Petra Veintimilla

Petra Veintimilla

New to politics, Oliver councillor envisioned herself there

The only new Oliver council member elected was Petra Veintimilla, a 31-year-old business person.

Ron Hovanes is humbled by the fact he kept the mayor’s chair in Oliver by acclamation.

Hovanes said it’s a credit to the work done the last three years.

“I appreciate the fact that I’m going to be mayor for the next four years,” he said. “It’s been kind of a quiet election for me because I haven’t had to be out there campaigning everyday, which has been kind of nice. I look forward to the next four years.”

He’s also thrilled about his council, which includes incumbents Maureen Doerr, who received 837 votes, Larry Schwartzenberger, 758, and Jack Bennest 754. Incumbent David Mattes was not re-elected after receiving 721 votes. New to council is Petra Veintimilla, who got in with 899 votes, tops among all council members.

“Petra is young and energetic,” said Hovanes. “She worked very hard during the campaign. As much as we’re going to miss Dave Mattes, he was very much a part of our last council, a good part of our last council, I truly believe that we have a really strong council to move forward with.”

Veintimilla, 31, said going into the elections that she was optimistic about winning a seat, but was also realistic as she was up against four incumbents.

“I knew that I had to work hard,” said Veintimilla, who was speechless after finding out she topped the vote list. “I envisioned myself there. It never even occurred to me that I would come out on top that’s for sure. I figured it would be a fight to the end.”

Veintimilla, who grew up in Oliver and works at her family’s business, Alberto’s Decorating Centre, as a window covering specialist, said the support she received indicates that the people hearing what she had to say are optimistic about Oliver’s future and “can kind of see the diamond in the rough that we are.”

Voters also had a decision to make in a referendum on Frank Venables Theatre. They were in favour, 1,364-458 for the community to provide the administration and operation costs.

“That’s a wonderful compliment to the theatre,” said Hovanes, adding that the difference in votes was almost the same percentage when they went to the electorate asking for the capital commitment for $3.8 million a few years ago. “It’s going to bode very well for the community. We probably have the nicest 400 seat theatre you are going to find anywhere. It’s absolutely gorgeous. The opportunity to bring it up to its full potential and to have some decent dollars towards the operation of the theatre is going to allow it to flourish.”

Also winning by acclamation were Andre Miller and Rick Machial for the water council.

Of the 3,724 eligible voters, 1,263 voted. That equals out to 33 per cent.


Just Posted

Wade Cudmore, seen here with his mother Kathy Richardson, had his first court appearance in relation to first degree murder charges in the deaths of Erick and Carlo Fryer Tuesday, June 22, 2021. (Kathy Richardson/Facebook)
Man charged in Naramata double homicide appears in Penticton court

Wade Cudmore appeared for the first time in relation to first degree murder charges

(John Arendt - Black Press)
Penticton wants to give you money to make something fun happen in the city

City launches community grant program to help post-COVID recovery

Penticton mayor John Vassilaki and Minister of Housing David Eby have been battling over the Victory Church shelter and BC Housing projects in the city. (File photos)
Penticton heads to court over homeless shelter as BC Housing audit begins

The city was not satisfied with the response from Minister David Eby regarding the ongoing situation

With high temperatures forecasted for the week and into the next, Interior Health is offering some tips on how to keep yourself safe from heat-related illness. (Pixabay)
Interior Health offers safety tips as temperatures soar

‘Too much heat can be harmful to your health’

The proposed design of the five-storey building on Front Street. (City of Penticton)
5-storeys still too tall for Penticton’s downtown, votes city council

Vote against new development leaves one councillor questioning validity of city’s zoning restrictions

Teenagers make their way to Truswell Road after a party is broken up by police at the end of Mission Creek (Lorraine Besner/Contributed).
Kelowna residents concerned about ongoing alleged underage beach parties

Public urination, property damage, drinking and drug usage have become weekly concerns

Point Roberts is part of the mainland United States but not physically connected to it, to reach the community by land one must pass through Canada. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Closed Canadian border leaves Point Roberts’ only grocery store on verge of closure

‘We’re Americans but we’re not attached to America. It’s easy to forget we’re here,’ says owner Ali Hayton

Mayla Janzen and Ashley Hoppichler, with her daughters Lily and Sophia, are bringing a Friday evening market to Polson Park, starting July 2. (Jennifer Smith - Morning Star)
Entrepreneurs craft up Vernon night market

Friday evening Polson Park event to take place throughout the summer

Splatsin Chief Wayne Christian and Tina William lead the Every Child Matters March in Enderby Monday, June 21. (Lyndsey Leon photo)
Hundreds march with Splatsin in Enderby for #215

300 orange-shirt wearing people of all backgrounds turned out in support

Robin Sanford and her fiance Simon Park were married in an impromptu ceremony at Abbotsford Regional Hospital on June 16. (Submitted photo)
Mom dies day after witnessing daughter’s hospital wedding in Abbotsford

Nurses help arrange impromptu ceremony in 3 hours for bride and groom

B.C. Finance Minister Selina Robinson with Premier John Horgan after the budget speech Tuesday, April 20, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
B.C. home owner grant won’t be altered, despite expert advice

Tax break for residences worth up to $1.6 million too popular

B.C. conservation officer Sgt. Todd Hunter said a black bear is believed to have killed local livestock. (THE NEWS/files)
Black bear believed to have killed miniature donkey in Maple Ridge

Trap set for predator that has been killing livestock

People enjoy the sun at Woodbine Beach on June 19, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/ Tijana Martin
BC Hydro assures customers it has ‘more than enough’ power to weather the heatwave

Despite an increase of pressure on the Western grid, blackouts are not expected like in some U.S. states

Air Canada planes sit on the tarmac at Pearson International Airport during the COVID-19 pandemic in Toronto on Wednesday, April 28, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
Pilots say no reason to continue quarantines for vaccinated international travellers

Prime minister says Canada still trying to limit number of incoming tourists

Most Read