Updated: Liberals back Larson for Boundary Similkameen
As expected, the B.C. Liberals have announced that Oliver municipal councillor Linda Larson will be the party’s candidate in Boundary-Similkameen for the 2013 provincial election.
Larson is the former mayor of Oliver, elected in 1997, 1999 and 2002, and currently sits as an Oliver council member.
Larson is running to replace MLA John Slater, who resigned from the Liberal caucus Jan. 14 to sit as independent for the remaining four months of his term..
Larson said she was approached by the B.C. Liberals in December, after Slater had agreed to resign, a decision he later reversed, claiming the party had misled him into believing he couldn’t win the riding.
“I’ve ended up in the middle of a storm, if you want to call it that. I had no idea it was going to come about that way. Now I am here, I will make the best of it,” said Larson, who has known and worked with Slater for many years, both as mayors of their respective communities and during his term as MLA.
“Saying that, you should understand just what I said, I know John,” emphasized Larson. “I believe at this point in time, the party made the very best decision it could for the party and for John.”
Larson contacted Slater in December to ask him about his decision and about her taking up the Liberal nomination.
“He said definitely he was not going to continue. He thought it was a wonderful idea and he would support me and take me around the riding to introduce me to everybody,” said Larson. “Then, within two weeks he had a complete reversal. By then, I had already publicly said that I would step forward if he stepped down.”
Larson, who describes herself as firm believer in free enterprise and business, said that regardless of the controversy surrounding the Liberal nomination in Boundary-Similkameen, she is pleased to be chosen to represent the Liberal party.
“I’m proud to be running for the B.C. Liberals under Premier Christy Clark,” said Larson. “The premier has shown tremendous resilience in the position, and I know she is the right choice to continue leading British Columbia.”
Larson feels it was likely a combination of her work in municipal politics and on local and provincial business organizations that brought her to the notice of the B.C. Liberals.
“I have a recognized name. I worked on the small business roundtable for the province for six years, I chair Community Futures both locally and provincially,” said Larson, whose own political stance, she said, closely follows the B.C. Liberal mandate.
“The businesses in this province are the ones that keep us going. I believe we need to keep supporting business and I believe we need to keep taxes down. We need to do our best to help families because they are the workforce of the province,” said Larson.
Larson will be formally nominated on Feb. 2 at the Royal Canadian Legion Hall (6417 Main St.) in Oliver. Registration will begin at 9:30 a.m. with the meeting starting at 10 a.m.