Lee seeks fourth term as mayor of Charlottetown

TC Media newsroom@journalpioneer.com
Published on June 26, 2014

Clifford Lee is seeking another term as mayor of Charlottetown.

Charlottetown's longest-serving mayor is asking voters for another term in office.

Clifford Lee formally announced his intention Wednesday to seek the city's top elected job when the municipal election is held on Monday. Nov. 3.

Lee, who succeeded George MacDonald in 2003, was re-elected in 2006 and 2010.

But while the civil servant jumped into the race, he wasn't talking about goals or initiatives just yet.

"I'm not announcing today what my platform is because, quite frankly, I want to talk to the citizens of Charlottetown and see what their issues and concerns are,'' Lee said following the formal part of his press conference at the Rodd Royalty Inn. "This city is their city, not mine, and in order to appropriately represent the community you need to know what the people are concerned with.''

Lee did make a point of addressing rumours that he wants to pursue the leadership of the provincial Progressive Conservative Party or seek federal political office.

"I think the media and some people within the political world have done a great job of putting my name out there as a possible contender for the leadership of the party,'' Lee told The Guardian. "I have no intention, none whatsoever, no interest in it. I've said my interest is in being mayor of the city and you will not see my name on a ballot for the leadership of the party.''

Lee promises that, if re-elected, he will serve his full four-year term.

So far, Lee is the only person to officially enter the mayor's race. Former councillor Philip Brown, who ran against Lee four years ago, is still mulling over whether to throw his hat in the race but he pulled in less than half the vote in 2010.

Lee said he will probably announce his platform in the fall and will spend the summer knocking on doors and talking to people.

The incumbent mayor wants to see a couple of rather large projects currently underway — creating a new water source and completing the sanitary/storm water separation initiative.

"We have $3.2 million allocated as a reserve for our new water supply. I anticipate that there will be an announcement very soon by the province, city and the federal government once the Build Canada Program is signed.''

Barb Stevenson, a lawyer in Charlottetown since 1980, endorsed Lee on Wednesday.

"He is a man who has worked tirelessly for the city,'' Stevenson said. "He has the necessary vision, leadership and trust (of residents).''

If defeating Lee was tough before it's even harder now with so much positive buzz around the 2014 celebrations.

Times are certainly good in the capital this year but Lee said the job isn't complete. He cited the recent federal job cuts and changes to the EI system as two examples of issues that still plague the electorate.

"The reality is the job is not complete. If I thought the job was complete I would not be reoffering for the position of mayor of this great city.''