In 2011, when first elected mayor of Courtenay, Larry Jangula declared the job as mayor was a big undertaking and did not put his name forward to be appointed to one of the four seats allocated to Courtenay on the Regional District. The mayors of Cumberland and Comox also embraced the same tactic. In fact, historically, few mayors in B.C. take a seat at their Regional Board, as they are traditionally the leaders whose job is really to “waive the city’s flag”, which is hard to maintain while serving regional interests. It was a good decision in 2011 and would be a good decision for 2014.
In 2011, the top vote-getter was recommended by Mayor Jangula to be appointed to the Regional District. Following this same thinking, topping the polls in 2014, David Frisch ought to be given the same opportunity to be appointed to one of the seats. In the interest of full disclosure, I did support newly-elected Coun. Frisch, along with 3,670 other Courtenay residents who also demonstrated confidence in him as a civic leader. In fact, I believe he received the most votes ever in Courtenay’s history.
Residents of the rural areas directly elect their regional representatives. On the other hand, urban residents rely on the decisions of their elected Councils to appoint representatives. In this system, it seems appropriate that the top vote-getter deserves to represent us in one of our seats at the Regional District. After all, they have demonstrated a lot of confidence from the voters.
I look forward to seeing Courtenay Mayor and Council reflect the will of the people in their first act on Monday, Dec. 1.