A week after election day, the has dust started to settle and Mayor-Elect David Bosiak joined me, Sam Brownell, and Al Gaines on the Al Morning Show today. Below are the questions, along with the answer that Mayor-Elect Bosiak gave.
Question: Throughout your campaign, your focus was moving forward together, I know you've already started meeting with some of the senior administration at City Hall, what's the next step in that process?
"It's just ensuring that we're all on the same page, we had a great meeting yesterday, an intro meeting, getting the new council and incumbents familiarized with all the rules and the protocols and everything that's involved with being a municipal government. We're just really excited to sort of hit the ground running, I know that both all the staff at city hall and the people that have been elected to the council are all really enthusiastic to get going. We've been in a big pause for a couple of years now and everybody's just ready to get going. That's the most interesting thing for me is we want to get something going and we're gonna do that as soon as we can be officially on the council."
Question: Now that you've had a chance to actually see who the council is and briefly meet with them, how do you think that the elected council will help with the process of moving forward together?
"Before I answer that I would just like to thank everybody who ran, I think that the democratic process is truly important and I think for us to have a contested election is valuable because it allows people to make a choice. I think that your question related to those six councilors that got elected, I know them all personally, and I've worked with several of them quite closely in the past on various projects. We have a great mix of incumbents who understand municipal government and can help the newbies get up to speed quickly. I'm just enthusiastic about their approach. Many of them have reached out to me since the election and congratulated me on the approach that we took, let's not look back. We have issues, obviously, every community does, but let's focus on what we can do, what are the solutions, what are the things we can work on, and I think collectively that's what the six councilors will be bringing. Obviously, they have varied interests and skill sets, and experiences, and all of those will blend together as we get on the same page. I hate to use so many cliches but they're relevant, they apply, and I'm just happy that we have a group that apparently wants to work together, and is willing to work together on the list of priorities that we'll identify very soon and get to work at."
Question: Do you think there will be any growing pains when it comes to a new Mayor with three new Councilors and everyone having to learn how to work together?
"Probably but I hope not. Only because of the attitude that these folks bring. We've already had an informal meeting last night, just to get up to speed on the rules and the regulations and the municipal protocols and all those things that are incumbent upon new council members to understand and appreciate and use going forward. There was just a positive vibe throughout the whole meeting and everybody was looking forward to working together. The discussions that we had were collegial, in the sense that with the incumbent councilors we have some that have been on existing subcommittees and other committees external and internal to the city, and there were very cordial discussions about who should be on what, and how do we blend that, and how do we mix the new in with the old, in the sense of the new council versus the incumbents who have been there. There's just a wealth of experience with the three that are around the table, and their understanding and my appreciation for them, they've all acted as deputy mayor, so they all understand what that role entails, and they're all willing to pitch in where necessary. That's the sense I got from the meeting yesterday, and from my discussions with them since the election. I can't tell you all of the definitives right now but I can tell you that my initial intent of being a team and working together, so far so good, it's only been a few short days, but the feeling is positive, and that's the only thing I could hope for and the outcome was that, so that was great."
Question: How important is it for the city to build and then maintain relationships with all the surrounding municipalities, as well as both the provincial and federal governments?
"It's absolutely crucial, and I think that wow we'll move forward on the projects, and the things that we'll have to deal with as a community are incumbent upon working with other people. No one person can really do much on their own, they obviously can put in the effort and try and make change happen and sometimes it does, but for the most part, it requires relationships and the relationships that I've developed over the years, and others around the table who have, I think that we're well suited to understand the value of those relationships. I've had so many calls, I can't even tell you exactly how many, from people from other municipalities, other municipal leaders, other people in government who have congratulated me on becoming the mayor and then them suggesting let's continue to talk, let's work together, let's meet, or when they're back in town they want to meet. We've got an AMM convention coming up at the end of the month and we're all looking forward to participating and seeing other people from other municipalities and the provincial government together, and then getting our priorities lined up and getting at them."
Question: Throughout your campaign, you talked about the help you had from your team, is there anything you want to say to everyone who's been by your side throughout that campaign over the last several months?
"I've had steadfast support from a small group of people who are very dedicated to the cause and to what I and we collectively believe in, but beyond that, I have an amazing wife who's been tremendously supportive quietly. She's my rock, and she's so honest with me and that's been truly the most meaningful to me throughout my campaign. Same thing, my sister and my dad are in town and just diehard Bosiak supporters, and so I just can't thank them enough for their support of me and their willingness to tell me the truth and say 'hey David hello? how about...' and I truly appreciate that. Then the small group of people that I had around me were absolutely dedicated, and probably the best thing I can say Sam to conclude is that we were honest with each other, and the response after the election, obviously we were happy with the victory, but just the notion that to a person they said 'it was great working together with these other people I learned so much,' or 'wow that person is so skilled in this area and by watching that they did it made me better,' so that was tremendous. Then just the broader community came out, I was really pleased that our turnout was about a third more, I talked to Kirk Dawson and he did the exact numbers, you guys probably know the numbers better than I do, but there was a greater turnout and that people showed that they cared about our city and that's really important."
The new council will be sworn in at the Inaugural Council Meeting on Monday November 7th, and their first Regular Council Meeting will be on Monday November 14th. Both start at 5 p.m. in the Council Chambers at City Hall.