June 20, 2013 - 4:36 PM
PENTICTON — The heads of the regional district and the City of Penticton must find their chairs uncomfortable because they want new ones.
The Regional District of Okanagan-Similkameen lost its chair Dan Ashton when he ran and won an MLA seat in the May 14 provincial election. Vice-chair Mark Pendergraft, director of Osoyoos-Rural, has been serving as acting chair since Ashton resigned but now Pendergraft wants the top regional job.
He declared at Thursday's district meeting he would run in the July 4 board election.
If Pendergraft is elected by the board it will mean an immediate election for the vice-chair's position. Director Garry Litke said he would submit his name for vice-chair but would withdraw if a suitable candidate stepped up.
Litke is also Penticton's acting mayor who plans on running in a mayoral byelection when its called. Seated near him at the regional board is newly appointed director Judy Sentes who fills an empty Penticton seat. She is a Penticton city councillor.
Ashton made a surprise visit before the meeting wrapped up on Thursday. The MLA was sworn-in at a ceremony in Victoria recently and tendered his resignation as Penticton's mayor and as RDOS chair. He reassured the board he will be available.
"I wore out many pairs of pants by being on my knees begging for money" from the provincial government, he said. "I can assure you I will listen. The RDOS has had a great past and a wonderful future and by working together we can make a huge difference."
To contact a reporter for this story, email Shannon Quesnel at email@example.com, call 250-488-3065 or tweet @shannonquesnel1
News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2013