Kim Richter is running for re-election to her seat on Langley Township councillor, she announced recently.
Richter was first elected in 1999 and is one of the longest-serving councillors, along with Bob Long, who is stepping down, and Steve Ferguson, who is running again with Coun. Eric Woodward’s Contract With Langley slate.
“I have decided to seek another council term because Langley Township is at a major crossroads in its history and its future,” Richter said in her announcement.
She said there are three major crises that the council will have to tackle in its next term.
• Cost of living, including taxes, spending, and affordable housing
• Climate change, with severe weather events requiring policies around climate mitigation and resiliency, and Richter said protecting farmlands and forested areas is also required
• Governance, with Richter saying the Township requires “balance in decision making, not dominance or control by any one focus, initiative, or group.”
She said the council needs balance and oversight.
The current election campaign is seeing two major slates face off for the first time in decades, with Woodward running for mayor at the head of Contract With Langley, facing off against Elevate Langley, a slate headed by Rich Coleman. Both slates are running full complements of council candidates.
Richter won her first election back in 1999 as a member of the Langley Citizens Coalition (LCC) which was facing off with the Langley Leadership Team (LLT) and then-mayor John Scholtens.
In the end, voters elected Richter as the sole LCC councillor, and only two LLT members, May Barnard and the late Dean Drysdale. Neither side’s mayor was elected, with independent Kurt Alberts winning.
Since then, there hasn’t been an election in Langley that saw two slates face off, until now.
Richter noted that because she was the only LCC member in her first term, she voted as she saw fit and had no one telling her what to do. After that term, she ran as an independent for the next 20 years.
She said there are good people running for both slates, but that the Township doesn’t need slate politics.
In addition to serving on council for 23 years, Richter is a professor of business management at Kwantlen Polytechnic University and is Metro Vancouver regional director for the Township. She has also been a member of the KPU board of governors, a trustee for Langley Memorial Hospital, and a director of Langley Family Services.