08/05/2015 11:23 EDT | Updated 08/05/2016 01:12 EDT

Wynne calls Sept. 3 byelection so PC Leader Patrick Brown can run for a seat

TORONTO — Premier Kathleen Wynne has called an Ontario byelection in the midst of the federal election campaign to give new Progressive Conservative Leader Patrick Brown a chance to seek a seat in the legislature.

The byelection in the Simcoe North riding, just north of Barrie, will be held Sept. 3.

Wynne didn't want to call a byelection during the federal campaign, but changed her mind after Brown said he wasn't concerned about simultaneous electioneering confusing voters in the riding.

Wynne said she didn't want to stand in Brown's way of trying to win a seat in the legislature before the fall session begins Sept. 14.

Veteran Conservative Garfield Dunlop resigned in July as the MPP for Simcoe North, which borders the Barrie riding, clearing the way for the byelection.

Brown resigned as the MP for Barrie after he won the provincial PC leadership last May, taking over from Tim Hudak, who stepped down after last year's election loss to Wynne's Liberals.

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The Canadian Press