All three Penticton-area rural directors say they’ll seek re-election in November to keep their seats on the board of the Regional District of Okanagan-Similkameen.
“Some days it would be nice to just drive home and say, ‘This is not my problem’ — especially the (feral) horses, it’s aging me — but I’ve got to keep going,” said Michael Brydon, who’s nearing the end of his second term as the director for the West Bench.
Karla Kozakevich, who represents Naramata, said she appreciated working with volunteer boards of the water utility and recreation commission during her first term, and wants to carry on with infrastructure projects planned for the community.
“I enjoyed connecting with the people of Naramata and helping them with any questions and concerns,” she added.
Also seeking a second term will be Tom Siddon, the director for Okanagan Falls-Kaleden, who insisted that even at 72 years old, he’s still fit for the job.
“My health is still good enough, and I think it helps my mental health to have these kinds of things to wrestle with. I’m not a guy that just wants to sit and play bridge or chase a little, white ball around a golf course,” said Siddon, a former school trustee and federal cabinet minister.
He cited planned works like the revitalization of the Okanagan Falls town centre and a sewer extension to Kaleden and Skaha Estates as projects he’d like to see carried through to completion.
Similkameen Directors George Bush and Angelique Wood, and RDOS board chairman Mark Pendergraft, who represents rural Osoyoos, have also confirmed they’ll seek re-election.
Allan Patton, the director for rural Oliver, is the only board member to publicly declare he will not run again.
“I’ve done three terms and I’ve enjoyed it very much, but I think it’s time to pass on the torch to someone else,” he said, adding that new four-year terms for civic leaders are “a little bit discouraging to me.”
Princeton-area Director Brad Hope couldn’t be reached for comment on his political future.
There are a total of eight rural directors on the 18-person RDOS board. The rest of the seats are filled by council members appointed by regional municipalities.
Anyone interested in running as a rural director in the Nov. 15 election must submit a completed nomination package, available from the RDOS office at 101 Martin Street in Penticton or online at www.rdos.bc.ca, to the RDOS between Sept. 30 and Oct. 10.
Three more people have recently declared their intentions to run for Summerland council, including one for mayor.
Christopher Boisvert-Gilman, 63, will seek the top job after an informal poll he conducted showed 82 per cent of people wanted him to run for it.
Following a career elsewhere in corrections, Boisvert-Gilman is now looking to unite his new home under his leadership.
“I consider myself resourceful, thrifty and innovative, believing in pulling together a community rather than dividing it,” he said.
Small business owner John Dorn said he’ll make a robust economy and job creation his priorities if he gets on council.
“We need to construct the right conditions to attract self-employed people and their families,” said Dorn, who has lived in Summerland since 2006 and is a past Legion branch president and lifetime member of the Kinsmen Club of Canada.
Another small business owner and candidate, Joel Gregg, intends to make filling empty buildings his priority on council.
“I’m concerned about all the vacancies I see on Main Street and throughout the community,” said Gregg, who is the practice manager at Jubilee Dental Centre and owns Jubilee Fitness Club.
With files from Summerland Review