Manitoba’s set date provincial election is now officially moved to April 19, 2016. Under section 49.1(3) of The Elections Amendment Act, the provincial election date moves from October 6, 2015 to the third Tuesday of April 2016 if, by January 1, 2015, the federal election date has not been changed. The change to Manitoba’s set election date was adopted to eliminate overlap between the timing of provincial and federal elections.
As a result of this change, the calendar year for determining advertising limits in the year of a fixed date election will now be 2016. The Election Financing Act (EFA) imposes limits on advertising by registered parties and candidates in the year of a fixed date election. Under section 58(1) of the EFA, the advertising limit is set at $268,000 for registered parties outside the election period and under section 58(2) of the EFA for registered parties and under section 58(2) the advertising limit is set at $6,500 outside the election period for candidates. These limits are subject to inflation adjustment as per section 59 of the legislation.
The advertising limit for the fixed date election year is separate and in addition to the limit for the election period (writ day to election day). There is no limit for advertising in a non-election year or in the year of a non-fixed date election (e.g. a by-election).