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Acclaimed Oak Bay mayor promises work on outdoor pool

10 vie for six seats on Oak Bay council come Oct. 15
Welcome to Oak Bay, where an estimated 13,978 people are eligible to cast votes come Oct. 15. (Christine van Reeuwyk/News Staff)

While Mayor Kevin Murdoch will be acclaimed in Oak Bay, the race is on to fill the six councillor seats from among 10 candidates.

Individuals on the ballot this October are Andrew Appleton, Hazel Braithwaite, Raymon Farmere, Cairine Green, Roxanne Helme, Esther Paterson, Carrie Smart, Evan Southern, Lesley Watson and Eric Wood Zhelka.

The nomination period closed Sept. 9 and the deadline for a candidate to withdraw is Sept. 16 at 4 p.m.

Oak Bay introduced mail voting this election and is now accepting applications, available at Mail ballot packages will be available for pick up or sent out by mail starting on Sept. 24. Mail ballots may be picked up from municipal hall, 2167 Oak Bay Ave., until Oct. 14 at 4:30 p.m and can be hand delivered to any official polling station on general election day. Registrants are responsible to ensure ballots are received by the chief election officer no later than 8 p.m. on Oct. 15.

An estimated 13,978 people in Oak Bay are eligible to cast votes by mail, at advance polls Oct. 5 and 12 or during general election day Oct. 15 from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.

While it was no secret, on Sept. 5 Murdoch announced he would seek re-election with a platform and a promise. He will be acclaimed as no other candidates declared by the Sept. 9 nomination deadline.

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Murdoch sees top priorities as developing new commercial village area plans – which would address multi-family housing and active transportation – and an outdoor pool for the region.

The village plans would help ensure commercial centres are draws for both regional residents and tourists seeking positive shopping and dining experience while creating village-centred multi-family housing, public spaces and active transportation corridors.

An outdoor pool has been a regional desire for many years, and the recent heat waves and interest in outdoor activities have amplified the benefits.

In the past, cost and land availability have proven significant barriers. Murdoch plans to seek partnerships with other municipalities, school districts, the province, the federal government and private donors to help make this a reality.

Ongoing initiatives Murdoch believes need to conclude early in the next term include infill housing, the asset management program implementation, and resolving the future of the Oak Bay Lodge and Oak Bay Marina properties. He anticipates other ongoing priorities, such as improving First Nations relations, environmental protection, and transportation improvements will continue.

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About the Author: Oak Bay News Staff

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