Betty McIntosh won’t run for reelection
Whoever is elected mayor in New Westminster won’t have at least one familiar face at the council table.
While Coun. Jonathan Coté has declared his candidacy for the mayor’s chair and Mayor Wayne Wright hasn’t made up his mind yet, Coun. Betty McIntosh has decided not to run.
McIntosh, 63, said she would like to spend more time with her grandson and travel in the trailer she and her husband Ken recently bought. She said having to go through so many reports and so many meetings was a cycle she’d like to break.
McIntosh has served five terms on council. In the latest one she was the only councillor not to have received New Westminster District Labour Council support.
“I’ve helped bring a balanced opinion and a questioning that I don’t take everything at face value, I have a critical eye,” said McIntosh.
The McIntosh name, however, might remain at the council table. She said her son Scott, 39, will run for council. He built a new house in New Westminster that required dealing with a lot of bureaucracy.
“He’s got his opinions on how city hall should work,” said McIntosh.
She believes there could be a significant change coming on council. That’s over and above the fact there will be at least two new councillors since she’s not running and Coun. Jonathan Coté has entered the mayor’s race.
“I don’t believe the incumbents are going to be reelected, it’s as simple as that. I know there are other people who will be coming forward,” said McIntosh. “I’ve heard a lot of criticism about how this council has been treating people in the community. You’re never assured a seat, and I’m hoping there’s a greater balance than what there has been.”
In her opinion council has been too wrapped up in fighting the provincial government.
“When so much partisan politics is coming into the chamber it’s not benefiting the community,” said McIntosh, who worked as an emergency nurse at Royal Columbian Hospital. “You might not agree with [a provincial] minister but you’ve got to be respectful.”
She has been involved in the community since she had “a new babe” in her arms when she joined a parents group at Richard McBride elementary. In 1993 she ran for school board and then council three years later. She lost in 2002 but returned in 2005. Except for 2008 when she joined the Voice New Westminster slate, McIntosh has campaigned as an independent.