Mayor Andrew Jakubeit says he wants to be Penticton mayor for another four years, despite the pressures he faced in his first term. Steve Kidd/Western News

Jakubeit seeking a second term as mayor

Penticton mayor says he wants to continue work started in first term as mayor

Mayor Andrew Jakubeit is seeking a second term as mayor in the municipal elections this fall.

Jakubeit, who has been on council for a decade, was elected to a four-year term as mayor in 2014. His time on council has seen a number of positive developments, like the patient care tower now under construction at Penticton Regional Hospital, but there has also been controversy.

“We have so much potential here”

–Andrew Jakubeit

Two years of Jakubeit’s time on city council were spent dealing with the fallout of a project that would have seen a private waterslide development in Skaha Lake Park.

Council voted to approve the project in 2015, and after two years of court cases, renegotiations and ongoing protests, the city was forced to pay out on a penalty clause to cancel the deal in mid-2017.

Related:City of Penticton releases Trio terminations docs

“I feel over the last four years I’ve grown and gained the experience that will provide consistency, stability and the leadership needed to continue the momentum we have generated during our term,” said Jakubeit.

Approving the deal was a decision of the whole council, but as mayor, Jakubeit was the focus of a lot of the backlash.

“That is one of the negatives of the job. It is frustrating. I think that discourages a lot of good people from wanting to participate on a council,” said Jakubeit. “It does wear on you, or take some of the enthusiasm out of your sails, but then you come across someone who says, I really like what you did with downtown’s walkways or the lakeshore.”

Jakubeit lists the waterslide controversy as his biggest regret as mayor.

“Lack of a clear process and community engagement resulted in two years of conflict and ultimately overshadowed what has been an exciting time for our community,” he said, noting factors like the development of 1,169 homes in the community, the city’s ongoing support of the Youth Engagement Strategy project to build a youth centre and convincing Gateway Casinos and Entertainment from moving Cascade Casino outside city limits.

“We have so much potential here and it is such a great community to build on,” said Jakubeit. “Right now we have a fair bit of momentum that has been created. That is why I think it is good to have some experience, consistency and stability to continue moving forward.”

Policing and housing affordability are much talked about issues in Penticton and Jakubeit puts social issues like mental health, homelessness and addiction high on his list of challenges.

“I think the community is starting to get a bit more frustrated around that. It is a national crisis or issue that people expect the local city to solve,” said Jakubeit. “When we have social issues that are bigger than us alone … that is more difficult to tackle. Meeting people’s expectations is going to be a challenge with that kind of social problem.”

Jakubeit said he’s committed to continuing the work started during his first term as mayor.

“I certainly have a big passion for our community,” said Jakubeit.

“I think anyone that goes into public office, I think they have the best intentions at heart to make their city the best place to live work and play, not just for now but into the future.”

Steve Kidd
Senior reporter, Penticton Western News
Email me or message me on Facebook
Follow us on Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Morning Start: Water can freeze and boil at the same time

Your morning start for Thursday, August 6, 2020

Hunting cabins were built west of Summerland

Area around Darke Lake was once known as the Piggeries

Penticton Public Library opens with limited hours

Library was closed for nearly five months due to COVID-19

Dry Lake wildfire now classified as held

Wildfire was burning out of control north of Princeton for three days

Regional District of Okanagan-Similkameen pays nearly $8 million in wages

Figures included in latest Statement of Financial Information

Arson suspected in several wildfires lit near Kootenay town

RCMP making progress in arson investigation of Marsh Creek fires

Three screening officers at Vancouver airport test positive for COVID-19

The public is not believed to be at risk of exposure

VIDEO: B.C. conservation officers free not-so-wily coyote with head stuck in jar

Poor pup was found with a glass jar stuck on its head in Maple Ridge

‘Do our lives count for less?’: COVID-19 exposes cracks in disability aid

In July, Parliament approved a $600 payment for people with disabilities facing additional expenses during COVID-19

Agreement between province, BC Hydro, First Nation, ends legal fight over Site C

B.C. will work to improve land management and restore traditional place names in areas of cultural significance

Father recounts narrow escape from Shuswap houseboat fire

Saskatchewan group overwhelmed by kindness of Sicamous, Salmon Arm communities

B.C. doctors, dentists call on province for mandatory mask rule

Open letter says masks should be worn in indoor public spaces, public transportation or in crowds

Merritt man arrested after allegedly touching children inappropriately

Skylar Mcleod, 24, is facing six charges, including one for sexual interference

Most Read