Wilks wins Conservative nomination

Sparwood Mayor and newly elected Conservative candidate in waiting, David Wilks, was humbled after hearing the results from last week’s campaign.

Sparwood Mayor and newly elected Conservative candidate in waiting, David Wilks, was humbled after hearing the results from last week’s campaign.

“As a politician, which I have been in Sparwood for the last nine years, you recognize that you’re only as good as the people who believe in you,” said Wilks.

Wilks spent last week campaigning in Kootenay-Columbia riding as the Conservative party voted on who would take current MP, Jim Abbott’s place as the Conservative candidate for the riding.

“The campaign went very well,” he said. “There were four great candidates and we had a great time on the road for six days. I was grateful to the other three candidates that ran who are all great candidates.”

Creston councillor Wes Graham, Russ Kinghorn from Cranbrook, and John Zimmer from Cranbrook, also ran for the Conservative nomination.

“The people believe that I am the best choice to move forward, and I will not let them down,” Wilks said.

Wilks will replace Abbott as the representative of the Conservative Party in the next federal election. He will go up against Mark Shmigelsky of the NDP. There is no word yet on the candidates for the Liberal and Green Parties.

Abbott will remain the representative of the Conservative party until a federal election is announced.

“If you watched the news over the past week, the opposition parties have indicated they may or may not support the budget,” said Wilks. If the opposition parties vote against the budget, Prime Minister Stephen Harper will have to ask the Governor General to dissolve parliament which would lead to an election.

Wilks said that according to the Community Charter he is legally allowed to carry on as Mayor of the District of Sparwood and as a Director at the Regional District of  East Kootenay.

If he is elected as a Conservative MP in a federal election then he would have to give up being Mayor of Sparwood because the Community Charter says that an elected official is not allowed to hold two elected positions.

Sparwood would not have to enter into a by-election if Wilks is elected because the District is within one year of a municipal election.

Wilks said that Sparwood council would appoint a Deputy Mayor to replace him should he be elected MP, until there is a municipal election.