Amendment to The Local Government Elections Act, 2015 Provisions Concerning Nominations for Reeve in a By-Election
Res #: 11-23M
Responses Received: Yes
Departments: Saskatchewan Ministry of Government Relations
WHEREAS both rural and urban municipalities are governed by the same legislation, being The Local Government Election Act, 2015, and have little need for different election procedures concerning by-elections, or when an incumbent from an even division wishes to run for reeve in a general election for the reeve and odd divisions.
WHEREAS the election procedures differ for by-elections and general elections for the reeve and odd divisions in Sections 71(1)(a)(ii), 71(2), 72(1)(b), 72(2), and 72(3)(b).
WHEREAS requiring current councillors to resign before a by-election, or before running for reeve during a general election for the reeve and odd divisions, is inconsistent with the provisions for urban municipal councillors running for mayor in a mayoral by-election.
WHEREAS requiring current councillors to resign before a by-election, or before running for reeve during a general election for the reeve and odd divisions, can create a lack of quorum if there is interest amongst multiple current council members.
WHEREAS requiring current councillors to resign to run in a by-election, or before running for reeve during a general election for the reeve and odd divisions, necessitates that further by-elections must be held to fill council vacancies.
WHEREAS running numerous successive by-elections is both expensive and time-consuming for a municipality.
BE IT RESOLVED that SARM lobby the provincial government to amend Section 72 of The Local Government Election Act, 2015 to include a provision similar to Subclause 71(1)(a)(ii) and Subsection 71(2) to allow current councillors the ability to run for reeve in a by-election, or for incumbents in even divisions to run for reeve in a general election for the reeve and odd divisions, without needing to resign prior to nomination OR to remove the provisions in Subsection 72(2) and Clause 72(3)(b) which force such resignations and amend Section 71 to apply to both urban and rural municipalities.
Responses From: Saskatchewan Ministry of Government Relations
December 7, 2023
- The Ministry of Government Relations (ministry) is open to proposals that would establish greater consistency regarding the eligibility of incumbents to run for office without
- The amendment described in the resolution was previously included in amendments to The Local Government Election Act in 2008, and then withdrawn after objections from rural municipal
- Following the introduction of those amendments, the Saskatchewan Association of Rural Municipalities and the Rural Municipal Administrators’ Association of Saskatchewan indicated the change would result in inequity. In an election for reeve, a councillor in the middle of their term could keep their seat and run for reeve, while a councillor whose term is ending must choose between running for reeve or running for councillor. As a result, a house amendment was made, restoring the original wording that requires a sitting councillor to resign to run for
- Urban municipalities hold all elections in the same year, while rural municipalities stagger their elections every two years for half of The only way to achieve full equity for all candidates in rural municipalities would be to hold all elections in the same year.
- The ministry will consider consulting further on this change when The Local Government Election Act, 2015 is next open for
The Honourable Don McMorris – Minister of Government Relations, Saskatchewan Ministry of Government Relations