Update from the City Clerk on Ward 7 By-Election

Posted on Monday July 20, 2020

As the province moves forward with its reopening framework, the Clerk’s Office is preparing a report for Council to advance the Ward 7 By-Election safely. I am expecting the report to be finalized this summer and the election to be held this fall, pending public health directives.

The by-election process must follow and consider the rules, procedural timeframes, legal considerations, and regulations of a regular election. The added complexity continues to be the evolving pandemic, emergency measures, and public safety. Additional precautions must be in place to protect everyone involved in the election process and to ensure all voters in Ward 7, including those most vulnerable to the COVID-19 virus, have equal opportunity to vote.

After both the City and Province declared a State of Emergency in March, I declared an emergency pursuant to Section 53 of the Ontario Municipal Election Act and postponed the Ward 7 by-election. The Act gives the Clerk independent authority and oversight over municipal elections.

In addition to participating in a by-election working group with election officials in other Ontario municipalities that also have vacant seats, I have been in regular communication with Public Health officials to review requirements and precautionary measures to be incorporated into revised election procedures.

I appreciate the understanding and patience of the residents of Ward 7, and recognize the importance of having representation at Council.  As such, my focus and responsibility is to deliver a safe by-election as soon as possible given the circumstances, to maintain the integrity of the election process, and to ensure a fair and democratic election overall.

Until a Ward 7 representative is in place, specific questions or concerns from Ward 7 residents can continue to be directed to the Mayor's Office or any member of Council for assistance and follow-up. I am pleased to help coordinate as well.  

Danielle Manton
City Clerk
City of Cambridge