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Willow Creek council elects Sandberg as reeve

maryanne sandberg

Division 3 councillor Maryanne Sandberg was elected reeve of the MD of Willow Creek.

Maryanne Sandberg is the new reeve of the MD of Willow Creek.
Sandberg was swom in at council’s organizational meeting Oct. 23.
Sandberg, councillor for Division 3 in the Fort Macleod area, told fellow councillors, “Thank you for putting your trust in me for the next year. I appreciate it.”
Glen Alm, Division 4 councillor for a rural area adjacent to Claresholm, is deputy reeve.
Three new councillors were also sworn in — John Van Driesten for Division 1 in the Fort Macleod area, Darry Markle for Division 5 for the area east of Claresholm, and Evan Berger, returning as councillor after years as a provincial MLA, representing Division 6, the rural area around Nanton.
For the internal vote for reeve, three councillors were nominated — Sandberg, Berger and Alm, with Alm declining the nomination.
Ballots were opened in private in a separate room by chief administrative officer Cynthia Vizzutti and executive assistant Arlene MacOdrum, and the unexamined ballots were voted by council to be destroyed. No vote totals were provided.
Council voted to change the make-up of the Agricultural Service Board to four councillors and three members-at-large, but to maintain the board as is, with seven councillors until three members-at-large can be found and appointed.
The suggestion to change the board make-up, originated by Alm, was supported by Division 7 councillor Ian Sundquist, representing the area around Stavely.
“I think it would provide an opportunity to provide more feedback for our agricultural service board,” Sundquist said.
Appointments of councillors to committees were made.
One of the more interesting ones being Markle’s appointment to a committee that hasn’t met for some time — the Claresholm Joint Economic Development Initiative- Claresholm Industrial Airport.
That committee may be revived with the recent strong concerns from Claresholm airport users about the use of the airport for non-flight recreation. Markle has 34 years experience in aviation.
When Markle accepted the appointment he commented, “I will love to do this.”
Markle told fellow councillors airport use issues seem to be a problem across the province with airports that have shared oversight between rural and urban municipalities.
“They seem to be at odds everywhere,” Markle said. “There has to be a solution somewhere.”
Coun. Evan Berger was appointed to the subdivision and development appeal board where he will serve with Evert Vandenberg, Lauri Moore, Lexi Levair and Howard Paulsen.
A brief discussion was also held on whether to hold an open house, a tradition at the MD of Willow Creek, where all departments give a report to residents who attend and take questions.
About 12 to 14 people attend the open houses in the past two years.
Council decided to again hold an open house and chose March 14, 2018 at 7 p.m. as the date and time.

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People in Fort Macleod and district who have symptoms and think they may have COVID-19 should call Health Link at 811. If their symptoms match the criteria, Health Link will advise on their next steps regarding testing.

Most recent updates below.

  • There are 358 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Alberta, including one in Claresholm.
  • Since yesterday, 31 new cases of COVID-19 have been confirmed in Alberta, bringing the total to 226. Sixteen cases are suspected to be as a result of community transmission. The rest are travel-related.
  • Canada and the United States have an agreement that will restrict non-essential travel across the border, including for tourism and recreation. Canadian and American citizens and permanent residents who are currently visiting each other's country can still return home.
  • Forty-nine new cases of COVID-19 have been reported in Alberta, bringing the total Friday afternoon to 195. On a positive note, three people who contracted the virus have been identified as recovered.
  • Fort Macleod Fish and Game has cancelled its awards banquet set for Saturday, March 28.
  • The Empress Theatre in Fort Macleod is closed.
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