8           The following is added before section 52 and after the section heading "POSTPONING AN ELECTION":

Postponing fixed date election

51.1(1)     The Lieutenant Governor in Council must make an order postponing a fixed date election to the third Tuesday in September of the same calendar year if the executive co-ordinator of the Emergency Measures Organization makes a report to government indicating that there is a significant risk of major flooding in multiple electoral divisions that requires significant emergency response resources of the government to prevent the flood or reduce its effects.

Report must be made public

51.1(2)     The government must make a report under subsection (1) available to the public.

Deadline for postponement

51.1(3)     An order may not be made under subsection (1) if a general election has already been called under section 49.

Preliminary voters lists can be used

51.1(4)     When an order is made under subsection (1), the preliminary voters lists that have been prepared under section 74 may be used for the postponed election.

9           Section 52 is amended

(a) in the section heading, by adding "in an electoral division" at the end; and

(b) by striking out "If for any reason it is impossible" and substituting "If the chief electoral officer certifies that it is impossible for any reason".

10          Subsection 56(1) is replaced with the following:

Closing day for nominations

56(1)       The closing day for nominations is

(a) the Tuesday that is 21 days before election day, in the case of a fixed date election; or

(b) the Monday that is 15 days before election day, in the case of any other election.

11(1)       Subsection 62(2) is amended by striking out "Friday" and substituting "Tuesday".

11(2)       Subsection 62(3) is amended by striking out "32 days" and substituting "35 days".

12          The following is added before section 65 and between the centred headings "ENUMERATION" and "ENUMERATORS":

LIST OF ADDRESSES

List of addresses for every electoral division

64.1(1)     The chief electoral officer must prepare a list of addresses for every electoral division in the province to assist in conducting enumerations in electoral divisions.

Updating list of addresses

64.1(2)     The chief electoral officer may take any steps he or she considers necessary to update a list of addresses and ensure that it is as accurate as possible.

Sources of information

64.1(3)     The chief electoral officer may obtain information to prepare and update the list of addresses from any source he or she considers reliable, including the following:

(a) any department or agency of the Government of Manitoba;

(b) any municipality or local government district in Manitoba;

(c) the Chief Electoral Officer of Canada.

Obligation to provide information

64.1(4)     When the chief electoral officer requests information from an entity mentioned in clause (3)(a) or (b), the entity is required to provide the information.

Agreement

64.1(5)     The chief electoral officer may enter into an agreement with the Chief Electoral Officer of Canada

(a) to provide information from the list of addresses that will assist in preparing or updating a list of voters for a federal election; and

(b) to receive information that will assist in preparing or updating the list of addresses.

13          Section 65 is replaced with the following:

Enumeration of voters

65(1)       Except as otherwise provided in this Act, the returning officer for an electoral division must ensure that an enumeration is conducted to identify eligible voters before an election is held.

Appointment of enumerators

65(2)       The returning officer must appoint persons to conduct the enumeration. The appointments must be made

(a) no sooner than 75 days before election day, in the case of a fixed date election; and

(b) when the election is called, in the case of any other election.

14          Subsection 66(3) is amended by replacing clauses (a) and (b) with the following:

(a) at least 43 days before election day or by an earlier date specified by the returning officer, in the case of a fixed date election; or

(b) at least three days before the close of nominations or by an earlier date specified by the returning officer, in the case of any other election.

15          Section 74 is replaced with the following:

Preparing preliminary voters list

74(1)       The returning officer must prepare a preliminary voters list for each voting area in the electoral division, using information supplied by the enumerators.

Information on preliminary voters list

74(2)       The preliminary voters list must

(a) be arranged by streets, avenues or other types of roads, unless the chief electoral officer requires the list to be arranged in alphabetical order by voter surname; and

(b) assign a consecutive number to each person on the preliminary voters list and include all information that the enumerator obtained about each person.

Format of preliminary voters list

74(3)       The preliminary voters list must be prepared using a standard format and consistent wording, in accordance with written directions from the chief electoral officer.

Deadline for completing preliminary voters list

74(4)       The returning officer must complete, date and sign a preliminary voters list for each voting area in the electoral division

(a) at least 40 days before election day, in the case of a fixed date election; or

(b) at least two days before the close of nominations, in the case of any other election.

