Delegates went to the polls this morning on the second day of the Prince Albert Grand Council fall assembly to elect a new southern vice-chief.

Incumbent Lac La Ronge Indian Band member Brian Hardlotte is being challenged by Christopher Jobb of the Peter Ballantyne Cree Nation in the two-way race.

Hardlotte says one of the of the main roles of the elected executive is to work with each of PAGC’s 12-member First Nations to ensure treaties are being implemented.

“The Prince Albert Grand Council has to be right there, what’s coming down from Ottawa or what’s coming down from the provincial government here, that’s going to threaten or affect the treaty rights of our people,” he says.

Jobb says he favours continued business ventures for the tribal council but economic development on traditional lands has to be balanced with environmental protection.

“I know the impacts we have in our traditional territories – the water that’s being taken off seepage out of these little lakes making ice roads, making seismics, fracking – all that stuff,” he says. “These are the important issues.”

Voting closes at noon and results should be known a little later on today.

At yesterday’s assembly, a number of financial items were discussed including the audit of the Prince Albert District Chiefs Management Corporation and the annual report of the Prince Albert First Nations Business Development Partnership.

Special recognition was also given to the traditional medicine graduates and the Bobby Bird memorial scholarship awards were presented.

The two-day assembly took place at the Senator Allen Bird Memorial Centre in Prince Albert.