Views sought on overhaul of Isle of Man election rules – BBC News

People on the Isle of Man could be able to register to vote during the month of an election, the government has said.

Changes could see the electoral register updated monthly, replacing the existing quarterly publication.

Currently those who change address have to wait up to three months to be eligible to vote in a new area.

Chief Minister Howard Quayle said the changes would “give people confidence” in the election process.

A consultation is seeking views on proposals to overhaul election rules following a “root and branch review” of the system.

Concerns were raised over the “cleansing” of the register in 2015, when those who did not respond to a letter from the Cabinet Office were removed from the electoral roll and left unable to vote in the 2016 local authority poll.

The changes would see the rules for local authority and House of Keys contests brought together in one piece of legislation.

Other proposals include:

  • The abolition of the edited version of the electoral register
  • The introduction of on-demand postal voting
  • Individuals made responsible for registering to vote rather than the designated head of household
  • The chief secretary becoming the returning officer for all elections
  • A requirement for all candidates to submit a declaration of expenses and donations within 35 days of the poll
  • The introduction of a mechanism for a bye-election to be called if a member of the House of Keys is suspended from Tynwald

Mr Quayle said the changes would make the election process “simpler” and “perceived to be fairer and easier to use”.

He added: “We want the public of the Isle of Man to be confident in their election process.”

The changes would be brought into force ahead of the House of Keys general election in September 2021.


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