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City of Corner Brook issues Coun. Tony Buckle violation notice for placement of campaign benches

Buckle.
Buckle.

The City of Corner Brook has issued a municipal regulation violation notice to Coun. Tony Buckle, but it remains to be seen it will have any impact on his seat on council.

Buckle, who was told to remove benches containing his campaign material from public property earlier in the municipal election campaign, placed four of the benches in close proximity to city hall on voting day Sept. 26.

In a post on the city’s website Tuesday afternoon, the city said it had received complaints about the bench placement on election day due to their proximity to the polling station located at St. John the Evangelist Church on Main Street and their obstruction of a city sidewalk.

The violation notice was issued under the City of Corner Brook Street Bylaw, which states no one can place or move anything on a sidewalk that might damage the sidewalk or curb or obstruct the free passage of the public.

That piece of municipal legislation has nothing specific to do with the election campaign, though.

While the city said it has also received requests to remove Buckle from his position on council, the city clarified it does not have the jurisdiction to address any alleged contraventions of the Municipal Elections Act.

The city’s statement noted that the remedy for anyone believing a candidate has committed an unlawful act that would disqualify that candidate from serving on council is to file a petition with the court in accordance with Section 68 of the Municipal Elections Act.

The Western Star checked with the Supreme Court of Newfoundland and Labrador’s Trial Division, which is where the Municipal Elections Act states such a petition has to be presented. As of Tuesday, no such petition had been filed.

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