Crombie’s last day as mayor of Mississauga could be Oct. 6


Published September 14, 2023 at 11:26 am

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If recent polling turns out to be accurate, Mississauga Mayor Bonnie Crombie has only 22 days left on the job as head of Canada’s seventh-largest city.

Crombie, shown in an online Angus Reid poll last week to be the preferred choice by a wide margin to be the next leader of the Ontario Liberals, announced last night she’ll take a leave of absence from her post as mayor starting Oct. 6 “…as she undertakes her bid to become leader of the Ontario Liberal Party.”

A statement from the Mayor’s Office said Crombie, 63, informed Mississauga council on Wednesday of her plan to take the leave so that she can pursue her higher political ambitions.

In her absence, City of Mississauga councillors will assume the mayor’s duties on a two-month, rotating basis. Duties include chairing council and committee meetings and attending official events on behalf of the mayor.

First up is Ward 3 Councillor Chris Fonseca, who’ll serve as acting mayor in October and November. Under the Acting Mayor Bylaw, she’ll be followed by Ward 4 Councillor John Kovac in December and next January.

Should Crombie be successful in her bid to become leader of the Ontario Liberal Party, which will be determined in late November, Mississauga would be looking at a mayoral byelection to determine her immediate successor for the remainder of the current term.

The next municipal election in Ontario takes place on Oct. 26, 2026.

Crombie, who served as a Liberal MP from 2008 to 2011 before succeeding the iconic Hazel McCallion as mayor of Mississauga in 2014, won a third-straight term as Mississauga mayor last fall, earning 77 per cent of the vote in the 2022 municipal election.

The statement from the Mayor’s Office continued, noting Crombie will sit down with Mississauga’s city manager over the next several weeks “to review key priorities for council in the coming months, including the 2024 city budget.”

It concluded that council will continue to “press forward on the issues that matter most to them including affordability, housing, transit and climate change.”

As Crombie prepares for the first Liberal leadership debate, taking place Thursday night in Thunder Bay, she was the target of criticism this morning from the Ontario Progressive Conservatives.

In a statement, the PC Party said, in part, that “…it must be nice to take a prolonged vacation from your job.”

It continued: “It’s clear Bonnie only sees being mayor as a backup plan rather than what it is: a full-time job. She’s hedging her bets on becoming leader of the Ontario Liberals when she should be serving the people of Mississauga.”

Meanwhile, the Sept. 6 Angus Reid poll showed Crombie to be the top choice as next Liberal Leader of the province.

The question “Who do you find most appealing as the next Ontario Liberal Leader?” was posed to those who’d consider voting Liberal in the next provincial election.

While 57 per cent of respondents said they are unsure who they’d find the most appealing, 31 per cent said their choice would be Crombie.

Next up in the poll were Liberal MP Nate Erskine-Smith and former provincial cabinet minister Yasir Naqvi, both at four per cent.

Current provincial Liberal caucus members Ted Hsu (three per cent) and Adil Shamji (two per cent) placed fourth and fifth, respectively. 

Liberal Party members will cast ranked ballots on Nov. 25 and 26, and the Party will announce its new leader on Dec. 2.

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