Collaboration a future key for Matejka

Ponoka County councillor would like to work together more if re-elected

Bring municipalities closer together through better relationships and collaboration is one part of the re-election platform for a Ponoka County councillor.

Mark Matejka, who was first elected in 2013, announced his intention to run for Division II again in hopes he can do more for the entire community.

“I’ve enjoyed the opportunity to serve the community and the county residents,” he said.

“I’ve enjoyed not only working on council, but also on the number of boards I sat on. I have developed some good relationships with some of the surrounding municipalities and I think the opportunity is still there to learn and grow more with more years of experience.”

Matejka doesn’t believe a councillor can take credit for what has been accomplished during his term.

“Anything accomplished was done as a whole team,” he explained.

“I think I’m a better person and councillor now simply because of my experiences. You come in with lofty expectations and then realize it’s a team process, not as a council, but as part of the county team with administration and staff.”

That said, Matejka feels proud of helping keep the county like a finely-tuned, tight ship as well as being a council that was able to work together to help the community.

Should Matejka win another term, he wants to continue working with other adjacent municipalities, though especially with the Town of Ponoka.

“I want us to continue building on common relationships with adjacent municipalities. We can work together in a lot of ways,” he added.

“It could be as simple as snow removal and grass mowing in certain areas, our bylaw officer could certainly be shared, our weed inspector and sprayer could be used around the town (of Ponoka). Stuff like that.”

Matejka stated the county already works with certain municipalities on waste management and recycling, though believes there is more that can be done especially considering the push from the province for municipalities to do more together.

One item from this past term that Matejka has learned, and knows how to better deal with, is the snail’s pace that is sometimes unavoidable in government.

“Anytime you start dealing with governments, you can sometimes be frustrated by some of the bureaucracy of it all,” he said.

“It becomes a difficult thing to move as quickly as you’d like in order to accomplish things. Maybe that’s experience now talking, but when you get elected you always want to change the world. It’s a slow moving ball, sometimes it’s even uphill.”

The deadline for candidates to file their nomination papers is Sept. 18. Election day is Oct. 16.

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