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Municipal election campaigns kick into high gear

By: Darren MacDonald - Sudbury Northern Life

 | Sep 03, 2014 - 2:28 PM |
Voters across Ontario will be electing new municipal governments Oct. 27. File photo.

Voters across Ontario will be electing new municipal governments Oct. 27. File photo.

Platform announcements planned, headquarters opening

 With the Labour Day weekend in the books, municipal candidates are kicking their campaigns into high gear, with some high-profile candidates coming out with policy announcements and opening their campaign offices this week.

Businessman Dan Melanson will open his office Thursday in the same Paris Street building used in the June provincial campaign by now NDP MPP Joe Cimino during the provincial campaign.

 The launch goes at 5:30 p.m. Also on Thursday, former Auditor General Brian Bigger will release his first campaign platform since he launched his bid for the mayor's job last month. Bigger will hold a news conference at 10:30 a.m. outside of the new Greater Sudbury Transit Garage on Lorne Street.

While offering no clues about the actual platform, a release from Bigger's campaign says Bigger will “share his first platform plank, and how he will take back Sudbury for Sudburians.”

Candidates sign up, withdraw as nomination date nears
With the Sept. 12 deadline to register to run in the Oct. 27 vote, voters are getting a better idea of who is running – and who isn't.

Last week, two candidates dropped out of the race for city council, with Ian Heft pulling out of the race in Ward 1, and Adam Toews dropping out of the race in Ward 9.

Several people have joined the race in recent weeks, including former city councillor Mila Wong, who's running in Ward 10, as well as Stefano Prezenza (Ward 8), Tom Trainor (Ward 1) and Joseph Palmateer (Ward 2).

A record number of candidates have signed up to run in the October vote, where there are more vacancies to be filled since the city's inaugural election at the turn of the century. There are no incumbents running for mayor, and no incumbents running in Wards 1, 5 and 8.

And councillors in Ward 3 (Claude Berthiaume), Ward 9 (Doug Craig) and Ward 10 (Frances Caldarelli) have either announced or are expected to announce that they are not running again. That would mean seven of the 13 spots on city council will have new faces on Oct. 28.

Meeting moved to avoid lame duck status

In addition to being the nomination deadline, Sept. 12 is also the day councillors would achieve lame-duck status. Under provincial rules, a city council can't make major decisions after Sept. 12 if there is no chance that a majority of them will be back after the election.

The idea is that people who don't have to worry about re-election shouldn't be able to make big decisions that will affect their successors. To get around that rule, September's city council meeting has been moved up a week, to Sept. 9 instead of the original Sept. 16 date.

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Darren MacDonald

Darren MacDonald

Staff Writer


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