“I’m in it to win it” Val van den Broek said.
It was July 30, and the Langley City councillor and mayoralty candidate was reacting to the announcement that former Langley City mayor Peter Fassbender was going to run for his old job following a detour into provincial politics.
On the day the news broke, van den Broek made it clear she had no intention of withdrawing and running for another term on council instead.
When van den Broek first confirmed her intention to seek the seat vacated by retiring City mayor Ted Schaffer in April, it happened on the same day fellow councillor Paul Albrecht also announced for mayor and Schaffer said he wasn’t going to endorse either one.
After Albrecht pulled out of the mayoralty race, when van den Broek went to city hall last week to sign her nomination papers, Schaffer went with her.
He signed as nominator along with former City councillor Terry Smith.
The one-term councillor said lack of experience is not an issue, that she has worked in government approximately 20 years, as a Langley City councillor, federal public servant (RCMP and corrections), Langley City RCMP community police office coordinator and auxiliary constable volunteer.
Van den Broek said she has worked hard to learn as much as she can about the demands of municipal government since being elected. Her campaign theme is “Let’s Move Forward.”
Van den Broek said she will campaign on issues of “transportation, revitalization, and social issues and … collaborate with other levels of government, community partners, and local businesses.”
She ranks social issues, especially the homeless problem, as top concerns.
“We need more case workers, we need more housing,” van den Broek said.
“But that is going to take other levels of government. We (the City) can’t do it by ourselves.”
The current council has made big steps toward undoing years of neglect, but more remains to be done, she said.
“We also have to clean up the City, and by clean-up, I mean revitalize,” she said.
That includes refreshing playgrounds, parks, nature trails, creating dog parks and community gardens to provide “positive spaces to foster positive relationships.”
Coun. van den Broek has lived in Langley with her husband since 2000.