Advance polls are now open in provincial constituencies across Alberta. If you are unable to cast a ballot on Alberta’s Election Day on Tuesday, May 5, you can now vote in the Advance Polls from 9:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. on April 29, 30 and May 1, 2. If you are not sure where your voting station is located or what constituency you live in, visit the Elections Alberta website and use their search tool to find out.

Be sure to bring proper identification with you to the voting station. Elections Alberta accepts a wide range of identification in order to vote.

On May 5, voting stations will be open from 9:00 am to 8:00 p.m. Unofficial election results will be posted online after the polls close that night and official results will be released on May 15.

Alberta’s Election Act ensures that all eligible voters are allowed time off work to vote on Election Day. Section 132 of the Election Act allows for three consecutive hours for the purpose of voting.

If you do not know who your candidate is or what the different political parties stand for, I have compiled a list of candidates running in this election with links to websites and social media accounts (which are being updated on an ongoing basis).

According to Elections Alberta, 2,543,127 voters are eligible to participate in this provincial election. The largest constituency is Calgary-South East, with 41,559 eligible voters, and the least populated constituency is Dunvegan-Central Peace-Notley, with 14,869 eligible voters.

In 2012, a total of 1,290,223 (54.39%) Albertans participated in the provincial election (voter turnout was 53.9% in Calgary, 54.4% in Edmonton, and 53.3% in the rest of the province). In the same election, 179,820 (13.9%) of Albertans voted in the Advance Polls, a record in our province (6.7% of Albertans voted in Advance Polls in the 2008 election).

Historically, the largest voter turnout was 81.8%, which occurred during the 1935 election.

Voter turnout dipped below 50% in the mid-2000s, with a measly 44.7% of Albertans showing up in 2004 and 40.6% in 2008. Let’s not let that happen again. Be sure to cast your ballots in the Advance Polls or on Election Day.