Bev Parnham

Bev Parnham

Mayors re-elected with ‘mandate’

Port McNeill an Port Hardy mayors vow steady as she goes

Winning 61 per cent of the vote leads Port Hardy Mayor Bev Parnham to believe voters sent a clear message when they elected her to a second term.

“The electorate has spoken and they know what they’re doing,” she said after her Nov. 19 win.

“I believe we’ve been given a pretty clear mandate that the town is happy the way things are going and we’re working hard on their behalf.”

Two councillors, Scott White and Larry Woodall, did not run for reelection and incumbent Coun. Eric Ralph was defeated. One seat had been vacant since Coun. Stan McLennan left earlier in the year.

Incumbents Al Huddlestan and Nikki Shaw won their seats, and newbies Janet Dorward, Rick Marcotte, John Tidbury and Jessie Hemphill will fill out the council starting next month.

Parnham said she believes she has a good mix of people on her board.

“The council coming in looks really good, a good cross section of the community: there are people who are retired, young people, First Nations, people whose passion is health and housing and others whose passion is economic development,” she said.

“I see it as a really good mix of experience and inexperience and there will be new ideas and I’m really pleased.”

Parnham said her priorities for the next three years haven’t changed.

“The No. 1 priority is what it’s always been and that’s the economy,” she said.

“The last three years we built what I think is a really good foundation and we got a lot of the puzzle pieces into place and the next three years we’re really going to make things happen and I think we’ll see some really good results, very soon.”

Parnham added she’s anxious to “get out there and get the economy rolling and look after our community” to make sure Port Hardy is a great place to live.

“That’s what people want,” she said.

XXXXXXXX

It seems it’s now Gerry Furney’s world and the rest of us just live in it.

“My wife lives in that world too and she keeps me on my toes,” said Furney, a day after he was reelected to yet another term as mayor of Port McNeill.

“And my son and daughter live in that world and they’re married with kids here and they keep me on my toes too.”

Furney is about to start an incredible 36th year as mayor of Port  McNeill after voters returned him to office Nov. 19 with nearly 200 more votes than his competitor, Shelley Downey, who campaigned on a platform of change.

“But there was no explanation of what they wanted to change,” said Furney, who also served 12 years as a Port McNeill councillor.

All in all, Furney said he thought it was a good campaign.

“It was fairly friendly and no one insulted me or anything, it was all pretty clean,” he said.

McNeill voters also gave the nod to two incumbents, Gaby Wickstrom and Shirley Ackland as well as two newcomers to the board, Grant Anderson and Chris Sharpe.

Furney said he’s happy with the two new councillors, but doesn’t see any big changes to the way he’s been running things for the past three decades.

“We have a mandate for more of the same which is essentially good, sound management,” he said.

“We know what our limitations are budget-wise. There’s only a certain amount of money we can collect from the taxpayers; we don’t have a mandate to increase taxes.”

Furney said the key to fiscal responsibility is to keep costs to an absolute minimum. “We don’t have a big huge bunch of bureaucrats sitting around a table in the municipal office wondering what they’re going to spend money on,” he said.

The mayor joked at the beginning of the latest campaign he was already looking towards the 2014 elections, but for now he’s content to live in the present.

“It’s nice to be representing nice people in a nice community,” he said.

 

Just Posted

North Island MLA Michele Babchuk. Photo contributed
COMMENTARY: MLA Michele Babchuk talks the future of forestry

‘These forests are important to every single one of us, myself included’

Dr. Prean Armogam hands over a cheque for $10,000 to Hardy Bay Senior Citizens Society president Rosaline Glynn. The money will be going towards a new roof for the Port Hardy seniors centre. This is the second donation Dr. Armogam has made to the society, giving them $5,000 a little over a year ago. (Tyson Whitney - North Island Gazette)
Doctor donates $10k to Hardy Bay Senior Citizens Society for new roof

This was the second donation Armogam has given to the society

New COVID-19 cases on Vancouver Island by local health area for the week of May 30-June 5. (B.C. Centre for Disease Control image)
COVID-19 cases drop again almost everywhere on Vancouver Island

Nanaimo had four new cases last week, down from 22 the week before

Blueprints for the seniors housing project in Port Hardy. (North Island Seniors Housing Foundation photo)
BC Housing declines North Island Seniors Housing Foundation’s proposal to build units

BC Housing will be explaining why exactly the project was declined at a June 18 meeting

An aerial view of the marine oil-spill near Bligh Island in Nootka sound that the Canadian Coast Guard posted in a live social media feed in December. ( Canadian Coast Guard/Facebook)
Oil from vessel that sank in 1968 off Vancouver Island to be removed

DFO hires Florida firm to carefully remove oil from MV Schiedyk in Nootka Sound starting in mid-June

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau participates in a plenary session at the G7 Summit in Carbis Bay, England on Friday June 11, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Canada donating 13M surplus COVID-19 vaccine doses to poor countries

Trudeau says the government will pay for 87 million shots to be distributed to poor countries

Premier John Horgan speaks as provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry, right, and health minister Adrian Dix look on during a press conference to update on the province’s fall pandemic preparedness plan during a press conference from the press theatre at Legislature in Victoria, Wednesday, Sept. 9, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
B.C. officials to provide details on Step 2 of COVID reopening plan Monday

Step 2 could allow for larger gatherings and a resumption of recreational travel

Indigenous Services Minister Marc Miller is seen during a news conference, Wednesday May 19, 2021 in Ottawa. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Indigenous child-welfare battle heads to court despite calls for Ottawa to drop cases

Feds are poised to argue against two Canadian Human Rights Tribunal rulings

The Great Ogopogo Bathtub Race has been held in Summerland as a fundraising event. Do you know which Canadian city introduced this sport? (Black Press file photo)
QUIZ: A summer’s day at the water

How much do you know about boats, lakes and water?

Two-year-old Ivy McLeod laughs while playing with Lucky the puppy outside their Chilliwack home on Thursday, June 10, 2021. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress)
VIDEO: B.C. family finds ‘perfect’ puppy with limb difference for 2-year-old Ivy

Ivy has special bond with Lucky the puppy who was also born with limb difference

A million-dollar ticket was sold to an individual in Vernon from the Lotto Max draw Friday, June 11, 2021. (Photo courtesy of BCLC)
Lottery ticket worth $1 million sold in Vernon

One lucky individual holds one of 20 tickets worth $1 million from Friday’s Lotto Max draw

“65 years, I’ve carried the stories in my mind and live it every day,” says Jack Kruger. (Athena Bonneau)
‘Maybe this time they will listen’: Survivor shares stories from B.C. residential school

Jack Kruger, living in Syilx territory, wasn’t surprised by news of 215 children’s remains found on the grounds of the former Kamloops Indian Residential School

A logging truck carries its load down the Elaho Valley near in Squamish, B.C. in this file photo. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chuck Stoody
Squamish Nation calls for old-growth logging moratorium in its territory

The nation says 44% of old-growth forests in its 6,900-square kilometre territory are protected while the rest remain at risk

Most Read