Changes coming at NESD board after election deadlines pass

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There will be one contested race on Nov. 9 and one upcoming by-election in the race for trustee in the North East School Division (NESD). Subdivision 5, which was represented by former chair Luke Perkins and serves Star City, Gronlid and Naicam, will be vacant after no candidates came forward in two calls for nominations.

That means that in that subdivision, no voting will take place Nov. 9 but when the new board holds their first meeting a by-election for the subdivision will be declared, according to a notice posted by the NESD.

In Subdivision 1, which serves Hudson Bay, Kathy Bank was the lone nominee and won by acclamation and will replace former trustee Linda Erickson.

Former longtime trustee and former Carrot River mayor Bob Gagne also decided not to run again in Subdivision 2, which serves Carrot River and White Fox. Carrot River Administrator Kevin Trew and farmer/businessman Mervin Edwards of Arborfield will now be facing off in the lone election for a seat.

Dustin Kelsey of Choiceland is the lone nominee for Subdivision 3, which serves Nipawin rural, Choiceland and White Fox.

In Subdivision 4, which serves the City of Melfort, Kevin Graham has won the seat by acclamation. According to his biography, he is employed at Bourgault Industries and has lived in Melfort for 17 years.

Melfort was formerly represented by two subdivisions until the board redrew districts in February. After the election in 2016, current Melfort MLA Todd Goudy and Randy Ariss were elected to those seats. After Goudy was elected in a by-election in March 2019 the board left his seat vacant. Ariss passed away in December 2019 and Perkins temporarily oversaw Melfort for the board until the end of the last term.

In Subdivision 6, returning trustee Lori Kidney will return to serve Tisdale proper after the boundaries were redrawn. She previously served Naicam and Tisdale rural in the old Subdivision 4. Former Subdivision 6 trustee Richard Hildebrand did not let his name stand for another term.

Subdivision 7, which serves Porcupine Plain and Bjorkdale will see longtime trustee Ted Kwiatkowski return by acclamation.

Former longtime deputy chair Marla Walton returns for another term serving the Town of Nipawin. Not running for another term in Nipawin, which now has one trustee position after redrawing of subdivisions, is Michael Botterill.

In February, the board of the NESD passed unanimously a motion to reduce the number of board members from 10 to eight, which meant redrawing some electoral boundaries.

The board now includes representatives from Hudson Bay, Carrot River – Arborfield, Nipawin, Nipawin Rural-Choiceland-White Fox, Melfort, Melfort Rural, Naicam-Gronlid-Star City, Tisdale and Tisdale Rural.