Official election results for the Cariboo Regional District have now been announced (Oct. 23), with six new directors elected to the board.
CRD Elections were held in Electoral Areas A, B, E, F, J, K and L of the regional district.
All other electoral area directors, including new Area I director Jim Glassford, were acclaimed on Sept. 24, 2018.
A total of 4,654 voters came out to vote, out of the 18,895 eligible voters in Areas A, B, E, F, J, K and L in the regional district, representing a 24.6 per cent voter turnout.
Voter turnout was higher than in the 2014 elections, which saw 2,137 voters.
For the North Cariboo Airport Service referendum in areas A, B, C and I near Quesnel, 1,446 ballots were cast by CRD residents with 72 per cent saying yes to establishing a contribution service for the Quesnel Regional Airport. In total, 1,044 people voted yes and 402 voted no. The new tax will see regional district residents contribute to the Quesnel airport operating costs.
The 2019-2022 board of directors will include the following electoral area directors:
Electoral Area Director Acclaimed/Elected New Director
Area A (Red Bluff, Quesnel South) Mary Sjostrom
Area B (Quesnel West, Bouchie Lake) Barbara Bachmeier
Area C (Bowron Lake, Barlow Creek, Barkerville) John Massier (Acclaimed)
Area D (Commodore Heights, McLeese Lake) Steve Forseth (Acclaimed)
Area E (South Lakeside, Dog Creek) Angie Delainey
Area F (Horsefly, Likely, 150 Mile House) Conrad Turcotte
Area G (Lac La Hache, 108 Mile Ranch) Al Richmond (Acclaimed)
Area H (Canim Lake, Forest Grove) Margo Wagner (Acclaimed)
Area I (Narcosli, Nazko, West Fraser) Jim Glassford (Acclaimed, new)
Area J (West Chilcotin) Gerald Kirby
Area K (East Chilcotin) Chad Mernett
Area L (Lone Butte, Interlakes) Willow MacDonald
Some CRD candidates won their spots by small margins; for example, Mary Sjostrom in Area A won the election by just 13 votes.
The CRD’s chief election officer Alice Johnston said the small margins don’t necessarily mean they conduct recounts, however.
“On Oct. 23 when we declare the official results, I open up all the ballot account forms and if there weren’t many rejected ballots and everything balances, then I probably won’t conduct an informal recount,” she explained.
Johnston said that unless there is a high number of rejected ballots, there’s no reason to back through them. “It’s pretty self explanatory on which ones are rejected and which ones are counted. We don’t reject them just because people put a tick instead of an X, or something like that. Sometime people purposely don’t mark their ballot, or it’s marked in such a way that you can’t decide what was the intent of the voter. But they don’t happen very often.”
Johnston said that now that the official results have been declared, if a candidate or elector wishes, they can request a judicial recount through the provincial court.
READ MORE: Several new directors elected on CRD board