Chris Clegg,
Editor, South Peace News

I took this stand a few years ago and wrote a column on the matter.

This week, I do the same.

Last week, Councillor Brian Gilroy asked if I would sign his nomination papers to run for the High Prairie town council. I did.

In fact, if asked, I will sign anyone’s nomination papers.

There is no way I would provide any road block to anyone seeking a seat on town council. Perhaps I have a misguided view, but I strongly believe we should all encourage all citizens to become involved in local government in any way possible, including signing papers.

Besides, just because you sign anyone’s nomination papers does not mean you support the candidate. Granted, it does give one the perception you are supporting the candidate, but no one knows what goes on behind the closed doors of the voting booth.

I am reminded of a PC nomination meeting in Fairview many years ago. A woman ran for the nomination. I am assuming she had to get at least six signatures to support her nomination. She and three others went to the meeting in Fairview from an outlying community. On the first ballot she received two votes?

Two votes!

On the way home, she muttered that even her friends did not support her.

“I didn’t vote for you,” proclaimed her husband.

I bet the doghouse wasn’t empty that night!

Anyone is allowed to examine nomination papers after they are filed. I respect the right to examine the papers to see if the nominator can sign legally. It is part of the process.

However, I do not understand why the tongues start wagging in the coffee shops when word spreads around of who signed whose papers. Is it really that important or are some people too desperate for conversation?

It is difficult to persuade people to run for council. Sometimes they are leery. Some may be nervous. It is a big step.

Should we not encourage, rather than discourage, people who show an interest?

Or, are you so happy with the current candidates that you want no change?

Keep in mind, if you need your nomination papers signed, I am not hard to find.


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