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Chief Electoral Officer Anton Boegman provides an on how the provincial election will be held during the COVID-19 pandemic at a press conference at B.C. legislature in Victoria, on Tuesday, September 22, 2020.CHAD HIPOLITO/The Canadian Press

Elections BC says 160,000 people have requested mail-in ballots for the Oct. 24 provincial election.

B.C.’s chief electoral officer said earlier this week that he expected as much as 40 per cent of the ballots cast in the election to be sent in the mail.

Anton Boegman said only about one per cent of voters usually vote by mail, but COVID-19 makes this election different.

Elections BC says the vote-by-mail packages sent out don’t represent the ballots that will be considered for counting because voters may not return their package or get it in on time.

The mail-in ballots won’t be counted for 13 days after the election and Boegman said the results could take another five days to calculate.

Elections BC says all COVID-19 safety precautions would be taken for voters, both on election day and during seven days of advanced polls from Oct. 15 to Oct. 21.

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