A candidate for Red Deer city council says any suggestion that she lives outside the city is unfounded.
Concerns were brought to the Advocate that Dianne Wyntjes might live outside of the Red Deer city limits, but Wyntjes said it isn’t the case.
“If I lived in the county, I would have been running for county council. So I’m familiar with the residence requirement,” Wyntjes said. “That’s a pretty major thing and I wouldn’t have invested all of my time and energy to date if I didn’t meet the residence requirement.”
Wyntjes said she has lived in Red Deer since 1975, when she moved here with her parents from Eckville as a teenager. She attended Lindsay Thurber Comprehensive High School and Red Deer College, working for the federal government locally, then the City of Red Deer and now CUPE.
When she met her husband Allan, he had an acreage outside of town and she had a home in the city. They sold both properties and bought a home in Deer Park together in 1990, living there for around 15 years. For the past five years, they have lived in their home in Lancaster Green.
Her husband Allan Wyntjes’ parents have a home on property in Red Deer County. Allan Wyntjes continues to work on the farm outside of the city, but both Wyntjes and her husband live in the city.
“I was knowledgeable about the election requirements that you have to reside in the city so I wouldn’t make that faux pas,” Wyntjes said. But she doesn’t mind someone asking the question or wanting the issue clarified.
“Those are legitimate questions and the best thing to do is answer them.”
Red Deer returning officer Elaine Vincent said there have been no complaints filed or brought to the city’s attention that someone living outside the city is running for city council. Vincent said this doesn’t appear to have been an issue any time in the past four or five elections.
Candidates complete and submit papers on nomination day, then swear an oath that they are eligible to submit papers, Vincent explained.
To be eligible to run for city council, a candidate must be a resident of the jurisdiction and have been so for at least the six months prior to filing nomination papers.
Vincent said if a complaint were made, it would be forwarded to the police for investigation and police would determine if it needed to be pursued further. If in violation, a person could face a fine of up to $1,000.