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Director of Area B (Burns Lake rural) not seeking re-election

Bill Miller has represented the Burns Lake area for the past 10 years
Bill Miller has represented the Burns Lake area at the Regional District of Bulkley-Nechako (RDBN) for the past 10 years, and has been the RDBN’s chair for the past seven. (Lakes District News file photo)

Bill Miller, Regional District of Bulkley-Nechako (RDBN) Director of Electoral Area B (Burns Lake rural), has recently announced he will not be seeking re-election this fall.

Miller has represented the Burns Lake area at the regional district for the past 10 years, and has been the RDBN’s chair for the past seven.

“It has been an honour and privilege to work with directors, staff, and all the local government people across the north,” said Miller.

“I am truly humbled by the people of my community that have given me their trust and support for those years; I hope I have met your expectations,” he continued. “I have learned a huge amount and have gained friends and great relationships with many people; I know there is someone out there who can pick up the torch and carry on.”

“It was not a decision I made lightly,” he added. “Especially given the projects at the RDBN like the Resource Benefits Alliance (RBA) negotiations, and even more significant the review that will come from this year’s fire season.”

Miller has been instrumental in the negotiations with the provincial government as the chair of the RBA – a group of 18 municipal governments and three regional districts seeking a share of government revenue from future resource developments.

Earlier this year the B.C. government committed $300,000 to help the RBA consult with stakeholders to lock down a proposal to be sent back to the B.C. government.

READ MORE: Province gives $300K to Resource Benefits Alliance

Miller has also had his hands full with the wildfire situation in the Lakes District. But despite the challenges, he said he’s been impressed by the efforts of local residents.

“The efforts of those who are on the fire line, caring for evacuees, baking and cooking, supplying people with necessity or just giving someone encouragement or a hug has been phenomenal,” said Miller. “I had someone say to me that Burns Lake should be renamed ‘Awesome’… they are right, it is awesome.”

Regional district elections take place the same day as school district and municipal elections – Saturday, Oct. 20. This is a change from previous years, when local elections took place on Nov. 15. The earlier election date is being implemented B.C. wide this year.

Eileen Benedict, Director of Electoral Area E (Francois/Ootsa Lake Rural), was also asked if she would be pursuing re-election this year, but she did not respond by press time.

The nomination period for candidates takes place between Sept. 4 and 14. Nomination packages are currently available at the RDBN’s office.