Qualicum councillor wins NDP nod

Qualicum Beach Coun. Barry Avis will carry the NDP banner into the next provincial election in the Parksville-Qualicum constituency.

Qualicum Beach Coun. Barry Avis will carry the NDP banner into the next provincial election in the Parksville-Qualicum constituency.


Avis won a three-way nomination contest on the first ballot Sunday over 2009 candidate Leanne Salter and Nanaimo school trustee Andrea Bonkowski.


Roughly 150 people attended.


Avis stressed his career in government, with three elected terms to council, as well as six years on the Association of Vancouver Island and Coastal Communities board, rising to vice-president. He also sits on the Vancouver Island Regional Library board.


“I’ve worked on many issues with [NDP MLA] Scott Fraser, such as logging on the Englishman River, the Raven Coal project and Cathedral Grove,” he said. “However, I’ve been limited in my scope of what I can do.”


The vote was not without controversy, with NDP headquarters called because there was one ballot too many in the box.


But scrutineers all agreed the one ballot would not have made a difference in the final result, indicating that Avis won by more than two votes.


In his victory speech, Avis thanked both Bonkowski and Salter for running and pledged to put together a strong team to take on Liberal incumbent Ron Cantelon in the next provincial election.