Elections Ontario

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Elections Ontario
Élections Ontario
Elections Ontario logo yellow.png
Agency overview
Jurisdiction Provincial Elections in Ontario
Headquarters 51 Rolark Drive, Toronto, Ontario
Employees 81,792 (general election period) [1]
Agency executive
  • Greg Essensa, Chief Electoral Officer[2]
Website www.elections.on.ca

Elections Ontario (French: Élections Ontario) is an agency of the Legislative Assembly of Ontario responsible for the administration of provincial elections and referenda. The agency is led by the Chief Electoral Officer, Greg Essensa, appointed in 2008, as a non-partisan Officer of the Legislative Assembly. His predecessor was John Hollins (2001-2008). It is charged with the implementation and enforcement of the Election Act (R.S.O., c. E.6), Election Finances Act (R.S.O. 1990, c. E.7), Representation Acts (various), as well as specific portions of the Municipal Elections Act, 1996 (S.O. 1996, c. 32, Sched.), Taxpayer Protection Act, 1999 (S.O. 1999, c. 7, Sched. A), and Fluoridation Act (R.S.O. 1990, c. F.22).[3] The agency collects information about political parties, candidates, constituency association, leadership contestants, and third parties involved in Ontario politics.[4]

Mandate[edit]

Former logo of Elections Ontario

Its responsibilities include:

  • Administering the election process in general elections and by-elections
  • Maintaining the Permanent Register of Electors for Ontario (PREO)
  • Testing new voting equipment, vote-counting equipment and alternative voting methods
  • Conducting public education on the electoral process
  • Investigating and reporting apparent contraventions
  • Overseeing the registration of political parties, constituency associations, candidates, leadership contestants and third party advertisers
  • Publishing on the Internet financial statements of the people and entities governed by the Act, including the real time disclosure of political contributions
  • Reviewing financial statements to ensure compliance
  • Distributing publicly funded subsidies
  • Investigating and reporting apparent contraventions
  • Recommending reforms to the Election Act and Election Finances Act.[5]

2012 Privacy Breach[edit]

In July 2012, Chief Electoral Officer Greg Essensa announced the April disappearance of two USB flash drives holding data on 2.4 million voters in 25 Ontario ridings.[6] The data included the names, gender, birth date and address of voters.[7] The two staff members who lost the drives no longer work at Elections Ontario.[8] The Ontario Provincial Police and the Information and Privacy Commissioner of Ontario started investigations into the privacy breach described as "the largest in Ontario history".[9] Merchant Law Group filed a class action suit with the Ontario Superior Court of Justice on July 20, 2012.[10][11][12] Information and Privacy Commissioner Ann Cavoukian issued a report with recommendations on the incident on July 31, 2012.[13]

2015 Sudbury by-election bribery investigation[edit]

On February 19, 2015, Chief Electoral Officer Greg Essensa delivered a report to the Ontario legislature alleging that Premier Kathleen Wynne's chief-of-staff Patricia Sorbara and Sudbury riding organizer Gerry Lougheed Jr. had offered a job to Andrew Olivier, who intended to run to be the Liberal candidate in the by-election.[14] Ontario police investigated the allegations and laid two charges against Lougheed. Police did not lay charges against Sorbara.[15][16]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Report on the 39th Provincial General Election
  2. ^ "Contact Us". Elections Ontario. Retrieved 2011-04-05. 
  3. ^ http://www.elections.on.ca/content/dam/NGW/sitecontent/2014/reports/Strategic%20Plan%20%282013-2017%29.pdf Elections Ontario Strategic Plan 2013-2017
  4. ^ http://www.elections.on.ca/en/political-entities-in-ontario.html/ Elections Ontario Strategic Plan 2013-2017
  5. ^ http://www.elections.on.ca/content/dam/NGW/sitecontent/2014/reports/Strategic%20Plan%20%282013-2017%29.pdf Elections Ontario Strategic Plan 2013-2017
  6. ^ http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/national/elections-ontario-voter-data-goes-missing-report/article4421768/ Globe & Mail
  7. ^ http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/national/class-action-launched-against-elections-ontario-over-missing-voter-information/article4431889/ Globe & Mail
  8. ^ http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/politics/elections-ontario-warns-voters-of-privacy-breach-as-usbs-holding-personal-data-vanish/article4422723/ Globe & Mail
  9. ^ http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/politics/elections-ontario-warns-voters-of-privacy-breach-as-usbs-holding-personal-data-vanish/article4422723/
  10. ^ http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/national/class-action-launched-against-elections-ontario-over-missing-voter-information/article4431889/ Globe & Mail
  11. ^ http://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/elections-ontario-faces-class-action-over-missing-data-1.1210979 CBC News
  12. ^ http://www.merchantlaw.com/class-actions/current-class-actions/elections-ontario-class-action Merchant Law Group
  13. ^ https://www.ipc.on.ca/images/Findings/2012-07-31-Elections-Ont_1.pdf Elections Ontario's Unprecedented Privacy Breach
  14. ^ http://www.elections.on.ca/content/dam/NGW/sitecontent/2014/Media%20Releases/February%2019,%202015%20-%20Chief%20Electoral%20Officer%20report%20on%20apparent%20contraventions%20of%20Election%20Act.pdf The Chief Electoral Officer’s Report on Apparent Contraventions of the Election Act
  15. ^ https://www.thestar.com/news/queenspark/2015/09/24/criminal-charges-laid-in-sudbury-election-probe.html Toronto Star
  16. ^ http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/national/liberal-fundraiser-faces-charges-in-alleged-by-election-bribery-scandal/article26514410/ Globe & Mail

External links[edit]