Grand Forks’ mayor to enter provincial politics?

Brian Taylor

Grand Forks Mayor Brian Taylor could be running as a member of the B.C. NDP party for the Boundary-Similkameen region come the next provincial election.

Taylor says he’s in the midst of filing his nomination papers and thinks that he has what it takes to enter provincial politics.

“I think I have the skills to work in that arena and to make a contribution to Grand Forks and to the province. I’m getting more confident in my abilities to navigate the shark-filled waters and would like a chance to make a difference at a provincial level,” he says.

With a body of work that includes work with the City of Grand Forks and the Regional District of Kootenay Boundary, Taylor has developed many skills, some of which can translate into the provincial government level.

“I think I’ve been able to identify where decisions are made these days. I think that’s part of the maturity of being a politician for a number of years at various levels,” says the mayor.

“If you really want change to happen, you’ve got to influence people, who are the ones that make the decisions and for our area here, I think working with Interior Health is going to be a critical part of the job of the MLA (member of the legislative assembly).”

He says the Boundary-Similkameen has a lot of issues but health care will be a major one and he says farming is another.

“Farming is something in the whole of the Okanagan, in particular they’re looking at competition again coming straight up Hwy 97 from California. I think we need to talk about getting produce from the South Okanagan into our stores and I’m all for having some kinds of limits on how much we allow across our border,” explains Taylor.

“I grew up where we had some control over what came in from Yakima and Wenatchee and I don’t think they do anymore.”

While Taylor is considering provincial politics that doesn’t mean he’ll be abandoning another run as mayor in November 2011.

“I’m certainly going to keep my hat in the ring for mayor,” Taylor says.

“I’m assuming at this point in time that this whole process of choosing a candidate will occur and whether or not there’s an election (provincial) or not that would be the time when the mayoral issue would come up.”

He also doesn’t think he’ll be the only one running for the NDP in the region.

“The riding, I think, will have a number of interested candidates for nomination for the NDP, so I don’t expect to be running alone here for the nomination,” he explains.