WESTLOCK – Following at least two failed attempts to fill a vacant council seat, the Village of Clyde will be holding a byelection in July.
At their May 16 meeting Clyde council discussed a letter received March 24 from Municipal Affairs minister Rick McIver, which indicated a July 15 deadline for a byelection in the village.
The council seat opened in early January when deputy mayor Patricia Hamaluk resigned. Nominations opened Feb. 22, with a byelection scheduled for March 22, but the village did not receive any nominations by March 1, at which time the nominations were closed. Since January council has continued with four elected representatives.
Hamaluk was the second councillor to step down since the municipal election last October. Councillor Jerry Austin was the first to resign just weeks after the election in early November.
“Originally, we did look at recommending that we fall right in line with Mr. McIver’s requirement that the election be called on July 15, however with it being a Friday in the summer we didn’t think it would be very advantageous to do that, so administration is recommending that we move it to the Monday, which is July 11,” said CAO Jaye Parrent.
Mayor Charis Logan-Aquirre asked what will happen if there are again no applicants and inquired whether the village would go through the same, or a similar process.
“The legislation in Alberta’s Elections Act indicates that you open your nomination period until 12 noon on Nomination Day,” explained Parrent. “If you don’t receive (any nominations) then you open up the following day for a period of six days, at which point (if) we still would have insufficient nominations then we’d notify the minister and the minister would determine what the next steps are at that point.”
Council also discussed the appointment of the returning officer and deputy returning officer for the byelection, where they chose former CAO Ron Cust and administrative assistant Megan Brill respectively, and whether or not to allow for special mail-in-ballots, which council did approve.