Josh Bishop is the new Reeve for the County of Wetaskiwin. Naomi Finseth/ County of Wetaskiwin.

Josh Bishop is the new Reeve for the County of Wetaskiwin. Naomi Finseth/ County of Wetaskiwin.

County of Wetaskiwin has a new Reeve

New Reeve and Deputy Reeve were appointed at Oct. 27, 2020 County Council meeting.

The County of Wetaskiwin has a new Reeve. Josh Bishop was nominated and elected by the County of Wetaskiwin Council to the Reeve position at the regular Oct. 27, 2020 County Council meeting.

Bishop was elected to County Council in 2017 and has served two years as the Deputy Reeve as well as being the Chair of the Agricultural Service Board.

“It is an honour and privilege to serve the county in my new role as Reeve,” says Bishop. “There has been a huge learning curve to get to this point and am confident we as a council are heading in the right direction.”

In his time on Council, Bishop has played a part in many important projects completed by the County. Bishop says the most important project being the recently completed Service Capacity Review.

“This was an issue that took a couple years of discussions and planning to proceed and has turned into a great success. As chair of the steering committee I was involved in setting the priorities for the audit as well as selecting the consultants,” says Bishop.

“The report identifies many areas we can improve efficiency and effectiveness. Many of the recommendations are already completed while others will take quite some time to fully implement. Some of these steps have allowed us to realize cost savings and higher productivity.”

Another major project tackled by the County while Bishop served as Deputy Reeve was the purchasing of packers to aid the graders in a pilot program to increase efficiency with fall gravelling and gravel packers in the County.

Previously, the County was on a winter gravelling program where gravel would be applied on top of frozen snow and ice during the winter, which was resulting in a large amount of gravel ending up in the ditch because it was difficult for the graders to plow snow without removing the fresh gravel.

The purchase of the packers helped as the packers were used to harden the driving surface and keep gravel on the road, creating roads with excellent drivability. Bishop says the combination of these projects “will end up increasing efficiency in the gravelling budget with those funds going towards much needed road upgrades.”

The biggest project that the County will face in 2021, with Bishop at the helm, is the 2021 budget.

“Looking forward, the next big project will be budget 2021 and there are many challenges to say the least. Increased costs and reduced funding sources are going to impact our decision making for the next several years,” says Bishop. “We will have many hard discussions and difficult decisions will need to be made. As we deliberate in the coming months, council as well as staff realize the position we are in and will work diligently as a team to minimize the impact to our ratepayers.”

Bishop is ready to face the County’s upcoming projects and challenges and looks forward to what the future on Council as Reeve brings.

“I look forward to meeting new people and continuing to advocate for our residents,” says Bishop.

At the Oct. 27 County Council meeting a new Deputy Reeve was also appointed — Lyle Seely.

Seely was elected to Council in 2013 and has been a part of several important decisions made by Council.

“A highlight from my first term on Council was amending the Land Use Bylaw to clarify the use of RVs. Council was not able to fix all the areas in the County but changes we did reduce nonconforming RV use,” says Seely. “Another big success for me is getting sewer collection to the east end of Alder Flats. I was pushing for this way before I was elected to Council.”

In his new position as Deputy Reeve, Seely says, “looking forward I have a very long list of project I would like to see done but at the top I am excited that we are moving forward with a Hamlet Revitalization Strategy.”

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

 

Lyle Seely is the new Deputy Reeve for the County of Wetaskiwin. Naomi Finseth/ County of Wetaskiwin.

Lyle Seely is the new Deputy Reeve for the County of Wetaskiwin. Naomi Finseth/ County of Wetaskiwin.

Just Posted

Alberta Premier Jason Kenney said Thursday that the province may consider a regional approach to loosening COVID-19 restrictions if numbers continue to decline. (photo by Chris Schwarz/Government of Alberta)
Province further easing health restrictions

Numbers of people hospitalized and in intensive care has dropped dramatically, says premier

Government of Alberta COVID-19 Aggregate Data Map. Screen Grab/ https://www.alberta.ca/stats/covid-19-alberta-statistics.htm#geospatial
City of Wetaskiwin under 10 active cases; single active case in County

Active COVID-19 cases in the City and County of Wetaskiwin continue to drop.

File photo
Alberta’s central zone has 670 active cases

301 new cases identified Sunday

Alberta has 1,910 active cases of COVID-19 as of Wednesday. Red Deer is reporting five active cases, with 108 recovered. (File photo)
Red Deer reports 25th COVID-19 death

415 new cases identified provincially Saturday

Alberta Health reported two new COVID-19 deaths in Red Deer Friday. (Image courtesy CDC)
Two more deaths linked to Olymel outbreak in Red Deer

Province reported 356 additional COVID-19 cases Friday

A ” Justice for Jeff” T-shirt. (Photo submitted)
Rally to be held outside Red Deer courthouse for slain Ponoka man

Sentencing for accused charged with manslaughter with a firearm set for March 4

THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
Time to check the mail: Every household to receive a Canada Post postcard this spring

Postcard can be mailed for free to any address in Canada

A cross-country skier glides along the banks of the Ottawa River in Ottawa on Thursday, Feb. 25, 2021. Canadians across the country can look forward to a mild spring peppered with the odd winter flashback throughout the first part of the season, according to predictions from one prominent national forecaster. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Mild spring with some wintry blasts predicted for most of Canada: Weather Network

Weather Network is forecasting a slower than average start to spring in British Columbia

AstraZeneca’s vaccines are ready for use at the vaccination center in Apolda, Germany, Sunday, Feb.28, 2021. (Michael Reichel/dpa via AP)
Feds hoping for AstraZeneca shots this week as Pfizer-BioNTech prepare next delivery

The first of those doses could start to arrive in Canada as early as Wednesday

People line up outside a vaccine clinic as seniors wait to get the COVID-19 vaccine in Edmonton Alta, on Friday February 26, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson
Alberta Health Services head sorry for glitches in vaccine booking system for seniors

AHS president said technical issues have been fixed and a virtual waiting room is in place

Vandalism is shown on Alberta NDP MLA Janis Irwin’s constituency office in Edmonton in this handout photo on Saturday, February 27, 2021. Alberta Premier Jason Kenney quickly condemned vandalism at an Opposition legislature member Janis Irwin’s Edmonton office after the MLA posted pictures showing her front window spray-painted with the words “Antifa Liar.” THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO, Janis Irwin *MANDATORY CREDIT*
Alberta Premier slams vandalism after slur painted on MLA’s office window

Edmonton MLA Janis Irwin posted pictures showing the front window spray-painted with the words ‘Antifa Liar’

A helicopter flies past a mountain near McBride, B.C., on Saturday January 30, 2016. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Avalanche warning for backcountry users in North and South Rockies

Avalanche Canada is urging backcountry users to always check their regional avalanche forecasts

Most Read