16(1)       Subsection 75(1) is replaced with the following:

Providing copies of preliminary voters list

75(1)       The returning officer must provide the chief electoral officer and each candidate in the election with a copy of the preliminary voters list.

16(2)       Subsection 75(3) is replaced with the following:

Preliminary list in electronic format

75(3)       The preliminary voters list is to be provided in electronic form. A copy of the preliminary voters list may be provided in paper form upon request.

17(1)       Subsection 76(1) is amended

(a) by striking out "The returning officer" and substituting "When the preliminary voters lists have been completed, the returning officer"; and

(b) by adding "in the election period" after "on every day".

17(2)       Subsection 76(2) is repealed.

18(1)       Subsection 77(1) is replaced with the following:

Revision period

77(1)       Applications for revision of the preliminary voters list must be considered

(a) from the day the preliminary voters list is completed until the second Thursday before election day, in the case of a fixed date election; or

(b) for four consecutive days, beginning on the Monday after the preliminary voters list is completed, in the case of any other election.

18(2)       Subsection 77(2) is amended

(a) by striking out "three week-period" and substituting "two-week period"; and

(b) by striking out ", excluding Sundays,".

18(3)       Subsection 77(3) is replaced with the following:

Place and times for revision

77(3)       The revision must be conducted in the office of the returning officer

(a) from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. on a day other than Sunday; and

(b) from 12:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. on Sunday.

19          Section 110 is amended by striking out "8:00 a.m." and substituting "7:00 a.m.".

20(1)       Subsection 125(4) is amended by striking out "Sunday" and substituting "Saturday".

20(2)       Subsection 125(5) is amended by striking out "Sunday" and substituting "Saturday".

20(3)       The following is added after subsection 125(5):

Maximum distance for advance voting

125(5.1)    When establishing advance voting stations, the returning officer for an electoral division outside of Winnipeg and Brandon must make reasonable efforts to ensure that the residents of a town, village or other population centre with more than 50 eligible voters do not have to travel more than 30 km in order to vote at an advance voting station.

21          Subsection 137(6) is amended by striking out "8:00 a.m." and substituting "7:00 a.m.".

22          Subsection 141(3) is amended by striking out "8:00 a.m." and substituting "7:00 a.m.".

23          Subsection 170(3) is amended

(a) in clause (a), by striking out "Friday" and substituting "Tuesday"; and

(b) in clause (b), by striking out "32 days" and substituting "35 days".

24          Subsection 186(7) is repealed.

25          The following is added after section 186:

Notice of investigation

186.1(1)    Before completing an investigation, the commissioner must notify any person who is a subject of the investigation that the person is being investigated and inform the person of the nature of the matter being investigated, unless the commissioner believes that doing so would compromise or impede the investigation.

Notice of results of investigation

186.1(2)    If, after completing an investigation, the commissioner decides that no further action is to be taken, he or she must notify any person who is the subject of the investigation of that decision.  If the investigation was initiated at the request of another person, the commissioner must also notify that person of the decision.

Outcome of investigation may be made public

186.1(3)    If the commissioner believes that it is in the public interest to make public the outcome of an investigation, he or she may do so, and may include in the information provided the name of the person and the nature of the matter investigated.

26          The following is added after section 187:

INJUNCTIONS

Application for injunction

187.1(1)    If the commissioner has reasonable grounds to believe that a person has committed or is likely to commit an act or omission that is contrary to this Act, the commissioner may, during an election period, after taking into account the nature and seriousness of the act or omission, the need to ensure fairness of the electoral process and the public interest, apply to the court for an injunction described in subsection (2).

Injunction

187.1(2)    If the court, on application by the commissioner under subsection (1), is satisfied that there are reasonable grounds to believe that a person has committed or is likely to commit an act or omission that is contrary to this Act, and that the nature and seriousness of the act or omission, the need to ensure fairness of the electoral process and the public interest justify the issuing of an injunction, the court may issue an injunction ordering any person named in the application to do one or both of the following:

(a) refrain from committing any act that appears to the court to be contrary to this Act;

(b) do any act that appears to the court to be required by this Act.

Notice

187.1(3)    No injunction may be issued under subsection (2) unless at least 48 hours notice is given to each person named in the application, or the urgency of the situation is such that service of notice would not be in the public interest.

