by Laura Walz firstname.lastname@example.org Results of the November 19 civic election are official. Both City of Powell River and Powell River Regional District have verified the preliminary results released on election night.
Dave Formosa defeated Stewart Alsgard, incumbent mayor, by 247 votes. Formosa won the advance poll and Westview and Cranberry, while Alsgard came out on top in Townsite and Wildwood.
With 4,466 residents voting, voter turnout in the city was 43 per cent, above the province-wide average of 29.47 per cent. However, it was down from 2008, when 4,651 voters cast ballots, for a 47 per cent turnout.
In Electoral Area B in the regional district, where Director Stan Gisborne defeated challenger Kim Barton-Bridges 190 to 162, voter turnout was 31 per cent. On Lasqueti Island, where Director Merrick Anderson easily held off Timothy Peterson 159 to 39, voter turnout was 72 per cent.
Colin Palmer, regional district board chair and Electoral Area C director, noted at the November 24 board meeting that the November 19 election has resulted in a number of changes for Island Coastal Economic Trust (ICET). Established by provincial legislation in 2005, the trust provides $50 million for investment in regional economic priorities in communities on central south Vancouver Island, northern Vancouver Island and the Sunshine Coast.
Palmer pointed out that the ICET board chair, Barry Janyk, the mayor of Gibsons, was defeated. As well as Alsgard, Darren Inkster, mayor of Sechelt, Greg Phelps, mayor of Courtenay, Ken McRae, mayor of Port Alberni, and Eric Russcher, mayor of Ucluelet, were not re-elected. They all served on ICET’s North Island-Sunshine Coast regional advisory committee and Phelps was chair of that group. Charlie Cornfield, mayor of Campbell River, did not seek re-election.
“Let that be a lesson,” Dave Murphy, Texada Island director, quipped, “that mayoral seats have an expiry date.”
“Not like electoral directors,” Palmer responded.
“Apparently not,” said Murphy.
City council and regional district board members will be sworn in at a joint inaugural meeting, scheduled for 7 pm on Tuesday, December 6 at Powell River Recreation Complex.