Mayor Kerry Cook officially kicked off her re-election bid last week.
Cook filed her paperwork at city hall and later held a barbecue to meet with campaign supporters. She said her message to supporters was she would continue with a collaborative approach.
As for her election platform, Cook said she would continue to be focussed on crime reduction. She reiterated the approach taken in 2008 when council took “immediate” action after the election to address the City’s crime problem by approving two administration positions with the RCMP.
“The success of crime reduction shows the hard work has paid off. It’s a tribute to RCMP leadership, First Nations leadership, community policing and all stakeholders of coming to the table and working together,” she said, adding that the work was not yet over.
“We don’t want to lose that momentum.”
Cook added that economic development was also a priority through the $3 million recently designated to the Cariboo-Chilcotin Beetle Action Coalition, through partnerships with Thompson Rivers University and through the implementation of an Industrial Revitalization Tax Exemption bylaw aimed at bringing new business and industry to town and encouraging existing business to grow.
She touched on the Business Expansion and Attraction Strategy Task Force designed to use community expertise to build further economic development opportunities.
That work, says Cook, will be combined with fiscal responsibility and accountability. In 2008, council, said Cook, cut $1 million from the City’s budget.
“We had to figure out a way of paying for the debt approved by the last council as a lot of it was rolling into our term,” she said, adding this council has worked to create a long-term financial plan.
The intent of that, she said, is to plan and put money aside yearly to meet the community’s capital infrastructure needs.