It has been my pleasure to serve as an FCM Board member for the last two years, bringing the concerns of local government to the attention of the federal government, and helping develop our policies to support programming of initiatives that assist communities throughout Canada to reach their fullest potential.
Working together, both as a Board and as an organization, we successfully raised local government concerns to an unprecedented level of importance in the last federal election. Board members subsequently met with federal representatives about the important Budget issues that not only impact us, but that rely on us for program delivery - issues such as infrastructure and asset management, transit and transportation, housing and homelessness, environmentally sound sustainable development, Broadband, Fisheries and waterways.
As a member of the BC Caucus, I've had the opportunity to work with colleagues from all parts of the Province and the nation, both urban and rural - sharing information, discussing ways to keep our needs in the mix of national discourse, and lending support for communities to participate in valuable FCM programs.
I have been fortunate to serve on numerous Standing Committees, including Infrastructure and Transportation, Environmental Issues and Sustainable Development, Conference Planning, Social Economic Development, and the Rural Forum.
I am part of the team that lobbied energetically to have the needs of rural communities, in British Columbia and across Canada, treated with the same respect, care and concern as our big cities and urban communities. We secured a guaranteed carve-out of infrastructure moneys earmarked for rural and northern needs in addition to retaining full access to all other infrastructure program funds in the last Budget. Now we need to focus on creating dynamic and effective rural/urban partnerships for economic development and community advancement.
I am a Councillor in British Columbia's second-smallest municipality, and sit on the Board of the Regional District of Central Kootenay. In these capacities, I sit on a Regional Transit Committee and a Regional Hospital District Board; I foster collaboration toward economic development, watershed governance, eco-asset management and other initiatives.
I know intimately that the only way we ensure the health of our communities is by working together, by sharing our information and resources, by finding common ground and a common voice.
I hope you will support me to continue working on your behalf on the FCM Board.