11/17/2014 09:05 EST | Updated 01/17/2015 05:59 EST

Jim Eglinski to be elected in Yellowhead riding, CBC projects

CBC News projects that Conservative Jim Eglinski will be elected tonight in the Alberta riding of Yellowhead,

The retired RCMP officer Eglinski glided to victory, in one of two federal byelections tonight.

Eglinski, 65, is a former mayor of Fort St. John, B.C., but now lives on an acreage outside Edson.

CBC made the call 30 minutes after polls closed at 7:30 p.m. MT.

It was a similar story to 2011 when the federal riding elected the now retired Conservative MP Rob Merrifield with a 77 per cent share of the vote.

Merrifield resigned after 14 years to work for Alberta Premier Jim Prentice as the province's representative to the United States in Washington, D.C.

The sprawling, largely rural riding stretches from just west of Edmonton all the way to the British Columbia border, encompassing Jasper National Park. 

Former prime minister Joe Clark represented the riding from 1979 to 1993.

A second byelection tonight is being held in the Ontario riding of Whitby-Oshawa to fill the vacancy left by the death of former finance minister Jim Flaherty.