Pete Fry is expected to be acclaimed as the candidate of the Green Party of Vancouver for the municipal by-election.
The long-time community activist and creative professional is the sole contender for the Green party nomination on August 16.
Early polling indicates that Vancouver voters want to elect a second Green to council.
This could mean the formation of the first Green council caucus in the city’s political history.
In 2011, Adriane Carr became the first Green councillor in Vancouver. She won a second term in 2014, but the two other Green council candidates – Fry and Cleta Brown – failed to make the cut.
Fry went on to run for the B.C. Greens in the 2016 provincial by-election in Vancouver-Mount Pleasant, placing second to the B.C. NDP.
Vancouver voters on October 14 will elect a new councillor to fill in the seat vacated last July by Geoff Meggs, who was hired as chief of staff of B.C. NDP Premier John Horgan.
Last August 1, the Vancouver Greens issued a statement about the results of a poll by Justason Market Intelligence, showing that 30 percent of decided voters would support a Green candidate.
The same survey revealed 27 percent support for the Non-Partisan Association; 18 percent, OneCity; and 17 percent for the ruling Vision Vancouver party of Mayor Gregor Robertson.
In a phone interview Wednesday (August 3), Carr told the Georgia Straight that Fry was the only one who put his name forward for the Green party nomination.
Carr expressed optimism that Vancouver will have its first Green caucus after the fall by-election.
“People are looking to grow the number of greens elected at the city,” Carr said.
She also noted that survey results showing Vision at the bottom is a sign that Vancouver residents are not happy with the ruling party.
“They are looking … I think to send Vision a message that it’s time for a change in the power structure at the city,” Carr said.
Vancouver voters in 2014 elected the most number of Green civic politicians so far.
In addition to Carr in council, Green candidates Stuart Mackinnon and Michael Wiebe won seats in park board. Janet Fraser was elected as the only Green trustee in school board. However, Fraser and the other school trustees were fired by the province in 2016.
In the 2014 municipal election, Brown and Fry placed 18th and 19th, respectively, in the ballot for 10 city councillors.
Fry is a well-known community activist with a passion for urban issues like affordable housing.
According to Carr, early indications of strong support for the municipal Green party are part of a change going on in B.C.
She was referring to the May 9, 2017 election of three B.C. Green MLAs, who later supported the B.C. NDP in defeating the B.C. Liberal government of now ex-premier Christy Clark.
“It’s a start of a change in politics,” Carr said. “And we started to see it in the [May 9, 2017] provincial election where people I think were … tired of electing parties with a majority that gives them too much power, and allows them to ram through their agenda without really having to take into consider other points of view. And that includes not just points of view of other elected officials, but the public as well.”