The Parksville Community Centre is open for voting on Oct. 24. (Michael Briones photo)

The Parksville Community Centre is open for voting on Oct. 24. (Michael Briones photo)

It’s Election Day in B.C.: Here’s what you need to know to vote

B.C.’s snap election has already broken records for advance voter turnout, mail-in ballots

It’s officially Election Day in B.C.’s 2020 provincial snap election.

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 Parksville-Qualicum riding, 12,609 of 48,396 registered voters had cast advanced ballots. In the Mid Island-Pacific Rim riding, 9,501 (out of 44,869) voters cast advanced ballots.

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.

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 (All general voting places are open from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. (Pacific time) on Oct. 24, 2020):

Parksville-Qualicum

Christian Fellowship Centre, 825 Village Way, Qualicum Beach

Costin Hall, 7232 Lantzville Rd., Lantzville

Craig St Commons Gym, 330 Craig St., Parksville

Dover Bay Sec School, 6135 McGirr Rd., Nanaimo

Lasqueti Comm Hall, 206 Main Rd., Lasqueti Island

Nanaimo Ecumenical Centre, 6234 Spartan Rd., Nanaimo

Nanaimo North Town Centre, 158-4750 Rutherford Rd., Nanaimo

Nanoose Place 2925, Northwest Bay Rd., Nanoose Bay

Parksville Comm & Conf Centre, 132 Jensen Ave E., Parksville

Qualicum Beach Civic Centre, 747 Jones St., Qualicum Beach

Candidates running in the riding:

Parksville-Qualicum candidate Rob Lyon, B.C. Green Party

Parksville-Qualicum candidate Don Purdey, B.C. Conservative Party

Parksville-Qualicum candidate John St John, Independent

Parksville-Qualicum candidate Michelle Stilwell, B.C. Liberal Party

Parksville-Qualicum candidate Adam Walker, B.C. NDP

Mid Island-Pacific Rim

Ahousaht Admin Building, Ahousaht

Alberni Athletic Hall, 3727 Roger St., Port Alberni

Bamfield Fire Hall, 352 Pachena Rd., Bamfield

Beaver Creek Fire Hall, 6038A Beaver Creek Rd., Port Alberni

Bradley Centre, 975 Shearme Rd., Coombs

Cherry Creek Hall, 3720 Moore Rd., Port Alberni

Cumberland Senior Citizens Centre, 2674 Dunsmuir Ave., Cumberland

Denman Island Seniors Hall, 1111 Northwest Rd., Denman Island

Ditidaht Comm Hall, 658 Malachan Ir 11 Rd., Nitnat

Echo Centre, 4255 Wallace St., Port Alberni

Fanny Bay Comm Hall, 7793 Island Hwy S, Fanny Bay

Hornby Island Comm Hall, 4305 Central Rd., Hornby Island

Hot Springs Cove Band Bldg, Refuge Cove IR 6, Ahousat

Lighthouse Comm Centre, 240 Lions Way, Bowser

Port Alberni Friendship Centre, 3555 4th Ave., Port Alberni

Royston Comm Hall, 3902 Island Hwy S, Royston

Sproat Lake Fire Hall 3, 7667 Pacific Rim Hwy, Sproat Lake

Tofino Comm Hall, 351 Arnet Rd., Tofino

Ucluelet Comm Hall, 500 Matterson Dr., Ucluelet

Candidates running in the riding:

Mid Island Pacific Rim candidate Rob Clarke, B.C. Libertarian Party

Mid Island Pacific Rim candidate Graham Hughes, Independent

Mid Island-Pacific Rim candidate Evan Jolicoeur, B.C. Green Party

Mid Island-Pacific Rim candidate Josie Osborne, B.C. NDP

Mid Island-Pacific Rim candidate Helen Poon, B.C. Liberal Party

Voter registration:

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

– with files from Ashley Wadhwani

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