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City of Vancouver hosts ‘Candidate 101’ classes for political newbies

Meetings run July 3 and July 14 at city hall
council 101
All the joys of being a city councillor will be outlined at a pair of information sessions on July 3 and July 14 at Vancouver city hall.

Long hours, endless scrutiny and marathon meetings can all be yours come election time on Oct. 20.

But before diving head-long into politics, the city is offering a primer on public service for prospective councillors, park board commissioners and school trustees.

The first of two sessions is being offered at city hall on July 3 from 6:30 to 8 p.m. The second meeting is scheduled from 10:30 a.m. until noon on July 14.

The meetings will cover the basics around civic life: duties, time commitments and all the other nuts and bolts a politician needs to know.

The city’s chief election officer, Rosemary Hagiwara, will lead each session and will be joined by staff from both the park board and B.C. School Trustee Association.

Attendees are asked to pre-register online for the sessions, though doing so isn’t mandatory.

The July 3 registration link is at candidate101-july3.eventbrite.com, while the July 14 session is found online at candidate101-july14.eventbrite.com.

Nomination packages will be accepted from Sept. 4 to Sept. 14 in person at city hall.

Between now and then, here are some basic tips on what’s needed and what to expect for prospective candidates.

  •  Must be 18 or older as of Oct. 20
  •  A Canadian citizen
  •  Resident of B.C. for the six months preceding the September nomination period

Nomination packages will be available online at vancouver.ca in mid-July, and those completed packages must include:

  • Signatures from a minimum of 25 qualified electors who endorse the candidate for office
  • A $100 deposit, which will be returned after campaign financing disclosure statements are filed with Elections B.C.
  • A declaration swearing that the candidate is eligible to run, will take office if elected, and is aware of all financial requirements required by Elections B.C.

Candidates can also submit an optional 150-word biography and photograph to be posted on the city’s website and shared in the printed voter guide.

More details are online at vancouver.ca/vote.