Last week marked Garry Litke's 100th day in office as mayor of Penticton.
"I seem to be working full time - plus full time and into the weekends," said Litke.
Litke was sworn in as mayor Sept. 16 in Vancouver after winning a Sept. 7 byelection to replace Dan Ashton, who became the local MLA in the spring. Last week, Litke marked his 100th day in office as mayor.
"There was a waiting period after the election I guess we weren't quite aware of," said Litke.
He said it wasn't the same being sworn in away from home, but there was no choice in order to be eligible to participate in that weekend's Union of B.C. Municipalities convention.
One of his priorities as mayor is making Penticton a place people want to and can stay in after they graduate from high school, he said.
As a former teacher in Penticton, Litke said he felt there were not enough job opportunities for graduates in town.
"I always saw my students either having to leave town to get a decent income or stay in town and take jobs that were more menial than they actually deserved."
In his first 100 days as mayor, Litke said, he has most enjoyed the moments he calls "successes."
"Opening the walkway along the beach was great, because I know my children and my grandchildren will be able to come back and walk along there," the mayor said.
Litke tried to enter provincial politics before becoming mayor. He was the NDP's candidate in Penticton-Okanagan Valley in 2005, but lost to incumbent Bill Barisoff. When asked if he considered running provincially in the last election, Litke said he is enjoying municipal work because he believes he can make more of a difference as mayor than as an MLA.
Litke said his priorities during his next 100 days as mayor include balancing the budget and working to improve Challenge Penticton Canada, the city's triathlon.
So far, Litke's duties as mayor have caused him to cut back on other activities, such as exercise.
"I used to go to the gym three or four times a week," he said. "I have not been to the gym in a couple months. I've put on five pounds."
Although he normally would be looking forward to ski season, Litke does not think he will have time.
"Last season, I skied 40 days. I don't think that's going to happen this year."