It’s officially Election Day in B.C. today Oct. 24,2020. (Black Press file)

It’s officially Election Day in B.C. today Oct. 24,2020. (Black Press file)

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

UPDATE 8 p.m:

The polls are now closed.

Original Story:

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.

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.

READ MORE: Here’s how voting amid a pandemic will happen in B.C.

Here’s what you need to know before you vote:

Polling locations:

Voting locations will be open from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.

Penticton Seniors Centre, 2965 South Main St, Penticton

Days Inn Penticton, 152 Riverside Dr, Penticton

Penticton Lakeside Resort Hotel, 21 W Lakeshore Dr, Penticton

Harold Simpson Memorial Youth Centre, 9111 Peach Orchard Rd., Summerland

Summerland United Church, 13204 Henry Ave., Summerland

Summerland Community Centre, 9710 Brown St., Summerland

Trout Creek Elementary School, 5811 Nixon Rd., Summerland

Naramata Elementary School, 3660 8th St., Naramata

West Bench Elementary School, 1604 West Bench Dr., Penticton

Days Inn Penticton, 152 Riverside Dr., Penticton

Penticton Lakeside Resort Hotel, 21 W Lakeshore Dr., Penticton

Uplands Elementary School, 145 Middle Bench Rd. S, Penticton

Penticton Lakeside Resort Hotel, 21 W Lakeshore Dr., Penticton

Lutheran Church, 1370 Church St., Penticton

Columbia Elementary School, 1437 Allison St., Penticton

Parkway Elementary School, 225 Kinney Ave., Penticton

Wiltse Elementary School, 640 Wiltse Blvd., Penticton

Penticton Seniors Centre, 2965 South Main St., Penticton

Candidates running in the riding:

The Penticton Western News has interviewed the candidates in the riding, and their bios and interviews can be found on the pages below:

Dan Ashton, BC Liberal

Toni Boot, BC NDP

Keith MacIntyre, BC Libertarian

Ted Shumaker, BC Green

Voter registration:

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 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

– with files from Ashley Wadhwani

BC politicsBC Votes 2020