Gimse re-elected, Freitag new to SLRD 

Regional district reps for Squamish-Lillooet to be sworn in Dec. 12

click to enlarge susie-gimse.jpg

Regional District residents have returned a familiar face and voted in a new representative to provide local leadership to the rural residential areas in the Sea to Sky corridor.

Susie Gimse was re-elected to represent Electoral Area C of the Squamish-Lillooet Regional District (SLRD) while Moe Freitag was elected in Area D.

Freitag is taking over the position from John Turner, who chose to end his term without seeking re-election.

"I'm feeling more at ease with it now that the campaign part is over and we can actually get down to doing some work," said the Britannia resident.

Freitag is jumping right into the work. He met on Nov. 24 with members of the community association in Furry Creek.

"Britannia Beach Community Association just had their AGM," Freitag said. "I will attend their next meeting and we'll go over a couple of their concerns and things they would like to see or have happen."

He said he intends to set up meetings soon with people in each of the areas he is now tasked with representing.

"Communication is the number one factor," said Freitag when asked what his first priority is. "All these regions tell me lack of communication has really affected how they see the SLRD functioning."

Freitag said he plans to publish a quarterly newsletter that he will send out to his constituents. Those who want it via the Internet will get it digitally and he said he would mail it to those who don't use the Internet. The content is to include information on projects being undertaken by the SLRD along with timelines and any other information relevant to the residents.

He said that he talked to Gimse and both agree the SLRD website is due for an update. As part of that initiative, Freitag said he wants the SLRD to explore live streaming the board meetings over the Internet so residents can watch the meetings at their homes.

Gimse was out of town and wasn't available for an interview but she indicated during the election campaign that she will make decisions using the best available information and common sense to enhance the lives of the people living in Area C of the SLRD.

"My commitment to you is to help ensure the rural lifestyle you want and love is preserved and propelled for future generations who also choose to call this home," Gimse wrote in a letter to constituents.

She wrote in her campaign literature that she wants to continue working toward getting better cell service throughout her region and Internet service for every household in Area C. Gimse also wrote that advocating for highway upgrades is a priority for her along with ensuring the governance and boundary review that is underway serves Area C residents.

Gimse received 318 votes to beat out Lincoln Ferguson with his 120 votes and Geoff McLeod, who collected 118 votes.

Freitag picked up 85 votes in his run against four other candidates in Electoral Area D.

The closest competitor for Freitag was Bruce Bessie, who received 66 votes. Nancy Hamilton followed Bessie with 33 votes, former Pemberton councillor Lisa Ames got 23 votes and only one ballot was cast for Deb McBride.

Gimse is in her 18th year representing the voters of Birken, D'Arcy, Divine, Pemberton Meadows and Mount Currie.

Debra Demare was acclaimed to represent Area A, which includes Gold Bridge and Bralorne.

Mickey Macri was acclaimed to the seat he has held for many years as the representative of Area B, which includes Duffey Lake, Pavilion and Bridge River.

The incoming board will be sworn in on Dec. 12. The SLRD board meets on the fourth Monday of each month at 10:30 in the Pemberton office of the SLRD but the December meeting is scheduled for Dec. 12 because the fourth Monday in December is Boxing Day.

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