Town undecided on Masonic Day proclamation request

Should the town announce a special day for the Masonic Lodge of Ponoka? The answer to that question remains up for debate.

Should the town announce a special day for the Masonic Lodge of Ponoka? The answer to that question remains up for debate.

CAO Albert Flootman told council Tuesday, June 14 during the regular meeting that he struggled with a request from the Masonic Lodge of Ponoka to proclaim June 24 as Ponoka Masonic Day.

Part of his hesitation relates to the fact that the Masonic Lodge is a private fraternal organization and while he once worked for a Mason, he worried making the proclamation would create some controversy within the community.

“The club is a private, fraternal organization, not a service club,” said Flootman.

“This isn’t a reflection on who they are as a people,” he added.

While the group does not claim to be a religious society, there are others who feel the Masons are exactly that, explained Flootman.

Coun. Tim Falkiner supported the motion, which was to deny the request.

“I have never once heard anything that the masonic lodge has done,” said Falkiner.

A request to table the motion by Coun. Tim Falkiner was approved 4-3 with Falkiner and councillors Sandra Lyon, Teri Underhill and Carla Prediger voting in favour, effectively negating the need to make a proclamation.

Prediger asked that administration create a policy related to proclamations. Mayor Rick Bonnett voted against the motion stating a concern of having too many policies.