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Posted on: March 25, 2021

Council vacancy to remain until October 2021 Election

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The vacancy left on Town of High Level Council by the passing of Coun. Ellis Forest in March will remain until the Municipal Election scheduled for October 2021.

“The earliest possible date that a councillor could be elected would be May 7, which only leaves a handful of meetings prior to the general election in October of this year,” said Town CAO Clark McAskile. “It is Administration’s recommendation that Council not hold a by-election to fill Coun. Forest’s vacancy.”

Council made the decision during their regular meeting on March 22.

With the impending election, it was generally agreed that there is not sufficient time to fill the position by holding a by-election before the position would be contested again in October.

The Municipal Government Act, which is the governing mechanism for municipalities, states that by-elections must be held to fill empty positions unless certain conditions are met. One of these conditions, “council consists of six or more councillors and the vacancy occurs in the 18 months before a general election and there is only one vacancy,” applies to the current conditions of Town of High Level Council.

The earliest day a by-election could be held is May 7, 2021. The successful candidate in that by-election would then face re-election again in October.

The Alberta Municipal Election is scheduled for Oct. 3.

Council moves to fill empty Committee spots

Monday’s Council meeting also gave Council an opportunity to fill committee spots left vacant by the passing of Coun. Ellis Forest. As he was an active member of Council, there were a number of vacancies left to fill, including:

Community Futures of Northwest Alberta – Mayor Crystal McAteer

High Level Policing Society – Coun. Brent Anderson

High Level Transportation Society – Coun. Mike Morgan

High School Bursary Committee – Coun. Jan Welke

Mackenzie Regional Waste Management Commission – Deputy Mayor Boyd Langford

Water North Coalition – Coun. Mike Morgan.

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