Turner Valley Mayor Barry Crane is running in the upcoming election, on a platform of financial responsibility and continuity in amalgamation planning.
Crane was elected as a councillor in 2013 and was acclaimed as the mayor in 2019 in a byelection. So far no one is challenging Crane for the position but potential candidates have until Sept. 20 to submit their papers.
Crane said continuity of council going into amalgamation and maintaining financial accountability are the top reasons he wants to run again.
“Fiscal responsibility is number one leading into the upcoming election,” Crane said.
Over the past four years Turner Valley council has not raised the tax rate. Crane said that holding the tax rate is not possible in the long term, but that council needs to remain committed to fiscal responsibility.
“I think we need to start investing in the community and if that has project costs, we need to justify that as a council and explain that to the residents,” Crane said.
The last term on council was “very satisfying”, he said, with the Town nearing completion of an inventory of all its assets. The project cost $150,000 over three years.
“For a new council or any council to properly budget for the long-term success of a municipality it is important to know what you are dealing with at all times,” Crane said. “We thought it was important to get the community up to the standard that anyone coming in to assess the reality of what you are dealing with, not what we think might be the reality.”
Adding pathways within the Town and connecting to Black Diamond has also been a priority over the last term, he said.
“Pathways has been a prime focus of this council,” Crane said. “The connectivity of the Friendship Trail, which is almost in completion that has a section that needs to go along the golf course and negotiations are still ongoing in good faith to get that final section complete which will give us 13 kilometres of connected pathways through the two communities.”
Maintaining some experienced will make the proposed amalgamation between Turner Valley and Black Diamond smoother, Crane said.
“It is important to have continuity going into the final year before amalgamation and aligning bylaws,” he said.
Both Turner Valley and Black Diamond councils voted in favour for amalgamation earlier this month. The proposal has been sent to Ric McIver, minister of municipal affairs, for approval.
If amalgamation goes ahead, Crane said he has not decided if he will run in the election on Nov. 22 2022, to select the new Town of Diamond Valley's first council.