Sioux Lookout Municipal Election by the numbers
Tim Brody - Editor
The people have voted and the results are in.
Doug Lawrance was re-elected Sioux Lookout mayor in the October 22 Municipal Election with 717 votes.
Dennis Leney finished second in the race for mayor with 565 voters.
Jason Bailey finished third with 474 votes.
Residents were asked to elect five councillors-at-large.
Cory Lago and Joe Cassidy were elected as new councillors, joining re-elected councillors Joyce Timpson, Cal Southall and John Bath.
Lago received 1254 votes, Timpson 1052, Southall 988, Cassidy 910 and John Bath received 786 votes.
Don Fenelon had already been acclaimed Ward 1 (Hudson) councillor.
The rest of the results were as follows: Yolaine Kirlew – 765 votes, Darlene Angeconeb – 735 votes, Ron Bird – 536 votes, Debbie Baker – 461 votes, and Steven Forbes 410 votes.
Voter turnout in Sioux Lookout was 55.2 per cent, or 1767 of 3200 eligible voters.
Voter turnout in the previous Municipal Election in 2014 was 55.95 per cent.
“Based on a cursory review of voter turnout numbers throughout the region, of the larger communities (Sioux Lookout, Dryden, Kenora and Red Lake – all of which used the telephone/internet voting method), Sioux Lookout had the highest voter turnout (in 2018) informed municipal clerk and manager of corporate services Brian P. MacKinnon.
Asked about feedback received using a telephoneinternet voting method for the first time in Sioux Lookout, MacKinnon shared, “The overall feedback regarding the Internet/Telephone alternative voting methods was positive. Many people seemed to appreciate the convenience afforded by these methods. In fact, we heard many people say, “Wow! That was quick and easy,” after voting online at the Municipal Office.
“Some people did raise some concerns, but I am confident we were able to provide the supports to individuals who were uncomfortable with the voting methods. I will be bringing a post-election Report to Council in early 2019, which will comment on the election and include recommendations for consideration for future elections.”
The 2018-2022 Term of Council commences
on December 1.
The newly elected council will be sworn in at a private ceremony on December 1, repeating their Oath of Office at an inaugural special meeting of council, which will likely take place during the first week of December.
The newly elected council will hold its first regular meeting on December 19.
Six members of council needed to be re-elected for council to avoid a “Restricted Acts” (lame duck) period from now until the end of this term of council (November 30).
With five members of council returning, the following restrictions will be placed upon the current council until December 1 when the new council is sworn in:
(a) appointing or removing from office of any officer of the municipality;
(b) the hiring or dismissal of any employee of the Municipality of Sioux Lookout;
(c) disposing of any real or personal property of the municipality which has a value exceeding $50,000 at the time of disposal; and,
(d) making any expenditures or incurring any other liability which exceeds $50,000.
MacKinnon further clarified, “Please note that clause (b) does not apply as the authority for the hiring or dismissal of any employee of the Municipality has been delegated to the CAO (or Acting CAO). Clauses c) and d) do not apply if the exceeding disposition or liability was included in the most recent budget adopted by Council prior to Nomination Day. Section 275(6) of the Municipal Act provides that even if the Restricted Acts section is engaged, it does not affect any delegation of authority which has been properly granted prior to Nomination Day. Council's existing delegations under the Delegation By-law and the Purchasing By-law are not impacted by the aforementioned
MacKinnon added, “Also, Council passed By-law No. 49-18, Being a By-law to Authorize the Delegation of Authority to the Acting Chief Administrative Officer, the Chief Administrative Officer, the Treasurer and the Clerk to Conduct Certain Business of The Corporation of the Municipality of Sioux Lookout and its Council during the 2018 Municipal Election Restricted Acts Periods. Essentially, any acts for which Council may become restricted, the aforementioned staff may carry out these functions on Council’s behalf during the restricted period (if applicable). By-law 49-18 has a sunset date of November 30, 2018 (meaning it is no longer in force after that date).”
MacKinnon commented, “I am very grateful to the Sioux Lookout voters for participating in the election, and for showing kindness and consideration to our election staff when interacting with them – whether those interactions were related to getting their name on the voters list, requesting information on the election process, or posing questions or raising concerns.”
Sioux Lookout Mayor Doug Lawrance shared with residents following his re-election, “Thank you for your vote of confidence. There are so many good things going on in our community and so much more coming. I am both humbled and privileged to be able to lead the community at this time. I look forward to working with Council to do what we can to improve the quality of life for all residents of Sioux Lookout.”
Asked what items he sees as a priority and would like to address in the upcoming term of council, Lawrance shared, “My priorities were set out during the election campaign and included: housing, social issues and policing, roads and infrastructure, relieve residential tax burden, long term care for seniors, new recreation facilities, economic development, upgrade sidewalks & trails, advocacy and engagement, truth and reconciliation, support arts & culture programs. I think these overlap with many of those elected to Council. An additional priority for me is enhancing how we as a Municipality communicate to the community. By we, I include myself as Mayor, Council and Councillors, and the
administrative / operational
Asked his thoughts on the new council he will be tackling these items with, he commented, “Each and every Councillor brings their own perspective and priorities to the Council table. Our strategic planning sessions will take place soon and that will help to define overall Council priorities and individual Councillor passions. As for any Council, ensuring that we are acting in the best interest of the community as a whole will help to guide our decisions.”
Lawrance concluded by stating, “I would like to thank all of those who I was able to talk to as I knocked on doors through the election campaign. The citizens of Sioux Lookout proved to me that they are overwhelmingly polite, positive, and community-minded. I would like to acknowledge and congratulate all those who ran for Council, whether elected or not, it is a true act of civic engagement. It continues to be my belief that those who run and those who are elected all care passionately about their community.
“I would also like to acknowledge the two out-going Councillors who were not re-elected, Councillors Kirlew and Forbes, for all their positive efforts on behalf of Sioux Lookout. And finally, I would like to say how much I look forward to working with Municipal Staff through another four year term. While elections may be the expression of democracy, it is the administration and staff of the Municipality who maintain the institutions of democracy on behalf of all