COMPLIANCE AGREEMENTS

Compliance agreements

187.2(1)    If the commissioner believes on reasonable grounds that a person has committed or is likely to commit an act or omission that could constitute an offence under this Act, the commissioner may enter into a compliance agreement, aimed at ensuring compliance with this Act, with that person (in this section and sections 187.3 to 187.6 called the "contracting party").

Terms and conditions

187.2(2)    A compliance agreement may contain any terms and conditions that the commissioner considers necessary to ensure compliance with this Act.

Obligations of commissioner

187.2(3)    Before entering into a compliance agreement, the commissioner must obtain the consent of the prospective contracting party to the publication of a notice under section 187.6.

Admission of responsibility

187.2(4)    A compliance agreement may include a statement by the contracting party in which the contracting party admits responsibility for the act or omission that constitutes an offence.

Inadmissible in evidence

187.2(5)    The fact that a compliance agreement was entered into, and any statement referred to in subsection (4), is not admissible in evidence against the contracting party in any civil or criminal proceedings.

Effect of compliance agreement

187.2(6)    When a compliance agreement is entered into, any prosecution of the contracting party for an act or omission that led to the agreement is suspended and, subject to section 187.4, the commissioner may not institute or resume such a prosecution.

Renegotiation

187.2(7)    The commissioner and the contracting party may renegotiate the terms of the compliance agreement at the request of the commissioner or contracting party at any time before it is fully executed.

If agreement complied with

187.3(1)    If the commissioner is of the opinion that the compliance agreement has been complied with, the commissioner shall give a notice to that effect to the contracting party.

Effect of notice

187.3(2)    The commissioner's giving a notice under subsection (1) terminates any prosecution of the contracting party that is based on the act or omission in question and prevents the commissioner from instituting a prosecution based on that act or omission.

When prosecution may be commenced or continued

187.4(1)    If the commissioner is of the opinion that a contracting party

(a) failed to disclose all material facts when the compliance agreement was entered into; or

(b) has failed to comply with a compliance agreement;

the commissioner must give notice of the failure to the contracting party, informing the contracting party that the commissioner may commence a prosecution in respect of the original act or omission or, if such a prosecution has been instituted and suspended by virtue of subsection 187.2(6), that those proceedings may be resumed.

Time limit for beginning prosecution

187.4(2)    A prosecution commenced because of a failure by a contracting party is not subject to the time limit for commencing a prosecution under subsection 187(4), but such a prosecution must be commenced not later than five years after the day on which the commissioner became aware of the facts giving rise to the prosecution.

Dismissal of proceedings

187.5       The court must dismiss proceedings against a contracting party if it is satisfied on a balance of probabilities that the contracting party

(a) disclosed all material facts when entering into the compliance agreement; and

(b) has totally complied with the compliance agreement or, in the case of partial compliance and taking into account the contracting party's performance with respect to the agreement, is of the opinion that the proceedings would be unfair.

Publication

187.6       The commissioner must publish a notice that sets out

(a) in the case of a formal caution issued under subsection 187(2), the name of the person cautioned, a summary of the offence in question and the date the caution was issued; or

(b) in the case of a compliance agreement entered into under section 187.2, the contracting party's name, the act or omission in question and a summary of the compliance agreement.

27          The following is added after section 196:

PREPARATIONS FOR NEW ELECTORAL DIVISIONS

Actions in anticipation of new electoral divisions

196.1       In anticipation of an Act establishing a new electoral division or changing the boundaries of an existing electoral division, the following may take place before the changes made by the Act come into force:

(a) the chief electoral officer may appoint a returning officer and assistant returning officers for the new or revised electoral division;

(b) the returning officer may take any steps necessary to conduct an election in the new or revised electoral division, including

(i) hiring enumerators and conducting an enumeration,

(ii) preparing preliminary voters lists, and

(iii) conducting a revision.

28          Subsection 200(3) is amended by adding "the format and wording of voters lists and" after "including".

Coming into force

29          This Act comes into force on the day it receives royal assent.

SCHEDULE C

THE ELECTIONS FINANCES AMENDMENT ACT

C.C.S.M. c. E32 amended

1           The Elections Finances Act is amended by this Act:

2           Section 1 is amended by adding the following definition:

"fixed date election" means a general election held on a fixed date under section 49.1 of The Elections Act; (« élections à date fixe »)

3           The following is added after subsection 10.6(1):

Inflation adjustment

10.6(1.1)   At the beginning of each calendar year after 2008, the Chief Electoral Officer must adjust the amounts in subsection (1) and publish the new amounts in The Manitoba Gazette. The Chief Electoral Officer shall make the adjustment by

(a) determining the ratio between the consumer price index for Winnipeg at the beginning of the 2008 calendar year and the consumer price index for Winnipeg at the beginning of the calendar year for which the adjustment is made; and

(b) applying the ratio to the amounts in subsection (1).

