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FRENCH CONNECTION: Let’s hope for the best this year

Please note my use of “hope.” It’s a stronger word than wish, Diana French writes.
Diana French pens a weekly column for the Williams Lake Tribune. (Monica Lamb-Yorski photo - Williams Lake Tribune)

Let’s hope is for a happy, healthy 2023.

We can never have enough happiness, and with our current health situation we need to stay as healthy as possible. Hopefully COVID will wear itself out but we’ll likely have to live with wonkey weather.

Let’s hope Russia will tire of fighting in Ukraine and no other country gets big ideas. Please note my use of “hope.” It’s a stronger word than wish.

We head into 2023 with a new premier and some new locally elected officials. I hope all the new people do well by us, but my main interest is city council. It’s closest to my daily life. The majority of councillors (four) are first-timers.

Newly-elected politicians usually have their own goals and there’s nothing wrong with that, it’s probably why they ran for office, but before our new council makes many plans I hope they’ll look over some old ones that fell by the wayside as new councils took over.

For instance, in the fall of 2009, the council of-the-day launched an initiative to develop a long-term vision of a sustainable city. Guided by professional consultants, citizens were given the opportunity to participate in the process.

Many did, and they came up with some innovative solutions to solve the social, cultural, economic, environmental, and governance challenges of the day, plus a vision of the city in 2030 — “Williams Lake/Imagine Our Future.” Remember that?

Council adopted it as a decision-making policy. In recognition of their sustainability leadership, the city was honoured with the 2010 Federation of Canadian Municipalities’ Sustainable Community Planning Award for its Integrated Community Sustainability Planning Framework.

Over the years, councils lost interest in having public input in planning, abandoning committees like Recreation Commission, Advisory Planning. Will this new council bring them back?

Diana French is a book author and former Tribune editor

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