COMMISSIONER OF CANADA ELECTIONS
CANADA ELECTIONS ACT
This notice is published by the Commissioner of Canada Elections, pursuant to section 521 of the Canada Elections Act, S.C. 2000, c. 9.
On June 8, 2009, the Commissioner of Canada Elections entered into a compliance agreement with the City of Westmount, Quebec (the Contracting Party), pursuant to section 517 of the Canada Elections Act, concerning removal by city officials on September 28, 2008, of some Communist Party of Canada election advertising posters. The posters had been placed on city street poles during the 2008 federal general election.
Section 325 of the Canada Elections Act provides the following:
- No person shall prevent or impair the transmission to the public of an election advertising message without the consent of a person with authority to authorize its transmission.
- Subsection (1) does not apply with respect to
- the prevention or impairment, by a public authority, of an unlawful transmission if reasonable notice has first been given to the person who authorized the transmission; or
- the removal by an employee of a public authority of a sign, poster or banner where the posting of it is a hazard to public safety.
The City of Westmount has acknowledged that the removal of the posters had not been authorized by the registered agent of the Communist Party of Canada and that no reasonable notice had been given to the agent before the posters' removal.
The City has committed to inform its officials and employees of the requirements under section 325 of the Canada Elections Act, and to ensure future compliance with those requirements within its jurisdiction.
In reaching this agreement, the Commissioner of Canada Elections took into consideration:
- the timely admission of the facts;
- the co-operation provided by the Contracting Party;
- the good faith of city officials, whose actions were based on public interest considerations; and
- the commitment made by the City to ensure future compliance with the provisions of section 325 of the Canada Elections Act, and to instruct its officials and employees accordingly.
September 22, 2009
William H. Corbett
Commissioner of Canada Elections