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Turner Valley stays as status quo as possible

Two empty spots were filled on Turner Valley town council in the Oct. 18 municipal election, and the remaining four incumbent candidates were re-elected back onto council.
BD new councillors
Newly elected town councillors Curtis Dixon (left) and Hazel Martin are joining incumbents Cindy Holladay, Jonathan Gordon, Garry Raab, John Waring and acclaimed mayor Barry Crane.

Two empty spots were filled on Turner Valley town council in the Oct. 18 municipal election, and the remaining four incumbent candidates were re-elected back onto council.

Returning to council are Cindy Holladay, Jonathon Gordon, John Waring, and Garry Raab.

Former Turner Valley councillors Jamie Wilkie and Lana Hamilton did not run again. Council candidates Hazel Martin and Curtis Dixon will fill their spots.

Turner Valley mayor Barry Crane was acclaimed when no one else ran for the position.

He has been vocal about keeping the existing council intact and was thrilled with the election results.

“By the look of the numbers of the voting the residents also agreed they were well served last term and want them to perform those same duties this term,” Crane said.

The new incoming councillors bring great experience, said Crane.

“Hazel, who’s got a massive amount of experience for the town, running events, and overall community spirit and volunteerism,” Crane said.

Dixon’s background with amalgamation at a Manitoba school board and in technology will be valuable on council.

“He’s been a great figure pre-COVID he was trying to really engage in special events and community spirit and he’s got a good IT background so I’m looking forward to his input on municipal affairs,” Crane said.

Working with new Black Diamond mayor Brendan Kelly on amalgamation will be seamless, Crane said, as they’ve known each other for more than 10 years.

“I know him very well,” Crane said. “I’ve worked in Eden valley’s school system, where he is a teacher…so I feel great working with him. I think we will get along fabulously.”

Returning Coun. Jonathan Gordon said he also spent time with the Black Diamond candidates during the campaign and is looking forward to working with them.

“The key priorities will be working with admin to align some bylaws that need to be aligned with Black Diamond,” Gordon said.

Council hopes to hear from Municipal Affairs Minister Rick McIver within four or five months on the Towns’ request to amalgamate, said Gordon.

Dixon ran in the 2017 election and said he is thrilled he gave it another shot.

He said he plans on keeping a close eye on the amalgamation process, after going through amalgamations while working at school divisions in Manitoba.

“I’ve experienced it twice before,” he said. “It’s the little things that will catch us off guard.”

For Martin extending her public service after 25 years working for the Town of Turner Valley is exciting.

“There’s going to be a lot of challenges and I’m just looking forward to representing the people of Turner Valley,” she said.

When it comes to amalgamation, she said looking for areas to become more efficient and save money is a priority.

“We need to find some efficiencies to hold the line on taxes for our residents,” she said.

Ensuring fair treatment of Turner Valley during the process to bring the towns together is also an issue, she said. Seven hundred and thirty-one voters turned out for the election.

Click here for the Turner Valley election voting results.


About the Author: Darlene Casten

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