Residents of Tsiigehtchic have voted in favour of becoming a hamlet after a plebiscite was held May 23.

When the votes were tallied, 76 per cent were cast in favour of becoming a hamlet and 24 per cent were cast to remain a Charter Community.

Charter Community senior administrative officer Jeff Mercier said that Municipal and Community Affairs had been notified of the results of the plebiscite and council was awaiting instructions as to the next steps.

“Mahsi Cho to all that exercised their rights and voiced their choices,” he said in a statement.

Anyone who was over 18 and had lived in the community for at least 12 months was eligible to vote. As of the 2019 general election, 106 people were eligible to cast a ballot. The voter turn out was 74 per cent.

As a charter community, Tsiigehtchic currently does not differentiate between its band council and municipal council, meaning the two bodies are one and the same. In addition, in a charter community only band members are permitted to sit on council and the band chief doubles as mayor. Hamlets instead separate bands from municipal councils and opens access to running for municipal office to anyone who lives in the community and is legal age.

Tsiigehtchic had been pushing to switch to a hamlet since 2019, but the process only formally got underway in February of this year.

Eric Bowling

Your source for all things happening in the Beaufort Delta. Eric jumped at the chance to write for the Inuvik Drum after cutting his teeth in Alberta. He enjoys long walks, loud music and strong coffee....

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