The voting members have spoken, and Jason Louie will be serving the Lower Kootenay Band (LKB) as Nasukin for another term.
“It’s been a long haul. I’m tired, but relieved,” said Louie. “I’m also very honoured. I know that the voting members of the LKB have put their faith and trust in me, and it’s a privilege to serve our people.”
He thanked his wife and children for being his biggest supporters through the seven-week process.
“I look forward to bringing the Yaqan Nukiy back together,” said Louie.
“There has been division for quite some time, and we need to start somewhere. I want to make an effort everyday to make this community a better place and set an example for our youth.”
On Friday, Nov. 25, the final votes were counted with 51 for Louie, followed by 41 for Robin Louie and 33 for Chad Luke. The later two will join as the newest councillors. Both have previous experience – Robin on council and Luke as Nasukin in the 90s.
As the terms are staggered, Cherie Luke and Josie Fullarton are also still serving on council to round out the five-person team.
One of the empty council seats was left behind by Louie’s father, Robert Louie Sr., who died in August.
“I am totally committed to working with the existing council and the newly elected members,” said Louie.
“It’s good to have a full roster because we’ve been short for some time. We’re of the same mindset that we need to do everything to better the LKB.”
Of the 202 possible voters in the LKB, 47 per cent cast their ballots. Louie was happy to see that level of participation, and expressed his gratitude to those who voted.
In 2010, he was elected for the first time and will be serving his third term in 12 years. In the upcoming four years, he wants to see the completion of the Seven Nations Soaring Eagles Healing Centre.
Once completed, the $9.5 million project will offer treatment to Indigenous people suffering from drug and alcohol dependency.
“The motivation of why I keep running is unfinished business,” said Louie. “I want to see that project come to fruition and have clients coming from various indigenous communities all over B.C. There’s good things that are going to be coming.”