Village of Donnelly will be going forward with a byelection in February to fill its fifth elected official position on council.
Council chose Feb. 20 as nomination day, with municipal byelection to be held on March 20, if necessary.
“Being on council is a way for people to give back to the community, set policy, write bylaws and overview the budget,” says Mayor Myrna Lanctot.
“By giving your time on council you are setting a standard for a safe, caring community for every resident that lives within the village of Donnelly.”
Lanctot explains interested residents will have to have the ability to set aside some time for their council role, should they be elected. She explains council members are expected to read council and committee packages before meetings.
“There are committees appointed to each councillor and some courses that you will be obliged to participate in,” she says.
“It is always good if you can attend the Alberta Municipalities Association conference each year. This conference provides you with knowledge and allows you to see what other municipalities are doing to address issues or concerns,” she adds.
Lanctot says all municipal elected officials are expected to follow the Municipal Government Act (MGA), reminding candidates that the MGA states that voting during meetings is a mandatory obligation.
“As a councillor, you vote on what you think the majority of residents would want, not what you want,” she says.
“I believe that an open mind is key to making the best decisions, listen to all the information, do some research if required, and then vote on what makes sense for the residents.”
The Village is hoping they can attract a number of potential candidates to hold a full election in the municipality.
Recently in a letter from Municipal Affairs Minister Rebecca Shulz, she suggested the Village to possibly reduce their elected officials to three members before the next general municipal election in 2025. She also urged the municipality to communicate with electors on the importance of establishing elected representation.
“Council needs to be open and consider all options, especially if the minister is asking us to consider it,” says Lanctot.
“I personally feel it is important to consider any and all options in hopes that the best solution for the village becomes implemented.”