Tag Archives: Longyearbyen Community Council

POLITICIANS TARGET TOTS AND TOURISTS: Visitor tax, private kindergarten among priorities for new city council majority

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A tax on tourists, separating the harbor from other local government operations and allowing privately operated kindergartens are among the proposals in a platform drafted by the new, more conservative majority of the Longyearbyen Community Council as it officially took office Monday.

SHAKE AND MAKE UP: Labor-led local council forms new alliances and names committees at first post-election meeting

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Plenty of handshakes, smiles and congratulations – along with lots of pro forma yea/nay votes – were exchanged by former and newfound rivals as the newly elected Longyearbyen Community Council met for the first time Monday night to formally vote on leadership and committee positions.

WHEN BALLOTS GO BONKERS: How did Liberals narrow the vote gap with Labor, yet lose a council seat? Say hello to the Webster/Sainte-Laguë method

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The simple version is Labor Party supporters were more inclined to be straight-ticket voters, while those inclined toward the Liberal Party spread more of their votes among other parties.

That’s how the Labor and Liberal parties went from five seats each on the Longyearbyen Community Council, when there was a nine-vote difference immediately after the election, to Liberals losing a seat a day later in the official count, even though they narrowed the vote margin to a mere five ballots.

Beyond that, trying to explain the formula used to allocate seats or ponder “what-if” scenarios if a person (or three) had voted differently is easy to explain only (and then only maybe) if you’ve got a PhD in mathematics (and then only maybe). Or if you actually are familiar with something called the Webster/Sainte-Laguë method.

ELECTION 2019: Labor get big boost from a few final votes, gaining one council seat advantage over Liberals in official tally

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A few uncounted votes significantly and strangely shook up the Longyearbyen Community Council on Tuesday evening, as the Labor Party’s lead over the Liberal Party shrank to five votes (from nine in the preliminary count), yet the 350-345 tally was enough to give Labor a one-seat advantage on the 15-member council with five members compared to four for Liberals.

Both parties got five seats in the preliminary count announced Monday, but the seat Liberals lost a day later was given to the Conservative Party which finished with 190 votes and three council seats. The Progress Party with 130 votes retained its two seats and the Green Party with 97 votes retained one.

The question now is how much, if at all, the official count affects negotiations to form a majority coalition on the council. 

ELECTION 2019: Labor barely wins most votes (for now), but Liberals poised to take over leadership of local council

Labor barely won the most votes as of now, but Liberals are the ones who may be claiming victory for the next four years.

Who will lead Longyearbyen during the next four years remains very much in doubt following the local council election, as a preliminary vote count Monday night shows Labor edging Liberals 342 to 333. Both parties will get five of the 15 council seats with those totals and, while Labor has presided over the majority for the past 16 years, Liberals may have the advantage in forming a majority coalition during discussions in the coming days with the three other parties on the ballot.

ELECTION LIVEBLOG: Results, reactions and rants about the 2019 Longyearbyen Community Council vote from Stationen

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(BREAKING – “FINAL” MONDAY RESULTS: Labor (342 votes) and Liberal (333) parties finish in virtual tie, win five seats each; Conservative (184) and Progressive (126) parties each win two seats, Green Party (98) wins one seat. Makeup of next majority is murky. Official results to be released Tuesday. See details after jump)

Welcome to Stationen, where candidates and politicos are gathered for the results of the 2019 Longyearbyen Community Council vote. This liveblog began when the polls closed at 8 p.m. and will post happenings as they happen, so to speak, in reverse chronological order (in other words, those just wanting to skim the top of this for the latest numbers can do so without wading through the mad wordiage further down).

Emphasis: Tonight’s tally is likely to be preliminary, with full official results released tomorrow. But barring tight margins and unexpected alliances (both of which happened last time), tonight’s results should indicate who the leaders of Longyearbyen will be for the next four years.

Bang the box below for all of this evening’s updates…

ELECTION 2019: Residents showing up steadily to select new Longyearbyen Community Council; voting continues until 8 p.m. tonight

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Voters showed up steadily Sunday afternoon, the first of the two-day Longyearbyen Community Council election, with polls open today at Kulturhuset from 10 a.m. to 8 a.m.

SCOOTER OFF: Governor overrules city, orders Hurtigruten Svalbard to immediately remove dozens of snowmobiles from open field due to complaints

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“No parking” of snowmobiles in a large field near the edge of Longyearbyen does not mean the city can violate its own code by declaring “except for a huge tourist fleet,” The Governor of Svalbard stated Friday in order demanding Hurtigruten Svalbard immediately remove dozens of its rental units from the area due to complaints from residents.

Briefs from Svalbardposten for the week of Feb. 5, 2019

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Dwellings at Vei 226 to be first avalanche-area homes of 142 demolished
Residences at the addresses Vei 226 Nos. 23, 25, 27 and 29 are scheduled to be the first four of 142 dwellings in avalanche-prone areas to be demolished beginning in late spring, according to city officials.

‘How does a mom explain?’: Trym Aunevik, 16, lifelong Longyearbyen resident and champion swimmer, told he must finish school on mainland because he has Down’s Syndrome

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Trym Aunevik, 16, is a national champion swimmer who a month ago proved fit enough to be one of four teens representing Norway in next year’s Special Olympic World Games. But the government has decided he is not fit to continue attending school in his lifelong hometown of Longyearbyen because he has Down’s Syndrome and the school lacks a special education program.