It’s a question I get asked a lot these days. Or maybe a variation of that question. Well, to be honest with you, I’m still figuring it out. There’s a lot going on and the new Town Council sort of boarded the train midway through a long trip. It’s going to take a little while to discover what all this train can do and where all the stops are. But so far, I’m enjoying the ride.
Swearing In Made It Real
We were all sworn into office on Monday, November 5. It went quickly and before I knew it, I was officially a Councillor. Well, I knew it was going to happen but the actual ceremony lasted in the neighbourhood of 15-minutes. The shortest Town Council meeting I ever attended as a local reporter was about 8-minutes long if I recall correctly. I’m glad we didn’t break that record.
First Official Meeting
I was very much looking forward to the first actual meeting. Each of us received the agenda in advance so we could go over it. By the time the meeting rolled around on Monday, November 19 the agenda package was 121-pages. There was a lot of business to wade through but the actual meeting was completed in about 45-minutes. Motions were made and we got through it.
For me, I was particularly excited about the Committee Appointments that were announced at that meeting. These are the committees we each sit on and represent the Town of Princeton. There are a number of them and for some reason I will be sitting on a total of 11 at this point – the most of any of the Councillors. I also like the mix as many I have some interest in.
This is the list of Committees I will be sitting on:
KVR Mixed Trail Use Select Committee
Princeton Exhibition Association
Similkameen Valley Planning Society (alternate)
Okanagan Regional Library (alternate)
Princeton Health Care Steering Committee (alternate)
Princeton Arts Council (alternate)
Princeton Posse KIJHL Hockey Team (alternate)
The way in which these committee appointments work is that the majority of them include two members of Town Council, a designate and an alternate. There are a couple that I sit on that include more than two and one includes all members of Town Council. I quite like the interesting cross section of topics covered in the committees I have to represent the Town on.
Meetings, Activities And Fun
Well, as there are a number of committees, it also means there are a number of meetings. My list includes several groups that meet just monthly. There is a few that meet only quarterly so at this point I have only been to a couple of meetings. However, there has been a lot of additional activity in my life now that I am an elected representative of the community.
I attended a flag raising ceremony to mark Louis Riel Day and was presented with a Métis sash lapel pin. It meant so much to me that I wore it to my first Town Council meeting. I have been in and out of Town Hall frequently in the past week taking care of various tasks. I also receive an endless stream of email to my personal Town Council email address. Many of them are items that require attendance from any and all members of Town Council. My calendar is filling up.
Probably the most fun part of this new position of mine was during the annual Christmas Light-Up and Santa Visit on November 24. All members of Council were approached to participate with a list of possible duties provided. As I was going to be downtown that day anyway vending JamBusters! (www.jambusters.ca) with my wife Brenda in the Princeton Legion Hall, I was sure I could help with a small task as part of the light-up celebration in the park next to the Legion.
It was suggested that I be the MC for the event (I wanted to help at the craft table) thanks to my years of experience in Broadcasting and various other forms of Media. I saw the logic behind that so I accepted the slighter bigger job. Well, it was far more fun than I expected and all members of Town Council present put in a ton of effort in what was probably our first real public event where we were out and about with area residents. It was truly a blast. I can’t wait for next month!
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.