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Returning Officer may appoint Poul Booths, &c.
XXIII. At every such Election of Commissioners the Commissioners
shall cause to be printed a sufficient Number of Voting Papers in blank, in the Form given in the Schedule (A.) to this Act annexed, or to the like Effect, and shall furnish them to the Returning Officer for the Use of the Voters; and if it appear to the Returning Officer at any Election expedient so to do, he may cause Booths to be erected, or Rooms to be hired and used as Booths, for taking the Poll at such Election, and he shall in such case appoint a Clerk to take the Poll at each Booth, and shall cause to be affixed on the most conspicuous part thereof the Name of the Ward or District for which such Booth is provided ; and public Notice of every Election, and of the Situation of the different Polling Places, and of the place where Voting Papers may be procured by Electors, shall be given by the Returning Officer Two Days at least before the Commencement of the Poll.
SCHEDULE (A.) Sect. 23.
Voting Paper for the Town (or District] of
Ward, in the Town (or
I vote for the Persons named in the above List as Commissioners for this Town (or District, or Ward, as the Case may be].
(Signed) Here the Name of the Voter should be written.
Scale of Votes of
Also the Section numbered 24 of the said Act:
Rate-payers are entitled to vote in the Election of Commissioners,
(Secs.10.11.) payer shall have respectively the same Number and Proportion
of Votes according to the Scale following ; (that is to say,) If the Property in respect of which he is entitled to vote be rated
upon a rateable Value of less than Fifty Pounds, he shall have
One Vote :
One hundred Pounds, he shall have Two Votes :
and fifty Pounds, he shall have Three Votes :
hundred Pounds, he shall have Four Votes: If it amount to Two hundred Pounds and be less than Two hundred
and fifty Pounds, he shall have Five Votes : And if it amount to or exceed Two hundred and fifty Pounds, he
shall have Six Votes. Where Two or more Persons are jointly (a.) rated as Occupiers, As to joint rating
and Ownership. or named in the Rate as Owners of Pemises in respect of which One Vote only is given, the Occupier or Owner first named in the Rate Book shall give such single Vote; and so when the Number of joint Occupiers or Owners so rated or named in the Rate is greater than the Number of Votes given, such Number of such Occupiers or Owners as is equal to the Number of Votes given shall give each One Vote in the Order their Names stand in the Rate Book; and where the Number of Votes is equal to the Number of such Persons, they shall all vote single; and where the Number of Votes given exceeds the Number of such Persons, they shall all have One Vote, and the Person first named in the Rate Book shall have the remaining Vote or Votes :
Any Person who is Owner and also bona fide Occupier of the Compound Vote, same Premises shall be entitled to vote in respect both of such Occupier. Ownership and of such Occupation.
XI. That no Person entitled to vote shall give in the whole of Case of Electors the Wards a greater Number of Votes than he would have been in several Wards entitled to have given if the Borough had not been divided into
(a ) By this Act, any owner or rated occupier of the very lowest annual value (and as regards occupiers of small Tenements even tho' the rates be paid by the owners under this act) are entitled to vote; yet by this addenda if two happen to own or occupy premises rated at on farthing less than the annual value of £50, only one of such is entitled to vote, contrary to the provisions of the Poor Law, the Public Health, the Reform Acts. &c. &c. Two among the Promoters of this Act contended for altering this clause, to suit the spirit of the Times, but could not obtain the smallest alteration. Some may think it strange, that tho' the Bill promoted by the late Commissioners was thrown out by the aid of the Hon. Member for the Borough at the surgent request of his Party and at the risk of his seat, because its Election clauses were based on the system of “plurality of votes," yet, in 1852, the whole Borough submitted willingly to the Establiebment of the same system, with the addition of this and other exclusive provisions.
of 10 & 11 Vict. c. 16. incorporated with this Act.
Commissioners may cause alphabetical List of Voters to be made and may defray the Expence out of the Bates.
(Secs.11. 12) Wards.
Wards, nor in any One Ward a greater Number of Votes than he is entitled to in respect of Premises in that Ward; and unless such Person should by Notice in Writing delivered to the Commissioners Clerk in each Year Fourteen Days at least before the Day of Election elect in what Ward or Wards he will vote for the ensuing Year, and determine the Proportion of Votes which he will give in any One or more of such Wards, he shall be
entitled to vote only in One Ward. (a.) Sections 26 to 85 XII. That the following Sections of the Commissioners Clauses 16. incorporated Act, 1847, shall be incorporated with this Act :
The Section numbered 26 of the said Act:
sioners, if they think it necessary for enabling the Returning
Also the Section numbered 27 of the said Act: ReturningOfficer XXVII. If the Qualifications of the Electors of the Commissioners
depend upon the Rates payable by such Electors, the Returning Overseers, &c.
Officer may summon the Overseers or Inspectors of the Poor, Collectors, and other Officers employed in the Assessment or Collection of the Rates, to attend the Election in order to assist in ascertaining that the Persons presenting themselves to vote, or who have voted, are or were duly qualified to vote at such Election; and such Overseers or Inspectors, Rate Collectors, or other Officers shall attend with the Rates and such other Documents necessary for the Purpose aforesaid as may be in their custody or Power, at such Places and at such Times as the Returning Officer may direct, and shall answer all such Questions as any presiding Officer at the Poll shall pnt to them respecting the Title of any Person to vote at the Election ; and any Overseer or Inspector, Rate Collector, or other Officer who shall wilfully neglect or fail to
may summon Rate Collector,
to attend the Election.