4(1)        Subsection 38(3) is amended

(a) in clause (a), by striking out "$15." and substituting " $20."; and

(b) in clause (b), by striking out "$45." and substituting "$60.".

4(2)        The following is added after subsection 38(3):

Amounts increased in 2010

38(4)       Beginning January 1, 2010,

(a) the $20. amount in clause (3)(a) is increased to $25.; and

(b) the $60. amount in clause (3)(b) is increased to $75.

5(1)        Subsection 38.1(2) is amended

(a) in clause (a), by striking out "$15." and substituting " $20."; and

(b) in clause (b), by striking out "$45." and substituting "$60.".

5(2)        The following is added after subsection 38.1(2):

Amounts increased in 2010

38.1(2.1)   Beginning January 1, 2010,

(a) the $20. amount in clause (2)(a) is increased to $25.; and

(b) the $60. amount in clause (2)(b) is increased to $75.

6(1)        Section 40.1 is amended

(a) by renumbering it as subsection 40.1(1); and

(b) by striking out "$15." and substituting "$20.".

6(2)        The following is added after subsection 40.1(1):

Amount increased in 2010

40.1(2)     Beginning January 1, 2010, the $20. amount in subsection (1) is increased to $25.

7           The following is added after section 42:

Inflation adjustment — contributions, loans and allowances

42.1(1)     At the beginning of each calendar year after 2008, the Chief Electoral Officer must adjust the monetary amounts in the following provisions and publish the new amounts in The Manitoba Gazette:

(a) subsection 41(1.1) (limit on contributions by individual);

(b) subsection 41(1.1.1) (limit on contributions by individuals to leadership contestants);

(c) subsection 44.1((3.2) (maximum loan amount);

(d) subsection 55.2(1) (third party spending limit);

(e) section 70.2 (annual allowance for registered political parties).

Adjustment

42.1(2)     The Chief Electoral Officer shall make the adjustment required under subsection (1) by

(a) determining the ratio between the consumer price index for Winnipeg at the beginning of the 2008 calendar year and the consumer price index for Winnipeg at the beginning of the calendar year for which the adjustment is made; and

(b) applying the ratio to the monetary amounts in the provisions listed in subsection (1).

Rounding up of amounts

42.1(3)     A monetary amount adjusted under this section shall be rounded up to the nearest $10.

8           Section 50 is amended

(a) in clause (1)(a), by striking out "$1.40" and substituting "$1.79";

(b) in clause (1)(b), by striking out "$2.60" and substituting "$3.22";

(c) in clause (2)(a), by striking out "$0.70" and substituting "$0.92"; and

(d) in clause (2)(b), by striking out "$1.30" and substituting "$1.61".

9           Section 51 is amended

(a) in clause (1)(a), by striking out "$2.20" and substituting "$2.72";

(b) in clause (1)(b), by striking out "$3.50" and substituting "$4.33"; and

(c) in subsection (2), by striking out "$0.45" and substituting "$0.56".

10          Section 52 is amended by striking out "June 1996" wherever it appears and "June 2008" is substituted.

11(1)       Subsection 54.1(1) is replaced with the following:

Annual limit on advertising expenses

54.1(1)     The total advertising expenses incurred by a registered political party in a calendar year, outside an election period, shall not exceed

(a) $150,000., in the year of a fixed date election; or

(b) $75,000., in another year.

11(2)       Subsection 54.1(4) is amended by striking out "2001" wherever it occurs and substituting "2008".

11(3)       The following is added after subsection 54.1(5):

Expanded definition of "advertising expenses"

54.1(6)     For the purposes of this section, in the year of a fixed date election, "advertising expenses" also includes money spent or liabilities incurred, and the value of donations in kind accepted, by a registered political party in producing and distributing

(a) posters, leaflets, letters, cards, signs and banners; and

(b) any similar printed material, the purpose of which is to support or oppose, directly or indirectly, a registered political party;

but does not include

(c) material that is distributed

(i) to individuals who hold memberships in the party, or

(ii) at a conference, convention or meeting held by the party, or a constituency association or candidate of the party; or

(d) a commentary, letter to the editor or similar expression of opinion of a kind normally published without charge in a newspaper, magazine or other periodical publication.

