Former Langley Township mayor Rick Green is attempting a comeback, three years after he lost the mayoralty to challenger Jack Froese.
The necessary papers were filed on Friday, the deadline for registration by candidates in the Nov. 15 municipal election.
Though his time in office was admittedly a “difficult” one marked by controversy and repeated clashes with the rest of council, Green says he has decided to have “one more go at it.”
Green says he is running because he has been “inundated” with requests from residents that he run and because he is frustrated with Township council decisions, especially those approving development projects over the objections of taxpayers.
“All we have to do is look at the last three years,” Green says.
If he is elected mayor with the same group of councillors who opposed him in the past, Green says he “will bend to the wishes of the public” and attempt to make things work.
The so-called Brownshak affair was perhaps the biggest controversy involving Green as mayor.
Green had told council in a closed-door session in 2009 that he had received an anonymous letter and copies of corporate records about Brownshak, a small Langley developer at the centre of a political controversy.
Green said the documents might support allegations of improper conduct by Brownshak and its principals, who were the wives of realtors Joel Schacter and Bob Bailey, and of MLA Rich Coleman and Township administrator Mark Bakken.
The allegations were found to be groundless.
Green later admitted that he had misled council at that meeting by claiming the anonymous letter had arrived the day before the emergency meeting, when in fact he had known about the documents since August of 2009.
According to a Township press release, Green apologized to council at two closed meetings.
That also led to an RCMP investigation into an anonymous accusation that Green violated privacy laws after he was censured by council, but no charges were laid.
At the time, Green estimated the affair cost the Township $100,000, mostly on outside legal advice, and that he personally spent another $20,000 of his own money defending himself against “politically motivated” allegations.
In a press release announcing his 2014 candidacy, Green blasted the current council for not listening to residents about projects like the Coulter Berry building in Fort Langley, the Wall residential development in the middle of farmland and the expansion of the Langley Events Centre.
“What has become so blatantly clear to all is that this mayor and council have no respect for public input,” the Green statement says.
He goes on to list of issues he plans to campaign on, including “Community Heritage Value, No Community in Community Planning, questionable property purchases (Your tax dollars), questionable property transactions (Your property portfolio asset value), debt, taxation, projects over-budget and Langley Events Centre Subsidies, Operational Costs and facility use contracts that are in place.”
He promises more details of his plans for the Township will be released as the election progresses.
Green has a website, www.rickgreenformayor.ca.