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Wasaga Beach PC hopeful challenges premier's appointment of Saunderson

Under the appeal process, the provincial nomination committee has until June 15 to respond in favour or against the appeal
Stella Ambler was one of four people nominated in race to become the PC candidate in Simcoe-Grey in the next provincial election.

One of the people who were campaigning to become the next Progressive Conservative candidate for Simcoe-Grey has filed an official appeal against Premier Doug Ford's appointment of Brian Saunderson to the role. 

Last Friday, Premier Ford announced Collingwood's current mayor, Brian Saunderson, would be the PC candidate running for MPP in the 2022 provincial election. 

However, Saunderson was one of four people vying for the spot. There was supposed to be a party vote to choose the local candidate. Ford's appointment did away with the vote. 

Stella Ambler, a Wasaga Beach resident since 2020 and one of the people running for the PC nomination in Simcoe-Grey, has filed an appeal with the PC party's nomination committee. 

Ambler, a former MP from Mississauga, sent a letter to her supporters noting she filed the appeal on Tuesday (June 8). The nomination committee is supposed to give a ruling by June 15 to determine whether the appeal can proceed to a hearing. 

"I'm not giving up, and I know from the hundreds of emails, texts, and phone calls that I've received from local members that you are also disappointed, upset and ready to speak out," wrote Ambler to her supporters. 

After Ford announced Saunderson as the Simcoe-Grey candidate and cancelled the local vote, the Simcoe-Grey riding association candidate selection committee chairperson, John Greswell, resigned over the decision. 

The nomination race in Simcoe-Grey opened in the fall of 2020. Current Simcoe-Grey MPP Jim Wilson announced he would not be running again. He has been the local MPP since 1990, and except for the last couple of years he has been part of the Progressive Conservative caucus. Since 2018 he has been sitting as an independent MPP. 

The next provincial election is slated for June 2022. If nothing changes, it will be Brian Saunderson's name on the ballot for the PC party in Simcoe-Grey.

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Erika Engel

About the Author: Erika Engel

Erika regularly covers all things news in Collingwood as a reporter and editor. She has 15 years of experience as a local journalist
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