KAMLOOPS — Fourty-eight hours after his landslide mayoral win, Ken Christian was back in council chambers for the first time in three months on Monday, preparing himself for his new role in municipal politics.
Christian met with the two new councillors, Ray Dhaliwal and Kathy Sinclair, on Monday morning to talk about what's ahead.
"We have to hit the ground running," said Christian. "We have to get the Kam Plan underway. We're going to be dealing with the decision with respect to the Ajax mine. We're going to be in the midst of budget preparations."
More than anything, though, Christian wants a smooth transition as Arjun Singh --- the acting mayor for the past three months hands over the reins.
He also wants to come through on his campaign promises, as much as he can in a year.
"A lot of that has to do with dealing with the opioid crisis, dealing with homelessness, looking at development in the downtown," he said. "Just starting those discussions. I don't think I would be naive to think we'll achieve all of that in a year, but certainly we wanted to start the discussion and get the community engaged."
Christian also wants to make changes on council, so that individual councillors represent certain communities within Kamloops.
But he reiterated that he's not for the ward system.
"What I did hear during the campaign is there are some neighbourhoods that feel disconnected from City Hall," noted Christian. "So the potential to have councillors to be assigned to community associations to be a liason between council and those areas, I think, would help."
Christian said the break from the council table has refreshed him and he is ready to work. He will be sworn in, along with Dhaliwal and Sinclair, on October 16.
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