Green Party starts candidate search in Boundary-Similkameen

The B.C. Green Party has begun the process of choosing a candidate for the Boundary-Similkameen riding to run in the May provincial election.

Dave Cursons, the riding organizer, said that despite shifting electoral boundaries the Greens have run candidates in the South Okanagan, Similkameen, Nicola, Lillooet, Boundary and West Kootenay since 1986.

Bob Grieve, who ran in the riding in 2009,  managed to gather almost 10 per cent of the vote in a divided race that saw Liberal candidate John Slater take the riding with 37 per cent of the votes.

“We see there is a definite sentiment in the direction of the Greens,” said Cursons. Some predict, he said, that the Green party will do better both provincially and federally following the election of Elizabeth May, the federal Green Party leader, in Saanich-Gulf Islands in 2011.

“They know we are at least persistent,” said Cursons.

Boundary-Similkameen has seen some turnover on the political front in the last few weeks, with NDP candidate Marji Basso dropping out of the race and the B.C. Liberal party refusing to endorse MLA John Slater’s nomination, replacing him with Oliver councillor Linda Larson as their 2013 candidate.

Cursons said his announcement is not in response to the turmoil, though he hopes it will encourage voters to consider the Green Party as an alternative. What has happened here, he said,  is indicative of a wider problem with the major parties.

“There is a confusion of morale,” he said. “This is not just happening in Boundary-Similkameen.”

The Green Party has a meeting planned for Feb. 9 in Grand Forks, where they will be talking to prospective candidates. That will be followed by a similar meeting in either Oliver or Osoyoos, to interview potential candidates on this side of the riding.

The Boundary-Similkameen riding includes communities from Christina Lake though Grand Forks and Osoyoos up to Oliver and halfway up the Similkameen to just past Hedley.

“I am planning to do a lot of travelling over the next three weeks or so to talk to people and potential candidates,” said Cursons, who hopes to have a candidate in place by mid-March, if not earlier.

The Green Party platform revolves around environmental issues, such as precautionary restraint in economic growth with practices to secure water, air and soil to work toward sustainability.

Prospective Green Party candidates for Boundary Similkameen can contact the party in Cawston at 250-499-5417.


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