Hello Red Deerians, and welcome to a wild Alberta spring. You never know what spring weather to expect, but we certainly know that summer is on the way!
With April in the rearview mirror, I want to share the work we are doing here in the Mayor’s office with our regional partners that you may be interested in. Red Deer is so much more than what we find within City limits, and we would be nothing without the collaborative relationships with have with not only Red Deer County, but all of Central Alberta.
I believe in so many aspects of my life and career, that we are stronger together – and being a local politician should be no different. We are Central Alberta strong, and together we can make this the best region in western Canada.
I need to look no further than to the work we have been doing with our closest neighbour, Red Deer County. Just recently, we came together for an annexation process, an example of how we are continuing to forge a stronger relationship together. We are so grateful to Red Deer County for the positive and productive discussions, and to the landowners in the area for the open and robust conversations.
Red Deer County Council accepted the Annexation Application and Report on Negotiations at a Council meeting earlier this month, and we have now submitted the application to the Land and Property Rights Tribunal for their consideration. Their process will likely include public hearings, and then a recommendation to the Ministry of Municipal Affairs for final approval.
We’ve had many great discussions about working together in the future to see great things happen for both the city and county, and as we embark on a process to update the Intermunicipal Development Plan (or IDP), we know that with an attitude of collaboration, opportunities abound!
We also have a common interest in strengthening our community, our tourism and our partners. This is evident in both the County and the City coming together in support of Red Deer Airport, Tourism Red Deer, and many local agencies that work to enhance the quality of life for everyone in the region.
I also meet quarterly with a regional group of Mayor’s and Reeves with a similar goal of working together, building and supporting each other and creating a region that is mutually beneficial. We want to break down the walls of our city limits, build on each others strengths with a goal of making our whole region the best it can be.
I am very proud of the work we have done, and continue to do for our region, and will continue to keep you up to date on any new initiatives and collaborations. I want to take a moment to thank specifically Mayor Wood of Red Deer County, County Councillors and administration on all the work we have been able to do together, as well as the Mayors and Reeves from our region that are working to make Central Alberta just the best it can be.
As we venture forward into spring, and beyond, let us remember that there are good things are growing in Central Alberta. The better seeds we plant today, the better things we can harvest, when the time comes.
We are stronger together.
Ken Johnston is the Mayor of Red Deer.