Councillor wants end to resignation rule
A Winnipeg city councillor is hoping to change a rule forcing the resignation of municipal politicians if they choose to run for higher political office.
Coun. Gord Steeves (St. Vital) said it's wrong to force councillors out of office the moment they win a party nomination to run for a federal or provincial seat.
MLAs who run federally, Steeves said, are only forced to resign if they win in an election.
"There's no way to defend this legislation as any [way] fair or just," Steeves said.
"And it's not often that you can pick up a piece of legislation and say this is just plain wrong. But this truly is one of these instances."
A University of Manitoba professor agreed that the municipal rule appears to violate people's fundamental rights under the Charter of Rights and Freedoms, Steeves said.
City Council's Secretariat committee passed Steeves's motion to ask the province to repeal the law, which has been on the books for less than a decade.
Steeves said he didn't make the motion in advance of a run for a provincial seat, but admitted he may want a seat in the Manitoba legislature in the future.
The motion to repeal the rule must still pass a vote of the Executive Policy Committee and city council as a whole.