Pirate Pete walks the plank

Wayne Potoroka is the new mayor of Dawson City. The three-time city councillor won with a landslide, receiving 474 of the 658 votes cast. Potoroka defeated Peter Jenkins, who has had a long and colourful political career.

Wayne Potoroka is the new mayor of Dawson City. The three-time city councillor won with a landslide, receiving 474 of the 658 votes cast.

Potoroka defeated Peter Jenkins, who has had a long and colourful political career. Jenkins was mayor from 1980-1995 and spent 11 years in the legislature before being re-elected as mayor last term.

He’s still known to some as Pirate Pete, a nickname he earned with his scheme to provide free satellite television for Dawson’s residents while he was mayor. He did so by purchasing a residential satellite subscription under the names of long-dead pioneers and then broadcasted the signal for free.

Earlier, he spent six months in prison for perjury in the 1970s, when his hotel was found to be stealing electricity.

During the campaign, Potoroka said the Klondike town had been “spinning (its) wheels on a number of issues.”

The town’s landfill dominated the race. The territory wants to haul rubbish to it from surrounding communities. The town already takes in waste from the Dempster Highway and nearby mines – costs that Jenkins has said Dawson shouldn’t shoulder.

Both candidates were also concerned about costs to build a new recreation centre.

Stephen Johnson and Bill Kendrick kept their seats on council. Darren Taylor and Kyla MacArthur will join them.

The territory’s other incumbent mayors hung on to their seats.

George Nassiopoulos was elected for a third term in Haines Junction, capturing 113 of the votes. He defeated Martin Eckervogt, who won 78 votes, and John Farynowski, who won 36 votes.

Farynowski, a former mayor, launched his campaign in part because of concerns over the village’s since-scrapped plans to burn trash at high temperatures. Along with other critics, he was upset that the plans were made without enough public consultation. The village later backed down from the project, citing maintenance costs.

During Nassiopoulos’ six years as mayor, Haines Junction saw $11 million in infrastructure upgrades. Much of this money was spent on water and sewage systems.

More projects are coming to the village. It is working on a biomass project with the Champagne and Aishihik First Nations to generate power from the area’s beetle-killed wood. And the village is talking with Yukon College and the territorial government about converting an unused Parks Canada property to a scientific research facility.

Incumbant Mike Crawshay is joined on council by Bruce Tomlin, Angie Charlebois and Dave Weir.

Richard Durocher has been elected for a fourth term as mayor of Watson Lake. He beat challenger Fred Statham by over 200 votes. Durocher captured 289 of the votes, while only 82 ballots were cast for his sole competitor.

During the campaign, Durocher said the town had the opportunity to be a “shining example” to other communities in Canada if it commits to safety and sustainability. Both he and Statham campaigned on making Watson Lake attractive for long-term residents.

Many workers at the nearby Cantung and Wolverine mines come from Vancouver. Airport upgrades would encourage more people to spend more time, and money, in the city, said Strathm during the campaign.

Heather Campbell made history in Faro. She became the first female mayor in the town’s history to be elected for a second term.

She beat city councillor Diane Rogerson and Brian Ross. Campbell sought re-election so she could continue to be part of the growth she sees happening in the community, she said during the campaign.

Harold Boehm will remain on council. Former mayor and councillor Mel Smith will join him. Heather Grantham and Debbie Carreau were elected for their first terms.

Clara Jules was elected for a fourth term as Teslin’s mayor. She received 84 votes, just over double the amount cast for her only challenger, Rob Gareau. But most of the council will be new. Stephen Kremer will be the only returning member. Brad Stoneman, Gord Curran and Denise Johnston were voted in for their first terms.

Carmacks Mayor Elaine Wyatt was acclaimed. Lee Bodie and Tara Wheeler kept their seats on council, with Pat McKenny and Tracy Burns joining them.

Scott Bolton was acclaimed as Mayo’s mayor. Incumbents Trevor Ellis and Kris Pavlovich will remain on council. During the campaign, Pavlovich said he and first-time candidates Joann Aird and William Leary would make a perfect team for council. Both Aird and Leary were elected.

Contact Meagan Gillmore at

mgillmore@yukon-news.com

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Kimberly Armstrong, creator of Glimmer of Hope, poses for a photo with examples of toys for packages she is putting together. The care packages are for children who have suffered abuse, trauma, illness or sudden loss. (Kimberly Armstrong/Submitted)
Kids experiencing trauma will receive gifts from new charity

A Whitehorse woman is compiling care packages for children who have suffered… Continue reading

Sport Yukon held its 45th annual Member Awards on Dec. 3, recognizing the achievements of nearly 80 athletes, coaches, volunteers and administrators from 16 different organizations. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News)
Sport Yukon hands out the hardware, virtually

Awards ceremony recognizes athletes, coaches, volunteers and administrators

Commissioner of Yukon Anglique Bernard, in her role as Chancellor of the Order of Yukon, announced the 2020 Order of the Yukon inductees in a statement Dec. 2. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News)
Order of Yukon inductees announced

Ten Yukoners will receive territory’s highest honour

The primary goal of the new relief package for tourism operators is to support the tourism sector, whether they’re private industry or not-for-profit organizations, said Tourism and Culture Minister Jeanie McLean. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
Relief program offers funds for businesses that rely on tourists for more than half their revenue

Two new streams of funding, in addition to the accommodation relief program, were announced

Yukonomist Keith Halliday
YUKONOMIST: Climate emergency, lite edition

Back in September 2019, Whitehorse City Council declared a climate emergency, to… Continue reading

A sign outside the Yukon Inn Convention Centre indicates Yukoners can get a flu vaccine inside. As of Dec. 4, the vaccinations won’t be available at the convention centre. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News)
Whitehorse Convention Centre ends flu vaccination service early

Flu vaccinations won’t be available at the Whitehorse Convention Centre after Dec.… Continue reading

In 1909, Joseph Kavetzki took over Brown’s Harness Shop, depicted here, reconstructed, 90 years later. Third Avenue in Dawson, south of Princess Street, was the heart of the blue collar industrial section of gold rush Dawson. (Michael Gates/Yukon News)
History Hunter: The Yukon is rich in hidden history

I had worked for a few months in my new position as… Continue reading

asdf
Today’s mailbox: Kindness, shingles and speed limits

Letters to the editor published Dec. 4, 2020

ASDF
COMMENTARY: Land use planning must include industry

Carl Schulze Special to the News This commentary is a response to… Continue reading

Whitehorse City Hall. (Joel Krahn/Yukon News file)
City hall, briefly

A look at decisions made by Whitehorse city council this week

Nominations continue to be open for Northern Tutchone members of the White River First Nation to run for councillors in the 2021 election. (Maura Forrest/Yukon News File)
White River First Nation to elect new chief and council

Nominations continue to be open for Northern Tutchone members of the White… Continue reading

The Town of Watson Lake has elected John Devries as a new councillor in a byelection held Dec. 3. (Wikimedia Commons)
Watson Lake elects new councillor

The Town of Watson Lake has elected John Devries as a new… Continue reading

The new Little Salmon Carmacks First Nation council elected Dec. 1. (Submitted)
Little Salmon Carmacks elects new chief, council

Nicole Tom elected chief of Little Salmon Carcmacks First Nation

Most Read