It's helpful to get your head around the major benchmarks of setting up your campaign before you begin. Here are some tips on how to organize your campaign.
1. Remember the important dates.
2. Don't campaign before the Nomination and Campaign period begins.
3. Fill out our questionnaire! Please fill out all sections, sign and date and return by email to [email protected] by August 19, 2022. File may be opened in Acrobat or Adobe reader and signed with a digital signature, saved and sent back by email. Or you can print the pages, and scan or send photos by email. Contact PAFE with any questions at (416) 763-PAFE or [email protected]
4. Use the answers to prepare your campaign pitches. Ask yourself the following questions to prepare something to introduce yourself.
- Who are you?
- Why do you want to run for this position?
- Why should voters choose you?
- What have you done in the community?
5. Submit your nomination form to the city clerk by August 19, 2022. The form can be found at your municpal election website or in the 2022 Candidates guide for Ontario municipal council and school board elections. There is a fee of $100 to file, which will be refunded if you file your financial statement on time.
6. Questions about your campaign should be directed to the city clerk.
7. Go over your social media posts and ensure they reflect the way you want to be perceived as a candidate. Ask a third party to assist you.
8. Get professional photos taken.
9. Open a bank account under the campaign name.
10. Create campaign pages on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc. These accounts can be closed after the election if you wish. Consider closing your personal accounts so you do not confuse your constituents. SAVE all your passwords!
11. Buy your own domain and create a website. Make a separate email address for the campaign.
12. Establish your campaign team.
- chief financial operator
- campaign manager
- signs crew
- canvassing/volunteer organizer
- GOTV manager
13. Find someone you trust who is good with finances to track campaign donations and expenses and prepare reports at the end of the election. Bookkeeping should be done by category. SAVE all your receipts, stubs, and cheques you paid or received.
14. Ascertain your spending limit and stay below it. Typically we recommend budgeting around $5K. Make sure to allot funds to pay the auditor to prepare your financial statements after the election is over, as these funds are not part of your spending limit, and for a thank-you party. If you spend over $10K on your campaign you will be audited.
15. Hire an accountant to certify your financial statements. Do not leave this til the end as they can get booked up at the end of an election. For examples of what a financial statement should look like, consult the municipal website for statements from previous elections. Failing to submit your financial statement on time means you will not be allowed to run in the next election and may compromise your victory if you place first.
16. Find out the maximum campaign donation limits for each donor, as well as the limit for donating to multiple campaigns in the same municipality. Ensure your donors are aware of these limits.
17. Get a map of your ward. A boundary map can be downloaded from your city's website and a detailed map with full street breakdowns can be purchased from city hall. Purchase at least two to record where you have canvassed.
18. Start canvassing door-to-door with enough time to visit every residence at least twice.
19. After nominations close you will receive a copy of the voters' list, broken down by poll.
20. Plan to take some time off work near the end of the campaign period so you can campaign full time.