This story was updated at 8 a.m., Oct. 24.
On Monday, Mayor Bryan Paterson swept Kingston’s municipal election, earning a convincing win for his second term in office.
At press time, Paterson held 69 per cent of the vote with 23,708 ballots cast—well ahead of his closest competitor, Vicki Schmolka, at 7,545 votes.
“I would be humbled and honoured to be mayor of the city for another four years,” Paterson said at City Hall, following a delay in online voting that set results back later into the evening.
“I think that we have a real chance to build on the momentum that we have as a city right now,” Paterson told The Journal over the phone after the election.
Paterson said alleviating the housing “crunch” would be a top priority in his next term. “We need more of all different types of housing, built across all parts of the community. That’s going to be a top issue for us.”
He also referenced the Third Crossing project—which is planned to begin construction next Spring—and improvements to Kingston’s regional airport.
“Queen’s students—their voice matters as much as any other resident in Kingston. I’m looking forward to hearing from them and their priorities, and continuing to work together over the next four years,” Paterson said.
On election day, around 6 p.m., the online voting platform suffered technical issues and became inaccessible to voters in the final hours of open polls. In response, the City extended in-person voting from 8 p.m. to 9:15 p.m.
This issue may have deterred some voters, but the total number of ballots this year came in at 34,529—a slightly lower turnout than the 2014 elections with 35,856 ballots.
In 2014, Paterson won with 38.15 per cent of the vote. Four years later, he faced off against Schmolka, Rob Matheson, and Eric Lee for three months leading up to Monday.
At press time on Monday night, Schmolka received 7,545 votes and 21.97 per cent of the total; Matheson 2,529 votes and 7.36 per cent; and Lee 564 votes and 1.64 per cent.
Meanwhile, in Sydenham, Peter Stroud was re-elected for his second term and won the district council seat with 64.57 per cent of votes. In the 2014 election, he was elected with 56.75 per cent of votes.
In his campaign, Stroud expressed support for new housing development and more student engagement.
Third-year Queen’s student Dylan Chenier was Stroud’s closest rival, receiving 21.51 per cent of Sydenham’s votes.
With 50.98 per cent of the votes, incumbent Jim Neill was re-elected to the Williamsville District seat. Neill committed to expanding and protecting green space and green transportation.
Rob Hutchison, also re-elected, won the King’s Town seat with 80.43 per cent of votes. Hutchison advocated for sustainability and community revitalization in his campaign.
A referendum question was also included on the ballot. Voters were asked if they were in favour of using a Ranked Ballot Voting system to elect municipal officials in the future.
For a candidate to win in the ranked system, they must receive over 50 per cent of the total vote—a simple majority. Voters are also given the ability to rank their preferences, including all names or groups represented on the ballot.
Of the 32,803 voters who responded to the referendum, 62.93 per cent voted in favour.
Nonetheless, the results are non-binding—less than 50 per cent of eligible electors in Kingston voted on the referendum question. Council can still decide to implement Ranked Ballot Voting, using the referendum results as an advisory tool going forward.
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