While it didn’t come as a big surprise, Yorkton’s newest Mayor elect Bob Maloney says he is humbled by the honor to represent the city and is looking forward to the next four years.
Garnering 95 per cent of the votes, Maloney won out over a young Richard Genaille who was not in attendance as poll results came in at City Hall Wednesday evening.
Elected to council to serve a four year term with Maloney were former mayors, James Wilson and Chris Wyatt, Randy Goulden, Larry Pearen, Les Arnelien and Ross Fisher.
Maloney believes experience factored in when residents made their decisions and cast their votes. “We’re going to have a very experienced council... Councillor Goulden, obviously she has lots of experience, she represented us very well during a number of issues... especially with SUMA... it’s great to see her back on council. Our whole group is very experienced. We have two former mayors. We have Les Arnelien who has all kinds of experience. Ross Fisher is coming back for his second term, Larry Pearen has done very well in the community... When you look at that group of people you have to be pleased.”
Maloney also acknowledged those who weren’t successful in their bid to serve on council. “They put their names forward and put themselves out there. It can be tough and bruising to the ego so you have to respect the people who come forward for their communities.” Not making the list this year was councillor Richard Okrainec and first timers Robby Bear and Aaron Nagy.
The goal now says Maloney, is to move forward and to get on with the business of managing the city’s growth. There will be challenges he says and no council is perfect, but he’s in it for the long haul and says he is committed.
“No council is perfect. We make mistakes... but that’s the nice thing about municipal politics. If you don’t like what’s going on you can fix it...”
The plan Maloney says, is to stay the course and manage growth. “We have a Gallagher Centre to pay for. We have a fire hall to pay for. We have landfill issues. I think the community may see increased costs in landfill fees in years to come... There are some issues out there but I don’t think we’re going to be seeing big projects or big spending... I’m a proponent of paying down debt and making sure we can afford the things we get into.”
Yorkton is good shape he adds. “And if the province comes along and wants to cost share on a project, we’re positioned to do that... I know James was always very good at finding those deals for us and I’m sure we’ll continue to work on that in the future.”
Both local school divisions also elected board representative Wednesday evening. In by acclamation for the Christ the Teacher School Division are: Jerome Niezgoda, Doreen Rathgeber, Dwayne Todas, and Patricia Zaryski.
Elected in the Good Spirit School Division are: Gordon Gendur, Bonnie Rushowick, and Richard Haacke.
See full election details on the City of Yorkton website: www.yorkton.ca.