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Running for Election


Have you considered running to be a member of Riverview Town Council? Elections NB offers information about becoming a candidate. Here’s a summary:

Information for Municipal Election or By-Election Candidates

This information is a general guide to the election process for those interested in becoming candidates in a municipal election or by-election.  If you have questions that are not answered here, contact either the Municipal Returning Officer for your area or Elections NB in Fredericton, at 1-888-858-VOTE (8683), or the Elections New Brunswick website at

For information on the role of municipal councils, contact your local municipal office, or the Capacity Building Branch of the Department of Environment and Local Government, at 506-453-2690, or their website at

Who Can Be a Candidate

(Section references here refer to the Municipal Elections Act when dealing with a particular matter):

Who Can Be a Candidate? (Section 18)

General Requirements:  To be a candidate in a municipal election or by-election, a person must be:

  • 18 years of age on or before election day;
  • a Canadian citizen;
  • a resident of the province and the municipality for at least 6 months before election day; and
  • In a municipality that is divided into wards for election purposes, a person is not qualified to be nominated as a candidate for councillor for a ward unless he is a resident of that ward when he is nominated.

People Who Cannot Be Candidates:  A municipal official or a full-time employee of a municipality cannot be a candidate in that municipality or community. A judge, an election officer, or a person who has been disqualified for municipal office under federal, provincial, or municipal election laws, may not be a candidate anywhere.

People Who May Not Be Able To Be Candidates:  Some public sector employees are restricted from engaging in political activity, even at a local level, or may need prior approval from their employer before filing nomination papers. If you work in the federal or provincial public service, check with your employer before filing nomination papers. It is the responsibility of a candidate to obtain any approval required by his or her employer; the Municipal Returning Officer will not require or confirm such approval in processing nomination papers.

Federal Public Service Employees (this information is provided by the Public Service Commission of Canada):

Are you a federal public servant thinking of being a candidate in a municipal election? In most federal public service organizations, an employee may seek nomination as, or be, a candidate in a municipal or provincial election before or during the election period, only if the employee has obtained permission from the Public Service Commission of Canada (PSC) to do so. This means that until a federal employee has obtained permission from the PSC, no declaration of candidacy or candidacy-related activities may be undertaken. The PSC may grant permission, with or without conditions, only if it is satisfied that seeking nomination as, or being, a candidate will not impair or be perceived as impairing the employee’s ability to perform his duties in a politically impartial manner. Before engaging in any non-candidacy political activity, an employee should assess his own circumstances. The PSC also encourages employees to consult their manager or their organization’s designated political activities representative. A list of the designated political activities representatives for organizations subject to these rules and other information on Political Activities are available at under the "Political Activity" section. You can also contact the PSC at 1-866-707-7152, or

New Brunswick Public Service Employees:

Other than the restrictions mentioned above on municipal employees running for office in the municipality in which they work, there is no general restriction on New Brunswick public service employees running for municipal offices.  However, it may be considered inappropriate or create a significant conflict of interest for some positions. If you work in the public sector and are interested in running for local office, consult senior management in your department or agency before filing nomination papers.

Nomination Papers (Section 17)

Nomination papers can be obtained from any Municipal Returning Office, or can be printed from the Elections NB website.

Nomination papers must be completed and returned to the office of the Municipal Returning Officer for the municipality where the person will be a candidate (not your local municipal offices) before the day fixed for the close of nominations.

Nominations close at 2:00 p.m. as follows:

  • for municipal general elections, on the Friday, the thirty-first day before polling day.  If this day is on a holiday, nominations will close on the Thursday, the thirty-second day before polling day; or
  • for a municipal by-election, on the Friday, the twenty-fourth day before polling day.  If this day is on a holiday, nominations will close on the Thursday, the twenty-fifth day before polling day.

Do not leave filing to the last minute, in case corrections or additions are needed in your papers, as no nomination papers can be accepted after the deadline under any circumstances.

Contents of Nomination:  The Nomination Paper must be filled out completely, and must include:

  • the name, civic address, and occupation of the candidate;
  • the office for which the candidate is offering;
  • the candidate’s certification of his or her name, civic address, and occupation and address for service as shown on the nomination paper is correct as stated;
  • The candidate’s certification that he or she:
    • is a Canadian citizen;
    • will be eighteen years of age or more as of the day of the election;
    • will have been ordinarily resident in the municipality for at least six months immediately before the election; and
    • expects to be ordinarily resident in the Province and in the municipality on election day, and if a candidate for a councillor in a ward, is resident of that ward when he or she is nominated;
  • the consent of the candidate, with the signature of the person witnessing the consent of the candidate;
  • the signatures of at least ten (10) nominators, who are all qualified voters living in the municipality and ward if applicable, of the candidate; and
  • a completed declaration of the witness who obtains the nominators’ signatures.

