Newly sworn-in Mayor Linda Hepner becomes emotional when recognizing her Surrey First team on Monday night.

New city council takes the helm

Mayor Linda Hepner and eight Surrey First councillors sworn in on Monday night.

Looking confident and sure-footed, newly minted Mayor Linda Hepner laid out her priorities on Monday night as she and her Surrey First team were sworn into office.

A crowd of about 400 packed council chambers at Surrey’s new city hall when the recently elected Surrey council was escorted in by an honour guard.

Hepner began by thanking outgoing mayor Dianne Watts for her three terms. Watts is now planning to run federally for the Conservatives in South Surrey-White Rock.

“Dianne Watts never met a good idea she didn’t like,” Hepner said, adding she looks forward to working with Watts when she is in Ottawa. “And by the way, I’ve got a little light rail project I want to talk to you about.”

Hepner listed her priorities in the years to come.

Her first order of business is to promote a “yes” vote in this spring’s transportation referendum.

She also plans to make good on her promise to hire another 100 police officers next year.

“We will place an emphasis on neighbourhood policing,” Hepner said. “You will see front-line officers build relationships with residents and business owners and become more ingrained in the very fabric of our neighbourhoods.”

She will create a business advisory council to accelerate growth in the private sector.

She also wants to make Surrey one of the nation’s most “age-friendly” cities.

“We will start with a seniors’ summit next year,” Hepner said. “And we will not leave behind the most vulnerable and less-fortunate in our community.”

She will create a “social innovation strategy” bringing together the best minds in strengthening the city’s social safety net.

She also said she wants to hear from people about the great ideas they have for Surrey.

“If it’s something that will make our city better, I want to know about it,” she said. “If it’s a way to make our city more sustainable or more livable for families, I want to know about it.”

Hepner became emotional when she expressed how excited she was to begin working with the new team, returning Couns. Tom Gill, Judy Villeneuve, Barbara Steele, Mary Martin and Bruce Hayne, and newcomers to civic politics Couns. Vera LeFranc, Mike Starchuk and Dave Woods.

“I see a team in every sense of the word,” she said. “It’s a team that’s willing to work hard on your behalf.”

In addressing her colleagues directly, she said “we are going to have a very, very busy four years.”

A brief council meeting was then convened to name the Surrey representatives of the Metro Vancouver board of directors.

They are: Hepner, Villeneuve, Steele, Hayne and Martin. Gill was appointed as alternate mayor.

 

Just Posted

Surrey LRT decision ‘really sets White Rock back’: mayor

Walker says his focus now is making sure residents can access transit network

Surrey adds more parkland to its inventory

City aquired Campbell Heights property

Clayton townhouse projects sent back to staff over school capacity concerns

‘We’re really stressing out the school systems here’ says Surrey Councillor Steven Pettigrew

Dirty chapter of Surrey history detailed in book about Bridgeview’s sewage woes in ’70s

Surrey-raised author’s ‘Mudflat Dreaming’ chronicles Vander Zalm-era debates, and beyond

Superheroes help police deliver toys to hospital in memory of Keian Blundell

Holiday Wish Toy Drive ‘a resounding success’ this year

Story of the Year: Deadly Humboldt Broncos bus crash

The Canadian Press annual survey of newsrooms across the country saw 53 out of 129 editors cast their votes for the Humboldt Broncos bus crash.

VIDEO: Tornado rips through city west of Seattle

Reports indicate five to seven homes damaged in Port Orchard, Wash.

Surrey boy’s birthday wish raises $13,500 for rescued farm animals

Matthew Farden received a large donation from the mister Blake Foundation towards a sanctuary farm.

Trial date postponed for man charged with killing Abbotsford police officer

Oscar Arfmann’s trial pushed back from January to May 2019

Privacy watchdog says legal cannabis buyers should use cash, not credit

Some countries could bar entry to individuals if they know they have purchased cannabis

Emergency task force calls for safe supply of drugs in Vancouver to prevent ODs

Dr. Patricia Daly says more people are dying alone in the city than elsewhere in the province

‘A start:’ Alberta critical of Ottawa’s $1.6B package for ailing energy sector

A further $150 million is to be used for clean growth and infrastructure projects

New B.C. Lions coach DeVone Claybrooks adds eight to coaching staff

DeVone Claybrooks has filled out his staff for the 2019 season

Two-year-old attacked by cougar near Mission, B.C.

Boy not seriously injured in incident on Monday afternoon

Most Read

l -->