When Whistler Council next meets on Jan. 6, there will be fewer than 20 meetings remaining before the next municipal election gets underway in October.
Mayor Nancy Wilhelm-Morden said her plan for the final stretch is to focus on the four major plans approved by council in recent months: the Economic Partnership Initiative, the Recreation and Leisure Master Plan, the Community Cultural Plan and the Learning and Education Task Force report.
Together, the four plans come with hundreds of recommendations for Municipal Hall.
“I personally want to ensure that the recommendations of the four major plans are well incorporated into our short and medium-term work plans,” said the mayor. “That’s a priority and that’s something that I think everybody (on council) would share. Certainly staff is already working on doing those things.”
Another priority for the mayor is to work on the municipality’s “back of house” services, including computers and software used by staff,. “That might be a little aggressive for the time we have, in that it will involve some significant upgrades and new purchases of computer software,” she added.
Looking back, Wilhelm-Morden said she had accomplished almost everything in her 10-point campaign promise, which included freezing taxes, rolling back pay parking, taking a paycut and fixing transit, among other things. The one promise where she acknowledged that she has made the least progress is in stopping old growth logging in the Cheakamus Community Forest — although that’s also progressing with the CCF working on an Old Growth Management plan to file with the provincial government.
“We’ve got that issue well in hand, we just haven’t completed it yet,” she said.
As well, her original plan would have removed pay parking from all the day skier lots except for Lot 1, but in the compromise reached by council, pay parking was only removed from Lot 4 and 5 and is still in place for Lots 1-3.
Wilhelm-Morden said she hasn’t decided at this point if she is going to run again, but said she’s getting the question a lot more recently with the election nearing.
She also said it’s been a pleasure to work with the current council.
“We do work so well together,” she said. “It would be a shame if the team split up, but on the other hand, because we’ve worked so well and have shown the community at large that being a local politician can be very rewarding, we might see some really good candidates step forward and put their hat in the ring — not that there weren’t good candidates in the last election, because there were, but some members of the community who might not have considered it might be interesting in stepping up.”
The next municipal election is on Saturday, Nov. 15, 2014.