The newly installed council in the Town of Bay de Verde on the North Shore of Conception Bay met earlier this month to select their mayor and deputy mayor.
The town council in Bay de Verde on the North Shore of Conception Bay has chosen a new mayor and deputy mayor.
Gerard Murphy, an elementary school administrator, has earned his fifth consecutive term on council with the highest number of votes – 168.
Murphy will lead the council in the mayor’s chair, the same place he has sat for the past 14 of his 16 years on council. He spent a year-and-a-half as the deputy mayor after a byelection before being named mayor.
Louis Keats, who has been a councillor for three prior terms, unseated Gordon Coish for the deputy mayor’s position. He earned 141 votes to Coish’s 92, enough votes for each to earn a seat.
Keats and Coish were both nominated for the position, but Keats came out on top with four votes to three after a secret ballot.
Murphy told The Compass Oct. 29 he and Coish had a good relationship on council, but is sure he will work well with the new deputy mayor.
Keats is currently a board member for the Harbour Authority in Bay de Verde, a town of some 400 people.
There were several plans in discussion prior to the election among council, and Murphy expects they will soon become a reality.
“We have worked towards a strong, positive, fiscal situation,” he explains, noting the town was nearly bankrupt during his first years on council.
Some expected goals are to administer water and sewer to the remaining 25 per cent of the town that are currently on septic systems, upgrading and resurfacing roads and beginning discussion with shell fish processors and the harbour authority about reducing a pungent smell that is being produced and trapped inside the harbour during fish harvesting season.
“There are some significant air quality issues for those who live (near the harbour) in the community,” Murphy says, “I would imagine toxicity levels would be high in that environment.”
Other members of the new Bay de Verde town council include Gerard Broderick, Juanita Emberley, Karl Coish and Dean Potter.