Nova Scotia

Environment Minister Margaret Miller won't reoffer in next election

Environment Minister Margaret Miller will not reoffer in the next provincial election, saying it's time to focus on her family and personal matters.

Hants East MLA says she'll finish her term but it's time to focus on family

Hants East MLA Margaret Miller was first elected in 2013. (Robert Short/CBC News)

Nova Scotia Environment Minister Margaret Miller will not reoffer in the next provincial election.

The MLA for Hants East spoke on Thursday about growing speculation in her district about her political future. The 64-year-old former farmer and small business owner said the decision not to run again relates mostly to her age.

"Sometimes it's time to have time for you," Miller told reporters in Halifax following a cabinet meeting.

"There's a price to pay personally and with your family," she said.  

"With the age that I am now, it's just a good time to start thinking about slowing down and doing some of that travelling that you think about when you're younger."

'I love what I do'

Miller said it's difficult for anyone to fully appreciate the demands of the job until they're living it, although she has no regrets.

"It's more all-consuming than I thought it would be. I love what I do — working with people, working with constituents, helping resolve issues — I love all of that."

And while the role of a cabinet minister is different than constituency work, Miller said it's a chance to make "a big difference in the lives of Nova Scotians."

Other than the odd occasion, she said there is no downside to being involved in politics.

First elected in 2013

Miller was first elected in 2013 as part of the Liberals' surge to a majority government. The former president of MADD Canada was regarded as a strong member of the party's new crop of candidates that year and she found her way into cabinet as environment minister in 2016 during the Grits' first mandate.

She was reelected in 2017 and returned to cabinet, first with the natural resources portfolio before recently returning to the helm of the environment department.

Miller said she will finish this term. Premier Stephen McNeil has said he's asking all members of his caucus to let him know in the coming months their intentions for the next election.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Michael Gorman is a reporter in Nova Scotia whose coverage areas include Province House, rural communities, and health care. Contact him with story ideas at michael.gorman@cbc.ca

With files from Jean Laroche

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