Elections Nova Scotia

Chief Electoral Officer

Nova Scotia’s Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) is Richard P. Temporale.

Mr. Temporale was appointed to this position in June 2012 and had been the assistant chief electoral officer at Elections Nova Scotia since September 2008. Before that, he was with Elections Ontario in several capacities including director, corporate services and manager of elections officials. He also worked in municipal elections with the City of Toronto.

As head of Elections Nova Scotia, the chief electoral officer is accountable to the House of Assembly. The chief electoral officer provides independent, non-partisan, strategic advice on election-related matters and best practices in accordance with the terms of the Elections Act, and relevant laws. The chief electoral officer supervises the conduct of elections and provides leadership on other Elections Nova Scotia programs, services, operations and infrastructure.

The CEO administers provincial elections and by-elections and keeps voters and candidates aware of their rights and responsibilities. It is the CEO’s responsibility to ensure that election officers act with fairness and impartiality, and in compliance with election laws (Elections Act, and House of Assembly Act). The CEO also receives annual statements from all recognized parties and their associations, regarding the political contributions they received and the tax receipts they issued, and administers plebiscites under the Liquor Control Act.

During an election (or by-election), the Chief Electoral Officer has specific powers to:

  • extend the time for completing various tasks under the legislation; however, the CEO cannot extend the time for accepting nominations or the times for the opening and closing of the advance or ordinary polls
  • prescribe forms and modify forms to suit existing circumstances
  • remove from office any election officer who is not performing the duties of office satisfactorily, or who is showing a preference for one party over another
  • appoint Returning Officers
  • generally adapt the provisions of the Elections Act to fit the circumstances
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