By-election date set for rural Houston area

Seat became open when Rob Newell passed away

Rob Newell (file photo)

Rob Newell (file photo)

The Regional District of Bulkley-Nechako has set Feb. 29, 2020 as the day for a by-election to replace Rob Newell as the director for Area G, the rural area surrounding Houston.

Newell passed away Nov. 20.

And under a section of the Local Government Act, the alternate director for Area G, Andrea Newell, is to be the director until the by-election is held.

Setting of the by-election date now sets in motion a series of preparations, including seeking people to be nominated to run.

An advance poll date of Feb. 19, 2020 has already been determined.

Newell had represented the Houston Rural area since he was elected in 2011. He was 74.

Among his various responsibilities, Newell was a strong supporter of the North West Resource Benefits Alliance (RBA), a coalition of 21 local governments across the Northwest.

Formed in 2014, the RBA includes all member municipalities and electoral areas of the Regional District of Bulkley-Nechako, the Regional District of Kitimat-Stikine, and the North Coast Regional District.

The coalition was created to negotiate financial agreements with the province to ensure the region draws a tax benefit from economic development activity which falls outside local government boundaries.