Tofino mayor Josie Osborne has announced that she will seek the B.C. NDP nomination for Mid Island-Pacific Rim. (Westerly file photo)

Tofino mayor Josie Osborne has announced that she will seek the B.C. NDP nomination for Mid Island-Pacific Rim. (Westerly file photo)

Tofino mayor Josie Osborne seeks B.C. NDP nomination for Mid Island-Pacific Rim

Longtime B.C. NDP MLA Scott Fraser announced on Monday that he will not be seeking reelection

Tofino mayor Josie Osborne has announced she will seek the B.C. NDP nomination for Mid Island-Pacific Rim in the next provincial election.

“I have decided to run for the BC NDP because I have seen the devastating impacts this pandemic has had on our communities and I believe John Horgan is the right person to lead the province during this difficult time,” Osborne said through an announcement made by the B.C. NDP on Tuesday around 1:45 p.m.

“I want to help build a long-term recovery that is sustainable and will make life better for the people in the Central Vancouver Island and all British Columbians…Following the incredible work of Scott Fraser, it’s crucial this work to rebuild our province is done in partnership with First Nation communities.”

Longtime B.C. NDP MLA Scott Fraser announced yesterday that he will not be seeking reelection for the Mid Island-Pacific Rim seat and the party wasted little time finding a potential successor from a familiar source. Prior to entering provincial politics in 2005, Fraser served as mayor of Tofino from 1996 to 1999.

READ MORE: Mid Island-Pacific Rim MLA Scott Fraser won’t seek re-election

“Scott has been an incredible leader. He has worked so hard for the people in this riding and I really want to build on what he’s been able to do and I want to work to build back better in our riding and in the province,” Osborne told the Westerly News immediately following her nomination announcement.

“There’s no turning around. I am so excited. I feel very good about my decision. I have the support of my husband and my family and so many friends and colleagues, people have already been messaging me like crazy, they’re really excited to hear the news and I’m looking forward to what’s to come.”

She said the decision to run for provincial office was not an easy one to make, but she is excited about the opportunity to “scale up” her impact.

“There’s a lot of bitter-sweetness because I have absolutely loved being the mayor of Tofino. It is a privilege and an honour to serve the people here in Tofino and the region and I feel really proud of a lot of the accomplishments that I’ve been a part of,” she said. “I think though, for me, this is a way to even better serve the people of Tofino and the region in a new capacity and I think that working with the B.C. NDP is the best way that I can do that.”

She said she does not plan to immediately step down from her mayor’s seat, but will take an official leave of absence when a provincial election is called.

“That’s the appropriate thing to do,” she said. “Then, we’ll see where the chips fall after an election. If I’m successful in becoming the next MLA, then my intention would be to step down and enable a new leader in Tofino.”

Osborne is currently serving her third term as mayor of Tofino. She ran unopposed in a 2013 byelection and unopposed again in a 2014 general election. She faced two challengers for the mayor’s seat in Tofino’s most recent municipal election in 2018 and earned a decisive 85 per cent of the total votes cast, receiving 792 votes and besting Jarmo Venalainen, 69 votes, and Omar Soliman, 52 votes.

READ MORE: Tofino mayor Josie Osborne re-elected

The next provincial election has not yet been called, but candidates are being announced and Osborne will not be the only council member on the Mid Island-Pacific Rim ballot as, last week, Port Alberni city councillor Helen Poon was announced as the BC Liberal candidate.

READ MORE: Port Alberni city councillor named BC Liberal candidate for Mid Island-Pacific Rim

In a Tuesday morning Tweet, prior to her announcement, Osborne thanked Fraser for his service and support of the West Coast.

“It’s been a real privilege to work with you and learn from your compassionate, people-centered approach to politics,” she wrote.



andrew.bailey@westerlynews.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

READ MORE: Tofino mayor urges “kindness” as tourism reopens

READ MORE: VIDEO: Tofino mayor encourages women to run in B.C.’s 2018 municipal elections

READ MORE: Tofino mayor explains housing editorial

Provincial GovernmentTofino,

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

This tractor was stolen from Providence Farm near Duncan between May 6 and 7, 2021. (Submitted)
Tractor stolen from Cowichan’s Providence Farm

John Deere X300 model was swiped between May 6 and 7

The organizers of the annual 39 days of July festival hope to return to live shows in Charles Hoey Park this year, like in this photo taken in 2019, but audiences at the show may be limited to 50 people due to health protocols. (File photo)
39 Days of July hoping for outdoor events in Duncan this summer

Annual music festival will run from June 25 to Aug. 2 this year

Cowichan Valley WildSafeBC coordinator Amanda Crowston teaches a Grade 5/6 class at Ecole Cobble Hill last fall. (Submitted)
The bears are back in town and so is WildSafeBC

The bears are back in town so keep an eye out, reminds… Continue reading

The Regional District of Nanaimo has its sights set on busing to the Cowichan Valley in time for March 2022. (News Bulletin file)
Bus link between Nanaimo and the Cowichan Valley expected by next March

Unallocated transit hours already in Regional District of Nanaimo budget

B.C. Labour Minister Harry Bains in the B.C. legislature, May 13, 2019. (Hansard TV)
VIDEO: B.C. to provide 3 days of sick pay for COVID-19 absences

Province will support employers on cost, labour minister says

A Nanaimo RCMP officer is recovering after his patrol car was hit by another vehicle at an intersection on Monday, May 10. (Photo courtesy Julia Rose)
RCMP vehicle broad-sided in Nanaimo intersection crash

Police officer recovering at home following collision Monday

A partnership is looking to identify skeletal remains that were discovered by recreational divers in the Gorge Waterway this February. (Black Press Media File Photo)
Divers find partial human skull in Victoria’s Gorge Waterway

B.C. Coroner Service determines remains likely historical, not ancestral

The RCMP logo is seen outside Royal Canadian Mounted Police “E” Division Headquarters, in Surrey, B.C., on Friday April 13, 2018. Indigenous leaders are calling for an investigation into the conduct of Mounties on Vancouver Island after two police shootings of members of a small First Nations community in three months. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Indigenous leaders call for clarity, investigation into RCMP after B.C. shooting

The RCMP declined to comment on the requests by Indigenous leaders

Colleen Price, Vancouver Island University’s bachelor of science in nursing program chairperson, says she is impressed with how students have persevered through the COVID-19 pandemic. (Chris Bush/News Bulletin)
Next generation of B.C. nurses already showing resilience

University program head says learning had to be adjusted amidst pandemic

Two-year-old Kashius Weme rides at the Steve Smith Memorial Bike Park in Nanaimo on Tuesday, May 11. The youngster’s precocious bike-riding ability is already attracting cycle sponsors. (Chris Bush/News Bulletin)
2-year-old B.C. bike rider already attracting cycle sponsors

Nanaimo’s Kashius Weme has a knack for extreme cycle sports

Keith MacIntyre - BC Libertarian
Penticton’s Keith MacIntyre new leader of the B.C. Libertarian Party

The Penticton businessman was voted in by members of the party on May 8

RCMP are searching for Philip Toner, who is a 'person of interest' in the investigation of a suspicious death in Kootenay National Park last week. Photo courtesy BC RCMP.
Man sought in suspicious Kootenay death found in Lake Country

Philip Toner is a person of interest in the death of Brenda Ware

Vernon North Okanagan RCMP reported to 287 mental health calls between Jan. 1, 2021, and May 1. (Black Press files)
‘It’s not the police’s responsibility to deal with mental health calls’: Vernon RCMP

RCMP remind public to take care of mental health and well-being, while better solutions are sought

Most Read