12          Subsection 56(1) is amended by replacing everything before clause (a) with the following:

Government advertising and publications in general election

56(1)       No government department or Crown agency shall publish or advertise any information about its programs or activities in the last 60 days before polling day, and on polling day, in the case of a fixed date election, or during the election period for any other general election, unless the publication or advertisement

13          The following is added after section 66:

If by-election cancelled

66.1        For the purposes of this Act, if a by-election is cancelled because a general election has been called,

(a) polling day for the by-election is deemed to have been held on the day that the order is made calling the general election;

(b) election expenses incurred for the by-election are not included as election expenses for the general election;

(c) if a candidate in the by-election is also a candidate in the general election, the statement of the candidate under section 61 for the by-election may be filed at the same time the statement of the candidate is filed for the general election; and

(d) the statement of a registered political party under section 60 for the by-election may be filed at the same time the statement of the party is filed for the general election.

14          The following is added after subsection 69.1(4):

Deducting late fee from amounts payable

69.1(4.1)   When a person owes a late filing fee under this section, the Chief Electoral Offer may deduct the amount of the fee owing from any amount that may be payable under this Act to the person.

CEO to make late filing fees public

69.1(4.2)    The Chief Electoral Officer may make public the name of a person who is obligated to pay a late filing fee and the amount payable.

15          The following is added after section 70.1 and before the next centred heading:

ANNUAL ALLOWANCE FOR REGISTERED POLITICAL PARTIES

Statement by party

70.2(1)     When filing an audited statement under section 59, the chief financial officer of a registered political party must also file with the Chief Electoral Officer a statement specifying whether the party wishes to receive an annual allowance for the year covered by the audited statement.

Annual allowance

70.2(2)     The annual allowance is the lesser of the following amounts, as determined by the Chief Electoral Officer:

(a) subject to subsection (3), the amount equal to the product obtained by multiplying $1.25 by the number of valid votes received by each candidate endorsed by the party in the most recent general election, to a maximum of $250,000.;

(b) the total expenses paid by the party in the year, as set out by the party in its audited statement filed with the Chief Electoral Officer under section 59.

Determining maximum in year of general election

70.2(3)     For a year in which a general election is held, the amount in clause (2)(a) is to be determined in accordance with the following formula:

$1.25 × [(A × B/E) + (C × D/E)]

In this formula,

A   is the number of valid votes received by each candidate endorsed by the party in the general election;

B   is the number of days in the year after the polling day of the general election;

C   is the number of valid votes received by each candidate endorsed by the party in the preceding general election;

D   is the number of days in the year up to and including polling day of the general election;

E   is the number of days in the year.

Minimum allowance

70.2(4)      Despite subsections (2) and (3), the minimum annual allowance payable to a registered political party is

(a) $10,000., if the party is represented in Assembly by at least one member who was elected with the party's endorsement in the most recent general election; or

(b) $600., in any other case.

Indexing of amounts

70.2(5)     The monetary amounts in this section are to be indexed in the manner set out in subsection 42.1.

If allowance not used for expenses

70.3        If a registered political party that is entitled to receive an annual allowance for a year has not, in that year, paid expenses for its administration and functions that are at least equal to the amount of the allowance, the Chief Electoral Officer must deduct the difference from the party's allowance certified under section 70.4.

Certifying amount of allowances

70.4(1)     Within one month after receiving an audited statement of a registered political party under section 59 along with a request for an annual allowance, the chief electoral officer must certify the annual allowance payable and make the amount public.

Postponing certifying allowance

70.4(2)     The Chief Electoral Officer may postpone certifying a party's annual allowance if the statement filed by the party under section 59 fails to satisfy the requirements of this Act.

Allowance paid out of Consolidated Fund

70.4(3)     An annual allowance shall be paid from the Consolidated Fund without further appropriation, as soon as reasonably practicable after being certified.

16          Subsection 77.3(6) is repealed.

17          The following is added after section 77.3:

Notice of investigation

77.3.1(1)   Before completing an investigation, the commissioner must notify any person or organization who is a subject of the investigation that they are being investigated and inform them of the nature of the matter being investigated, unless the commissioner believes that doing so would compromise or impede the investigation.

