There are a lot of reasons to feel optimistic about the future of the region.
That’s the message Mayor Don Scott gave at his first ‘State of the Region Address’ on Thursday at the Fort McMurray Chamber of Commerce Luncheon.
He tells Fort McMurray News the main point in his address was ‘one of optimism.’
“There’s not many places in Canada that have billion dollar industries in their backyard and we are one of those fortunate places.”
Some other talking points included the strategic plan, the rebuild, and his vision moving forward.
Looking back at the past 12-months, Scott says there are two issues that really stood out and need to be addressed.
The first being the economy.
“Core to that is a pipeline to tidewater, we need to make sure Alberta’s products get the best prices possible.”
Mayor and council have been advocating for the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion project. During Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s visit to Fort McMurray back in April, Scott mentioned he would like to hold a pipeline summit if it could help end any disagreements.
The second issue he talked about during his address was getting more people to live in the region.
“I think it’s absolutely essential to the future of this region, we want as many people as possible living in the region – one of the philosophies I’ve stated is ‘if you’re going to extract resources from this region then you should live in this region.'”
This message was also delivered at the public hearing for Teck’s Frontier Oilsands project.
Moving forward, Scott adds the municipality will be focusing a lot of their attention on revitalizing the downtown core.