At a glance
Vernon-Monashee has been won by the BC Liberals since 1996, with slight boundary adjustments. It was known as Okanagan-Vernon until 2009. The BC Liberals have consistently maintained strong margins over the NDP runner-ups, although voter turnout has declined steadily since 1996 for a total decline of 20 per cent.
This election, candidates attempting to woo the voters of Vernon-Monashee include BC Liberal incumbent Eric Foster. Foster is the government whip who previously served as mayor and councillor for the Village of Lumby.
CUPE 5523 President Mark Olsen is the BC NDP candidate. Businessman Scott Anderson, who ran for Vernon council in 2011, is the BC Conservative candidate.
Rebecca Helps represents the BC Greens, and Korry Zepik is an independent candidate.
The Tyee has identified Vernon-Monashee as one to watch this May. As reporter Doug Ward describes: "If any of the seven Okanagan seats could flip to the NDP because of a vote split on the right, this is it. BC Liberal incumbent Eric Foster was in political hot water recently after being criticized by outgoing B.C. Auditor-General John Doyle over renovations and leasing arrangements at his Vernon office. Doyle also said that Foster should have recused himself as chair of the legislative committee that denied his reappointment as auditor-general. Foster's opponents, New Democrat Mark Olsen, a school board employee, and Conservative Scott Anderson, a Vernon businessman, have attacked Foster over the controversy. Foster beat Olsen last time by five percentage points."
Did you know?
After an all-party committee that MLA Eric Foster chaired opted to end auditor general John Doyle's tenure earlier this year, it was revealed that Foster's constituency spending was the subject of a random audit by Doyle's office, according to a Globe and Mail report. Doyle publicly chastised Foster for not stepping aside from the committee while being audited. The committee that ended Doyle's tenure later reversed the decision.
What should the new BC government's top priority be?
- Giving youth better access to education?
- Protecting the environment?
- Dealing with poverty?
- Creating a responsive and transparent government?
Last week's poll: Should increased funding for post-secondary education be a priority for the BC government? Read the results of that poll here.
Previous Election Results
|Candidate||Votes||%||Eric Foster BC Liberal||9015||37.3%||Mark Olsen BC NDP||7698||31.8%||Huguette Allen BC Green||4029||16.7%||Dean Skoreyko BC Conservative||1972||8.2%|
2005 Winner: Tom Christensen BC Liberal
2001 Winner: Tom Christensen BC Liberal
Telling Stats about Vernon-Monashee
|Statistic||Riding percentage||B.C. average|
|Percent seniors, 2011||18%||15.8%|
|Percent families with kids 24 and under, 2011||44%||47.7%|
|Percent residents with non-English mother tongue, 2011||11%||26.4%|
|Top three non-English languages spoken at home, 2006||Punjabi: 0.7%, French: 0.7%, Chinese: 0.4%||n/a|
|Average household income (before tax), 2006||$ 59,916||$ 67,675|
|Owners vs. renters, 2006||75/25||70/30|