Florenceville-Bristol completed its changing of the guard on Tuesday, June 8, with a final goodbye to outgoing council members and the swearing-in of the returning mayor, three returning councillors and three new councillors.
Mayor Karl Curtis and councillors Nancy Whyte-McCauley, David Trafford and Daniel Guest retained their seats in the May 10 election. Successful candidates Andy Saunders, Ryan Dickinson and Nancy Giggie, joined them around the table.
Guest, Giggie and Dickinson represent Ward 1, while Whyte-McCauley, Trafford and Saunders serve Ward 2.
Before getting down to regular council business, the outgoing council met one last time to close out their longer than standard terms. COVID-19 restriction in 2020 forced New Brunswick to delay municipal elections one year, stretching the expected four-year term to five years.
New Brunswick Local Government Minister Daniel Allain noted the extra year of council members' service as he thanked them in a letter Mayor Curtis read into the record. Allain also congratulated the town’s new council members, noting his department would seek their views surrounding the province’s recently released Green Paper on Local Government Reform.
Curtis acknowledged Allain’s words, telling council members the Green Paper would serve as one of their significant challenges over the next four years.
“You will hear his (Allain’s) name a lot of the coming months,” he said.
Curtis also read into the record a letter from NB Chief Electoral Officer Kim Pofferroth confirming the election results for Florenceville-Bristol.
After the adjournment of the final meeting of the outgoing council, Curtis presented a certificate of appreciation to outgoing councillor Elizabeth Campbell, who did not reoffer for her seat. The mayor said the town would also present a certificate to former Coun. Dan McCarthy, who fell just short in his re-election bid.
Campbell said she enjoyed her time on council, while extending congratulations to returning and new council members.
Florenceville-Bristol chief administrative officer Sarah Pacey then invited the new council members to take their seats around the council table and issued the oath of office to Mayor Curtis and all six council members.
Pacey said, this time, the oath ceremony will break from the norm to maintain COVID-19 protocols. She kept social distancing while the mayor and council read their oaths. Everyone in council chambers wore masks and respected social distancing requirements.
Early into the new council’s first meeting, Curtis announced and gained council approval for committee appointments, including the selection of Whyte-McCauley as Florenceville-Bristol’s deputy mayor.
Whyte-McCauley will also serve on Andrew and Laura McCain Art Gallery and Andrew and Laura McCain Library boards.
Curtis announced committee members as follows:
* Beautification Committee – Nancy Giggie
* Facilities and Maintenance Committee – Dan Guest
* Finance Committee – Karl Curtis, Nancy Whyte-McCauley, Dan Guest
* Human Resource Committee – Karl Curtis, Nancy Whyte-McCauley, Ryan Dickinson
* Planning Advisory Committee – David Trafford
* Public Works and Utilities Committee – Dan Guest
* Recreation Committee – Andy Saunders
* Northern Carleton Recreation Centre Fundraising Committee – Andy Saunders
* Tourism and Business Development Committee – Nancy Giggie
* Policing and Public Safety Committee – Karl Curtis, Ryan Dickinson, David Trafford
Jim Dumville, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, River Valley Sun