Warden McLeod for 2018; Bancroft calls term satisfying, rewarding

SD&G Clerk Helen Thomson reaches into a construction hat to pull a name for warden for the United Counties on Tuesday, Oct. 17, 2017 while CAO Tim Simpson holds the hat. The draw was performed after a council vote ended twice in a tie. (Newswatch Group/Bill Kingston)

SD&G – After two tie votes, South Glengarry Mayor Ian McLeod will be warden for the United Counties of Stormont-Dundas-Glengarry next year.

County councillors voted Tuesday morning and it was a edgy situation for the two nominees – McLeod and South Dundas Mayor Evonne Delegarde.

The first vote ended in a 6-6 tie, resulting in a second round of voting.

When the second vote ended in a tie, Clerk Helen Thomson had to draw a name out of a hat, picking McLeod.

“Ugh, I was shaking,” Thomson laughed after she reached in and pulled out the white slip of paper from the white hard hat.

Ian McLeod has been warden before in 2011 and has had a long political career, having served on South Glengarry council since 1998.

“I’m very happy. Very pleased with the support around council and certainly looking for the next year. I think it’s going to be a great year,” McLeod said in an interview with Cornwall Newswatch following the vote.

“Hard shoes to fill when Jim (Bancroft) leaves because he’s done such a tremendous job,” McLeod added.

McLeod believes streamlining Information Technology (IT) between the county and the member municipalities will be a big issue in 2018. “That’s probably going to be one of the bigger ones and then our continual works with the City of Cornwall,” he said.

Jim Bancroft, who will be warden for another month-and-a-half, said council “had a tough decision between two quality people.”

Bancroft says the warden position has been “rewarding” and “very satisfying”. “For me to finish off this year, it’s been very satisfying.”

On a personal level, it’s been important for me to have this time because I’ve been able to finish off something that I started in 1997 but didn’t quite have a full year at it. So I was really satisfied when council gave me the opportunity and I hope I’ve delivered on what they wanted me to do here,” Bancroft said.

Bancroft was reeve of then-Osnabruck Township prior to SD&G amalgamation in 1998.

As for his political future and whether he will run for re-election in South Stormont, Bancroft said “give me until early spring to make that decision.”

McLeod will be officially sworn in as warden during a ceremony in December.