The regional returning officer role

The Regional Returning Officer for the 2014 European Parliamentary Election, in the North West Region, is Sir Howard Bernstein, Chief Executive of Manchester City Council. He has the overall responsibility for all aspects of the nomination process; the calculation and declaration of the result as well as the conduct of the election in the North West Region.

The Regional Returning Officer is responsible for:

  • the overall management of the election across the region, including agreeing effective lines of communication with Local Returning Officers 
  • preparing and publishing the notice of election 
  • all aspects of the nomination procedure 
  • receiving notices of appointment of election agents and sub-agents and publishing notices of such appointments 
  • determining the form of the ballot paper 
  • authorising the Local Returning Officer's announcement of the local count results 
  • calculating the results of the election within the region and allocating seats to candidates 
  • announcing the regional results and publishing the results of the election and notifying the names and other details of elected MEPs to the Secretary of State 

The Local Returning Officer is responsible for the conduct of the poll in their local authority area, but may be directed by the Regional Returning Officer in how they delivery their duties.  Their other duties include:

  • Issuing poll cards and other forms and notices;
  • Issuing and receiving postal ballot papers;
  • Securing polling stations and equipment required;
  • Securing facilities for the administration of postal votes and counting of ballot papers;
  • Arranging training for polling station staff, counting agents and other staff as required;
  • Arranging of the printing of the ballot papers to be used