McPherson Wins Byelection by Narrow Margin
Trent Ernst, Editor
Low voter turnout and a close race characterized the most recent byelection, to fill the seat vacated by former councilor Doug Beale, but when the dust had settled, it was Don McPherson who stood victorious.
“It was close, that’s for sure,” says McPherson after the election. “I would have liked to have seen more people out to vote, though.”
McPherson won by only six ballots, beating out another former councilor, Jerrilyn Schembri, who also currently serves on the Peace River Regional District. Schembri was the first to announce the election results on Facebook, congratulating McPherson on his victory. She also says she was disappointed by the low turnout.
When all was said and done, less than one tenth of the population of Tumbler Ridge turned out to vote, a mere 268 people, and McPherson was elected with only 100 votes cast to his name. That’s less than half of the number that turned out for the previous municipal election, where 569 of the 1886 eligible voters showed up to cast a ballot, or slightly over 25 percent.
In the last Federal election, 61.1 percent of the population turned out to vote. In the Prince George-Peace River riding, that number was 71.5 percent.
For this byelection, 14 percent of the eligible voting public showed up.
Brenda Holmlund came in third, with 50 votes, while Crosbie Bourdeaux had 23 votes.
McPherson says that he is glad to be able to get back on council.”There are lots of exciting things coming up.”
The next meeting of council happens three days after the election. McPherson says that that’s too soon for him to get sworn in, as there has to be time to allow for a recount, if it is demanded. “I can’t get sworn in until the next meeting. But I’ll be there Tuesday, sitting in the Gallery.”