Mike Morden opposes the 55 modular housing units on Royal Crescent saying there are no treatment options for homeless people with addictions or mental health issues. (THE NEWS/files)

Mike Morden opposes the 55 modular housing units on Royal Crescent saying there are no treatment options for homeless people with addictions or mental health issues. (THE NEWS/files)

Morden says he’s in for Maple Ridge mayor contest

Two-term council veteran running for top spot in October

It’s going to be at least a three-way race for the mayor’s chair in Maple Ridge in the Oct. 20 civic elections.

Former councillor Michael Morden, this past week, all but confirmed he’s running, though he’s saving the formal announcement for when summer is over.

Morden, who ran for mayor in the 2014 election, said Thursday that his official announcement will be in September.

“I will be announcing my candidacy for running for mayor, after Labour Day.”

Morden said he considered the implications of running in a three-way race against former mayor Ernie Daykin and Coun. Craig Speirs, who’ve already announced.

But he’s not worried that if he runs he’ll split the right-of-centre vote. Speirs is a supporter of the provincial NDP.

Morden said 2018 is a “watershed” election.

“Those elected will determine our future in ways that can either benefit Maple Ridge or cause further division and harm. Given the challenges that we face today, those elected will lead us to a brighter future, or we’re just going to have more of the same.”

Morden spent two terms on Maple Ridge council, from 2009 to 2014, but lost when he ran for mayor in 2014.

Nicole Read won then with 5,637 votes, while Morden drew the second-largest number of votes at 4,825. Daykin had been seeking a third term as mayor, but came in third with 3,958 votes.

Morden said he’s spent the past four years listening and learning and helping people and wanted to make sure that any decision he made was right for the city and its future.

He added that he’ll be running as an independent and not part of any slate or election team.

“There are no slate or party politics that should be in play in municipal government. Municipal government has to be about the people and their needs.”

Still, he’s going to keep the formal announcement for next month.

“I would suggest to you it’s fairly clear signalling.”

He added that the election is important for the city and said he wanted to make the right decisions for the right reasons and not run just because people are encouraging him to do so.