Pique Sept.22, 2011
And then there were three.
In a tearful announcement on Tuesday evening, Paul Lalli announced that he would not seek re-election to District of Squamish council in November to focus on family, business and other matters.
With the announcement, only one of seven incumbents - Bryan Raiser - has announced they will seek re-election. Mayor Greg Gardner and Councillor Corinne Lonsdale previously announced they would be stepping down.
Lalli said he was proud of his 10 years of service and what the last council accomplished.
"I wanted to thank council colleagues and particularly the mayor who stepped up to the plate the last few years with some great leadership," said Lalli. "I've done 10 years and I'm very proud of that accomplishment. I'm proud that I was the youngest ever elected to council and the first Indo-Canadian."
In particular, Lalli is proud of the foundation that this council laid for future councils.
"We accomplished a lot - the Sub Area Plan, the Oceanfront Development Corporation, which is now going into rezoning; we finalized the Official Community Plan, the Trails Master Plan. We're updating zoning bylaws, The Multi-Modal Transportation Study, that's just to name a few. My wish is for the next council to take the hard work we did and start implementing it."
Lalli, who also served on the Finance Standing Committee, said he was proud of the fact that they've kept taxes increases low at a time when other municipal governments have been forced to raise property taxes substantially.
"I've been a strong supporter of lowering business taxes and light industrial taxes, and keeping residential properties to a minimal increase," he said. "It's not always easy in a tough economy, when you have the pressures of an aging infrastructure and more demand for services, but I think we were able to manage our finances quite well. Part of that was doing an Asset Management Plan that identifies all the infrastructure in the community - that was a huge project."
Another good move, he said, was hiring Chief Administrative Officer Kevin Ramsey last year, and building the management team at the district.
Lalli said he would continue to be involved in the community as chair of the hospital district, and in other capacities.
"I'll always be involved," he said.
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