There will be a new hand on the gavel at Gibsons’s council come November, as incumbent Mayor Bill Beamish has told Coast Reporter that he will not be seeking re-election.
That information came forward following Beamish’s official remarks at the syíyaya Days Métis Cultural Event at Sechelt’s Seaside Centre on June 21. While at the podium, he said that he and wife Heather were moving to Haida Gwaii in the fall.
When questioned about that plan, Beamish said that his decision to not run for elected office in Gibsons was “no secret” to his council and some of his contacts in the community. In response to being asked if he had made any public announcement of his plans, he said, “I’m not sure, this may have been the first one.”
Beamish's plans are to remain in Gibsons until after the Oct. 15 local government elections.
He said that he has purchased a home in his new community, noting with a smile that he “can launch his canoe right off the front” of his soon-to-be retirement home.
When asked if he knew of any potential candidates looking to replace him as mayor, Beamish said, “It will be interesting to see who steps forward.”
Successful first run for Council
Beamish was elected as mayor in his first run for Town Council in 2018. He had originally filed to run for a councillor’s position and changed to have his name stand for election as mayor after candidate Silas White withdrew from the mayoral race. He competed against hopefuls Blake MacLeod, William Moysey, and Leslie Thomson. Beamish received 1,347 votes, 76 per cent of all votes cast for that office.
A former administrator with the Town, Beamish also served three terms as an acting chief administrative officer in Sechelt. His work in local government included assignments in Houston and Haida Gwaii.