Mary Sjostrom has officially announcer her intention to run again in the Cariboo Regional District for Area A.
Sjostrom says she enjoyed her first term.
“I really enjoy what I’m doing. I really enjoy the people in the region. You know, I enjoyed my time at city as well, but this is quite different in the way that you get to interact with people more, and you get to help people one on one. You can’t always solve the problems but at least you’re there as an advocate if nothing else, because we have a lot of jurisdictions we don’t have control over. But when it comes to roads, ditches, and this type of thing, and even the street lights, it’s something we can lobby for and make happen.”
Sjostrom was Mayor of Quesnel for a couple of terms and a City Councillor before that.
She says they had a few successes in her first term as CRD Director for Area A.
“During the difficult time of COVID, we were able to secure money for the rural halls and the arena, helping out the machinery park with their security lighting and that type of thing, as well as the street lights. As we all know we lost a young lady about 2 1/2 years ago and Maple Drive really wanted that corridor, it’s a busy corridor to be lit, and we were successful with the lights and working with the partners, and particularly EMCON and the Ministry. We’re going to have some beacon crosswalks going in there. They won’t be in time for school but they will be in the fall, so there are things that really make a difference.”
As for a possible term two, Sjostrom says there is more that she would like to help accomplish.
“We’ll start with the fire hall, and that’s hall 2. We operate that in Red Bluff as a memorandum of understanding which we have done for years with the City of Quesnel, and I’ve been working with the Fire Chief and staff of the CRD, and we’re looking at the possibility of expanding that so we can have another truck. We don’t have a lot of fire hydrants so we have to haul a lot of water, and of course the area is growing. There hasn’t been any repairs for 40 years so we’re hoping, that would go certainly to referendum to the people, but we’re at least in the planning stages.”
Sjostrom says they are also in capacity planning for the Red Bluff sewer.
“There is a lot of demand on that sewer, and there is a lot of expansion on the fringe of the city as well. South Hills is on that program but there is quite a bit of development that’s been happening, so there is certainly pressure on that system to supply sewer, so that is something that we need to certainly get in the works.”
Sjostrom says the alternate approval process is underway for lights on Gook Road as well, and she says she would like to see that project go ahead as well if that’s what the people want.