Alberta Premier Jim Prentice called an Alberta Provincial election today. Polling day for the election will be May 5th.
The election call means that Alberta’s fixed election dates have been bypassed at their very first test.
Fixed election date legislation was contained in Bill 21, the Election Amendment Act, which was passed in 2011. This legislation brought in section 38.1 of the Election Act (Alberta), which set the date for provincial elections in Alberta to be on a four-year cycle within the 3‑month period beginning on March 1 and May 31. This of course is all subject to the power of the Lieutenant Governor to dissolve the Legislature when they see fit, which is what has happened in this case.
The first year of fixed elections was 2012, meaning the election call is one year ahead of schedule.