With one year to go before Delta residents cast their ballots in the next municipal election, incumbent mayor and former city manager George Harvie has announced his bid for re-election.
“Serving people as Delta’s mayor has been an honour of a lifetime,” Harvie said in a press release. “From delivering on record investments in our communities, to keeping Delta debt-free with some of the lowest taxes in the region through strong fiscal leadership during uncertain times, I’m proud of what we’ve been able to accomplish. But there’s more we need to do, and I’m far from finished achieving for Delta.”
Among Harvie’s top accomplishments since being elected mayor in 2018 is the Delta Families First program — a first of its kind in B.C. that provides Delta residents aged 10-18 and over 75 with free admission to recreation facilities and drop-in activities, according to a press release announcing his candidacy.
His record on investment in recreation also includes the track and field replacement at North Delta Secondary School, upcoming track upgrades at Delta Secondary School, 30 new pickleball courts (with 16 more planned), and approval of a new covered sports court at the Ladner Lacrosse Box.
He also cites progress on revitalization plans for Delta’s town centres as top achievements, which will create much-needed market and below-market rental supply while driving forward economic development and community amenities such as increased transit service, childcare, public art and greenspace.
“It’s these types of projects that we need to continue advancing to keep generations of families together in Delta,” Harvie said. “People who have left Delta want to come back, and it will continue to be one of my top priorities to ensure they have options to live, work and raise their families here.”
Harvie’s first term as mayor is also marked by “a new approach to local and intergovernmental engagement,” the release states, noting Harvie is a strong advocate for Delta at the provincial level who has worked across government lines most recently to deliver a new RapidBus service to North Delta and an additional vaccine clinic for Delta residents.
Harvie has also worked to make local government more accessible by alternating council meetings between North and South Delta, and established a number of new initiatives designed to strengthen Delta’s community fabric, including the Mayor’s Youth Council, the Mobility and Accessibility Committee, and the Mayor’s Taskforce on Diversity, Inclusion and Anti-Racism.
“These are the types of positive, inclusive changes I couldn’t effect as city manager,” Harvie said, noting that although Delta was recently recognized as one of the best cities in Canada, there are still many ways for the community to improve.
“If re-elected mayor, it’s my goal to get Delta to Canada’s top spot.”
Harvie is set to lay out a comprehensive platform over the coming months that will focus on low taxes, safer communities, keeping families and seniors together, and achieving investment for a more livable and climate-resilient Delta.
Harvie’s Achieving for Delta will nominate a full slate of council and school board candidates next year.
The general local election is scheduled for Saturday, Oct. 15, 2022.