Richard Poole, who served on Blackfalds Town Council last term, has been elected Mayor after garnering 863 votes in this year’s municipal election. His opponent Gary Smith finished with 215.
Both candidates were mayoral neophytes after incumbent Mayor Melodie Stol chose not to run.
“The win last night was very exciting.” Poole said.
“The group that I was with was at the Community Centre, where we watched the results come in. I felt really honoured that the community had chosen me to be their mayor and I am excited for the next four years.”
Poole feels the race was able to encapsulate the many viewpoints that exist throughout Blackfalds.
“I feel the race has been really good and I would like to thank Gary Smith for putting his name forward,” Poole said.
“I think the different point of view that we both put forward allowed the citizens to look at it both ways and make some choices about how they felt the Town should move forward.
“It was a lot of fun, there was a lot of interesting comments and social media, of course, was a big part of it.”
Joining Poole as councillors are Marina Appel (476 votes), Jamie Hoover (489 votes), Ray Olfert (456 votes), Rebecca Stendie (474 votes), Laura Svab (708 votes) and Will Taylor (672 votes).
Poole said the Town budget will be the first task for council—with several newcomers stepping on board.
“With a new council, we will need to take time to ensure everyone has a clear understanding of what our goals our, based on our Municipal Sustainability Plan (MSP),” Poole said.
According to Poole, the MSP is bedrock of which he intends to govern.
“Included with that will be the close cooperation with our neighboring partners like Lacombe County,” he said. “This is not only dictated by the Municipal Government Act, but I also believe we are good friends and I am looking forward to increasing that relationship.
“I am also looking forward to working with our Wolf Creek School Division, who have two major projects in their capital plan in the next five to 10 years—which is really exciting.”
He added, “I feel really humbled and excited at the prospect of the next four years. I would like to thank our community—Blackfalds is the best in Alberta.”