BC Finance Minister Katrine Conroy not seeking re-election in the fall

Kootenay-West MLA and Minister of Finance Katrine Conroy (right) and Nelson-Creston MLA Brittny Anderson (left)

After 19 years in office, NDP MLA for Kootenay-West Katrine Conroy has announced she will not be seeking re-election in the 2024 provincial election.

Conroy has served as the region’s MLA since 2005. In 2017, she was appointed to cabinet in her first role as Children and Families Minister and later Minister of Forests before being appointed Finance Minister in 2022.

In a media briefing today (Friday), Conroy emotionally announced the end of her political career, thanking her staff, constituents, family, and government for their support.

“Thank you for welcoming me to your towns, to your villages, your cities, regional districts, to your homes, fairs, and events of all kinds. Even if we didn’t always agree on everything, I always felt welcomed. No one gets here without the support of so many people.”

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When asked what her proudest accomplishments have been during her time in office, Conroy said she’s proud of the work she’s done for Kids and Care.

“Some of my proudest moments include working with Kids and Care and bringing in the opportunity for Kids and Care to attend post-secondary education for free.”

“As well as our childcare initiative. It’s going to make a difference for people. And for me, as a former childcare educator, that makes a big difference in people’s lives.”

Conroy said the decision to step back from politics was not an easy one, but that it was time.

“In four years, I’m going to be 70, and I want to be retired at 70. I want to be working. I want to be spending time with my family. I want to do some things for myself.”

“I think it’s time for the family’s sake that we take a step back. But for my sake, I’m ready to… It’s an incredible job. It’s a real honour. It’s been an amazing 19 years, but at the same time, it’s time to let go.”

She added that she hopes that the next person who takes on her role gets the same amazing experiences she has had.

“I know that the next person who takes on my role will have the same set of amazing experiences I’ve had, I’ve met so many people across the province, but also the honour of representing people in this constituency makes the job really special. And whoever it will be will do it well.”

Conroy will continue to serve as Kootenay West MLA and Minister of Finance until her term is up in the fall, but she said her constituency will be announcing nomination dates in the near future, adding that from her understanding there will be some “interesting” candidates.

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