Village chooses familiar face for council
Longview: Len Kirk wins municipal byelection with 96 votes
Tuesday, Dec 12, 2017 12:28 pm
After taking a 10-year break from council, Len Kirk is eager to return to the table.
Kirk was voted in as Longview’s third councillor during Monday’s byelection with 96 votes, defeating Walter Fox who received 33 votes, according to the Village’s unofficial results. The results will be official when filed with the Province on Dec. 15.
“I was astonished by the amount of votes that I got,” Kirk said Tuesday morning. “I’ve got to thank all the residents of Longview for coming out and voting for me. It was phenomenal.”
The byelection was called after Carole MacLeod, one of the three councillors elected in the Oct. 16 municipal election, resigned three days after being sworn into office.
Kirk comes to council with 20 years experience as a councillor, mayor and deputy mayor in Longview. He feels the experience contributed to him getting elected.
“I’m excited,” he said. “I’m feeling good about it. I’m ready to jump in with both feet.”
Days before the election, Kirk, who grew up and spent most of his life in Longview, went door to door, particularly in the newer areas of the village where he doesn’t know all of the residents.
While he didn’t have a campaign, Kirk said he would like to see the village address its aging infrastructure and work towards attracting more businesses and residents.
When talking with residents, many said they would like to see some unity back in the village, explained Kirk.
“There has been a bit of discord throughout the village over the last few years,” he said.
Alberta Municipal Affairs recently informed the Village it’s contracting an independent consultant to conduct an inspection into matters connected with the Village’s management, administration and operations.
“I’m glad they are doing that,” Kirk said of the inspection. “I’m looking forward to it. There are some changes coming up. I’m looking forward to that, too.”
Fox, who also ran in October’s municipal election and was defeated by five votes, said he just wasn’t meant to serve on council this term.
“The people have spoken,” he said. “There are other ways I can get involved.”
As a member of the seniors club, Fox said he plans to join some committees to stay involved with the village.
“I’m looking at some of them right now,” he said.
Fox said he congratulates Kirk on his win.
Kirk will be sworn in at an organizational meeting Dec. 19 in the community hall where the committee appointments will be determined. The regular council meeting will follow.