CANORA — Canora had another successful year in 2021 and town council is looking forward to getting more done in 2022.
It is not uncommon for people to dwell on things that a town council does not accomplish. However, council doesn’t ignore what some people perceive to be a problem or a priority – don’t forget that they too are residents and taxpayers.
The list of wants and needs is long and the resources and finances of the town are limited. Everyone would like first-class service and infrastructure, but no one wants to pay more in fees or property taxes.
This means council has to do the best they can with what they have, all the while prioritizing what gets done and when.
With that in mind, council can point to many notable accomplishments in the past year including: large-scale infrastructure renewal with the Norway Road paving project -- the Saskatchewan government paved Highway No. 9 and the Town, in turn, spent more than $700,000 on curb and median replacements. Upgrades at the Water Treatment Plant continued.
Due to health guidelines, Canora in Bloom and the Winter Lights Festival were not able to develop into the usual full-scale events, but everyone again experienced a breath-taking lights display at King George Park and a very successful shop-local downtown event. The fireworks display was made possible through local sponsorship.
When restrictions were lifted this past summer the tourism committee had an amazing street fair fundraiser for new Town of Canora custom street signage, which is part of our ongoing revitalization efforts.
Council continued its goal of improving property standards, which in turn keeps our community an attractive and thriving place to visit and call home. This is made possible with the continued assistance of the Commissionaires.
This past year we started a memorial tree sponsorship program. This is a special ongoing program that our community is offering -- a great way to beautify our community while paying tribute to loved ones.
The tree sponsorship aligns well with Trans Canada Trail upgrades. The trail is a great asset for families and seniors to enjoy whether it be biking, walking or jogging, the newly-upgraded trail will be sure to provide optimal enjoyment.
Ongoing recreation projects included work at the ball diamonds, curling rink and hockey rink as well as upgrades to the Canora Golf and Country Club facility, with a successful Chase the Ace fundraiser for grounds upgrades.
Town of Canora recently went through a byelection for councilor which resulted in a new council member Denise Leslie.
This council is eager to implement its goals and ideas moving forward to 2022 and the rest of our term.
Council will soon begin annual budget discussions, but has already made some bigger commitments for this year.
One of the biggest and most exciting projects that the community has seen for a while will be the new Canora Aquatic Facility. This is going to be a wonderful venue for residents, not to mention a huge tourist attraction and will also promote economic growth.
If everything goes according to plan the new swimming pool should be ready for the 2022 season. We sincerely thank everyone for their donations for the facility.
This year should see the construction of a transfer station to replace the existing landfill. The switch from a landfill to transfer station and subsequent decommissioning of the existing garbage dump is a multi-year project that will cost more than $3 million. This work should solidify the Town’s solid waste management system for decades to come.
Our town is a great one and council will continue to work with residents and local business to promote and uphold Canora as a positive, friendly and welcoming community for everyone.