As you can imagine, the month of March 2020 has been challenging for any political figure. We are faced with some very hard decisions regularly while sitting in an elected seat and the developments that have taken place on a global scale lately have impacted all forms of government – including your local Town Council. I’ll explain that a little more later.
Regular Start To The Month
March began fairly normally for me. Here is a quick outline of the meetings scheduled for my attendance and you’ll see a pattern that developed as the month went on.
March 1 – 12 Noon - School District 58 Community Partners Meeting, PSS Commons
March 1 – 7:30 PM – Town Council Regular Meeting, Council Chambers, Town Hall
March 9 – 5:30 PM – Copper Mountain Mining Corp. Meeting, Copper Pit
March 16 – 7:00 PM – Public Hearing, Council Chambers, Town Hall
March 16 – 7:30 PM – Town Council Regular Meeting, Council Chambers, Town Hall
March 17 – Health Care Steering Committee, PGH CANCELLED
March 17 – PXA Meeting, Princeton Library Meeting Room CANCELLED
March 19 – Interagency Meeting CANCELLED
March 19 – Princeton Museum AGM, Museum Building CANCELLED
March 20 – 10:00 AM Special Meeting of Town Council, Council Chambers, Town Hall
March 21-31 All Other Meetings CANCELLED
Coronavirus (COVID-19) Makes An Impact
March changed for us in our household mid-month. We’ve had to temporarily close one of our home-based businesses as the venue it is located was closed to the public on March 16. Town Council acted quickly, following expert advice, and started taking measures to restrict public access to local facilities to slow the spread of COVID-19.
In our house, both my wife, Brenda and I are immunocompromised. This has forced us to restrict our physical contact with others to where we are currently self-isolated at home. As I have a work-from-home career, this has not affected my job much at all. We are doing our part to “flatten the curve” and I encourage you to do the same if you are able.
The News About The Aquatic Centre
It was at the March 20 Special Meeting of Town Council when the news about the grant for the Princeton Aquatic Centre being turned down was shared with us. Although it was a sad note, there can be many positives to come out of it. My feelings on the $27-million project are no secret. I thought it was too massive a project for the existing taxpayer base to keep open year ‘round. However, I do believe the community requires a “community centre” of some kind that would include an indoor pool and other facilities.
I think that with the grant being turned down – and I have to point out that the design of the project came from a different Town Council – it gives us all a chance to go back to the drawing board to design something that would fit better within the community and that the community could afford to keep open all year for the enjoyment of residents and visitors. Expect to hear more about that sometime in the future. But for now, let’s not worry about that and focus on getting back on track once the COVID-19 situation is resolved.
How You Can Help Now And Later
This means supporting local businesses as much as you can now (the ones able to operate) and into the future once they can get back to full operation. It has been a tough couple of years for local business (forest fires, road closures) and 2020 won’t be any easier. This is why I encourage you to shop locally as much as you can as we are all in this together.
My name is George Elliott. I have been in the Media Industry since 1978. I spent 23 years in Broadcasting and worked in a total of six different radio stations located in southern British Columbia Canada during my career. In 2000 I switched gears and moved into the Print Media Industry at a small town, local weekly community newspaper. In 2004 I bought the paper and operated it with my wife, Brenda until July 2016 when we closed it. I launched a freelance web content and article writing business from my home in January 2014.