It is my pleasure to reflect on what we have accomplished in the 2021 year.
With these challenging and unprecedented times mainly due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the worst economic downturn in this province and countries history we have continued to remain steady regarding our service levels provided and financial status. Council, County Administration, and all Employees played an integral part in accomplishing success in this regard. I know we can become an even stronger more successful community by working together which includes County residents.
There is much to be proud of and some of the accomplishments in 2021, were:
- The groundbreaking of the new HAK School in the Town of Smoky Lake took place, and is set for completion in early to mid-2023,
- Métis Crossing is near completion of its 40-suite hotel on the beautiful banks of the North Saskatchewan River,
- The Victoria District Economic Development Strategy Plan is moving forward with the goal of adding to the tourism economy, increasing the visitor traffic to regional attractions, and Métis Crossing. Thus, supporting Municipal sustainability while preserving and promoting our culture, heritage, and ecological assets. While maintaining our community identity, lifestyle, and diversifying the Region’s economy we are enhancing experiences of our visitors by sharing with them an authentic way,
- A safer intersection at Highways 28 and 831 roundabout was completed,
- A virtual platform allows for a higher number of public attendees to attend our meetings conveniently from wherever they are,
- County Council diligently created and amended policies and bylaws to stay current with our ever-changing environment,
- Developed a stronger connection with our county residents and the public through social media with the creation of the Grapevine and other electronic means,
- Our new website makes it easier for all users to find information and includes micro sites that can be utilized by our community organizations, and
- A new accounting system was implemented enhancing our accounting and financial management capabilities.
In closing, 2021 and the past several years were challenging years magnified by last year’s global Covid-19 recession and energy price/economic collapse. We continue to work through this hardship which has brought us as a region closer together. Despite these challenges our County Residents have continued to demonstrate true resilience and are overcoming adversity during these times. It is an honor to be the Reeve of Smoky Lake County and Division Four Councillor. Thank you for this opportunity, it is a pleasure to be a part of a County that has the same aspirations of achieving a strong economy in a safe community with a high quality of life.
Reeve, Smoky Lake County