Notice of results of investigation

77.3.1(2)   If, after completing an investigation, the commissioner decides that no further action is to be taken, he or she must notify any person or organization that is the subject of the investigation of that decision. If the investigation was initiated at the request of another person or organization, the commission must also notify that person or organization of the decision.

Outcome of investigation may be made public

77.3.1(3)   If the commissioner believes that it is in the public interest to make public the outcome of an investigation, he or she may do so, and may include in the information provided the name of the person and the nature of the matter investigated.

INJUNCTIONS

Application for injunction

77.3.2(1)   If the commissioner has reasonable grounds to believe that a person or organization has committed or is likely to commit an act or omission that is contrary to this Act, the commissioner may, during an election period, after taking into account the nature and seriousness of the act or omission, the need to ensure fairness of the electoral process and the public interest, apply to the Court of Queen's Bench for an injunction described in subsection (2).

Injunction

77.3.2(2)   If the court, on application by the commissioner under subsection (1), is satisfied that there are reasonable grounds to believe that a person or organization has committed or is likely to commit an act or omission that is contrary to this Act, and that the nature and seriousness of the act or omission, the need to ensure fairness of the electoral process and the public interest justify the issuing of an injunction, the court may issue an injunction ordering any person or organization named in the application to do one or both of the following:

(a) refrain from committing any act that appears to the court to be contrary to this Act;

(b) do any act that appears to the court to be required by this Act.

Notice

77.3.2(3)   No injunction may be issued under subsection (2) unless at least 48 hours notice is given to each person or organization named in the application, or the urgency of the situation is such that service of notice would not be in the public interest.

Third party

77.3.2(4)   In this section, "person" includes a third party as defined in section 55.1.

18          The following is added after section 78.1:

Advertising rates

78.2(1)     During an election period, no person shall charge a registered political party, constituency association or candidate, or an individual acting with the consent of any of them, a rate for advertising that exceeds the lowest rate the person charges anyone else for the same amount of equivalent advertising space or time during that period.

Meaning of "advertising"

78.2(2)     In subsection (1), "advertising" means advertising in any broadcast, print or electronic medium that promotes or opposes a registered political party or the election of a candidate.

19          The following is added after section 91:

COMPLIANCE AGREEMENTS

Compliance agreements

91.1(1)     If the commissioner believes on reasonable grounds that a person or organization has committed or is likely to commit an act or omission that could constitute an offence under this Act, the commissioner may enter into a compliance agreement, aimed at ensuring compliance with this Act, with that person or organization (in this section and sections 91.2 to 91.5 called the "contracting party").

Terms and conditions

91.1(2)     A compliance agreement may contain any terms and conditions that the commissioner considers necessary to ensure compliance with this Act.

Obligations of commissioner

91.1(3)     Before entering into a compliance agreement, the commissioner must obtain the consent of the prospective contracting party to the publication of a notice under section 91.5.

Admission of responsibility

91.1(4)     A compliance agreement may include a statement by the contracting party in which the contracting party admits responsibility for the act or omission that constitutes an offence.

Inadmissible in evidence

91.1(5)     The fact that a compliance agreement was entered into, and any statement referred to in subsection (4), is not admissible in evidence against the contracting party in any civil or criminal proceedings.

Effect of compliance agreement

91.1(6)     When a compliance agreement is entered into, any prosecution of the contracting party for an act or omission that led to the agreement is suspended and, subject to section 91.3, the commissioner may not institute or resume such a prosecution.

Renegotiation

91.1(7)     The commissioner and the contracting party may renegotiate the terms of the compliance agreement at the request of the commissioner or contracting party at any time before it is fully executed.

If agreement complied with

91.2(1)     If the commissioner is of the opinion that the compliance agreement has been complied with, the commissioner shall give a notice to that effect to the contracting party.

Effect of notice

91.2(2)     The commissioner's giving a notice under subsection (1) terminates any prosecution of the contracting party that is based on the act or omission in question and prevents the commissioner from instituting a prosecution based on that act or omission.

When prosecution may be commenced or continued

91.3(1)     If the commissioner is of the opinion that a contracting party

(a) failed to disclose all material facts when the compliance agreement was entered into; or

(b) has failed to comply with a compliance agreement;

the commissioner must give notice of the failure to the contracting party, informing the contracting party that the commissioner may commence a prosecution in respect of the original act or omission or, if such a prosecution has been instituted and suspended by virtue of subsection 91.1(6), that those proceedings may be resumed.

