ELECTION DAY: Candidates had their say; Now it’s all up to you

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Municipal voters go to the polls on Monday to choose their local councils and school boards.

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Across the Greater Toronto Area, incumbents like Toronto Mayor John Tory and Brampton Mayor Patrick Brown are trying to fend off challengers.

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And in Brampton, city officials were working Sunday to find at least 150 workers needed to run that municipality’s election.

Former provincial Liberal leader Steven Del Duca is seeking mayor of Vaughan, while former provincial NDP leader Andrea Horwath is running for mayor of Hamilton.

Eight councilor positions in Toronto are vacant.

The election for councilor for Scarborough North will continue despite the death of incumbent Cynthia Lai on Friday, as there are three other candidates in the running.

Ballots already cast for Lai in advance or by mail will not be counted, but his supporters will no longer be allowed to vote.

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Polling stations are open from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.

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In Brampton, city officials sent out a massive request — less than 24 hours before polls opened Monday morning — for staff needed to work on the election, according to the CBC. City officials posted a tweet on Sunday afternoon insisting they had enough trained workers to organize the elections.

In addition to choosing city council members, voters will also choose a local school trustee from one of four school boards – Anglophone Catholic, Anglophone Public, Francophone Catholic and Francophone Public.

Two races of French-language administrators in Toronto – in the public 3-Centre neighborhood and the Catholic neighborhood -Toronto East- will be decided in by-elections at a later date after election officials found some candidates ineligible because they spoke no French, had no children in French-language schools and had not attended a Canadian French-language school.

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Vaughan Council increases by one position to 10 members.

An analysis by the Association of Municipalities of Ontario (AMO) of the 2022 election found 6,306 candidates across the province, with 1,931 candidates – or 31% – being women.

The same analysis found 582 acclaimed candidates and 32 fully acclaimed counsel because they had no contest.

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“There has been an increase in the total number of acclaimed candidates,” AMO noted, including 139 mayors and prefects in 2022.

Voter turnout in municipal elections tends to be lower than in provincial or federal elections.

Just over 38% of eligible voters turned out in the 2018 municipal elections.

The Ontario vote that returned Doug Ford’s government to power in June attracted 43% of eligible voters, the lowest turnout in provincial election history.


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