Braithwaite seeks top council job

Two-term councillor anxious to tackle mayoral campaign

The first hat is in the ring in the race to replace outgoing Oak Bay Mayor Christopher Causton.

Coun. Hazel Braithwaite officially announced her intentions to the News this week.

“We’ve got a history in Oak Bay of good people being in charge,” Braithwaite said. “I think I can carry that forward.”

Causton, who has been mayor since 1996, announced before he ran for the Liberals in the federal election in May, that he would not run again in this November’s election. That has left the field wide open for candidates to replace him.

Braithwaite, 52, has served on Oak Bay council since 2005, and said she is ready for the challenge of a mayoral campaign. She is already beginning to put together a list of volunteers who want to help out.

“I’m going to be doing a lot of work in the next couple of weeks to get organized,” she said, adding that her time as a councillor should serve her well in the coming election.

“If someone comes into it cold turkey, they don’t know what the expectations are, what the time commitment is, or the major issues that we are facing.”

Those issues include the revision of Oak Bay’s official community plan, a document which hasn’t been updated since 1997.

“It is high on my list of things we should be looking at. It encompasses a number of things that are important to the community, including secondary suites and the transportation plan.”

Braithwaite, who is a senior learning specialist at Coast Capital Savings, was the only declared candidate for the top job as of Monday.

Municipal elections in Oak Bay and across B.C. are slated for Nov. 19.