Two more announce intentions for Saanich council seat

Incumbent Leif Wergeland and community association president Rob Wickson throw their hat in the ring for Nov. 19 election

Leif Wergeland will seek re-election to Saanich council in November, the four-term councillor announced Friday.

“We have a number of great accomplishments, and yet there is still so much to deliver on,” Wergeland said, focusing on “council’s past record of progress” on such accomplishments as the adoption of the official community plan.

The 70-year-old’s hand-written press release focuses on maintaining the status quo and not making big changes, as financial challenges –namely sewage treatment and light-rail transit – are on the horizon for Saanich and the Capital Regional District.

“Saanich has a strong proven progress council – now is not the time for significant change in council’s makeup,” he said.

Wergeland, a semi-retired businessman who now runs the Compassionate Resource Warehouse, has been a councillor since 1996, and a CRD board director since 1999.

Incumbent councillors Susan Brice and Dean Murdock have also officially announced they will seek re-election in November. The ***News has, however, spoken will all councillors, and Paul Gerrard, Vicki Sanders, Judy Brownoff and Vic Derman will also run again. Coun. Wayne Hunter will run for Saanich School Board instead.

Also on Friday, Gorge Tillicum Community Association president Rob Wickson announced he’ll attempt to earn a seat on council for a second time.

Wickson ran in the 2008 election, earning nearly 7,000 votes.

“I believe we are at a crossroads and if we fail to take the right path in solving some of the pressing issues that not only affect Saanich but our neighbouring municipalities and partners, we will end up allowing others to make decisions that affect the quality of life in our neighbourhoods. We can’t let that happen,” Wickson said.

He detailed the need for regional transportation planning, sustainable land development, vibrant neighbourhoods and affordable accessible housing as priorities.

Wickson, an economist, has lived in Saanich since 1988, and is the past chair of both the B.C. and Victoria Chambers of Commerce.

“It’s time for me to move to the next level. It’s time for me to participate and bring my experience to Saanich council … in terms of trying to solve some of the riddles and puzzles in our community.”

Former councillor Nichola Wade has also said she will run for council.

In Saanich’s mayoral race, Mayor Frank Leonard will be challenged by former Saanich South MLA and councillor David Cubberley.

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