Municipal elections are governed by local election legislation that is distinct from provincial election legislation. While provincial election agencies may play a role in the administration of municipal elections, this is often done in tandem with several agencies and organizations. For example, here is a chart from Elections BC on “who does what:”
Municipalities appoint an official to oversee their election. This official is usually called the senior election official and they are responsible for the creation and maintenance of their municipality’s voters list.
Municipalities may create their own registers of electors and/or voters lists and they have the option to use the federal and provincial/territorial register of electors to supplement their own. Information from their lists may also supplement provincial and federal lists. The framework around access to and use of your personal information from their registers of electors is similar to the provincial framework. Personal information from the municipal register of electors may be shared with candidates for council and used internally, but only strictly for electoral purposes. In Alberta, for example, it is an offence punishable by fine of up to $100,000 and up to one year of imprisonment to engage in an unauthorized use of personal information from a municipal register of electors [Local Authorities Election Act, s.158].
Since municipal elections are often a joint responsibility between the provincial election agency and the election officials appointed by the municipality, complaints arising from an unauthorized use of your personal information could be either directed at your jurisdiction’s election agency or your municipality’s appointed senior election official (or your jurisdiction’s equivalent of that title). To file a complaint through your jurisdiction’s election agency, go to the link provided in “Election Privacy Complaint” à “Governments.” To make a complaint to your municipality’s senior election official, visit your municipal council’s website during an election period and reach out to that official.
These pages were last updated and reviewed in May of 2023.
The information on these pages only contains general information and guidance; none of the information constitutes legal advice. If you have a specific issue that you believe is a legal problem, the best practice is to consult a lawyer.
The information is non-partisan, dynamic, and ever changing. It is the result of FIPA’s research and public education programs.
If you note something that needs to be added, corrected, or removed, please contact us by email: fipa AT fipa.bc.ca.