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Municipal election postponed in Saskatoon after severe winter storm

Click to play video 'Questions around postponing Saskatoon civic election' Questions around postponing Saskatoon civic election
WATCH: Even though some braved the conditions to go and mark a ballot in Monday's election, the city will be offering people another chance to vote. Kyle Benning has more on the decision and how political experts view the process – Nov 10, 2020

Saskatoon is postponing its municipal election.

Polling stations that are open will close at 6:30 p.m. Monday.

Read more: Ministerial order allows Saskatchewan municipalities to delay elections due to weather

“This is certainly unconventional, and we appreciate the frustration many of our citizens have felt about not knowing what options they had to vote,” said the city’s returning officer, Scott Bastian.

“This is why we continued to encourage those who could, to go to the polls. All except one were open by midday.”

Condensed polls will open at five locations starting at 9 a.m. Friday: Cosmo Civic Centre, Lawson Civic Centre, Lakewood Civic Centre, Shaw Centre, city hall (Committee Room E).

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Those will operate as advance polls and close at 8 p.m.

Mail-in ballots will be accepted at the election office until 8 p.m. Friday.

Read more: In-person high school classes in Saskatoon cancelled Monday due to snowstorm

Roads in Saskatoon were impassible Monday morning due to a severe winter storm on Sunday.

The Saskatchewan government issued a ministerial order allowing municipalities to postpone elections due to the weather.

The election office said the delay in announcing the postponement of polls was due to discussions throughout the day with Government Relations Minister Lori Carr’s office.

Bastian said they wanted to seek out the best possible solution to let people elect their community leaders.

“We needed to be sure we were in compliance with the Minister’s Order in order to work through this difficult situation,” he said.

Read more: Saskatoon continues to dig out from weekend snowfall

Residents are voting for a mayor, city councillors and school trustees.

Bastian said 63 of the 65 polling stations in the city were open as of 11 a.m. Polling stations were scheduled to open at 8 a.m.

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City officials said election workers had trouble getting to their polling stations due to the snow- and ice-covered streets.

Click to play video 'Saskatoon continues to dig out from weekend snowfall' Saskatoon continues to dig out from weekend snowfall
Saskatoon continues to dig out from weekend snowfall – Nov 9, 2020