Marystown Deputy Mayor Julie Mitchell surprised a lot of people when she announced last week she would not be running in this month's municipal elections.
A popular figure during her eight-year tenure on the town's council, she revealed her decision at last week's council meeting, explaining it was based on "truly personal reasons, some family issues and whatnot."
Nominations for the municipal election in Marystown closed Tuesday evening.
Mitchell joined Couns. Phonse Ward and Dave Brenton among the current crop of council members who will not seek re-election Sept. 29.
Couns. Albert Stacey, Keith Keating and Charles Wiscombe will be on the ballot.
At last week's meeting, Mayor Sam Synard also confirmed his intentions to run for the top chair again.
"I would like the opportunity, of course if people see it that way, to just continue some of the stuff that we've started here," Synard said. "Reflecting back on the last eight years on council, we've had a great run as a team."
He pointed to the Marystown Retirement Centre and new marine industrial park as a few of the accomplishments.
To those running again, he noted, "I think if we all continue to work together over the next while, if we're all successful in getting re-elected, I think we have a reasonable shot at really trying to do something with Mortier Bay. I honestly believe that."
Brenton, who has served a total of 10 years on council, suggested council members in many communities across the province seem to be stepping aside.
"I think it's an indication of the toughness of this job and how hard it can get in times. It takes a lot of dedication to be a municipal councillor in any town, and I think you're seeing that a lot of people are either giving it up or there's not a lot coming forward.
"Of all the things I've ever been involved with, which is a few, as with everybody here, this is probably one of the most demanding, and stressful at times, jobs I've ever had."
In the other major town on the peninsula, Grand Bank, where nominations closed last week, there will be a two-way race for the mayor's seat, with incumbent Rex Matthews and challenger Darrell LaFosse, a one-term councillor, vying for the position.
Among the remaining current council members, only Elaine Strowbridge and Bruce Warren are running again. Deputy Mayor Newman Bartlett, Couns. Howard Bonnell and George Cooper have decided not to run.
Seven others are vying for council: former mayor Clayton Welsh, Roger Brooks, Ron Bungay, Stan Burt, Henrietta Hillier, Travis Parsons and James Rose.
Most council members in Burin, including Mayor Kevin Lundrigan, will be seeking re-election later this month.
"I've enjoyed the last 12 years on council, and especially the last eight as mayor," Lundrigan said. "Things have gone relatively well in the town, and we've got things that we haven't got finished ... I certainly hope to be around to see them completed."
Couns. Shane Foote, Everett Farwell, Howard Lundrigan and Clyde Baker are all looking to return.
Deputy Mayor Ross Pitcher indicated, due to health reasons, unless something changed within the last week, it was unlikely he would be signing the nomination papers this time around.
Acclamation in Fortune
There will be a new mayor in the Town of Fortune.
Nominations closed Thursday evening, with just enough names to round out a council, meaning an election by acclamation. Former mayor Alex Noseworthy decided not to submit his name this time around.
Returning to council are James Dunne, Patrick Parsons and Charles Penwell, a former mayor. Joining them are Frazer Smith, Levi Curtis, Joanne Johnson and William Wright.
Also not running from the previous council were Kim Price, Terry Stacey and Mary Kearley.
A new mayor and deputy mayor will be determined by vote of councillors at the first meeting.
Meanwhile, St. Lawrence Mayor Wayde Rowsell said he planned to submit his name for nomination again.
He noted the tradition in the town is that the person who collects the most votes is first offered the mayoralty.
Rowsell said he felt he still has a lot to offer the community.
"There are great things happening here. We've got an ambitious capital works plan going. Our efforts towards economic stability are continuing, with hopes there will be a positive announcement on the reopening of the fluorspar mines very soon," Rowsell said.
"We're continuing to lobby government with regards to increasing capacity at the wind power site and, of course, we believe there's great opportunity towards tourism development here."
Deputy Mayor Paul Pike also acknowledged he would seek re-election.
Port aux Basques
Port aux Basques had just enough councillors to fill all the seats, and current mayor Brian Button had no challengers. There will be no election in Port aux Basques. In addition to Mayor Button, the councillors will be:
Gary D. White
Alfred Taylor will serve as mayor; he was appointed by acclamation. There are six council seats besides the mayor's. The names on the Burnt Islands ballot will be:
Ricky N. King
Lydia Ida Thorne
There are seven seats in Rose Blanche. The mayor is chosen by the council after the election. Names on the ballot will include:
Isle aux Morts
There are five seats available in Isle aux Morts. The council chooses the mayor after the election. The names on the ballot will be:
George A. Walters