UPDATE: Polls have now closed.
It’s officially Election Day in B.C.’s 2020 provincial snap election.
Polls are open from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., Saturday Oct. 24.
First called in September by B.C. NDP Leader John Horgan, BC Votes 2020 is likely going to be one for the history books, already seeing a number of records broken when it comes to voter turnout.
Roughly 681,000 people cast their ballot during the seven days of advanced voting that ended Wednesday, compared to 614,389 in 2017.
In the Skeena riding there were 4,976 votes cast in the advanced polls, with a total of 21,262 possible voters.
Meanwhile, 478,900 returned vote-by-mail packages had been received by Elections BC by Oct. 22, representing 66 per cent of the packages requested.
Voters who have not mailed in their ballot can actually drop it off directly at a polling station.
It is expected that some ridings will see preliminary results as to which candidate will likely take a seat in the B.C. Legislature by the end of day Saturday.
Meanwhile, close races will have to wait until mid-November for the winner to be declared, once mail-in ballots are counted by Elections BC officials after Nov. 6.
Haven’t voted? There’s still time. Here’s what you need to know:
Polling locations for Skeena riding for Kitimat
Mount Elizabeth Middle/Secondary School, 1491 Kingfisher Ave.
Riverlodge Recreation Centre, 654 W Columbia Ave.
For Kitamaat Village
Kitamaat Village Recreation Centre, 1538 Jassee St.
Skeena DEO Office, 101-4647 Lakelse Ave.
Veritas School, 4836 Straume Ave.
Elks Hall, 2822 Tetrault St.
Coast Mountain College, 5331 McConnell Ave.
Kitsumkalum Community Centre, 14295 Hwy 16
Thornhill Community Centre, 3091 Century St.
Kitselas Health and Admin Office, 2225 Gitaus Rd., Usk
Mt. Layton Hot Springs Resort, 3739 Hwy 37
Rosswood Community Hall, 4145 Kalum Lake Rd., Rosswood
Candidates running in the riding:
Ellis Ross — BC Liberals
Nicole Halbauer — BC NDP
Martin Holzbauer — Independent
While eligible voters don’t have to register ahead of time to take part in the election, Elections BC recommends British Columbians sign up ahead of time in order to avoid lengthy lineups.
Voters can register or update their information online at eregister.elections.bc.ca/ovr or by calling 1-800-661-8683. Registration closed on Sept. 26.
To be eligible, British Columbians must be able to show one of the following pieces of identification:
- A B.C. driver’s licence
- A B.C. Identification Card
- A B.C. Services Card, with photo
- A Certificate of Indian Status
- Another card issued by the B.C. government, or Canada, that shows your name, photo and address
Health rules for voting during COVID-19:
All voting places and district electoral offices will have protective measures in place, including:
- Physical distancing
- Capacity limits
- Election officials wearing personal protective equipment (such as masks and face-visors)
- Protective barriers
- Hand sanitizing stations
- Frequent cleaning of voting stations and frequently touched surfaces
- Election workers trained on safe workplace guidelines and pandemic protocols
Watch the Kitimat Northern Sentinel and Terrace Standard websites for election coverage.
– with files from Ashley Wadhwani