Mayor Helen Posti is looking forward to what 2020 has in store for Eckville after an exciting 2019.
Over the past year Eckville saw continued success of annual events such as the rodeo and Bull Arena.
“[The rodeo] really came back in full force and I think that there was a bigger attendance from what I could see in past years,” said Mayor Helen Posti, adding having Bull Arena on a Friday night was “phenomenal.”
In 2019 the annual Municipal Breakfast was hosted Saturday morning following Bull Arena, which is a change Posti says the Town looks to continue this year while also incorporating some new aspects for this year.
Another highlight of 2019, according to Posti, is the continued support for the Canada Day festivities.
From a council perspective the decision to go solar at the arena and on Main Street was one of the most exciting, said Posti.
“We’re really looking forward to see what that’s going to look like,” she added. “Those are two areas that are just so in keeping with what’s happening around the world … people want you to leave a smaller footprint, so I think that was a good decision on council’s part.”
Through all the successes of 2019 there also came disappointment when the Eckville Senior Eagles moved the team to Lacombe.
Posti added the Town’s continued disappointment of no upgrade for the water treatment plant continued through 2019 and will carry on in to 2020.
“I think that 2020 is going to be the challenge,” said the mayor of the impact municipalities could face with a new government. “We’ve had some of the things already changed and dropped on us, so we do know a little bit of what we’re looking forward to…”
She is also excited to see how the Carbon Tax is going to hit and what the government does with health care.
This year the Town will be taking a look at the Strategic Plan to see where they are at and what additions need to be made.
With the turn of the decade Eckville is one year closer to celebrating it’s 100th Anniversary which will motivate much of the town’s development this year.
The Main Street Project and the upgrades to Monument Park will be completed this year in preparation for the 2021 celebration.
“What I’m looking forward to is to see what the design for the street is because there’s been a bit of controversy about these designs… so it’s going to be interesting to see what the engineers come up with for us,” commented Posti.
Springtime will bring the opening of the walking trail expansion, which delayed from the fall due to weather.
The expansion will also feature a rest stop with a bench in result to a donation from Repsol.
Additionally, this is will be first year where the Christmas tree lighting will done at its new location of the Community Centre.
Posti says she always reflects back on all the changes she has seen over the years.
“When I first got elected in January of 1986 they were just getting a fax machine,” the mayor reminisced. “When you think about what we have now and that we’ve gone paperless basically as much as we can for meetings it’s truly phenomenal the changes you get to see.”
“I’ve seen three changes to the Municipal Government Act in that time so there’s always a new learning curve,” added Posti.
She added for the future of Eckville she hopes to continue to see programming for the youth as well as healthy numbers at both Eckville Jr/Senior High School and Eckville Elementary School.
Going into this new decade she would like to thank everyone who volunteers to keep the community operating and safe.
Posti added the Town is fortunate to have staff who are able to carry out the visions of council.
With ringing in a new year she would also like to remind members of the community of what matters most, not just in 2020 but every year.
“The most important thing is your family and your friends, that is still your top priority over everything.”