Sooke's new council at Saturday's post-election event

New and unseated councillors respond to election

Each of the candidates spoke about the results of the Nov. 19 election.

The campaign signs are down, the ballots are counted and the District of Sooke’s new council is coming down off their high. Each of the candidates expressed their thoughts on the election.

In alphabetical order:

Sheila Beech – “Congratulations to the new mayor and council. It has been a pleasuere to work with this past council, we worked hard together and with staff to accomplish many worthwhile projects for the citizens of Sooke. I leave council proud of what we have done.”

Dave Bennett — “I would like to obviously thank my election team because they worked very hard for me over the past two months and they strongly endorsed my candidacy and I would urge Mr. Milne to focus on the positive for our community and to reach out to the almost six out of 10 people that did not vote and I just want to thank the people of Sooke for the opportunity and privilege to have served on council.

I was confident (going into the race) — I door knocked on, I would say, 85 to 90 per cent of Sooke residents and the reception I received was very positive. And I guess it was a surprise, but I congratulate Mr. Milne on his election.”

Bev Berger — “I’m extremely pelased witrh the results, I think we got a council that is like-minded and has genuine care and concern for our community, I’m looking forward to the next three years.”

“Moonfist”Myke Colbert – “Congratulations Mayor Milne, Councillors Haldane, Berger, Pearson, Kasper, Tait and Reay. Thank you for all for your efforts and welcome to office. Unite and be strong, as what you have now become is responsible for the District of Sooke. We are all on a journey somewhere and as always… together. Journey well, may wholesome things unite you.”

Ron Dumont — “Of course I’m disappointed. I’m happy we are leaving the district in a good and sound financial manner, positive and sustainable for the future. The good staff will continue to work hard for the council. The fire dpeartment is well trained and the envy of fure departments on Vancouver Island. I wish the new council good luck, it’s easy to make promises, harder to make them happen.”

Herb Haldane  — “I’m glad the whole insanity is over, it was not a nice election. I’ve lived in Sooke my whole life and am satisfied with what I’m doing and I do what people want. I’m elated by the people who got elected. We need leadership everywhere. It’ll be real interesting.”

Rick Kasper — “The voters have spoken loud and clear, as I’ve said in the past, they are always right.” I thank the members of council who didn’t get re-elected, it does take a toll. I want to thank them personally for their service, I know what it’s like, I’ve been there. I also want to thank Janet Evans, they’ve all put in a lot of work.”

Terrance Martin — “I’m very happy with the outcome. I made the best possible attempt to get a seat. I will carry on with life. I’m satisfied, the people asked to see a change.”

Jim Mitchell — “I think the council that has just been elected will be good for Sooke and they will be able to bring back some confidence in our local government. I offer them all my congratulations on running a good, clean campaign and I wish them all well. I would also like to give all of my supporters a big thank you. I believe that we were able to give the residents of Sooke something to think about during this election.”

Kevin Pearson — “I was pleasantly surprised by receiving the largest number of votes. I’m happy that the Sooke Electoral District has put confidence in me to go ahead and I think I’m going to bring some energy and some positiveness to the council so I’m looking forward to the challenge ahead. I thought I would be in the mix for being a councillor, although I was never really sure. I’m excited and nervous (heading into my first council meeting).”

Kerrie Reay — “It’s exciting, it’s a little overwhelming at the same time but I think, and I had mentioned elsewhere, that you have a right to run for council, but it’s really a privilege when the community puts you in a position to serve that community. And so I’m quite honoured to have that and I think it’s important that I make sure that I live up to my responsibilities, which I’ll do… and it’s great to get that sixth seat.”

Shaunna Salsman — “I would like to thank the residents of Sooke for the great conversations, warmth, and openness during this municipal election. My hope was that meaningful conversations about our municipal government and our community would be achieved. I hope that people feel their concerns and ideas were heard and understood. To those elected, I trust they will continue to use our community as a valuable resource to set priorities and make the municipal government’s connection to the community stronger. Keep sharing the stories of Sooke’s community spirit and it’s beautiful natural surroundings, these connect us all.

Maja Tait — “I’m excited about it, I’m looking forward to getting to know the new councillors and our new mayor of course. It was a clear message there is some dissatisfaction, perhaps, with different things and I think the other candidates and Wendal were very clear on what they wanted (to) set out (to do) and voters are in agreeance. They’re in agreement and they came out strong — it was very clear and decisive in terms of something council needs to focus on. I’m looking forward to a break for a bit, a week off, refocus.”