0408 - To a political junkie like I am, election campaigns cannot come soon enough and often enough. The next civic election is just over six months away, and not surprisingly the sleepy giant appears to be stirring. There’s no question that interest
in the October 20 election for city council will draw a lot more scrutiny than in recent previous terms.
Hats off to the three local groups which are organizing a speaker series for prospective candidates. It is an excellent way for would-be candidates
for mayor and council to learn some of the ropes before they decide if this is their cup of tea. (See details on this page).
We’ve had controversy in the past, but nothing matches the dysfunction of the present cast of characters at city hall.
If we are to believe the way the tea leaves are swirling, vocal electors want to “throw out the whole bunch” on city council. It’s difficult to argue with them, given the laughing stock Nanaimo has become, not only in our own province but
right across Canada.
The interest appears to focus on the mayoralty, with four or five possible candidates rustling the bushes to see what shakes out.
We don’t have to guess about Norm Smith, the former Mountie, has been in the race since
the last election. He’s declared, but the others I’ve been hearing about have not made their intentions public, so we’ll respect that until they do declare with all the attendant fanfare. From the names that have been touted, it should be
a very interesting contest, and Nanaimo will likely wind up with an excellent mayor.
City council, with eight spots, is another story. Again, some names are being suggested, but those people have not stepped forward yet. We always have to look at the
incumbents first, and that’s where it gets dicey. Will any of the Gang of Five even bother running again, or are they oblivious to the negativity they have?
It could be challenging if voters toss the whole bunch because there is danger in electing
an entirely new council – experience does count. That puts the load on Diane Brennan, Sheryl Armstrong and Ian Thorpe to return and provide at least some stability.
It would ordinarily not be too bad with a total sweep of council, but with the
precarious situation surrounding the current disastrous management of the city, that’s a real danger.
If anyone has intentions to run for city council, now is the time to get yourself known to the voters, exposure is everything. The first step
should be to sign up for the speakers series to find out what the job is all about. Know what you're getting yourself in for.
Oh, by the way, if you hear of any prospective candidates, drop me a note at firstname.lastname@example.org