Residents sought to fill vacant position
GORE BAY – Gore Bay council will be appointing a new councillor to fill a seat left vacant after Councillor Patricia Bailey announced her resignation from council at a meeting held this past Monday.
“Patricia (Bailey) is resigning from council, unfortunately,” Mayor Dan Osborne said at the council meeting.
Town Clerk Stasia Carr explained to council that the first step they need to take to fill the vacant seat is to accept Councillor Bailey’s resignation. “Then council will have to look at how we are going to fill the vacant council position, by either holding a by-election or appointing someone to council and advertising for people to put their name forward to apply for the vacant council seat,” she said.
Councillor Leeanne Woestenenk put forward a motion, with Councillor Kevin Woestenenk as the seconder to accept Councillor Bailey’s resignation from council, effective August 11. Council passed the motion with regret.
“We want to thank you for serving on council, and for everything you have done as a member of council,” said Mayor Osborne. “Hopefully everything goes well for you in your new life.”
It was pointed out Councillor Bailey is resigning for personal reasons and is moving to Iron Bridge.
The next part of the process was for council to declare the vacant seat on council, with Councillor Kevin Woestenenk bringing forward the motion and Councillor Aaron Wright seconding the motion.
“Now we need to discuss how we are going to fill the vacant seat on council,” said Mayor Osborne.
“If council wants to appoint someone, we would have to advertise for people to put their names forward,” said Councillor Ken Blodgett.
Mayor Osborne said appointing a new councillor is how council has filled vacant seats on council in the past.
“By appointing someone to council we wouldn’t have to have a by-election,” said Councillor Ken Blodgett.
“Yes, we would have to advertise for people to put their names forward and we would then appoint someone to council; or we could hold a by-election which would cost us (the town) money to hold,” said Mayor Osborne.
“If we have more than one person who puts an application forward for council, it comes back to council and we debate this and who we are going to select,” said Mayor Osborne. Council must fill the vacant council position within 60 days of the councillor seat being vacant.
Council agreed that they would opt for the option of advertising in both Manitoulin newspapers for local residents to forward their resume, and that they will then appoint someone to council.
“This doesn’t stop councillors from approaching someone that you think might be a good candidate for council and ask them if they are interested in being on council,” added Mayor Osborne.
Ms. Bailey told the Recorder after the meeting, “I loved being on council. It gave me the opportunity to learn new things and represent the town. I am relocating to Iron Bridge for personal reasons. I am still keeping my current job, but I am working at home.”
“If I move back (to Gore Bay) I would definitely run for council again. I definitely enjoyed my experience on council.”