When you slipped your ballot into the box at your local polling station on Wednesday, it’s possible that the candidate you supported for city council doesn’t actually reside in your ward. In fact, there were several wards in Regina with candidates from other wards running for council.
This is the second time Heather McIntyre has run for council in Ward 2. The last time she ran – and lost – in 2009, she was living in the south-end Regina ward. Now she lives just a few blocks over in Ward 1. It was a tight race. McIntyre lost by less than 100 votes to Bob Hawkins on Wednesday. McIntyre said that she knew she had a lot of support from the response she received during her last campaign, but that wasn't the only reason she’s wanted to represent Ward 2.
She cited concerns in the area around new development, infrastructure and the disproportionate amount of attention the proposed new stadium has demanded of voters during the municipal election.
"Regina’s growing, everybody knows it, and it’s very exciting to see the transition that’s happening,” McIntyre said. “But I think it’s very important that we do this right. We only get one chance to do this right, so I want to make sure that we manage our growth, I want to build livable communities, and I want to engage citizens."
Sarah Etter was running in Ward 6, but lives nearby in Ward 1. She said the reason she ran in that ward has much to do with her concerns around affordable housing. Etter said that the incumbent councilor, Wade Murray, also includes affordable housing in his platform, but she questions his approach, particularly his support of the Regina Revitalization Initiative in Ward 6 which, if it comes to fruition, would seek to have affordable housing developed on the current site of Mosaic stadium.
“I think it’s a mistake to put a lot of low-income housing in one area of the city,” Etter said. “It can create crime problems and that’s been proven many times.” Etter favours mixed-income housing instead, and wants to have greater input from the community on the development of the Regina Revitalization Initiative.”
In the end, Wade Murray won that ward by a margin of 20.4 per cent.