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Robert Quaiff announces he won’t seek another term as mayor

Prince Edward County Mayor Robert Quaiff has announced he will pull the plug on municipal politics when his term is finished in October.

Quaiff made the announcement Monday morning – his first day back to work following a lost bid as Liberal candidate in the June 7 provincial election to become the first MPP for the new Bay of Quinte riding.

With his wife Susan by his side he told media gathered outside of Shire Hall that his new focus will be on family.

“We decided over the weekend that it’s time to take a rest,” he said. “I think it’s time that I enjoyed my seven grandbabies, and my wife – she’s the one that’s stood by me through this whole thing; she’s the one that gave me encouragement and she’s the one always by my side and encouraged me to do what I did.”

Quaiff will be wrapping up 17 years of muncipal politics – including being a participant on the Eastern Ontario Mayors’ Caucus and the Eastern Ontario Wardens’ Caucus, the last year of which he served as chairman; and was a member of the board of directors for the Association of Municipalities of Ontario.

“I love Prince Edward County and that’s the bottom line for me. I only want what’s best for Prince Edward County and I think right now, with the wave of blue that came across the province last week; I want to see a new mayor come in and build a relationship with the PC party.”

Quaiff said he isn’t sure he would have as good a relationship with the PCs as he did with the Liberals and said a new mayor can make a better relationship and get what’s best for Prince Edward County.

“It was easy for me to talk to the Liberals. I don’t know if the same relationship would be there with the PCs,” he said. “I congratulated Todd Smith – a great candidate – and I really do hope for Todd that he ends up with a cabinet position and I think he will represent this municipality to the best of his ability.”

Quaiff’s proud of many accomplishments over his tenure, noting the reconstruction of Picton’s Main Street and County Road 3 and work on his well-known quest to fix County Road 49.

“The engineering study is completed and we’re waiting for funding. I’m hoping it will come forward,” he said, adding he’s also hopeful the new County hospital will move forward.”

He’s also proud of council’s work to create the Development Framework Committee.

“When we started this term of council we heard developers were not happy; they didn’t care if they built a home in Prince Edward County and now we’ve got 1,800 new builds in the process,” said Quaiff. “Also the firehalls we done and a lot of things that go unnoticed. I feel good. At the end of the day, this council did a good job.”

So far, South Marysburgh councillor Steve Ferguson has announced his intention to seek the mayor’s chair.

Quaiff noted he won’t be endorsing any candidates, but does hope more women will seek election.

“I’ve been a great advocate for females in politics,” he said, noting last year he nominated the first ever Eastern Ontario Wardens’ Caucus chair and vice-chairs.

“I would like to see a lot more females put their names in to run for council. They bring a really good perspective to the table and good discussion and I know there’s a lot of really good candidates out there.”

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  1. Dennis Fox says:

    Susan – I agree with you, but sadly this is not the case – egos are a strange thing.

  2. Susan says:

    If questions and concerns are presented politely and professionally as I am sure you did, your representative on Council has an obligation to communicate with you.

  3. Dennis Fox says:

    Susan – thanks for that suggestion, but I’ve been there, done that – and frankly the thought of sitting through 4 hour meetings just doesn’t doesn’t appeal to me anymore. I would like to see a younger person take a run at office – one who does not follow the maddening crowd and one who will ask such questions as – “Who owns private wells?” During the drought a couple of years ago, when the water restriction by-law was imposed (which BTW I supported), I got into quite a “discussion” with one of our Sophiasburgh councillors – he thought the municipality had jurisdiction over rural wells. Upon finding out he was wrong – he since refuses to communicate with me. While a peaceful solution it may be, it is also a total abdication of his responsibility as an elected official. No, I don’t want to see an acclamation in Sophiasburgh.

  4. Susan says:

    You could make it a race Dennis.

  5. Dennis Fox says:

    I know that it was reported in the media a year or more ago, but it would be nice if the taxpayers in both Bloomfield and Sophiasburgh were to receive official notification that they lost a councillor for the next election. To date, we have received nothing, other than increased taxes and tax notices. With only one councillor to be elected in Sophiasburgh now and with Kevin Gale retiring, I hope we have race here and not an acclamation.

  6. Chuck says:

    This is healthy and we now will see new blood on Council. We will have a new Mayor,new rep in Ameliasburg ,new rep in South Marysburgh for certain. Bloomfield alone is gone and a big field of credible candidates for Hallowell could turf incumbents. No incumbents for Picton or North Marysburgh running at this time. That’s encouraging for Picton Ward. New blood, I like it.

  7. Fred says:

    Diane O’Brien has filed to run for Mayor.

  8. Dennis Fox says:

    Chuck – thanks for your take on this – but I really don’t believe in conspiracy theories. Then again, either way who cares?

  9. Chuck says:

    Don’t be naive Dennis. Watch what happens. You should know or have been around long enough to know how politics in all parties work. An elected official doesn’t run in a provincial election for an obvious sinking ship without reward.

  10. Susan says:

    Why is the Council live streaming not working?

  11. Dennis Fox says:

    Sorry Emily, I highly suspect that won;t happen.

  12. Emily says:

    I expect an appointment announcement prior to the Liberals turning over power.

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