ATHABASCA — The dos and don'ts of elections are important to follow to make sure your vote counts and election day election day on Oct. 18 is easier for everyone.
Do: Vote, even if a candidate in your area was acclaimed; there are still referendum questions to decide.
“Even though we have divisions where the nominees were acclaimed, we want residents to know that they have an opportunity to vote on the referendum questions at all voting stations in the county,” said Athabasca County returning officer Leah Blair.
Choose up to the maximum number of seats for town or village elections. The key words are ‘up to.’ If there are six seats, for example, but you only support three of the candidates, it is acceptable to vote for fewer than six, but you cannot vote for more than the maximum.
Bring proper ID which includes proof of address — driver’s licence, other photo ID, a bank statement, or utility bill will work.
Do not: Write in someone else's name, circle your choice, put a star beside it, or cross out the other names.
“Everything needs to be marked with X,” said Town of Athabasca returning officer Jeff Dalley.
You cannot ask election staff who they would vote for or their opinion on the referendum questions, however if you need help reading the ballots, you can get it.
“You can have a person assist you by filling out the appropriate form,” said Dalley.
Who and Where? In the Town of Athabasca and Village of Boyle, there is one location in each municipality where voters will mark their ballots, while each of the nine divisions in Athabasca County will have its own locations.
Town of Athabasca residents will mark their Xs for mayor and six councillors at the town office Oct. 18 between 10 a.m. and 8 p.m. Advance polls took place on Oct. 7.
In the mayor's race Rob Balay and Rob Woito have each put their names forward, while nine others are vying for council seats — Michael Borody, Ida Edwards, Sara Graling, Jon LeMessurier, Roger Morrill, Dave Pacholok, Loretta Prosser, Edith Yuill and Rena Zatorski.
In Boyle, voters will choose five councillors, who will then decide who will be mayor among them. Advance polls take place Oct. 14 between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. at the Boyle Municipal Centre. On election day, polls open at 10 a.m. and close at 8 p.m. Mike Antal, Sam Assaf, Colin Derko, Pat Ferguson, Shelby Kiteley, Colin Piquette and Barb Smith are all hoping to fill the five council seats. Residents from the summer villages of Bondiss and Mewatha Beach may also cast their votes in regard to the referendum questions and Senate election.
Advance polls in Athabasca County will be open again Oct. 16 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. with locations at the county office in Athabasca or at the Grassland Community Hall, however locations on Oct. 18 will differ depending on which division one lives, and will be open until 8 p.m.
Division 1: Voters will decide between Dwayne Rawson, Joe Gerlach and Buster Malcolm at Rochester Community Hall and Perryvale Community Hall
Division 2: Voters will decide between Dennis Willcott and Natasha Kapitaniuk at Colinton Community Centre and Athabasca & District Seniors Centre
Division 3: Ashtin Anderson was acclaimed. Senate and Referendum votes only at Boyle Community Centre
Division 4: Voters will decide between Brian Bahry, Brian Hall and Keith Plowman at Forfar Community Hall and Athabasca & District Seniors Centre
Division 5: Tracy Holland was acclaimed. Senate and Referendum votes only at Athabasca & District Seniors Centre
Division 6: Voters will decide between Gary Cromwell and Jack Dowhaluk at Wandering River Seniors Drop-In Centre and Grassland Community Hall
Division 7: Voters will decide between Travais Johnson, Kelly Chamzuk and Donnie Kravontka at Grassland Community Hall
Division 8: Voters will decide between Ryan Breckenridge, Kendra Gilbert, Chet Gilmore and Rob Minns at Grosmont Community Hall and Athabasca & District Seniors Centre
Division 9: Camille Wallach was acclaimed. Senate and Referendum votes only at Richmond Park Hall