Stettler council settles in for new term

Mayor says members backed by good staff

By Jeff Labine

The Stettler Independent

With the civic election come and gone, Stettler’s mayor and councillors are ready to get to work but there might be a slight learning curve for some.

Earlier in the month, the town voted to re-elect Malcolm Fischer and Al Campbell to council chambers along with rookies Scott Pfeiffer, Gord Lawlor, Cheryl Barros and Wayne Smith.

Sean Nolls, who served as a town councillor last term, was acclaimed as mayor.

Following a swearing in ceremony on Oct. 24, which was led by retired judge Dave MacNaughton, the new mayor and councillors settled in for their first meeting.

While council didn’t go into anything too deeply, the town’s CAO Greg Switenky assured the rookie members that things will get easier with time.

Barros said after the meeting she’s more excited than scared.

“I’m excited with the crew we have and I think we will work well together,” she said. “I’ve been to a few (city council meetings) prior to (being elected) so I had an idea how it all worked. I do have a large learning curve but I think Greg, (assistant CAO Steve Gerlitz) and also Sean, Al and Malcolm will help guide us.”

While she’s looking forward to working with the beautification committee, she added her main focus will be to listen to residents.

Nolls said he’s not worried about council’s level of experience.

“Even though we have four new councillors, no matter what we were going to get, we were going to get a good council,” he said. “At the end of the day, our administration is so strong that they make us look really good. They do a fantastic job so we were in good hands anyways.”

As for Nolls, the rookie mayor described himself as someone who enjoyed working behind the scenes and said it was different having to take a centre stage role. He said he’s looking forward towards developing Stettler’s economy especially as the province begins to turn around from one of the worst economic downturns in recent history.

Nolls believes this will provide an opportunity to capitalize on developing the business community in Stettler especially along the highway and downtown.

“We already have a really strong downtown business and I’m really looking forward to see them grow and us growing the town with them and maybe help them out,” he added.

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