It's now four months until St. Albert voters head to the polls for the Oct. 18 civic election. With that in mind here's a quick run-down of who's running and who's not from incumbent councillors and challengers.
So far only Mayor Nolan Crouse has thrown his hat into the ring to claim the mayor's chair.
The hard-working incumbent, first elected to the job in 2007, seems to be at every event, ribbon cutting and child's birthday party (well maybe not that far). He made it clear more than a year ago a second term was his plan. He confirmed it in early April.
At this late juncture it's becoming increasingly unlikely that anyone will run against Crouse, meaning a possible acclamation. Mounting a challenge with four months to go would be a stretch for a credible contender, but I suppose anything is possible.
First the incumbents. Len Bracko announced his candidacy last week for a fifth council term, while Gareth Jones and Roger Lemieux have indicated they'd like to run again for respective second terms. James Burrows hasn't tipped his hand on whether he's in for a fourth term, nor has Lorie Garritty said if he'll run for a third.
Carol Watamaniuk is the only incumbent to officially bow out, declaring her "mission accomplished."
Now the challengers. The first was James Van Damme, the technology consultant who declared a full 10 months before the vote, unheard of for a council candidate in St. Albert.
Next came local businessman and prominent member of the St. Albert Taxpayers' Association Cam MacKay, who announced his candidacy in April.
Stanley Haroun became the third challenger when he declared last week.
The latest announcement came from Cathy Heron, who declared at a Rotary club meeting last Friday. Heron chairs the city's community services advisory board and worked on Mayor Nolan Crouse's 2007 election campaign.
Very soon, I hope, the Gazette will have an official election blog. Look for it in the coming weeks at www.stalbertgazette.com.