Witness and Nominators:  Each signature must be witnessed and the witness cannot be a nominator unless another person witnesses him or her. The candidate may collect and witness nominator signatures, but may not nominate himself or herself. Each witness who collects signatures must complete a separate declaration.  Relatives of a candidate may be nominators if they are qualified voters.  The returning officer will check the list of nominators on the list of electors to determine if they are qualified to vote in your area.  If a nominator has moved recently, ask them to call the returning office to update their information so that they are listed at their current address.

Candidate’s Name:  The name of a candidate will appear on the ballot as it is spelled on the Nomination Paper.  No prefixes (e.g., Mr, Mrs, Dr) are used on the ballots.  A nickname is permitted if it is in brackets and is printed on the Nomination Paper as the candidate wishes it to appear on the ballot.

Acceptance of Nomination:  Once it has been checked for completeness, the Municipal Returning Officer will sign or initial the nomination paper of a candidate to indicate that the nomination is accepted.

After Nomination:

Withdrawal of a Candidate (Subsection 17(4)):  After nomination, a candidate who decides not to run may withdraw his or her nomination at any time not later than 5:00 p.m. on the third day after nomination day.  A person withdraws by giving the Municipal Returning Officer a written statement that they are withdrawing as a candidate, signed by the candidate and two witnesses who are qualified voters in the municipality.

Death of a Candidate (Subsection 17(5)):  If a candidate dies after the close of nominations and before the closing of the polls on election day, the Municipal Electoral Officer for the Province will countermand the election for the affected office, and fix new dates for the nomination of candidates and a postponed election. The new election day will be not more than three months after the original election date.  Candidates already nominated do not need to resubmit nomination papers, but additional candidates may be nominated.  If the candidate who died was a candidate for a ward, the countermand and postponed election will apply only for that ward.

Acclamations (Subsection 17(4.1)):  If no more candidates than can be elected to an office are nominated, those candidates are elected by acclamation, and no polls are held for that office.

Contested Elections (Subsection 19(2)): If more candidates than can be elected to an office are nominated, polls will be held to elect candidates for that office.

Election Advertising and Campaigning (Sections 31.2, 54 and 55)

There are no restrictions on how much money candidates for municipal elections may spend on campaigning, and no requirements for filing any statements of donations received or money spent.

However, there are some restrictions on campaign activity:

Black Out Period:  After midnight of the Saturday night before the election until after the polls are closed on polling day, no election speeches, entertainment, or advertising may be:

  • broadcast by any radio or television station (in or outside Canada);
  • published in any newspaper, magazine or similar print media; or
  • transmitted by any means to any telephones, telecopiers, computers, or other communication devices capable of receiving unsolicited communications;  

in favour of or on behalf of any candidate.  However, this does not prohibit a bona fide news broadcast or news publication referring to or commenting upon a speech or containing any excerpts from a speech.

Election Day:  On election day no advertising or campaigning of any kind may be done on or from any moving motor vehicle.  In addition, there may be no advertising or campaign material of any kind placed within thirty metres (100 feet) of any premises in which a polling station is located.  “Polling station” means a building, or a portion of a building, secured by a municipal returning officer for the taking of the votes of electors on the ordinary polling day or an advance polling day. Candidates and one appointed scrutineer per polling station - but not their other agents, representatives or family members -- are allowed to be in any poll at any time on any polling day (ordinary or advance), as long as they do not engage in any kind of campaigning or interfere with voters or the polling process.

Advance Poll Days:  There may be no advertising or campaign material within thirty metres (100 feet) of the premises in which an advance poll is being held.  In addition, any advertising or campaigning using loudspeakers from a motor vehicle must not be able to be heard within thirty metres of the premises where an advance poll is being held.

Printed Advertising:  All election signs, posters, handbills or other printed materials must include the name and address of the printer and publisher on the face of the document. It is an offence to not include this information.

Placement of Election Signs:  The Department of Transportation controls where or if signs may be placed on highway rights-of-way.  Under the Highway Advertisements Regulation-Highway Act, election signs are not permitted on Level I and Level II access controlled highways (four-lane or two-lane).  However, they are permitted within the highway right-of-way of other highways.  In the interest of safety, any signs that are attached to a DOT sign, guard rail or bridge, installed within the median, or installed such that they reduce sight lines or visibility, will be removed immediately.

Municipalities may also have sign by-laws that control where or when election signs may be placed.

Aliant and NB Power ask candidates not to use utility poles to post campaign signs. While the practice may seem harmless, there are some potential safety concerns to be made aware of:

  • The signs themselves present a safety hazard for employees who must climb poles to complete their work.
  • The metal staples or clamps used to put up the signs often remain in the poles long after the election is over. These items could cause an employee to lose his or her footing while climbing. This could also be a hazard for the general public who may happen to brush the pole while walking by.
  • These staples or clamps will cause a pole to degrade faster than it should, therefore making them more susceptible to damage, required maintenance or possibly replacement.

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PLEASE NOTE: Candidates are prohibited from displaying - on any election sign - a logo, trademark or official mark, in whole or in part, owned or licensed by the Town of Riverview.