Mayor Nancy Wilhelm-Morden will be relying on her council incumbents to do some heavy lifting at the committee level, at least for the first part of this term.
The most strategic council appointments to committees and external boards — Tourism Whistler, the Squamish Lillooet Regional District, Finance and Audit committee, Economic Partnership Initiative (EPI), Festivals, Events and Animation — will be filled by the councillors on their second term, while the newcomers will wet their political shoes on smaller boards.
That could all change at the halfway mark as councillors find their stride.
"This time I mentioned to everybody that... at the two-year mark, we're going to look at whether we want to move people around for the remaining two years of our term," said the mayor, adding that the former council essentially stayed put on their various committees for the duration of their three-year term.
"Four years is a long stretch for any appointment," she said, referencing the new lengthened council terms.
The mayor is hoping she's impressed on her team the importance of the committee-level work and how much she, as a mayor, and the former council team, relied on it. Indeed, she believes the appointments last term were key to council's success — council members enjoyed the work and were placed in positions well suited to their strengths.
"This isn't just 'show up at a meeting and nod your head,'" said the mayor. "You're really expected to get in there and work."
Each council member has been placed on roughly half a dozen boards or committees. The mayor is on 10. Incumbents too have been shuffled from old boards and committees to new ones.
"I've heard back from just about everybody and they're happy with where they are going," said the mayor.
New this term, the mayor is putting herself on the board of Tourism Whistler and removing herself from the Whistler Housing Authority board, adding Councillor Jack Crompton there in her stead.
"I think it's good for more of the council members and specifically Jack Crompton to become exposed to what the Whistler Housing Authority does," said the mayor.
When asked why specifically Crompton, the mayor said that not only is he an incumbent and so valuable on the more strategic appointments, he's also younger and may well decide to go for another four years after this term.
And, she added, Jack asked for more work.
The WHA could have more of a role to play in the coming term, compared to the last, given the increasing concerns about the rental housing market.
The mayor said there are a number of units on the horizon in the next year and a half, at Rainbow and at Cheakamus Crossing.
"That may well fill the need that we're seeing this fall," she said.
"Certainly I'm going to be watching things. I am on the WDC (Whistler 2020 Development Corporation) board, which may well fill some kind of role if there was going to be some purpose-built affordable housing."
The WDC built the Athletes' Village-turned resident housing neighbourhood at Cheakamus.
Wilhelm-Morden — Finance and Audit, Coat of Arms, EPI, Audain Art Museum, Cheakamus Community Forest, Municipal Insurance Association, Tourism Whistler, Whistler Arts Council, Whistler 2020 Development Corporation, Emergency Planning
Steve Anderson — Advisory Design Panel, Forest and Wildland Advisory Committee, Illegal Spaces Task Force, Transit Management, Whistler Museum
Jack Crompton — Finance and Audit, One Whistler, SLRD, Whistler Centre for Sustainability, WHA
Jen Ford — Measuring Up, WAG, WHA, Library, Emergency Planning
John Grills — Finance and Audit, Human Resources, EPI, May Long Weekend, Audain Art Museum, WHA
Andrée Janyk — Human Resources, Festivals Events and Animation, Liquor License Advisory, Public Art, Recreation and Leisure, Environmental Legacy Fund, Chamber of Commerce
Sue Maxwell — Human Resources, AWARE, Bear Working Group, Cheakamus Community Forest, Whistler Community Services, Whistler Health Care Foundation.
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