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B.C. VOTERS QUALIFICATIOS 1871

(and in effect in 1875)

extracted by Hugh Armstrong
An Act to amend the Law as to the Qualification of Electors, and of Elective Members for the Legislature, and to provide for the Registration of persons entitled to Vote at Elections of such Members. [14th March, 1871.]

PREAMBLE

WHEREAS by a Proclamation bearing date the 13th day of October, 1870, and issued by the Governor of this Colony under and by virtue of the powers and authorities conferred upon him by the 'British Columbia Act, 1870,' and by the Order of Her Majesty in Council bearing date the 9th day of August, 1870, made in pursuance of the said Act, amongst other things certain provisions were made as to the qualification of Electors and Elective Members:

And whereas it is expedient to amend the law as to the qualification of Electors and of Elective Members of the Legislature, and to provide for the registration of persons entitled to vote at Elections for such Members:

Be it therefore enacted by the Governor of British Columbia, with the advice and consent of the Legislative Council thereof, as follows :-

1. No person shall be capable of being elected a Member of the Legislature who shall not be duly registered or entered on the Register of Electors for some Electoral District of the Colony, according to the provisions of this Act, at the time of his election, and who shall not have been resident within this Colony for one year previous to the date of his election; and no person shall be capable of being elected a Member to serve in the Council who shall be a Minister of any religious denomination, whatever may be his title, rank, or designation.

2. No Judge of the Supreme Court or of the County Courts, no Stipendiary Magistrate, no Constable or Police Officer, no Returning Officer, except in cases to be hereafter provided, shall be entitled to vote at any Election of a Member of the Legislature.

3. Every male of the full age of twenty-one years, not being disqualified by this Act, or by any other Law in force in this Colony, being entitled within this Colony to the privileges of a natural-born British Subject and being able to read English, or if a natural-born British Subject being able to read the language of his Country, having resided in this Colony for six months previous to sending in his claim to vote as hereinafter mentioned, who shall have freehold estate in possession, situate within the Electoral District for which his vote is to be given, of the clear value of two hundred and fifty dollars, above all charges and incumbrances affecting the same; or shall have a leasehold estate in possession, situate as aforesaid, of the annual value of forty dollars above all charges and incumbrances affecting the same; or shall be a householder within such District, occupying any house, warehouse, counting-house, office, shop, or other building or premises of the clear annual value of forty dollars; or shall pay for lodging the sum of forty dollars annually, or for board and lodging the sum of two hundred dollars annually, within such District as aforesaid; or who shall hold a duly recorded pre-emption claim to not less than one hundred acres within such District as aforesaid; or a free mining licence upon which a claim has been duly recorded within such District as aforesaid shall, being duly registered under the provisions of this, Act, be entitled to vote at the election of a Member or Members of the Legislative Council. Provided, that no person shall be entitled to be registered unless he shall have been seised, or possessed of, or occupied, used, held or enjoyed the qualification, in respect of which he shall claim to be registered, for the period of three calendar months, at least, previous to sending in his claim to vote as hereinafter mentioned. Provided, also, that no person shall be entitled to be registered as aforesaid, who shall have been convicted of any treason, felony, or other infamous offence, unless he shall have received a free or conditional pardon for such offence, or have undergone the sentence passed upon him for such offence. Provided, also, that no person shall be entitled to be registered as aforesaid, in respect of such estate or occupation, unless at the time of such registration he shall have paid up all rates and taxes, other than Municipal, which shall have become payable by him as owner or leaseholder in respect of such estate, or as occupier in respect of such occupation, except such as shall have become payable during three calendar months next before registration, except such as are due or alleged to be due at the time of the passing of this Act. Provided, also, that no natural-born British Subject who has renounced his allegiance, or sworn allegiance to any Foreign State, or become the citizen of any Foreign State, shall be entitled to be registered under the provisions of this Act, until he shall have taken the oath of allegiance to Her Majesty, before some Judge of the Supreme or County Courts, Magistrate, or Justice of the Peace in this Colony, which oath such Judge, Magistrate, or Justice of the Peace, is hereby authorized to administer in the following words:-

'I, A.B., do swear that I will be faithful and bear true allegiance to Her Majesty Queen Victoria, Her Heirs and Successors, according to Law. So help me God.'

And such oath shall be in writing, and shall be signed by the person taking the same and by the Judge, Magistrate, or Justice of the Peace.

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