Who says council proceedings are boring?
Things may get a little uncomfortable for Huntsville councillors at their February 11, 2020 meeting when they’re asked to publicly vote in favour of a candidate to fill the position of Huntsville Ward Councillor.
Eligible Huntsville residents interested in the position of Huntsville Ward Councillor will have until February 7, 2020, to submit their name.
At its January 27 meeting, Huntsville councillors were presented with two options: appoint a ward councillor or hold a byelection for the position which became vacant when then-Councillor Karin Terziano was appointed as Mayor of Huntsville. Councillors voted in favour of appointing the person who would fill the position, particularly since running a byelection could cost an estimated $46,000, according to a report compiled by municipal clerk Tanya Calleja. In contrast, she stated that filling the position through an appointment process would instead cost about $2,000.
But assuming more than one candidate puts their name forward, councillors will be put in the uncomfortable position of openly choosing one candidate over another.
Those who will be watching the proceedings on the night councillors are asked to vote for their candidate may be forgiven for thinking they wound up at game show rather than a council meeting. Calleja explained that on that night councillors will be asked to hold up a card with the name of the candidate they choose. There may be several rounds of such voting, depending on the number of candidates who put their name forward, and through a process of elimination, council will ultimately appoint a candidate for the position.
If there’s a tie, it will be the clerk who may find herself in the hot seat. She will have to break the tie by selecting, by lot or sortation, the candidate to fill the council vacancy. You can find more about the procedure for appointing a councillor here.
If a councillor opts to run for the position, they would obviously be exempt from voting.
While anyone wanting to run for the Huntsville Ward Councillor position does not have to live in that ward, they do have to be 18 years of age or older and a Canadian citizen. You can find out more about the requirements to run for municipal office here, based on the 2018 municipal election.
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