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Four of local units will offer electronic voting in elections


PICTOU – Four of the local six units taking part in the October municipal elections will be using electronic voting.

Josephine MacDonald, returning officer for New Glasgow, Pictou, Stellarton and the Municipality of the County of Pictou, said residents in these four units will be able to vote electronically or with paper ballot on the Oct. 15 election day, but there will be no advanced polls.

“October 15th (election day) is the only time you will be able to vote by paper,” she said. “If you are not around that day, electronic voting starts October 3 at 8 a.m. and continues until October 11 at 8 p.m.”

This does not apply to the towns of Trenton and Westville, which each have their own returning officers and will not be using electronic voting but will be doing paper ballots only through both advanced polls and election-day polls.

Advance polls in Trenton will be held Oct. 6 and 11. In Westville, advance polls will be held Oct. 8 and 11.

MacDonald was hired by the four units to hold a plebiscite in May on the proposed amalgamation as well as the municipal elections. If the amalgamation was success she was going to be returning officer for one new unit, but since it failed, she is returning officer for all four units.

She said electronic voting worked well during the plebiscite in May and cuts down on the manpower and training needed for the advance polls. Residents in Stellarton, Pictou, New Glasgow and the county will receive a PIN number in the mail about a week before the electronic voting opens. This will allow people to vote via phone or computer.

If people haven’t received their PIN number by Oct. 3, they should contact time the returning office help line in operation between 8:30 a.m. and 8:30 p.m. each day.

MacDonald said there is some interest in the upcoming municipal elections from people wanting to know about the nomination process.

Anyone wanting to put their name forward can make an appointment Sept. 6, 7, 8, 9 or 12 to meet with MacDonald. They must have the required deposit, a certificate saying their taxes are paid in full and nomination papers with five signatures.

MacDonald said she always suggests that people come with more than five names in case some of the names aren’t accepted. The final day to be nominated will be Sept. 13 and this will done on a first-come, first-served basis.

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