Mayor Lee Brain talks about his vision for Prince Rupert at the Hays 2.0 event on April 25, 2018. He will be the city’s mayor by acclamation. (Marc Fawcett-Atkinson / The Northern View)

More than 35 B.C. mayors elected without contest

No other candidates for mayor in the upcoming local election in 22 per cent of B.C. cities

Without contest, Prince Rupert’s mayor will serve a second term by acclamation – just one of the city leaders across the province who won’t be needing to campaign.

Mayor by acclamation is not uncommon for the 2018 election. Across cities, districts, villages and towns there are 36 candidates who will automatically become mayor, according to CivicInfo BC, a non-profit that collects its data from local Chief Election Officers.

Out of the 162 B.C. municipalities, 35 regions will have a candidate named as mayor without any challengers, or 22 per cent. On that list, 26 candidates are incumbents.

“Running for elected office is expensive and potentially humiliating. Rational candidates avoid contests against incumbents because these contests are much harder to win,” Michael Brydon said, who is both a professor at the Beedie School of Business at Simon Fraser University, and on the Regional District of Okanagan-Similkameen. After three terms he’s not running for re-election, and when the news broke he said six new candidates submitted for his seat.

Another political expert, Jason Morris, a political science lecturer at the University of Northern B.C., said he expected the number of mayors by acclamation to be higher due to changes in the term length to four years, from three years previously, and new restrictions on party financing. But “that hasn’t seemed to be the case,” he said.

READ MORE: Mayor runs unchallenged in Prince Rupert

“The large number of mayors that will be acclaimed in the coming civic elections on October 20 would suggest a lack of competition in many communities and as well the possibility, on the campaign trail, for less diverse views to be represented that can be later worked into social policy,” Morris said.

On Facebook, Brain addressed “Rupertites” about being named their mayor.

“Although I’ve been acclaimed, I want folks to know that this only further motivates me to kick it up a notch to spark major change and transformation in Prince Rupert.”

Formally, Brain will be acclaimed the end of Friday, Sept. 21, after the challenge and withdrawal period.

“You’ll be hearing more from me during this campaign period, but for now, I just want to thank everyone for their support, guidance and for sharing their concerns with me over these past four years. Listening is how I plan, design and implement a vision/path/way forward for our community,” Brain said in his post.

In the 2014 elections, Prince Rupert had four mayoral candidates and a 45.5 per cent voter turnout. Terrace had two mayoral candidates and a 31.6 per cent voter turn out. But with no race for the top spot, there is concern that if the mayor’s position is sorted before the elections voter turnout could be even lower.



newsroom@thenorthernview.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

bc election

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

RDCK reduces number of properties under evacuation alert from Talbott Creek Fire to 46

Improved visibility has allowed helicopters to resume water suppression efforts on fire

Unofficial holidays: Here’s what people are celebrating for the week of Sept. 20 to 26

Rabbit Day, Hobbit Day and One-Hit Wonder Day are all coming up this week

Interior Health reports three additional COVID-19 cases in region

The number of cases in the region since the beginning of the pandemic are now at 492

Kootenay teachers’ union going to labour relations board over COVID-19 related work conditions

Union issues open letter to premier, education minister, health minister and Dr. Bonnie Henry.

Trail market goes garlic

The event goes Saturday in downtown Trail from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Quirky Canadian comedy ‘Schitt’s Creek’ takes Emmys by storm with comedy sweep

Toronto-raised Daniel Levy and Ottawa-born Annie Murphy both got supporting actor nods

B.C.’s Chase Claypool catches first NFL touchdown pass

Abbotsford grad establishes new record for longest scrimmage TD by a Canadian

B.C. has highest number of active COVID-19 cases per capita, federal data shows

B.C. currently has 1,803 active cases after weeks of COVID-19 spikes in the province

181 days gone: Family continues to look for man last seen in RCMP custody 6 months ago

Brandon Sakebow’s last known location was leaving Mission RCMP cell, police say; family has doubts

B.C. unveils new cannabis sales programs to help small, Indigenous growers

Government did not say how it will define small producers, but says nurseries will be included in the policy

B.C. transportation minister will not seek re-election

Claire Trevena has held the position since 2017

Young B.C. cancer survivor rides 105-km with Terry Fox’s brother

Jacob Bredenhof and Darrell Fox’s cycling trek raises almost $90,000 for cancer research

Most Read