Cambridge Bay appoints new mayor
Angulalik Pedersen replaces Pamela Gross, who will represent riding in legislature
Angulalik Pedersen has been appointed Cambridge Bay’s new mayor, following his predecessor’s election as the community’s next member of the legislative assembly. Former mayor Pamela Gross was elected MLA on Oct. 25.
“I want to continue a lot of the work Pam did. She’s done a lot of amazing work for the youth, for the elders and for the whole community,” Pedersen said.
Less than a week into the job, he’s now in Iqaluit for the Nunavut Association of Municipalities’ annual general meeting.
On Monday, Pedersen spoke about the community’s air travel issues at the meeting, with Chris Avery, the president of Canadian North in the room.
“It affects our food security, it affects everyone’s lives,” Pedersen said about flight services in an interview.
“Our grocery stores were empty for days last week.”
Many community members have also been stuck in Yellowknife for over a week now, with weather and mechanical issues to blame for cancelled flights, he said.
Pedersen explained the same weather pattern typically rolls around this time of year, with fog or other unsafe weather showing up mid-day. He suggested flights be scheduled at different times according to the seasons to counter this.
The new mayor was appointed on Nov. 4. At the same meeting, Derek Elias was appointed deputy mayor.
Pedersen was the deputy mayor from 2019 until last Thursday, and before that, he was a city councillor for two years.
Aside from his new political duties, Pedersen holds multiple positions with the Canadian Coast Guard, including exercising officer for the coast guard and an Arctic instructor for the coast guard’s auxiliary.
He also serves as the co-chair of the Ekalukktiak hunters and trappers organization, is on the Victoria Island Waterway safety council, is a member of the fire department and the lieutenant of the hamlet’s medical and ambulance service.
With about two years left in the term, Pedersen will serve as the community’s mayor until the next general election in 2023.
Gross, the former mayor, was elected in 2017 again in 2019.
If the mayor’s position is vacated more than six months before the end of a term, the municipality’s council needs to fill the position as soon as possible, either through appointing a councillor or holding a byelection, according to Elections Nunavut.
Gross was confirmed as the community’s MLA-elect on Tuesday after a close three-way vote prompted a recount.
She was elected with 224 votes, beating out incumbent Jeannie Ehaloak — also a former Cambridge Bay mayor — and Peter Ohokak.
Iqaluit’s city council also lost a member with former deputy mayor Janet Brewster also having been elected to the legislative assembly in October.
Former councillor Solomon Awa has since been listed as Iqaluit’s alternate deputy mayor.
The fifth legislative assembly will sit for the first time in Iqaluit on Nov. 19 after new MLAs from across the territory go through an orientation.
MLAs will also vote on who the premier and ministers will be.