After weeks of campaigning, the municipal election is over and Jack Mussallem has been re-elected mayor of Prince Rupert with almost twice the votes of his nearest opponent, Kathy Bedard.
Mussallem ran on the strength of his own qualifications and avoided any pie-in-the-sky champaign promises. Instead, he offered financial restraint and pragmatic decision making instead; opting to understand what was in the box rather than to think outside of it. Mussallem also routinely slagged his two opponents qualifications for being mayor, latching on to weaknesses like the fact Bedard actually lives in Port Ed while she works in Prince Rupert.
While turnout this election’s turnout was low only 35.3 per cent of eligible voters, Mussallem got about to half of all votes cast in the election with 1769. Bedard received 981 votes and Corinna Mohart came in third with 357 votes.
“I’m disappointed, but I wish the city great success. And I will still be involved in this community, says Bedard after it was clear that she had lost.
The city council looks largely unchanged from the previous one. Incumbent councillors Joy Thorkelson (1,925 votes), Anna Ashley (1,459 votes), Gina Garon (1,536 votes) and Nelson Kinney (1,898 votes) were all re-elected to council. They will be joined by two first-time councillors Jennifer Rice (1,665) and Judy Carlick-Pearson.
Newcommer Jennifer Rice ran her campaign using the internet and social media with great success, propelling her from a relative unknown to third place overall.
“I think [that I have been elected to city council] because I’m a people person, so I can relate to a lot of different people, whether they’re older or young. I’m authentic and I’m pretty passionate about a lot of things,” says Rice.
The school board has also not changed very much after the election. Former board chair, Tina Last has been re-elected with the most votes;1,777. Also returning tot he school board is Bart Kuntz (1,587 votes), Terri-Lynne Huddlestone (1,046 votes) and Louisa Sanchez. The school board, like the city council, will be adding two new faces as well, Barbara Gruber (1,630 votes) and Marty Bowles (1,595 votes).