The council by-election planned for 21 May 2020 in the Craigentinny/Duddingston Ward has had to be postponed.
Due to the current public health advice around the control of the Coronavirus and under the provisions of the Coronavirus Act 2020, section 70, the returning officer will postpone the by-election for the vacancy.
Chief Executive Andrew Kerr, who is also Chief Returning Officer, said: “These are extraordinary circumstances and we’ve had to make significant changes over recent weeks to adapt to the situation. In order to protect the health of the public, in compliance with national guidance, we will be postponing the Council by-election to fill the Craigentinny/Duddingston vacancy created when Councillor Ian Campbell resigned last month.
“Once things return to normal and we have a rescheduled date for the by-election, we’ll be encouraging residents to take part in electing a candidate to this important role.”
Under the Local Government (Scotland) Act 1973 it is required that a vacancy is filled within three months of it arising, but in the circumstances this has been waived.
Although we put out a call to all who were going to stand in the by-election to contact us for interview, the only one who actually contacted us was Elaine Ford the Liberal Democrat candidate.
Elaine really wants to make a difference in the Ward, particularly in relation to roads and pavements. She is also concerned about speeding traffic and got the police to go out last year to conduct speed checks. No doubt she will stand at any reorganised by-election.
The vacancy on the council which should have 63 elected members was created by the resignation of Cllr Ian Campbell in February. Cllr Campbell resigned due to ill health.
As required by the Coronavirus Act the returning officer is consulting with the Scottish Ministers and the Convener of the Electoral Management Board for Scotland around his choice for a new date for the by-election. The Electoral Commission are also advising. All stakeholders will be advised of this new data as soon as it is finalised.
If you have any questions with respect to the postponement of the filling of the vacancy please do not hesitate to email the Elections team