Penalty on Rate Collector, &c. for Neglect.
(a.) If the Voter do not elect, the section does not point out in which "One Ward" he must vote he therefore has his choice. In the Poor Law Act, from which this section is partly taken, the words are "he shall not be entitled to vote for any ward in which be does not reside;" residence is not required as a qualification for owners or occupiers under this act.
perform the Duties hereby imposed upon him, shall for such Neglect "
(Section 12) or Failure be liable to a Penalty not exceeding Twenty Pounds.
Also the Section numbered 28 of the said Act: XXVIII. At every such Election of Commissioners the voting shall Mode of voting
commence at Nine of the Clock in the Forenoon of the Day fixed for the Election as aforesaid, and shall finally close at Four of the Clock in the Afternoon of the same Day (unless in case of Riot or Obstruction), and shall be conducted in manner following ; (that is to say,) every Person entitled to vote may vote for any Number of Persons having the prescibed Qualification (not exceeding the Number of Commissioners then to be chosen for the Town, or where the Commissioners are to be elected in Wards not exceeding the Number to be elected for the Ward in which such Person is entitled to vote) by delivering to the presiding Officer at the Poll a Voting Paper, containing a Description of his Qualification to vote, in the Form contained in Schedule (A.) (b) to this Act annexed, or to the like Effect, and also the Names of the Persons for whom he votes, such Paper being previously signed with the Name of the Person voting, and the Poll Clerk shall thereupon openly record such Vote in the Poll Book, and the Voting Paper shall be carefully preserved by the presiding Officer; and the presiding Officer shall, if he thinks fit, or if he be required so to do by any Person entitled to vote at the said Election, put to any Voter at the Time of his delivering in his Voting Paper the following
Questions, or either of them : 1. Are you the Person assessed as A. B., on the [
Rate [specifyiny the Rate which confers the Right to vote] in
Street, 8-c. as described in the Rate] ?
] Rate [specifying the Rate) and
described in the Rate] ? 2. Have you already voted at the present Election ? [or, if the Town
be divided into Wards,] Have you already voted for Commissioners to be elected for this or any other Ward at the present
Election ? And no Person required to answer either of the said Questions shall False answer,
stions at Poll Variation of Questions to suit Change of Occupation.
be permitted or qualified to vote until he has answered the same; and if any Person wilfully make a false Answer to either of the
(6.) See the form page 12 ante.
And voting in several Wards.
may vote by Proxy.
Questions aforesaid he shall be deemed guilty of a Misdemeanor, · or in Scotland shall be deemed guilty of Perjury.
Provided always, that the presiding Officer may vary the Form of the First of the Questions contained in the said Section so as to suit the Case of a Change in the Occupation of Premises by the Voter:
Provided also, that if in answer to the Question put to any Voter at the Election whether he has already voted at such Election for Commissioners to be elected in any Ward, he shall say he has so voted in some Ward, he may be asked to name the Ward or Wards in which he has voted, and the Number of
Votes he has given in such Ward or respective Wards : Female Owners Provided also, that every Female entitled to vote as Owner or and Male Owners Occupier under this Act shall be at liberty to vote by Proxy, and
every Male Person entitled to vote as Owner shall also be at liberty to vote as Owner as aforesaid by Proxy : Provided that in either Case the Proxy shall be appointed by Writing, and the Writing shall be signed within Ten Days next before the Day of Election, and the Owner or Occupier shall make a solemn Declaration before a Justice of the Peace (6.) of the Jurisdiction
wherein he or she may be, stating the Day of the Execution of Prosy Papers. such Appointment of Proxy ; and the Commissioners shall fur
nish to any Person entitled to vote applying to them in Person, by Letter, or by Agent for the same, Forms of such Appointment of Proxy and Declaration by the Appointer to the Effect contained in Schedule B. No. 2. and No. 3. hereunto annexed, on Payment of One Shilling for each Set of such Forms besides the Stamp; and no Appointment of Proxy or Declaration made in any other than the Papers so furnished by the Commissioners shall be received at any such Election; and every person who shall falsely or corruptly make and subscribe the said Declaration, knowing the same to be untrue in any material Particular, shall
be deemed guilty of a Misdemeanor : Corporations and Provided also, that every Corporation, Joint Stock or other
Company or Body of Proprietors or Undertakers, shall be deemed
Companies to vote by Proxy.
(6.) See the 18th Sec. 5 & 6 William 4, c. 62., which Act after noticing that it may be necessary and proper in many cases not therein specified to require confirmation of written instruments, or allegations, or proofs of debts, or of the execution of deeds or other matters :---enacts, That it shall and may be lawful for any Justice of the Peace, notary public, or other officer now by law authorised to administer an oath, to take and receive any declaration of the person voluntarily making the same before him in the form in the Schedule in that Act annexed; (the same as the Schedule to this local act). Unless this section will authorise the Justice to take the Declaration required in the Text, it would seem the Justice has not that power.