Mearns top votegetter in North Saanich

Rookie councillor tops polls in a tight race that saw three councillors replaced

Preliminary results from Saturday’s civic election show Councillor Craig Mearns topping the polls in North Saanich.

Mearns, one of two candidates to win in a byelection in 2010 to replace two councillors who quit council, received 2,042 votes to earn his first re-election to council.

The other rookie councillor, Dunstan Browne, who ran on a slate with Mearns and two other candidates this time around, was also re-elected, securing 1,975 votes.

Winning a seat on council for the first time were longtime school district trustee Elsie McMurphy (1,990), Celia Stock (1,957) and Conny McBride (1,983).

Former mayor Ted Daly (1,926) also won a seat back at the council table. Daly, the last of the six to be elected, narrowly beat candidate Jack Thornburgh by 12 votes, while Allan Collier was another 18 behind.

The six will join Mayor Alice Finall, who was acclaimed, at the first meeting of the new council sometime in December.

In the race for Saanich School District trustee, Barbara Menzies (2,230 votes) and Jim Standen (1,374) were elected.

Voter turnout in the district was 41.2 per cent of eligible voters.