Mayor-elect Leonard Krog makes a speech at the Vancouver Island Conference Centre on Saturday night. CHRIS BUSH/The NEWS BULLETIN

ELECTION DAY: Krog voted in as Nanaimo’s next mayor

Hemmens, Armstrong, Geselbracht, Brown, Turley, Bonner, Thorpe and Maartman elected as councillors

Leonard Krog will be Nanaimo’s next mayor.

Unofficial final results are in and Leonard Krog won the mayoral race. The successful council candidates, in order of vote count, are Erin Hemmens, Sheryl Armstrong, Ben Geselbracht, Tyler Brown, Jim Turley, Don Bonner, Ian Thorpe and Zeni Maartman.

“I think we’re going to have a very good council, maybe even a great council,” said Krog. “Nanaimo’s very fortunate tonight. A lot of good people put their names forward.”

He said it was difficult to fill out his own ballot because of the calibre of the candidates.

“Obviously Nanaimo is anxious to get on with progress and change…” Krog said. “It is about bringing people together for change and I think the candidates who are leading tonight speak to that as loudly as they possibly could and the voters obviously supported that message.”

He confirmed that he will be leaving provincial politics.

“I will be resigning my seat in due course and obviously that was the commitment I made,” he said.

Soon after Krog’s victory, the B.C. Liberal Party issued statements looking ahead to a coming byelection for the Nanaimo MLA’s provincial seat.

“The B.C. Liberals are excited to put forward a candidate who can effectively stand up to the NDP’s agenda, and soon join a B.C. Liberal government that will deliver greater opportunity in Nanaimo,” said Andrew Wilkinson, Liberal leader, in the statement.

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Krog received 20,040 votes with fellow mayoral candidate Don Hubbard at 6,802.

Hemmens led the polls with 15,937 votes; Armstrong, 15,817; Geselbracht, 15,136; Brown, 14,935; Turley, 11,649; Bonner, 9,674; Thorpe, 8,993; Maartman, 8,558.

Of candidates who didn’t make it onto council, Jeet Manhas was closest at 5,994 and Norm Smith rounded out the top-10 vote getters with 5,824.

Nanaimo council incumbents who were unsuccessful in re-election bids were Jerry Hong, with 4,063, and Gord Fuller, with 1,930.

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Brown said he hadn’t known what to expect going into election night, but said it looks like Nanaimo will have “a great council.”

“A lot of different skill sets, a lot of folks with different leadership throughout the community, which is wonderful,” he said. “I’ve talked with all those folks and I think everybody has a good understanding that we need to get down to business and tackle some key issues and some big issues.”

Geselbracht said the priority for councillors will be to set a positive, collaborative tone.

“In Nanaimo, we need to move forward by working together and we need to bring our different community groups together, rebuild our committees and meet the challenge of our growing city,” he said. “I think the first order of business is sitting down with the rest of council and having a good discussion and setting the priorities of how we want to move forward.”

Armstrong, will be one of just two returning councillors.

“I think there’s not going to be a lot of teaching for a lot of them because I think they’re coming here well prepared. They’re well versed in what they need, they’re going to get some excellent education from not only the city staff, but the RDN staff. But it’s just a matter of telling them, ‘Take your time, really research your topics.’ I think that’s really important. If there’s a contentious issue, make sure you understand the issue before you vote.”

She said she was nervous going into voting day.

“I was more nervous for this than I was the byelection…” Armstrong said. “I was concerned that people might lump me in with ‘get rid of all the previous council’ and obviously the voters didn’t, so I’m very thankful for that.”

Turley foresees a council that will be able to get along and the lacrosse official said he’s looking forward to his first city council meeting.

“Yeah, I was actually wondering if I should wear my referee’s jersey and bring my whistle with me but I don’t think I’ll have to with this council,” he said.

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Nanaimo Ladysmith school district

The next school board will be a mix of new faces and returnees. Jessica Stanley led the polls with 11,941 votes, followed by fellow newcomer Lisa Marie Barron at 11,143. Tania Brzovic was the highest vote-getter among incumbents with 10,052 votes. The other members of the school board, in order of vote count, will be Greg Keller, Stephanie Higginson, Charlene McKay, Chantel O’Neill, Bill Robinson and Elaine Wilkinson.

Of the candidates who weren’t elected to school board, Marilyn Sullivan was closest. Scott Kimler was the only incumbent trustee not to be re-elected.

District of Lantzville

District of Lantzville election results posted to Civic Info B.C. showed Mark Swain winning the mayoral race with a council of Jamie Wilson, Karen Proctor, Ian Savage and Will Geselbracht.

Unofficial results show Mark Swain with 833 votes; Bob Colclough runner-up with 531 votes.

Lantzville councillors elected include Jamie Wilson, 859; Karen Proctor, 730; Ian Savage, 645; Will Geselbracht, 615.

John Dunn was closest runner-up with 580 votes. Incumbent Dot Neary was eighth in vote count with 496.

For the full story, click here.

Regional District of Nanaimo

Regional District of Nanaimo election results are in. Vanessa Craig is the new Area B (Gabriola Island) director with 67.2 per cent of the vote count, defeating longtime director Howard Houle. Keith Wilson is the new Area A (Cassidy, Cedar, Yellow Point, South Wellington) director with 58.9 per cent.

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