BC FERRY AND MARINE WORKERS'

CONSTITUTION
  

ARTICLE 15 - BALLOTING PROCEDURES

Section 2 - Scrutineers

Section 3 - Election procedure for convention choosing two (2) candidates for office per position for the fleetwide referendum ballot.

Section 4 - Procedure for Referendum Ballots

Section 6 - Ratification Procedure

Section 7 - Counting the Ballot

Section 8 Electronic Balloting

Section 9- Report to Provincial Executive

Section 10- Holding ballots after vote

Section 1 - Standard procedures applied to all Union elections

(a) If only one (1) nomination is received for an elected position the nominee shall be declared elected to the position by acclamation.

(b) The candidate receiving the most votes shall be declared to be elected.

(c) In the case of a tie, there shall be a run off ballot between affected candidates.

(d) Should any or all but one of the candidates withdraw from the election, the remaining candidate shall be declared elected.

Section 2 - Scrutineers

Candidates for office shall not attend the balloting and counting, except to cast a ballot, but may designate a scrutineer to attend on their behalf.

Section 3 - Election procedure for convention choosing two (2) candidates for office per position for the fleetwide referendum ballot.

(i) Each voting delegate shall vote for one candidate for the position of President, Provincial Executive, 1st Vice-President, Provincial Executive, 2nd Vice-President, Provincial Executive and Secretary-Treasurer,

Provincial Executive.

(ii) The candidate with the least number of votes on each ballot shall be dropped from subsequent ballots.

(iii) Candidates who choose to withdraw from the election may do so by informing the delegates fifteen (15) minutes prior to the ballot.

Section 4 - Procedure for Referendum Ballots

(a)Ten (10) days after the close of nominations the Union, at the Union'sexpense, shall send to every member's household an 8.5'x11' sheet of election material that the candidate compiles. The original shall be costed to the candidate but the copies shall be costed to the Union.

(b) The Returning Officer shall decide the closing date of the referendum, taking into consideration the urgency for the matter, shift schedules, ballots being returned by mail and all other relevant factors. If a mail-in ballot is utilized, the minimum time allowed for the return of all ballots shall be twenty-eight (28) days. The referendum ballot shall be completed within thirty (30) days  of the convention.

(c) The Returning Officer shall, on receiving written notice from the Provincial Executive of a ballot to be taken, cause it to be printed and distributed.

(d) The Secretary-Treasurer Provincial Executive shall supply the Returning Officer with an up-to-date list of all members entitled to vote, noting the member's local.

(e) The Returning Officer shall ensure the following are available:

(i) Required number of ballots

(ii) List of all members entitled to vote and signature sheets

(iii) Explanation of the ballot

(iv) Balloting instructions

(v) Certificates as per Appendix "C"

(vi) One ballot container with lock

(vii) Instructions to the balloting committee as follows:

(a) instructions re: balloting procedures

(b) have members sign the signature sheet that they have received a ballot and issue each member a ballot.

(c) assure that there is a private place to mark his/her ballot.

(d) Have the marked ballot placed in the ballot container.

(e) On completion of the ballot taking, and in the presence of two (2) members, insert the signature sheet in the ballot container and return same to Returning Officer.

Section 5 - Procedure for conducting the ballot

In conducting the ballot, the Balloting Committee shall: 

(a) Decide on a central place where the balloting for the Local shall take place. The Balloting Committee may use mail in ballots when considered necessary.

(b) Notify the membership of the Local of the time and place for balloting.

(c) At the time and place for balloting, provide a ballot box which after inspection by any Scrutineer present, shall be locked by a member of the Balloting Committee.

(d)Issue to each member who presents himself at the place, a ballot and an explanation of the balloting procedure.

(e) Insure that each member who is given a ballot signs the signature sheet.

(f) Insure that there is a balloting booth to allow ballots to be marked secretly.

(g) Insure that the marked ballot is placed in the locked ballot box.

(h) On completion of the ballot, insert the signature sheet in the ballot box, seal the box and return it to the Returning Officer for counting.

Section 6 - Ratification Procedure

(a) A referendum vote on the ratification of a Collective Agreement shall take place in accordance with the Referendum Balloting Procedures in this Article.

(b) Before a referendum vote is conducted, the proposed Collective Agreement shall be completed, the Central Negotiation Committee shall report to the Provincial Executive and the membership at special meetings called for the purpose.

(c) The report shall be presented in writing to show each new and re-negotiated clause, Memorandum of Understanding and each clause that has been altered or deleted, and stating clearly, where required, the intent thereof. The report shall also be accompanied by a verbal explanation stating clearly the intent of each clause.

(d) The report shall have attached to it the recommendations of the Central Negotiation Committee and Provincial Executive.

(e) In outlying areas where it is impractical to hold membership meetings, the membership shall be sent a written report by mail, accompanied by the required ballot.

(f) The Central Negotiating Committee shall provide the above information five (5) days prior to Local meetings being held and seven (7) days shall elapse after the conclusion of all Local membership meetings before a ballot is conducted. Should special circumstances require alterations to the above time limits, they may be amended by majority vote of the Provincial Executive.

(g) In the event that the Provincial Executive and the Employer agree on a proposal constituting a change to the Collective Agreement and in the event the Provincial Executive deem the proposal major in impact, the Provincial Executive shall cause a referendum ballot to be conducted, as per this Article.

(h) Any modification or clarification to the Collective Agreement shall be printed and distributed to the membership by bulletin.

Section 7 - Counting the Ballot

(a) On the appointed date the Returning Officer, together with the Assistant Returning Officer, and in the presence of Scrutineers, shall check the number of ballots against the number of signatures on the endorsed signature sheets, assuring that there are no irregularities and place the ballots in a common ballot box. The common ballot box shall then be opened, ballots counted, recorded and reported to the Provincial Executive in writing.

(b) If any irregularities have been charged to occur during the counting of ballots, the Returning Officer or Assistant Returning Officer shall request the Trustees of the Union to investigate the charge and the Trustees shall determine the validity of the charges and order any action deemed by them to be appropriate.

Section 8 Electronic Balloting

Notwithstanding any of the above balloting procedures, electronic balloting may be used for fleetwide referendum votes for election of officers and ratification votes.

Section 9- Report to Provincial Executive

The Returning Officer's report to the Provincial Executive shall contain the following:

(a) The number of ballots issued

(b) The number of ballots returned

(c) The results of ballots by number

(d) The number of ballots "spoiled"

(e) The number of members eligible to vote

The signatures of the Returning Officer, Balloting Committee, and the Scrutineers present shall appear on the report.

Section 10 - Holding ballots after vote

The Returning Officer will hold fleet-wide referendum ballots for a period of six (6) months prior to being destroyed, allowing access to members in good standing. Members have the right to lodge a grievance or complaint to the Provincial Executive at the soonest opportunity, with the provision that inspection be co-ordinated through and under the supervision of the Trustees.