Candidates face signage rules before Saskatoon election
Just a month shy of Saskatoon's municipal election, names and faces of the three candidates vying for the mayor’s office can be seen all along the city’s streets.
However, not every green-space or street corner is their’s for the taking.
As manager of planning and development for the City of Saskatoon, Alan Wallace explains candidates are send a list of rules and regulations outlining what they can and can’t do with their election signs.
“It’s meant to create a level playing field and to allow candidates to put up temporary signs,” said Wallace. “That’s the key; these are temporary signs for 45 days prior to the election and seven days after.”
Wallace added it’s also to ensure driver safety for the thousands of motorists around high-traffic areas.
Election signs are prohibited on certain roadways in the city including anywhere of Circle Drive except between Warman Road and the CNR spur line west of Avenue C, anywhere on airport drive and Idywyld drive except between 20th Street and the CNR overpass north of 39th Street.
According to planning and development, signs must only have two face signs, are not permitted on centre median or traffic islands and must not be illuminated, animated or rotating.
In his 28 years with planning and development, Wallace said he hasn’t seen anything too strange in terms of violations of election signage, adding candidates to do violate the rules and regulations, quickly meet the regulations once warned.
Wallace mentioned candidate Don Atchison as a pioneer of the waving strategy, but council put a stop to that with a bylaw.
“As long as the candidate is in a place where temporary signs are allowed, they would be allowed to do that,” said Wallace.
Atchison, a man said to have pioneered greeting voters on the side of the road, said council passed a bylaw prohibiting what he’s come to be known for.
“They made it so you had to be 30-metres away from the sidewalk,” said the current mayor of Saskatoon. And although he wouldn’t comment specifically on the actions of mayoral candidate Tom Wolf, Atchison said he’s just concerned about his own campaign.
“What other candidates do, if they wish to break the law then that’s their business. I respect the citizens of Saskatoon and council and they said I couldn’t do that anymore.”
The third candidate in the race for mayor, Clay Mazukewich said he isn’t bothering with elections signs, adding he will win votes with his message, not an election sign.
“I don’t think it’s necessary. If I’m in the news in (the newspaper) and on the radio, that’s enough advertisement as far as I’m concerned,” said Mazukewich.
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