Telkwa Mayor Darcy Repen has taken his hat out of the 2017 race for Stikine MLA in the provincial election.

Repen says he’ll join the race again in the next election so he can focus on village issues like securing funding for a new water tower.

“I am absolutely committed to the Village of Telkwa. It was what compelled me to engage in that race in the first place.”

Repen says the village can’t afford their 1/3 share of the water tower project after receiving approval from the province. He says they’re now eying a gas tax grant through the UBCM for 100 per cent of the project.

Repen also says they’re waiting on funding for a $200,000 engineering and archaeological assessment that will give them an updated cost estimate.

“We remain with the conviction that we will be able to move forward with construction in the construction season of 2018. (That) means the timeline will be unaffected.”