MANITOULIN—The race is officially on for the 2018 municipal election on Manitoulin and Killarney and while Western Manitoulin residents generally seem content with their municipal affairs and councils have been acclaimed, it would seem the same can’t be said for part of the eastern region of the Island where many of the electoral races are competitive ones.
Gore Bay, Gordon-Barrie Island and Burpee and Mills have all acclaimed their councils. In Gore Bay, businessman Dan Osborne, a councillor on past terms of council, has been acclaimed as mayor. His council is made up of Kevin Woestnenek (incumbent), Aaron Wright, Paulie Nodecker, Patricia Bailey, Leanne Wostenenk and Ken Blodgett (incumbent), all acclaimed.
Gordon-Barrie Island’s council was also acclaimed with incumbent Reeve Lee Hayden remaining in office. Reeve Hayden’s council is as follows: John Turner, Marian Hester, John (Jack) Brady and Jack Bould (incumbent).
Burpee and Mills will see Reeve Ken Noland at the helm for another term with his council of fellow incumbents Wayne Lloyd Bailey, Arthur Hayden and Pentti Pallonen. New to the Burpee and Mills council table for 2018 is Martin Ainslie.
Cockburn Island’s council has also been acclaimed with Brenda Jones serving as mayor and Robert Brown, Glen Cressman, Evan Papineau and Scott Stewart serving as councillors.
There are three running for the mayor’s position in Billings Township with the news that Canada’s longest serving politician, Austin Hunt, at age 92, will not be seeking re-election. Mr. Hunt has served 65 years in municipal politics, first elected to Billings council in 1953.
The three candidates for Billings mayor are Ian Anderson, Barb Erskine and Margaret Tuomi. Ms. Erskine has served on the previous council and Ms. Tuomi is also a former Billings councillor and, in fact, she previously ran for the mayor’s position.
There are seven running to fill the four seats at the council table: Sharon Alkenbrack (incumbent), Bryan Barker, Paul Darlaston, Michael Hunt, Sandi Hurcomb (a former councillor and a one-time challenger for the mayor’s job), Sharon Jackson and Eric Parsons.
In Central Manitoulin, Mayor Richard Stephens has been acclaimed. There are contests in Wards 1 (Campbell) and 2 (Carnarvon). David Gilchrist, Angela Johnston and Derek Stephens (incumbent) are running for the two spots in Ward 1. John P. Bisaillon, Dale Scott (incumbent) and Steve Shaffer are running for the two spots for Ward 2.
Linda Farquhar (incumbent) has been acclaimed in Ward 3. No other residents agreed to let their name stand for the second councillor in the Sandfield ward. The election for Ward 3 will open today, Wednesday, August 1, and will be open from 9 am until 2 pm—one day only.
In Tehkummah, two are running for the position of reeve: Ron Hierons and David Jaggard, who have both served on Tehkummah council, Mr. Hierons as part of the most recent group. There are four spots on Tehkummah’s council table and nine candidates: Paul Bowerman (incumbent), James Fawcett, Jose Garcia, Karen Gerrard (the former clerk), Rick Gordon, Mary Catherine Johnston, Lorie Leeson (incumbent), Michael McKenzie (incumbent) and Eric Russell (incumbent, and reeve in the past term).
The Town of Northeastern Manitoulin Islands (Northeast Town) has two vying for the mayor’s position: incumbent Al MacNevin and two-term councillor Melissa Peters.
Laurie Cook has been acclaimed in Ward 1 while Ward 2 has four candidates for the three councillor positions: Barbara Baker, Al Boyd, Michael Erskine (incumbent) and Cody Leeson.
Bill Koehler (incumbent) and Sean O’Hare are running election for the sole Ward 3 seat while in Ward 4, Jim Ferguson, Dawn Orr (incumbent), Paul Skippen (incumbent) and Bruce Wood (incumbent) are running for the three seats.
The Northeast Town has also produced Manitoulin’s only two candidates for Rainbow District School Board trustee, Linda Erskine and Margaret Stringer.
Assiginack has the biggest race on its hands, with five running for mayor of that municipality. The candidates are Rodney (Barney) Deforge, Dave Ham (who has previously served as Assiginack reeve and councillor), Paul Moffatt (incumbent), Michael Phillips and Brenda Reid (who currently serves as councillor).
There are four seats around the Assiginack council table with nine candidates running in the election: Keith Harfield, Jennifer Hooper, Christiana Jones, Bill Lafleur, Rob Maguire, Dave McDowell, Hugh Moggy (incumbent), Joyce O’Connor and Tom Pudas.
In Killarney, there are two candidates for the position of mayor, incumbent Ginny Rook and Geoff Cosh.
In Killarney’s Ward 1, there are four candidates for the three available positions of councillor: Eileen Lewis (incumbent), Nancy Wirtz (incumbent), Michael Reider (incumbent) and Barbara Anne Haitse. In Ward 2, Pierre Paquette (incumbent), John Dimitrijevic and Jim Rook (incumbent) are running for the two available seats.
The Ontario municipal elections take place on Monday, October 22.