Time limit for beginning prosecution

91.3(2)     A prosecution commenced because of a failure by a contracting party is not subject to the time limit for commencing a prosecution under subsection 91(4), but such a prosecution must be commenced not later than five years after the day on which the commissioner became aware of the facts giving rise to the prosecution.

Dismissal of proceedings

91.4        A court must dismiss proceedings against a contracting party if it is satisfied on a balance of probabilities that the contracting party

(a) disclosed all material facts when entering into the compliance agreement; and

(b) has totally complied with the compliance agreement or, in the case of partial compliance and taking into account the contracting party's performance with respect to the agreement, is of the opinion that the proceedings would be unfair.

Publication

91.5        The commissioner must publish a notice that sets out

(a) in the case of a formal caution issued under subsection 91(2), the name of the person or organization cautioned, a summary of the offence in question and the date the caution was issued; or

(b) in the case of a compliance agreement entered into under section 91.1, the contracting party's name, the act or omission in question and a summary of the compliance agreement.

Amendments to unproclaimed provisions

20(1)       This section replaces provisions of The Elections Finances Amendment Act, S.M. 2000, c. 9, that are not yet in force.

20(2)       Subsection 55.4(2), as enacted by section 25, is replaced with the following:

Compliance

55.4(2)      The following shall ensure that the election communications of a third party comply with subsection (1):

(a) if the third party has a financial agent, the agent;

(b) if the third party does not have a financial agent,

(i) if the third party is an individual, the individual,

(ii) if the third party is a corporation, an officer who has signing authority for the corporation, or

(iii) if the third party is a group, the individual who is responsible for the group.

20(3)       Section 55.13, as enacted by section 25, is replaced with the following:

Guidelines

55.13       The Chief Electoral Officer shall issue guidelines to assist third parties and others in deciding whether communications are included within the definition of "election communication" in section 55.1.

Coming into force

21          This Act comes into force three months after the day it receives royal assent.

SCHEDULE D

THE LEGISLATIVE ASSEMBLY AMENDMENT ACT

C.C.S.M. c. L110 amended

1           The Legislative Assembly Act is amended by this Act.

2(1)        The following is added after subsection 52.22(4):

Privileges cease 60 days before fixed date election

52.22(4.1)  A member's mailing and printing privileges under this section cease 60 days before an election day for a general election held on a fixed date under section 49.1 of The Elections Act.

Guidelines or criteria apply

52.22(4.2)  A member's mailing and printing privileges under this section are subject to the criteria or guidelines established by the Legislative Assembly Management Commission under section 6.1 of The Legislative Assembly Management Commission Act.

2(2)        Subsection 52.22(5) is repealed.

3(1)        The following is added after subsection 52.23(3):

Limitation on use of payments

52.23(3.1)  Money received under this section must not be used to pay for

(a) advertising that appears  

(i) in newspapers, magazines or other periodicals, or on the Internet,

(ii) on radio or television, or

(ii) on billboards, buses or other property normally used for commercial advertising; or

(b) posters, leaflets, letters, cards, signs, banners or any similar printed material that is distributed;

within 60 days before an election day for a general election held on a fixed date under section 49.1 of The Elections Act.

Guidelines or criteria apply

52.23(3.2)  The use of money received under this section is subject to the criteria or guidelines established by the Legislative Assembly Management Commission under section 6.1 of The Legislative Assembly Management Commission Act.

4           The following is added after section 52.23 and before the centred heading that follows it:

Financial report about allowance received

52.23.1(1)  Each caucus or member that receives an allowance under section 52.23 must prepare and file an annual financial report about the allowance.

Form and content of report

52.23.1(2)  The annual financial report of a caucus or member under subsection (1) must, in accordance with section 6.2 of The Legislative Assembly Management Commission Act,

(a) be filed at the required time;

(b) be in the required form; and

(c) disclose the required information.

