Local News Walkerton Herald-Times

Vacant Brockton council seat to be filled by appointment

BROCKTON – Brockton council has opted to accept applications to fill a vacant council seat left by the resignation of Chris Oberle.

Oberle resigned his seat on council on Nov. 12 to take a position as a prosecutor with the City of Toronto.

Applicants for the vacant council seat will go through an interview process with council prior to the successful candidate being chosen.

“It allows for broad participation from the community,” said Mayor Chris Peabody. “We’ve already had a lot of interest in this position.”

Peabody said this is the best option because it allows for a wide range of people to apply from different sectors of the community, thus creating a broad pool of people that are interested in serving on council.

Council rejected two other options that included holding a byelection or appointing the person who had the most votes in the last municipal election in 2018.

Peabody said the option of holding a byelection would have cost upwards of $35,000 to mail out all of the ballots and to conduct the election.

“We decided, based on the costs, that it would be better for council to interview applicants and then have a selection process,” said Peabody.

Plans are to hold the selection process in open council.

THE PROCESS

Those wishing to apply for the vacant council seat are required to complete an application package that includes a nomination form, declaration of qualification form and a Freedom of Information release form.

Applicants are also asked to submit a personal statement of qualification for council’s consideration. These statements are to be typed on letter size (8.5” by 11”) paper and shall not exceed two pages in length (printed one-sided), and must include the candidate’s name and address.

A copy of the application package is available online at www.brockton.ca/CouncilVacancy
The completed package is to be submitted, in person, at the Brockton municipal office in Walkerton. Packages will be accepted from now until Wednesday, Jan. 15 between the hours of 8:30 a.m. and 2 p.m.

Applicants that are certified registered candidates will have an opportunity to address council for up to 10 minutes and may be asked questions by council during a special council meeting on Jan. 21, 2020 at 10 a.m. in the council chambers at the Bruce County administration building at 30 Park Street in Walkerton.

The successful candidate will be selected and sworn in as the new councillor that day.

– With files from Mike Wilson