Over the past three years, despite differences of opinion, this council has achieved some admirable objectives.
These include lift station completion, the trails and alternative pedestrian routes, BETHS shelter and the fiber optic network.
By far the most courageous thing that this council has accomplished has been to acknowledge what Municipal World magazine recently called the “ticking time bomb in cities across Canada,” rapidly aging city infrastructure.
This council shared a vision with our city management that we would go further than just the setting up of reserves to fix and maintain our infrastructure but we would actually create a stable, long-term plan.
We plan to maximize the life of our roads, sewer, water, storm and electrical systems and to replace some parts of our sewer, water and roads that have reached the end of their lives.
We are sensitive to the concern that we not rush into fixing roads and sewer lines until we have support from the provincial and federal governments.
The best way to get that support is to be ready to share the cost and to expect, in turn, that other levels of government will share the cost with our taxpayers.
Our community is currently undergoing a demographic shift. Increasing numbers of seniors are choosing to move to Grand Forks. This shift is creating new economic opportunities for the region and if we can adapt to changing service and product demands, we will prosper.
Finally, I am concerned that a small but visible number in our community are homeless.
Some of these people also face the challenge of mental health issues and substance abuse.
We are a welcoming and inclusive community but I expect more support from the province in addressing this complex problem. I will strive to seek long-term solutions, rather than Band-Aid fixes.
– Brian Taylor is the incumbent mayor