Sun. May 28 - Byelection called for former Horgan seat
Plus: Local farmer stops to smell the flowers (and eat them). School bus shortages. Sunday events.
Good morning !
We finally have a date for the byelection to replace John Horgan, and it’s less than a month from today.
Summer elections are fairly rare, given that families are often vacationing, university students are away, and people tend to be less engaged with politics overall. But the alternative—waiting until fall—would have left some locals without an MLA for half a year.
This June date is also not that long after the May provincial elections that have been fairly standard (such as BC’s in 2017 and Alberta’s current one), though Premier Eby could have called an actual May byelection shortly after receiving Horgan’s official resignation in late March.
Is late June the right time for a byelection?
Fast-tracked byelection coming to Westshore in four weeks
📸 Langford file photo: James MacDonald / Capital Daily
Premier David Eby announced Saturday that John Horgan’s vacated Langford – Juan de Fuca MLA seat will be filled by a June 24 byelection. Nominations will close at 1pm on June 3, though four candidates have already announced. Advance voting in what will be BC’s 201st provincial byelection will start Friday, June 16 and end Wednesday, June 21.
The major parties’ candidates are the NDP’s Ravi Parmar, the SD62 chair and a senior advisor to BC’s jobs minister; the Greens’ Camille Currie, a personal trainer and marine business co-owner who has campaigned to get all BC residents a family doctor; and BC United’s Elena Lawson, who successfully campaigned against a change to BC autism policy.
Also running is realtor Mike Harris of the BC Conservative party, though candidates from parties outside the main three seldom do well in the area. Langford – Juan de Fuca and its previous incarnations have almost always gone NDP, as did predecessors Esquimalt – Port Renfrew and Cowichan – Malahat dating back to the 1970s.
Horgan stepped down as MLA on March 31 after representing the riding since 2005. This will be the last race in the riding, which will be split in two in the next election due to Westshore population growth.
A byelection will also be held in Vancouver – Mount Pleasant following the resignation of Melanie Mark, the first First Nations woman elected to the BC legislature, who cited poor treatment as a factor in her resignation.
Subscribe to The Westshore for regular updates on the election race.
🌤️ Sun & cloud today: Wind becoming west 30km/h in afternoon & night / 60km/h near Juan de Fuca Strait. High 21C (17 near water) / low 11. UV index 8 (very high).
🏃 Road closures in Oak Bay and Uplands for the Oak bay Half-Marathon. Race info here.
⛵ Swiftsure yacht race finishes today: See where the remaining boats are here.
Local farmer gives up Silicon Valley to stop and smell (or eat) the flowers
After a decade away, Island-raised Ariel Rubin left a big job with Apple and returned to Saanich with her husband and four kids. She and her mother now operate Rockrose Farm, a sprawling flower farm in the Strawberry Vale that sells cut flowers and hosts events.
She wants the farm to be regenerative and self-sufficient, and to give others the kind of space she had in her Island childhood.
“I don't think I realized until I moved that some kids didn't grow up just eating from the garden and growing flowers,” Rubin said. “Some of us don’t necessarily grow up being exposed to these spaces, and I know how fortunate I had been to have that.”
The farm specializes in edible flowers, and Rubin took Tasting Victoria on a tour of the grounds to learn about the different flower flavours. Read the story, or watch the Tasting Victoria Live! episode, at the link below.
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🏮 Awakening Chinatown Festival: A celebration of the history, culture, and contributions of Chinese Canadians in Chinatown today, 12-5pm. [Details]
💃 Flamenco Tablao at The Mint: Enjoy a performance by the Alma de España Flamenco Dance Company today, 7-9pm. [Tickets]
👟 Victoria MS Walk: Participate in today’s fundraising 5k walk at Cadboro-Gyro Park, 10am. [Details]
🤤 Book your seats to Pacific Opera's 23/24 full-flavoured season: deliciously epic Die Walküre (Wagner), spicy flamenco-fusion Ainadamar (Golijov), and scrumptious The Marriage of Figaro (Mozart)—three shows for $72!*
🚌 Fill the Bus fundraiser: United Way Southern Vancouver Island aims to fill a BC Transit bus with donated menstrual products today at Tillicum Mall (10am-3pm).
🍤 Spot Prawn Festival: This eclectic free festival in James Bay has music, a beer area, a pet area, rugby, and of course prawns. 11am-6pm.
🏡 Recently sold single family homes: View all the recently sold homes in Victoria. View the sale prices, photos, and more.*
🤝 Now hiring: Public Relations and Marketing Specialist at University of Victoria.
In Other News
🎒 Westshore students missing school over lack of bus drivers
For the past two weeks SD62 has cancelled at least one route per day and at times as many as three. It says recent illnesses have compounded a broader shortage of qualified drivers. [CBC]
🏥 Island Health responds to doctors’ letter about Salt Spring shortages
The health authority told the Gulf Islands Driftwood that remote doctors have been used for the ER four times this spring when no in-person doctor was available, and that a new doctor will join the Lady Minto in July. The letter sent earlier this month flagged the effect of current and upcoming staff shortages. One factor in the island’s health staff shortages is its housing shortage.
💧 Bright orange water in Duncan caused by phytoplankton bloom
The bloom, called noctiluca, near Maple Bay Marina is considered harmless and shines like bioluminescence at night. [Times Colonist]
In Case You Missed It
📍 Saturday newsletter: New Saanich OCP draft aims to put services within 15-minute walks. Oak Bay Library asbestos update. Local doctor only taking older patients. Gas prices keep rising. [May 27]
🔥 Arson badly damages Duncan playground: The playground at 325 First St. was fully engulfed when Duncan Fire arrived early Friday morning. North Cowichan RCMP seek surveillance camera footage.
🚙 Thursday newsletter: A local student living in a van, as housing prices climb higher. A new referral program for local businesses. A Paralympian and a dog find a missing person. [May 25]
⚽ Pacific FC 1 Halifax 1: The draw keeps the locals in second place in the CPL. This past week they lost 0-3 to the Vancouver Whitecaps in the inter-league Canadian Cup semifinals.
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