Town's mayor hopes to continue reign
By: Tammy Rollie
| Posted: Wednesday, Sep 11, 2013 09:03 am
Turner Valley’s mayor is not the type to leave a job unfinished, so her decision to run another term should not be a surprise to her constituents.
For the past three years, Kelly Tuck committed her time to projects she said will help shape the community and she wants to see them completed before considering hanging up her gavel.
“I would like to see our downtown core revitalized,” she said. “I would like to see businesses return back onto the main core, I would like to see new buildings on the main core, I would like to see the campground and ball diamonds moved, the spray park built for kids and I would like to see our downtown thriving.”
Tuck said these initiatives have been a priority her entire term and she is eager to see them carried through.
Other priorities are conservation and efficiency.
“It’s really looking at how we can reduce waste and be more efficient in the every day business,” she said. “Turner Valley has even gone as far as changing our logo, which I think is exciting. Now we are ‘Back to nature.’”
Tuck would also like to see Turner Valley explore shared projects with other municipalities. For example, the Quad Regional Water Project, a partnership between Black Diamond, Turner Valley, the MD of Foothills and Longview to share water resources, is among those partnerships that will save taxpayers money, Tuck said.
“I want to ensure that when we are looking at any projects or we are moving ahead on a service, are you getting the best bang for your buck and it is going to benefit each one of us,” she said. “I truly enjoy being able to strategize where those dollars are coming from, where I can partner. It’s about the partnership, who we can partner with and how we can save the dollars.”
Tuck said applying for grants is a great way to save taxpayers money and her frugal qualities are one of her strengths as mayor.
“When you are going through the budget process, just ensure what services are required, what is the community asking for and what is it going to cost us,” she said. “I have always believed the Town of Turner Valley needs to operate like a business.”
Tuck considers the role of mayor a full time job, despite operating a home building company with husband Gord.
“I rely quite a bit on my family to pick up the slack because (being mayor) is my first priority,” she said. “When I come home from a meeting and I know it might be the smallest gain for this community I’m so proud. When you are downtown coming out of the post office and a ratepayer says to me, ‘It was so nice to see you at whatever event’ or ‘thank you for coming, thank you for volunteering’ those things mean the very most to me.”
Tuck had her share of challenges as mayor, particularly the June 20 flood.
“It was probably one of the toughest jobs all of council went through, including staff,” she said. “I’m happy with the way everything has transpired. It came together the minute it happened. It’s unfortunate that it happened, but it sure brought another element to bring us closer together.”
What Tuck plans to do differently if re-elected is spend more time with youth at Turner Valley School.
“I felt that I lacked that this term,” she said. “I like being with our youth in the community, watching them achieve their goals. Last time I was mayor I was invited to partake in some of the events at the school like speak about being mayor and I’ll make sure I have more time to be able to do that.”
Reflecting on the past three years, Tuck said the hard work of being Turner Valley’s mayor was worth it and she is grateful for the support she’s had along the way.
Tuck attributed a lot of that support to the town’s council members.
“I see value that they each bring to the table,” she said. “This has been a very strong council, it’s been a transparent council and it’s been a hardworking council and I would hope to have the same kind of strength on the council again. This past council worked really well together and I would want another strong council like I have now.”