It’s election season here in Guelph! The nominations are open for this fall’s Municipal Election, and interested residents are filing their papers to run for positions as mayor, for city council and for a spot on one of the local school boards. Each week, this space will break down who’s new to the race, who’s running again, and where we’re still waiting for someone to show an interest!
We’re still on “Billings Watch” this week. She remains the only member of city council who has yet to announce her intentions for the election this fall.
We’re still waiting for almost all the incumbents from the local school board races to declare whether they will run again. So far, we only know the fate of Upper Grand District School Board Chair Linda Busuttil, who is trying her luck running for Ward 4 City Councillor, and her colleague Mark Bailey, who said at the last school board meeting of the year that it’s his intention to retire at the end of the term.
In other school board news, there were actually some filings this week. Kyle Reaburn and Ralf Mesenbrink both joined the race to represent Wards 2,3 and 4 on the Upper Grand Board. Reaburn, according to his campaign website, works for a non-profit health advocacy group, while Mesenbrink is an educator and volunteer at West Willow Village, where he helps out alongside his wife, Linda Busuttil. This is now a three-person race with Jamal Nasir, who filed his papers way back on May 19.
There are also some new people in two of the council races. Dhruv Shah is now the sixth person to file their papers to run in Ward 1 while Raymond Sartor has become the sixth person to run in Ward 2. Both wards have one vacancy thanks to the retirement of current councillors Bob Bell and James Gordon, and both wards have been heavily reconfigured thanks to the ward boundary review.
Shah is a local businessman who is one driving forces behind the Western Ontario and Canadian Hindu Chamber of Commerce, which met last week at the Royal Canadian Legion. Information about Sartor though was a little harder to find, though he did write a letter of support to Committee of Adjustment supporting the revitalization of the 60 Ontario Street property.
Tuesday will officially mark the beginning of the one-month countdown to the close of nominations. Again, that deadline for applying to run for mayor, city council, or any of the school board positions is August 19 at 2 pm. Election Day is October 24.