Mayor Peter Kelly has ended a months-long game of will-he-or-won’t-he by confirming that he won’t.
Kelly told a crowd of waiting – and betting – reporters at City Hall Tuesday afternoon that he will not run for mayor or regional council in the Oct. 20 municipal election.
“It’s been a difficult decision,” he said. “Over the last few months, the calls to reconsider have been there. But at the end of the day, you have to do what’s best for the municipality and what is best for me and my family.”
Kelly said he agonized over the decision, taking many “late night walks” before deciding – Tuesday – not to run again.
He says he vacillated often, sometimes swayed by polling that indicated a council seat or fourth term as mayor was within reach.
“People have done polling, I did not do any polling, but others have done so,” he said. “Supposedly, the indications were good in terms of other independent polls.”
Kelly says it would have been difficult to mount a conventional campaign at this point.
Coun. Tim Outhit, the incumbent in District 16 (Bedford) where the mayor was rumoured to be running, was caught off guard by Kelly’s decision.
“I’m surprised,” he said. “He still has tremendous support in parts of Bedford and parts of HRM and I was expecting that he might make a last-minute comeback.”
The unofficial candidates’ list is now available at Halifax.ca/election. It includes six people running for mayor, including three new contenders – Aaron Eisses, Steve Mackie and Robert (Wesley) McCormack. — Metro News