By Cal Braid
Local Journalism Initiative Reporter
Taber Mayor Andrew Prokop has his eye on Feb. 10, when the Town and M.D. will host their first State of the Region gathering at the Taber Community Centre Auditorium.
Taber-Warner MLA Grant Hunter, Reeve Tamara Miyanaga and the mayor will all give a report. Prokop said there’s also a good possibility that Bow River MP Martin Shields will join virtually from Ottawa. The mayor’s office has invited representatives from Lethbridge, Medicine Hat and all points in between to attend. He told the Advance that the intent of the gathering is to celebrate the successes and works-in-progress from 2023 and to share what’s ahead as 2024 unfolds.
“There’s a lot to report,” he said. “We’re looking forward to the report as well as the dialogue, the question and answer piece.” The floor will be open to anyone in attendance and he said that the speakers will try their best to answer any questions that arise. The meeting is slated for 1 to 4 p.m. on Saturday.
“There’s certainly a lot of interest out there with people we’ve spoken to thus far about it. There are many things going on and people aren’t completely aware of what’s happening. We’re just trying to get the word out there about what is happening so there are no gray areas and everybody’s on the same page,” he said. He emphasized that all four representatives try to be as accommodating as possible when they get calls, emails, or questions on the street.
“I get a lot of questions on the street and that’s great,” he said. “It’s like anything else; if they’re not aware of something we try to inform them as best we can. If I don’t know the answer about something, I say just that and say that I will get back to them as soon as possible and I do. Then I talk to the proper person who can answer that question better than me. We can’t be experts in everything, but we certainly know where to reach out and who to talk to in order to get those technical questions answered if we can’t answer something in that capacity.”
For community-minded folks, the event will be a great opportunity to get up to speed on what’s happening in the region. Prokop said that afterwards there will be some time to mix and mingle and no huge rush to clear the place out. The session will be recorded and posted online soon after.