VICTORIA -- The current mayor of Tofino, Josie Osborne, has announced her interest in becoming the B.C. NDP’s MLA nomination for Mid-Island Pacific Rim in the next provincial election.

Osborne would be succeeding current MLA Scott Fraser, who just announced Monday that he would not be running for re-election.

“I have decided to run for the B.C. NDP because I have seen the devastating impacts this pandemic has had on our communities and I believe John Horgan is the right person to lead the province during this difficult time,” said Osborne in a release Tuesday.

Osborne was first elected as mayor of Tofino in 2013. She also acts as the current chair of the Island Coastal Economic Trust and was the former chairperson for the Alberni Clayoquot Regional District.

According to the B.C. NDP, Osborne ¬– a former professional biologist – is also a vocal advocate for the environment, housing and transportation.

“I want to help build a long-term recovery that is sustainable and will make life better for the people in the Central Vancouver Island (region) and all British Columbians,” said Osborne.

“Following the incredible work of Scott Fraser, it’s crucial this work to rebuild our province is done in partnership with First Nation communities,” she said.

While B.C. Premier John Horgan has been tight-lipped about the provincial government calling an early election during the COVID-19 pandemic, speculation about a possible fall election has been recently growing.

Speculation over a potential snap election has been fueled by recent announcements from current B.C. cabinet ministers, saying that they will not be seeking re-election, and because the premier’s approval rating has spiked during the COVID-19 pandemic.

While an election may be called early, a fixed election date is set for fall 2021.

With files from the Canadian Press.