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SLRD incumbents look ahead to another term

Macri seeks fifth consecutive term, Demare acclaimed

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Following the 2011 municipal election, the board of the Squamish-Lillooet Regional District (SLRD) had a much different look to it than in years prior.

"It was almost an entirely new board," recalls Area A Director Debbie Demare.

"So I was a little concerned, but you know, by the end of it we had managed to accomplish, or get off the SLRD's plate, some really big issues that have been hanging around for a long, long time."

There's a chance that the SLRD board will find itself in a similar situation after this year's election — only Demare, who will be acclaimed for the second straight election, and long-time Area B Director Mickey Macri are seeking re-election.

Demare is hoping that, new faces or not, the new four-year term will result in some quality work being done within the SLRD.

"It's going to be interesting to see if that additional year can really help bring some really substantive, quality work that will benefit the entire region," she said.

Some of the big issues resolved this term included the longstanding dispute between the SLRD and the Village of Pemberton concerning the Pemberton North Water Service and the redistribution of Payment In Lieu of Taxes funding to better benefit the north, Demare said.

"Just those two things right there were really big, long-term sticking points, and they're done," she said.

"They're off the table here, and so I think those were two big accomplishments."

In the next four years, Demare said she would like to continue to bring Area A closer to the Sea to Sky corridor in terms of relationships and economic development.

Both Demare and Macri serve on the SLRD's Northern Economic Development and Initiatives (NEDI) committee, which aims to foster economic growth in the SLRD's north.

The continued efforts of the NEDI committee are part of why Macri chose to seek a fifth consecutive term on the board, he said.

"I want to make sure that I'm part of that process," Macri said.

Macri also identified the continued work of the Agricultural Advisory Committee, and forging better relationships between the SLRD and surrounding communities as goals for the next term, should he be reelected.

The abundance of new faces seeking election in the SLRD is encouraging, Macri said.

"Definitely it is going to be challenging, but it's good," he said.

"It shows that there's an interest."

Ron Rooke and Eckhard Zeidler are both running for the Area B seat that Macri has held for the past 12 years.

"More than anything I'm just looking for the support from Area B, the residents in the communities," Macri said.

"I'll continue, if I'm elected, working as hard on any issues and concerns that happen within Area B."

Pique will be profiling different candidates in the SLRD each week as the Nov.15 election approaches.

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