Kawartha Lakes Mayor Andy Letham will not be running for a third term.
He informed council at their regularly scheduled April 20 meeting of his decision. “I will not be running in the next election,” Letham told council. “We have accomplished much together as a team and we have much more to do. Let’s keep going.”
While some were surprised by the mayor’s announcement, Letham remains true to a promise he made to his family in 2014 that he would only be a two-term mayor. In an interview with this reporter in 2019 Letham said, “Eight years as mayor will be more than enough.”
Letham, former general manager of the Lindsay Agricultural Society and past owner of a growing textile company, first became involved in politics in 2003, serving as councillor from the old Ward 11.
In 2006, Letham threw his hat in the ring for the mayoral position, losing a close six-way race by about 800 votes to Ric McGee who many believed would move forward with de-amalgamating Kawartha Lakes.
Letham ran again in 2010 for mayor, losing to McGee by 1,100 votes.
In 2014 with McGee moving out of the city, Letham campaigned again, winning easily with 16,000 of the 27,000 votes cast promising to grow business and run the city in a more efficient manner.
Letham was re-elected in 2018 in a hotly contested election, defeating long-time councillor Gord James by 1,800 votes in a tough three-way race.
Letham’s announcement gives interested candidates 18 months before the next election to make decisions, plan platforms, raise money and organize.
It is expected that there will be a full field of candidates vying for the mayoral position in 2022. Multiple sources who did not want to be identified say this could include current councillors Doug Elmslie and Ron Ashmore, and local lawyer Jason Ward.