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No by-election to fill Esquimalt council seat before October’s general vote

Council votes to complete term with six members after councillor’s resignation
Township of Esquimalt Coun. Jane Vermeulen has announced her resignation, which will take effect as of July 15. (Courtesy of Township of Esquimalt)

Esquimalt council has voted not to hold a by-election for the seat of a resigning councillor three months before October’s municipal elections.

Councillors at Monday’s meeting voted unanimously to not hold the additional vote as they can still go about business as usual despite Coun. Jane Vermeulen giving up her seat for a veterinary position in the U.S.

The township is not required to hold a by-election for a council vacancy that occurs after July 1 of an election year. Only six scheduled council meetings remain this term.

Residents will go to the polls, at the Esquimalt Recreation Centre, for the general election on Oct. 15.

READ: Esquimalt councillor ending term early with resignation

Vermeulen is ending her term early to accept a position as the medical director of the South Carolina Veterinary Specialty and Emergency Care clinic and to ensure her children can start at the new school on time.

In addition to her work on council, Vermeulen is a veterinarian and advocate for homeless and low-income pet owners. She founded Vets for Pets Victoria, which offers free monthly pet care at Our Place Society.

“I have immensely enjoyed my time as a resident of Esquimalt for over 15 years and as a councillor since 2018,” Vermeulen said in a news release. “The past four years have been extraordinary in terms of challenges and opportunities we faced at municipal government.”

READ: How to vote and your ballot options for the upcoming municipal election

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