Tracadie-Sheila MLA, Keith Chiasson is urging government and Elections NB to address major concerns with withholding province-wide election results due to lockdowns in some sectors of Zone 4. Refraining from counting, reporting and recording votes for an undetermined period of time will create significant hardship for municipalities.
“The problem is that if all the municipal election results are withheld for any length of time, it could leave municipalities in limbo at a time when many important decisions might be required”, said Chiasson
Chiasson believes the province must act quickly to tie up loose ends and provide solutions to address these concerns.
“Many municipal results have already been announced due to acclamation, and these newly formed councils are ready and eager to get to work. Our municipalities have a job to do, and we can’t tie their hands by denying them the power to do so. Issuing tenders or other decisions that are time sensitive need to be addressed as soon as possible, so having municipalities be on caretaker mode for an extended period will put them at risk of missing their 2021 targets and objectives.”
Chiasson believes government and Elections NB need to explain why this decision seems to be the only solution to ensure fairness in the municipal electoral process.
“We just went through a provincial election late last year and even though the pandemic has thrown us a few curveballs, Elections NB was able to get the job done by making sure that everyone’s democratic right was respected. This is another issue that we need to deal with, said Chiasson