There are no last-minute surprises on the final list of Argyll and Bute candidates for next month’s Scottish Parliament election.
The SNP’s Michael Russell, who is defending the majority of 8,543 he won last time out in 2011, faces challengers in the shape of Labour’s Mick Rice, the Liberal Democrats’ Alan Reid (who served for 14 years as Argyll and Bute’s Westminster MP), and Donald Cameron for the Conservatives.
The confirmed list of Argyll and Bute candidates was published on the Argyll and Bute Council website on Friday evening, shortly after the deadline for submission of valid nomination papers.
Speculation that UKIP, which published the names of its ‘regional list’ candidates on Friday afternoon, might field an Argyll and Bute constituency candidate proved unfounded - though its sole elected representative in Scotland, MEP David Coburn, is number one on the party’s Highlands and Islands list.
The key dates ahead of the May 5 poll are as follows:
The Buteman’s election hustings - Wednesday, April 13 (7pm at the United Church of Bute)
First issue of postal votes - Wednesday, April 13 to Friday, April 15
Last date for receipt of new applications for the electoral register - Monday, April 18
Last day for applications for a new postal vote, to change a postal vote to a proxy vote (or vice-versa), or to have a postal ballot paper sent to a different address, or to cancel a postal or proxy - not later than 5pm on Tuesday, April 19
Second issue of postal votes - Monday, April 25
Last day for new applications to vote by proxy (not postal proxy) - not later than 5pm on Tuesday, April 26
Last day for the appointment of polling and counting agents - Wednesday, April 27
Last date for clerical amendments to register (supplement) - 9pm on Thursday, May 5
New emergency proxy applications – 5pm on Thursday, May 5
Last day to apply for lost replacement postal ballot papers – not later than 10pm on Thursday, May 5 (spoilt is not later than 5pm)
Polling day - 7am to 10pm on Thursday, May 5
Verification and count - Thursday, May 5 from 10pm