Coming into force

5           This Act comes into force on the day it receives royal assent.

SCHEDULE E

THE LEGISLATIVE ASSEMBLY MANAGEMENT COMMISSION AMENDMENT ACT

C.C.S.M. c. L114 amended

1            The Legislative Assembly Management Commission Act is amended by this Act.

2           The following is added after section 6:

Non-partisan criteria or guidelines

6.1(1)      The commission must, as soon as reasonably practicable after the coming into force of this section, establish criteria or guidelines in order to ensure that the following are not partisan:

(a) material printed, mailed or distributed electronically by a member, if the cost is

(i) paid under section 52.22 of The Legislative Assembly Act, or

(ii) paid for with money that is appropriated by the Legislature to enable the member to communicate with his or her constituents;

(b) material printed, mailed or distributed electronically by the caucus of a recognized political party or a member who does not belong to the caucus of a recognized political party, if the cost is paid for with money that is

(i) received under section 52.23 of The Legislative Assembly Act, or

(ii) appropriated by the Legislature for use by the caucus or the member;

(c) advertising in newspapers, magazines or other periodicals, on the Internet, on radio or television, or on billboards, buses or other property normally used for commercial advertising, if the cost of the advertising, including the cost of producing it, is paid for with money appropriated by the Legislature

(i) to enable a member to communicate with his or her constituents, or

(ii) that is available for use by a caucus of a recognized political party or a member who does not belong to the caucus of a recognized political party.

Interim criteria or guidelines

6.1(2)      Until criteria or guidelines are established under subsection (1), the material and advertising referred to in that subsection must be non-partisan, as that term is defined in the regulations respecting constituency allowances made under The Legislative Assembly Act.

Annual financial report of caucuses and members

6.2(1)      The commission must, as soon as reasonably practicable after the coming into force of this section, establish requirements respecting the annual financial report of a caucus and a member that received an allowance under section 52.23 of The Legislative Assembly Act.

Requirements

6.2(2)      Without limiting subsection (1), the commission may establish requirements respecting

(a) the deadline for filing an annual financial report;

(b) the form of an annual financial report;

(c) the information to be disclosed in an annual financial report; and

(d) the method the Speaker is to use to ensure that annual financial reports are made available to the public.

Speaker to ensure that reports are available

6.2(3)      As soon as reasonably practicable after filing, the Speaker must ensure that the annual financial report of a caucus and a member are made available to the public.

Mailing expense budget

6.3(1)      For the 2009-10 fiscal year and for each subsequent fiscal year, the commission must establish a mailing expense budget for members and the caucuses of the various parties to the Assembly, and allocate the budgeted amount among members and the caucuses.

Exceeding budget requires approval

6.3(2)      A member or caucus may not exceed its allocated mailing budget without the Speaker's prior approval.

Coming into force

3           This Act comes into force on the day it receives royal assent.

Explanatory Note

Schedule A — The Lobbyists Registration Act

This Schedule requires the registration of people who lobby the government, government agencies or Members of the Legislative Assembly.

Schedule B — The Elections Amendment Act

This Schedule makes amendments to The Elections Act. Fixed date elections are to be held every four years on the second Tuesday in June. A variety of changes are made to the Act to accommodate fixed date elections.

Voting will now start at 7:00 a.m. on election day. Advance voting will start on the second Saturday before election day.  Maximum travel distances for advance voting are established.

The commissioner responsible for ensuring the Act is complied with is given authority to seek injunctions, give notice of investigations and enter into compliance agreements.

Schedule C — The Elections Finances Amendment Act

Under amendments to The Elections Finances Act, registered political parties will be eligible to receive annual allowances.

The advertising expense limits for political parties outside election periods are increased and, in the year of a fixed date election, the scope of what is considered to be advertising is expanded to include posters, leaflets, letters, and similar printed material.

Election expense limits are increased, and inflation adjustments are provided for amounts that are not presently indexed.

As in The Elections Act, the commissioner responsible for ensuring the Act is complied with is given authority to seek injunctions, give notice of investigations and enter into compliance agreements.

Schedule D — The Legislative Assembly Amendment Act

Amendments to The Legislative Assembly Act restrict the mailing and printing privileges of Members before a fixed date election.

The caucuses of registered political parties and Members who receive a payment for supplies and assistance under the Act must file an annual financial report relating to the payments.

Schedule E — The Legislative Assembly Management Commission Amendment Act

This Schedule requires the Commission to make rules ensuring that materials produced or distributed at public expense by caucuses and Members are non-partisan. Similar rules are to be established for advertising by caucuses and Members.

The Commission must also establish an annual mailing expense budget for caucuses and Members.