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Vernon voters share issues that matter to them at the polls

A steady line of voters filled Fulton Secondary School on election day
Voters flocked to Fulton Secondary School, one of three voting places in Vernon, for the municipal election Saturday, Oct. 15, 2022. (Brendan Shykora - Morning Star

A steady line of people flowed through Vernon’s Fulton Secondary School Saturday to cast their votes in the 2022 municipal election.

Elizabeth Middleton Scherle said she thinks this year’s election is an important one for the city. She’d like to see positive changes take place with respect to infrastructure.

“We live near Ellison Park where they have done nothing with the roads out there, that’s a big one for me, so I’m trying to select the right candidates to take that on,” Scherle said.

“And I don’t think the crime is necessarily because of the homeless people, I think there’s a much bigger picture to what is happening and some of the theft that’s going on,” she said.

For Judy Kimmerly, who moved to Vernon a year ago, today’s vote was about doing her civic duty.

“I care about where I’ve moved to and I want to do my part in exercising my right,” she said.

Like Scherle, Kimmerly has concerns about the downtown core.

“There is no treatment facility here for people, and I was surprised to learn that from a social worker. There’s one in Kamloops, there’s one in Kelowna, but there’s nothing here. So how do these people get help?” she said.

At the polls, Joyce Young said she always votes “because it’s the only way I can feel I’ve had my voice heard.”

Young said two issues have stuck out to her this election season: the environment and affordable housing.

“There’s lots of people making money off of big fancy homes that nobody local can afford and, for example, they want to build that lovely little monstrosity down on Lakeshore, that hotel conference centre,” Young said. “But they’re not even providing for the fact that all the people working in that hotel are going to be minimum wage and won’t be able to afford to live anywhere near where they work.”

Margaret Vallance says if you don’t vote, you have no standing to complain later.

For a voter who wished to identify only as Rob, the local economy, development and infrastructure are most important to him.

“Locally we see water mains breaking … we really need to invest a little bit more in that,” he said.

“I personally think it’s good to get a new and younger council on there and maybe somebody who’s a little more supportive of not only making some changes but — heaven forbid it — maybe we even need to raise taxes a little bit.”

The polls are open until 8 p.m. at three locations: the Recreation Centre Auditorium at 3310 37th Avenue, Fulton Secondary School at 2301 Fulton Road and Vernon Secondary School at 2100 15 Street.

READ MORE: It’s Election Day in Vernon: Here’s everything you need to know

READ MORE: Environmental issues debated by Vernon election candidates

Brendan Shykora
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Brendan Shykora

About the Author: Brendan Shykora

I started as a carrier at the age of 8. In 2019 graduated from the Master of Journalism program at Carleton University.
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