B.C. Liberal Ben Stewart speaks to supporters and the media Wednesday night at his Quail’s Gate Winery in West Kelowna after winning the Kelowna West provincial byelection. —Image: Alistair Waters/Capital News

MLA-elect waiting to be seated

Kelowna West MLA-elect Ben Stewart won’t be sworn in in time for tomorrow’s B.C. budget

If Ben Stewart was hoping to be sworn in as Kelowna West MLA in time for tomorrow’s provincial budget he’s out of luck.

According to Elections BC, Stewart cannot be sworn in until the district electoral officer returns the writ of election to B.C.’s chief electoral officer and the result is finalized. That is scheduled for Feb. 26.

Elections BC communications manger Andrew Watson said Monday while it is the B.C. Legislature that deals with the swearing in of MLAs, that cannot happen until after the Election BC process is complete and byelection result is finalized.

While Stewart was the clear winner on byelection day (Feb. 14), taking just over just over 56 per cent of the vote, that result is considered unofficial until the final count is completed and reported back to the chief electoral officer. The final count, goes today and will include the counting of the absentee ballots, which were not counted last Wednesday.

On byelection night, the preliminary result showed B.C. Liberal Stewart received 7,692 votes (56.34%), the NDP’s Shelley Cook 3,197 votes (23.42 %), Robert Stupka of the B.C. Green Party 1,746 votes (12.97%), B.C. Conservative Mark Thompson 908 votes (6.65%) and Libertarian Kyle Geronazzo 110 votes (0.81%). Only 29 per cent of the 46,800 eligible voters cast ballots.

When he was in Kelowna in December at NDP candidate Shelley Cook’s nomination meeting, Premier John Horgan said he planned to call the byelection to give the winner enough time to be in the legislature for the budget. But calling it for Feb. 14 meant that would not happen.

Stewart, however, is expected to be sworn in as MLA before the actual vote on the budget takes place. That vote normally takes place a few weeks after the budget is presented in the legislature by the finance minister and is debated by MLAs.

To report a typo, email: edit@kelownacapnews.com.



awaters@kelownacapnews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

No love for Warriors in Valentine’s day lost to Prince George

West Kelowna lost 5-2 Thursday to the Spruce Kings

‘The whole door was gone’ witness recounts alleged kidnapping at Kelowna apartment

Patricia Sawadsky looked outside to see numerous police vehicles surrounding her apartment

More snow on the way for Okanagan-Shuswap

Up to 5 cm of the white stuff could fall across the Okanagan - Shuswap on Friday

Alleged robbery turned kidnapping prompted Kelowna police presence

RCMP allege it was a targeted crime believed to be linked to the drug trade

Lake Country Art Gallery takes a snow day

The art gallery is closed today, because of rough road conditions

Okanagan kids head to Anaheim with coach Scott Niedermayer

Penticton players are attending Scott Niedermayer’s sweater retirement ceremony

Judge rules Abbotsford home must be sold after son tries to evict mom

Mom to get back down payment and initial expenses

Drivers illegally passing school buses prompts safety campaign

School District #83 count 32 vehicles passing buses with lights flashing in January

Trump officially declares national emergency to build border wall

President plans to siphon billions from federal military construction and counterdrug efforts

Snow turns to slush, rain as it warms up across B.C.’s south coast

Some areas are already covered by more than half a metre of snow following three separate storms

Father to be charged with first-degree murder in Amber Alert case

11-year-old Riya Rajkumar was found dead in her father’s home in Brampton, Ontario

Fentanyl, cocaine, body armour seized in Okanagan suspected ‘dial a dope’ arrests

Five people suspected of being involved in a dial a dope operation arrested

St. Paul’s Hospital replacement slated to open in Vancouver in 2026

Announced many times, but this time there’s money, Adrian Dix says

Fourteen ‘dream’ homes ordered evacuated as sinkholes open in Sechelt

Sinkholes throughout the subdivision have prompted the District of Sechelt to issue evacuation orders

Most Read