West Kelowna  

West Kelowna mayors' race

For the longest time, it appeared Gord Milsom would run unopposed for mayor of West Kelowna.

That all changed late Friday afternoon.

Mary Mandarino handed in her nomination papers at City Hall just moments before the 4 p.m. filing deadline.

Chief elections officer Tracey Batten read out the nominations in council chambers just after the deadline had passed to a small group who appeared to be surprised at the last-minute nomination.

Milsom, who announced his candidacy in January, had said he's going to continue his campaign right up to election day, regardless of whether he had a challenger for the seat.

"I've campaigned now for many months. I've had the opportunity to talk with a lot of people, did a lot of public consultation, and I feel I fully understand the priorities of our residents," Milsom said following the declaration.

Milsom says he has knocked on about 2,000 doors since announcing his candidacy, and says the top priorities of citizens he has talked with are clean drinking water, safe roads, bike paths and sidewalks, and policing."

Mandarino was not available for comment.

Milsom previously served three terms on council, while Mandarino is making her fourth run at office after running unsuccessfully for council twice and for mayor in 2014.

While only two have declared for mayor, there will be 17 names on the ballot for councillor.

Those include five incumbents, Rick de Jong, Rusty Ensign, Rosalind Neis, Bryden Winsby and Carol Zanon, as well as former mayor Doug Findlater, who decided to stay in politics after all.

Other contenders include:

  • Philip Akins
  • Jerome Chung
  • Brad Dobbin
  • Gerry Evans
  • Jason Friesen
  • Joe Gluska
  • Stephen Johnston
  • Tiffany Paré
  • Winston Wammer
  • Gordon Wiebe
  • Jayson Zilkie

It's the largest field for a councillor seat since the municipality's first election in 2007, when 24 people ran for the six available seats.

Two candidates are running for school trustee, Chantelle Desrosiers, and Chris Vernon-Jarvis. They are looking to claim the seat held by Julia Fraser, who is not seeking re-election.

Information on the election is available at the city's website.

Candidates do have a week to pull out of the race if they choose to do so before the ballot is made official next Friday.

Voters will go to the polls Saturday, Oct. 20.

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