Ralph Wiseman stepping down as Paradise mayor
The longtime mayor of Paradise has decided to retire, and will not be seeking re-election in next month's municipal election.
"It's been a hectic eight years. The town has moved along tremendously and I'm quite pleased with where we are," said Ralph Wiseman, who is stepping down from the helm of one of the fastest-growing towns in the province.
A former Liberal cabinet minister, Wiseman championed development in Paradise, including subdivisions, businesses and expansion of Topsail Road from two to four lanes.
Wiseman said it's time for someone new to serve as mayor.
"I think they need somebody that's got some strong leadership qualities, that has a goal, that has a vision for the town," said Wiseman.
Wiseman's municipal career was often controversial. He barely won the 2009 election against challenger Kurtis Coombs, then 19. An initial tie had Wiseman winning when his name was drawn from a recycling basket, although a subsequent judicial recount showed he had won by a three-vote margin.
Wiseman said he is looking forward to spending more time with his family, and taking a long-awaited vacation. While he has no plans to return to politics at any level, he did not rule it out entirely.
"Being a politician, you know, the old line is you never say never," Wiseman said.