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More Delta politicians going provincial

Coun. Scott Hamilton running in Delta North while Coun. Bruce McDonald vies for Delta South Liberal nomination

Two more members of Delta council have announced plans to run in the next provincial election, making it a total of three councillors hoping to become MLAs.

Longtime councillor Bruce McDonald this week announced he decided to seek the Liberal nomination in Delta South.

McDonald said he believes he can work at the provincial level to directly address the major concerns that affect South Deltans.

"I have served for almost 20 years at the municipal level and I believe I can represent the concerns and values of the residents of South Delta in Victoria. I have worked on or chaired every municipal committee and commission and have also served as council liaison to numerous community organizations. I bring not only my lengthy government experience, but also my knowledge of local and provincial issues as well as a proven commitment to the citizens of Delta," he said in a press release.

The release also mentions current Delta Chamber of Commerce president Kelly Guichon was "one of many residents in the riding" who encouraged McDonald to seek the nomination.

"Delta South needs a strong voice on many issues including, agriculture, transportation and health care. I have worked with Coun. McDonald over the years and I know he can get the job done for South Delta," she said.

Guichon had over a year ago stated her interest in also seeking the Liberal nomination but in the release noted her current commitments "require all my devotion and energy and require me to stay local."

The Liberals will hold a nomination meeting in Delta South on Jan. 22.

Tsawwassen resident Bruce Fougner is also seeking the nomination. Saying he's looking forward to a great debate with McDonald, he noted he welcomes the councillor's late entry in the race.

"Delta South needs to leverage its resources in a sustainable way to create opportunities for all local citizens. With the development of the TFN lands, Tsawwassen really needs to come to grips with future development, transportation, glassed agriculture and tax revenue," he said.

"One of the proudest moments in my life

was seeing all of our hard work and energy result in an amazing plebiscite turnout and vote against the first Southlands proposal.

As a member of the communication committee we worked long and hard hours to get our message out."

The choice for members will be between a long-serving municipal politician and a successful business person, both having different strengths, he added.

Current Delta South MLA Vicki Huntington has stated she will likely remain an independent in the next election. The New Democrats have already named Nic Slater as their candidate.

Meanwhile, the race in Delta North got more interesting this week with the Liberals announcing Delta council member Scott Hamilton will be the party's candidate for that riding, where current New Democrat MLA Guy Gentner won't be seeking re-election. Hamilton will be acclaimed at a nomination meeting this Saturday.

"No single issue is more important to British Columbians than our economy," said Hamilton. "The next election is about protecting and growing our economy with Premier Christy Clark and the B.C. Liberals, or going backwards under the NDP," he said.

Hamilton believes the B.C. Liberals are the best to ensure that Delta's regional transportation issues are addressed.

First-term Delta councillor Sylvia Bishop was the first councillor to throw her hat in the provincial election ring, having been acclaimed the NDP's candidate for Delta North.

A municipal by-election will likely be required to fill at least one vacant council seat, and possibly two, after this year's election. The provincial election will be held May 14.

sgyarmati@delta-optimist.com