Finance Your Campaign

Here are some ways the Elections Department is working on to make campaigning more financially accessble!

Underground Credit System

Many candidates use posters and other printed items as a part of their campaigns. Therefore to reduce the amount of money spent out of pocket, the Elections Department is working with Underground Media + Design to facilitate a printing credit system. This way, all you will have to do is identify yourself as a candidate (or designated team member), print your posters with no out of pocket cost! Of course, this is up to the spending limit, and for elections related items only. 


Presidential candidates and Referendum sides are eligible to receive an interest-free loan from the MSU to cover the upfront cost of campaigning! Half of this will be issued as a credit to the MSU Underground Media + Design while the other half shall be issued via cheque no later than the first day of campaigning. Loans will cover up to the spending limit and must be repaid within 30 days of polls closing and is subject to fines. To request a loan, please contact us at elections@msu.mcmaster.ca by at least three days before nominations close.  For more information on loans check out point 10.2 under Bylaw 10.

Underground Printing Discount

All candidates running in an MSU election are eligible for a printing discount at Underground for the duration of the campaign. Printing will be set at a standard rate of 75 cents per page and is limited to coloured posters on 11''x17'' tabloid paper only. There are also much cheaper black and white options available. 


As of September 27, 2015 the SRA voted to amend Bylaw 10  to extend reimbursements to all MSU Elections run under the Elections Department. This includes SRA Generals, First Year Council, By-Elections, Referendum, and Presidential Elections.

Section 10.1.6 states that:

Candidates and referendum sides receiving at least ten percent (10%) of the vote on any ballot shall be fully reimbursed up to the limit, less penalties. Those candidates receiving less than ten percent (10%) of the vote shall receive reimbursement equal to the exact percentage of votes received, multiplied by ten (10), less fines.

So what does this mean? Lets explore

10% Rule

Don't be flustered by this rule! The 10% rule exists to ensure that MSU resources are not being taken advantage of, and is attainable if you use your resources. In order to receive a FULL reimbursement, you must receive 10% of population that voted (only those who voted, not all who are eligible). As well, the Elections Department employs a preferential voting system meaning that voters can often cast multiple ballots.

If you do not get 10%, the MSU will still reimburse you for a % of the vote you did get. For example, 8% of the vote grants an 80% reimbursement, minus any fines you may have incurred. All deposits and reimbursements will be returned as a cheque after the voting period, and can be picked up at the Accounting Office in MUSC 201.

Contact Details

Chief Returning Officer
905-525-9140 ex. 24118

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