Litke promises more transparency on Penticton council

Garry Litke, Penticton’s new mayor-elect, wasn’t surprised with the low turnout at the polls Saturday.

Martha Lee Morrison (left) receives some instruction from municipal election officer Susan Soh prior to marking her ballot at the advance poll at city hall.

Martha Lee Morrison (left) receives some instruction from municipal election officer Susan Soh prior to marking her ballot at the advance poll at city hall.

Garry Litke, Penticton’s new mayor-elect, wasn’t surprised with the low turnout at the polls Saturday.

You always expect a byelection to have low numbers, especially with all the things going on in town,” said Litke, noting competition from the Jazz Festival, Young Stars hockey and several other events happening in Penticton over the weekend.

But there were half-hour lineups for three or four hours of the afternoon. So there was considerable interest.”

Litke won the mayoral component of the civic byelection with 2,779 votes, well ahead of his nearest competitor, Vic Powell, who garnered 701 votes.

The third mayoral candidate, Brian Henningson, received 222 votes.

In the race for the council seat vacated by Litke in July when he resigned to run for mayor, Katie Robinson led the pack with 1,500 votes, 340 ahead of Andre Martin’s 1,160 votes.

Lynn Kelsey received 399 votes, Pat Buchanan gathered 357 votes and Kevin Andrews finished with 275 votes.

In total, 3,752 votes were cast in the 2013 byelection, translating into a turnout of 14.65 per cent.

The last full civic election in 2011, saw 8,589 out of 25,632 possible registered voters participating, for a 33.5 per cent voter turnout rate.

Litke and Robinson will take their oaths of office in a special ceremony on Sept. 16 in Vancouver, ensuring that Penticton is fully represented at Union of B.C. Municipalities annual convention, which begins the same day.

The UBCM, especially meetings concerning the Penticton Regional Hospital expansion, are the first priority, according to Litke.

We have some appointments lined up with the movers and shakers, with politicians and bureaucrats,” said Litke. I hope to be able to set up a meeting with the financial advisory committee. MLA (and former Penticton mayor) Dan Ashton is chair of that committee so that gives us an in.”

Robinson, who is looking forward to getting a little bit of sleep now that the long campaign period is over, said the hospital is also high on her agenda.

I think that is going to be crucial for the people of Penticton to make sure that becomes a reality as soon as possible,” she said.

We will do lots of lobbying when we are down in Vancouver.”

Robinson, previously a councillor in the 90s, has already started saving the city money.

I found some of my old business cards, so I am saving the city money already by recycling my Katie Robinson, councillor cards. It still has all the correct information on it. That’s my first cost-saving measure,” she said.

Litke will also continue to work on improving openness at city hall.

There will definitely be continuing change on transparency. While I was acting mayor I made sure that the advisory committees no longer operated in camera and I think I will continue that,” said Litke.

For these so-called workshops there is no reason to have those behind closed doors. They should be made open to the public.

If anyone wants to come and look at a consultant’s report on sewer pipes they should be welcome.”

 

 

 

 

Just Posted

James Miller, the managing editor at the Penticton Herald, has been voted in for Jake Kimberley’s vacated council seat. (Submitted)
James Miller elected as Penticton city councillor

Penticton also voted yes to allowing up to 25 years for a Skaha Marina contract

The Eyes of the Tigers on the 2021 Beer Rune on June 19. (Brennan Phillips - Western News)
Penticton Beer Runners take trip around local beaches and brews

Over 160 people signed up to come back after the 2020 run was cancelled

There was high voter turnout for the first of three advance voting days for the Penticton city by-election.
Penticton city by-election general voting day is today, June 19

737 voters on June 9 in comparison to 2018 general election, which had 1,001 on first day

Police are asking for public assistance in locating Anthony Graham who has been charged with the murders of Kamloops brothers Carlo and Erick Fryer. (RCMP photo)
2 Penticton-area men charged with Kamloops brothers’ double homicide

Brothers Erick and Carlo Fryer were found deceased in May in Naramata

(File photo)
Penticton not holding Canada Day activities out of respect for Indigenous people

Cities across B.C. are cancelling the holiday after an increased spotlight on Canada’s dark history

Marco Mendicino, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship during a press conference in Ottawa on Thursday, May 13, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Canada to welcome 45,000 refugees this year, says immigration minister

Canada plans to increase persons admitted from 23,500 to 45,000 and expedite permanent residency applications

Emily Steele holds up a collage of her son, 16-year-old Elijah-Iain Beauregard who was stabbed and killed in June 2019, outside of Kelowna Law Courts on June 18. (Aaron Hemens/Capital News)
Kelowna woman who fatally stabbed Eli Beauregard facing up to 1.5 years of jail time

Her jail sentence would be followed by an additional one to 1.5 years of supervision

Cpl. Scott MacLeod and Police Service Dog Jago. Jago was killed in the line of duty on Thursday, June 17. (RCMP)
Abbotsford police, RCMP grieve 4-year-old service dog killed in line of duty

Jago killed by armed suspect during ‘high-risk’ incident in Alberta

The George Road wildfire near Lytton, B.C., has grown to 250 hectares. (BC Wildfire Service)
B.C. drone sighting halts helicopters fighting 250 hectares of wildfire

‘If a drone collides with firefighting aircraft the consequences could be deadly,’ says BC Wildfire Service

A dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine is pictured at a vaccination site in Vancouver Thursday, March 11, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
NACI advice to mix vaccines gets varied reaction from AstraZeneca double-dosers

NACI recommends an mRNA vaccine for all Canadians receiving a second dose of a COVID-19 vaccine

A aerial view shows the debris going into Quesnel Lake caused by a tailings pond breach near the town of Likely, B.C., Tuesday, Aug. 5, 2014. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Updated tailings code after Mount Polley an improvement: B.C. mines auditor

British Columbia’s chief auditor of mines has found changes to the province’s requirements for tailings storage facilities

Starting in 2022, the Columbia Shuswap Regional District is extending dog control to the entire Electoral Area D. (Stock photo)
Dog control bylaw passes in Shuswap area despite ‘threatening’ emails

CSRD board extending full dog control in Electoral Area D starting next year

A North Vancouver man was arrested Friday and three police officers were injured after a 10-person broke out at English Bay on June 19, 2021. (Youtube/Screen grab)
Man arrested, 3 police injured during 10-person brawl at Vancouver beach

The arrest was captured on video by bystanders, many of whom heckled the officers as they struggled with the handcuffed man

Most Read