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Minister appoints mayor for Wellington after no one comes forward to lead community

Alcide Bernard, Mayor of Wellington.
Alcide Bernard has been appointed as mayor of Wellington by Communities Minister Richard Brown. - Contributed

WELLINGTON, P.E.I. - The provincial government has resorted to appointing a mayor for the Rural Municipality of Wellington after no one came forward for the job.

Communities Minister Richard Brown announced Thursday that Alcide Bernard has been appointed mayor of his community for a term effective Dec. 7 until Dec. 6, 2022.

Bernard was the previous chairmen and then mayor of Wellington before and after the new Municipalities Act was passed. However, he announced prior to the Nov. 5 election that he wanted to step away from the roll and encouraged another to take up the mantle.

“I wanted to leave the opportunity for others this time,” said Bernard, who previously served four terms as the mayor.

“It’s always nice to be able to contribute to your community, and I’ve certainly done as best as I could to serve.”

However, it appears no one was interested in taking on the responsibility as no one came forward to run in the election.

The minister said he is grateful Bernard has agreed to keep the position.

“I want to express my sincere appreciation to Alcide Bernard for his past service as mayor of the Rural Municipality of Wellington and thank him for accepting this appointment,” said Brown.

“He played a key role in the implementation of the Municipal Government Act which is helping to modernize our municipalities and helping them deal with the complex challenges facing both urban and rural areas.”

According to the Department of Communities, Land and Environment, Wellington is the only municipality in the province where the minister has had to appoint someone as mayor. All the other municipalities either had someone acclaimed or had to hold an election.

It takes a minimum of four councillors to have a quorum and allow a municipal government to operate. If there had been a community with less than four candidates, Brown would have had to appoint people to be councillors. However, enough people came forward in all the municipalities, including Wellington, to avoid having to appoint people.

Related: Wellington, P.E.I., a place where no one wants to be the mayor

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