Esquimalt voters ushered in a new political era tonight (Sept. 19) with the election of their council.
Incumbent Meagan Brame, Dave Hodgins, incumbent Lynda Hundleby, Tim Morrison, Bob McKie and David Schinbein received the majority of votes, while candidates Josh Steffler and Sandra Dixon lost out.
“I think it’s fabulous,” said a smiling Bob McKie. “I think we have some young, we have some experienced and we have some older people on council.
“We have a well-rounded council that’s level-headed,” he said. “We’ll be able to compliment each other through the bad times and the good times.”
He was more disappointed with the turnout to the polls – 2,300 ballots were cast, representing 18 per cent of Esquimalt’s eligible voters. In the 2008 municipal election, 3,437 voters had their say.
There was no contest for the mayor’s seat. Mayor Barb Desjardins was acclaimed earlier this month.
The township’s referendum question was also answered – 1,510 voters in favour of the township rezoning municipal square. The changes would allow the construction of two mixed-use residential buildings, up to eight- and 12-storeys tall. There were 690 voters who were against the plan.
A public hearing on the issue may be scheduled sometime in February.
The results of the vote won’t be made official until Monday or Tuesday. The elected representatives, who will serve a three-year term, will be sworn in at their first council meeting on Dec. 5.
To prepare for their new jobs, the councillors-elect , along with those from municipalities throughout the Capital Region, will have the option of participating in a two-evening training session in one week’s time.
Voting results (unofficial):
Tim Morrison: 1,655
Meagan Brame, incumbent: 1,631
Bob McKie: 1,594
Lynda Hundleby, incumbent: 1,570
Dave Hodgins: 1,415
David Schinbein: 940
Sandra Dixon: 819
Josh Steffler: 800