Sooke mayor faces at least two challengers

Kevin Pearson and Mick Rhodes hope to unseat Maja Tait

Sooke Coun. Kevin Pearson and community advocate Mick Rhodes will take on Mayor Maja Tait when voters head to the polls next month.

All three filed nomination papers last week.

And there’s still more who can join the party. Nominations for the civic election close Friday at 4 p.m.

Tait, who is seeking her second term as mayor, said her campaign will focus on “the most pressing issues” facing Sooke: unprecedented fast growth in this second fastest-growing municipality on Vancouver Island.

“Together we can realize our vision of a safe, vibrant and inclusive community,” Tait stated in a press release.

“We need wise development decisions grounded in our community plans that maintain the unique rural identity we all love. Let’s ensure our growing neighbourhoods receive necessary and improved infrastructure, health and community services.”

Tait’s second term priorities include a provincial commitment for improved health services, improve local roads and infrastructure, affordable housing, daycare and support for seniors and expand neighbourhood green spaces, and trail connections.

Tait has served the last 10 years in municipal politics – six as councillor and four as mayor

Pearson said leadership is the key issue for Sooke in the election and he intends to get more accomplished as mayor.

“Since 2014 Sooke council has made plans and approved funding but we’ve lacked leadership in delivering results,” Pearson said.

“Under focused leadership, we can do better.”

Pearson wants more action on affordable housing, repaired roads and new sidewalks, downtown core improvements and more accountability.

He was first elected as councillor in 2011.

Rhodes has not released any campaign details yet.

The civic election is Saturday, Oct. 20.

•••

Municipal election day is Oct. 20 and when Sooke Region voters head to the polls, they’ll have a few new faces to consider.

So far, eight candidates have filed papers to run in the October vote. They include: Rick Armour, Jeff Bateman, Al Beddows, Herb Haldane, Rick Kasper (incumbent), Ebony Logins (incumbent), Phil Rossner and Tony St-Pierre.

Over in the Capital Regional District Juan de Fuca Electoral Area, incumbent Mike Hicks will face former Sooke councillor Herb Haldane.

Three positions for the Sooke School board are up for grabs in the Sooke Region, but so far only two candidates have registered: Margot Swinburnson (incumbent) and Allison Watson

Nominations close at 4 p.m. Friday.

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