Huu-ay-aht elects new chief councillor

With a clear majority of votes, Robert Dennis Sr. has been declared Huu-ay-aht’s new Elected Chief Councillor.

John Alan Jack, Connie Waddell and Trevor Cootes won three of the five council seats by a clear majority, and have been declared councillors.

Proving that every vote counts, there is a three-way tie for the remaining two councillor seats between Sheila Charles, Benny Clappis and Jack Cook. In the event of a tie vote, Section 69 of the Election Act contemplates a run-off election. Election Commissioner Kit Spence will review the provisions of the Election Act to determine the next steps required and provide more detailed information to all the candidates after that review.

A recount was conducted by the Election Commissioner on Sunday afternoon, and the results were exactly the same. The three-way tie remains and will have to be broken to name the last two councillors.

Follow the link for a copy of the full results: Huu-ay-aht First Nations Election 2015 Results

Hear from the candidates on the issues

Tonight is the first of three All-Candidates Meetings prior to Huu-ay-aht’s 2015 Election.

The session tonight, June 9, takes place at the Best Western Barclay, from 6 to 9 p.m. On Wednesday, June 10, candidates will gather in Anacla for the second meeting, from 4 to 7 p.m. The final All-Candidates Meeting will take place on June 19, the night before the election, at the Best Western Barclay in Port Alberni.

Election Commissioner Kit Spence will run the meeting, which will begin with a brief opening statement from each of the candidates for Chief Councillor. That will be followed with questions and a brief summary. This will take up the first hour of the meeting, and then the candidates for councillor will take the stage. The format will be the same, but they will be given the final two hours of the session.

If you cannot attend any of the All-Candidates Meetings, they will be filmed and shared with Citizens. The two Port Alberni sessions will be live streamed, and they can be found at (June 9) and (June 19).

Because of the limited Internet speed in Anacla, the session on June 10 will not be broadcast live. Instead, it will be shared on Huu-ay-aht’s YouTube site within 24 hours ( There may be interruptions in the live broadcasts as well, but you don’t have to miss a thing because the two Port Alberni meetings will also be added to this site after it airs live.

Child minding will be supplied at all of the All-Candidates Meetings, and there will be snacks and refreshments available.

If you have any questions about the Election 2015, call Election Commissioner Kit Spence, 250-881-0142, or email

Elections 2015 on June 20

The Election Act sets out the process for electing the Chief Councillor and elected Councillors on the Huu-ay-aht Council. Beginning in 2011, general elections are held on the third Saturday in June every four years. That makes this year an election year, and the vote is set to take place on June 20.

Executive Council appointed Kit Spence the Election Commissioner on April 9, 2015 – the first step in the election process. On May 4, 5 and 6, Spence will speak at a special round of community engagement sessions focused on the election process. These will take place in Anacla, Port Alberni and Vancouver, respectively. These sessions will be non-political event and will offer citizens an opportunity to get information from the elections commissioner prior to the election.

The nomination period runs from Monday, May 4 at 9 a.m. to noon on Thursday, May 14.

Any eligible voter can run for a seat on Council, including the Chief Councillor position, as long as they meet the criteria detailed in the Elections Act. A candidate can run for both Council and Chief Councillor, but if elected they can only hold one seat

All candidates must submit the nomination package to the Election Commissioner during the nomination period. In the package, the candidate must collect 10 nominees and include a certified copy of a current criminal record check, dated within 90 days of the election. Other information that must be submitted with the nomination package include one form with basic information on the nominee and a second one that contains a colour photograph and solemn declarations of a nominee. Huu-ay-aht citizens who are eligible to vote are encouraged to do so. In order to qualify, the citizen must be 18 years of age by June 20, 2015, and they must meet all the criteria set out in the Elections Act.

More details on the election are available in the Elections Act ( under the “Our Government” section on the Huu-ay-aht website and under the Election 2015 tab ( Please review this section regularly for the most current 2015 Election information.