At this time of the year we are tempted to reminisce about, second guess, even agonize, over things that are frozen in time. Or, with furrowed brow, we’ll speculate in the night about events or circumstances that may never happen. Hey, it is the season to be jolly; but it’s hard to be jolly when remembering the wrong turns we’ve taken in months past and the right turns passed by because we happened to be looking over the other shoulder just then.
Maybe we should grow up and recognize that some things are beyond change – though we might learn from them; others can be successfully met only as we understand the signals coming in (and the limits of our resources), consult with people who’ve had experience, and make choices based on the best evidence we can obtain.
Looking back over the last 12 months since this Mayor and Council have been in office, we probably have learned a few lessons. Some decisions might have been taken differently, though it is futile to regret decisions made.
The future is a different story. Looking at world economic trends we can try to strategically position the District of Chetwynd to limit the damage that could result from changes that seem to be outside the control of any person or government – and we don’t even know what these changes might be. We see the largest ever penalty laid on the largest financial institution in the world for money laundering. We see the government of the nation that is still the most powerful in the world playing chicken on the fiscal cliff. None of it makes sense to us honest, hard-working people earning our bread by the sweat of our brows. What are our options?
As Mayor and Council, already one-third of the way to the end of our term, what are our options? What unknowns lurk in the uncertain future of 2013 (it really is uncertain in the sense that it is unknown)? What decisions will we take to create the environment most likely to maintain or augment our present level of prosperity? How can we avoid being blindsided by the fallout from war in the Middle East or a social tsunami in the Orient?
There are things we can do: Mayor and Council, with the advice and guidance of Administration, will work to maintain the financial integrity of the District; we will ensure that staffing meets our needs in expertise and numbers; and we will create an environment that is responsive to the changing economic circumstances.
There are things we can’t do: Create revenue where none exists; overrule corporate decisions taken in foreign offices that affect the livelihoods of our local labor force.
But we can and we will maintain an optimistic outlook and we will continue to support Administration with an environment that ensures the highest return on your tax dollar.
And you, dear folks of Chetwynd, have a happy, fulfilling season, and stay with us.
Merlin Nichols, Mayor