Election rules

*75(1) The “Election Rules” consist of the provisions concerning elections, by-elections and electioneering in the General Bylaws and the Administrative Guidelines, previous directions by the Provincial Executive Council concerning elections, by-elections and electioneering, and additional rules established by the returning officers for the conduct of the election or by‑election and electioneering. Any additional rules established by the returning officers must not be inconsistent with the provisions in the General Bylaws and Administrative Guidelines or with previous directions by the Provincial Executive Council.

*(2) The returning officers shall communicate the Election Rules to the candidates and all candidates are required to comply with the Election Rules.

*(3) During the course of an election or by-election, either of the returning officers may provide directions to the candidates on any issue not addressed in the Election Rules and all candidates are required to comply with such directions.

*76(1) On the request of one of the candidates, any other person, or on his or her own initiative, a returning officer may inquire into whether a candidate has contravened the Election Rules. The inquiry shall be conducted by the returning officer designated by the Executive Secretary.

*(2) The returning officer shall notify the candidate of the inquiry and shall provide the candidate with an opportunity to present a verbal or written response or both to the issues in the inquiry. The returning officer shall set a deadline for receipt of the submissions.

*(3) If the returning officer determines that the candidate has breached the Election Rules, then the returning officer may do one or more of the following:
(a) declare that the candidate has breached the Election Rules;
(b) direct the candidate to cease breaching the Election Rules and take specified actions to remedy the consequences of the breach;
(c) issue a warning;
(d) levy a fine against the candidate up to the maximum amount of $5,000 and such fine is a debt due to the Association by the candidate;
(e) disqualify the candidate and remove his or her name from the ballot;
(f) in circumstances where the returning officer concludes that the breach of the Election Rules affected the results of the election or by-election in a material way, declare the election or by-election to be void and direct that another election or by-election be held in accordance with the directions by returning officer;
(g) take such other actions that the returning officer deems to be appropriate;
(h) publicize the findings and directions in any manner the returning officer considers appropriate.

*(4) Decisions and directions of the returning officer are binding on the candidate.

*77(1) At least 60 days before the deadline for nominations and acceptances, the Executive Secretary shall submit a list of names of persons with no direct or indirect interest in the election or by-election for potential service on the Appeal Panel and the Provincial Executive Council shall appoint from the list of names three persons to serve on the Appeal Panel and designate one of the persons to serve as chair.

*(2) Any candidate who has been found by a returning officer to have breached the Election Rules may appeal to the Appeal Panel.

*(3) Any appeal must be in writing, state the reasons for the appeal, and be provided to the Executive Secretary within 72 hours of the candidate being advised of the findings of the returning officer.

*(4) The Appeal Panel shall establish its own procedure but shall allow the candidate to make either verbal or written submissions. The Appeal Panel may allow the returning officer to explain the background for his or her decision and make verbal or written submissions on any issues that the Appeal Panel determines.

*(5) The Appeal Panel shall, after the conclusion of the proceedings before it:
(a) make any finding or order that in its opinion ought to have been made by the returning officer,
(b) quash, vary or confirm findings and directions of the returning officer, or
(c) refer the matter back to the returning officer for further consideration in accordance with any direction that the Appeal Panel may wish to make.

*(6) A decision of the majority of the members of the Appeal Panel is the decision of the Appeal Panel but, if there is no majority, the decision of the chair governs and the chair’s decision is deemed to be the decision of the Appeal Panel.

*(7) The decision of the Appeal Panel is final and binding on the candidate.