Assaly sent out an email to media August 8 announcing her plan to seek reelection. She filed her nomination papers at the municipal office June 29. She explained that she delayed her official election campaign announcement because “it was preferable to give precedence to the (July long weekend) multicultural festival” and the summer holiday break.
Assaly noted that the pandemic has put extra pressure on Hawkesbury and other municipalities to deal with continuing infrastructure improvement needs and essential services, like snow removal, while also trying to help both residents and local businesses deal with financial and social upset related to the lockdowns and other public health safety measures. She indicated those and other related issues continue to be priorities for the municipality.
« The housing shortage, the municipal land shortage, the labor shortage, the condition of our roads, » she stated, « the construction of a new municipal garage, the creation of a municipal pedestrian path with forest cover, the exchange of services with Champlain Township as well as customer service are among the concerns for which the Town will have to provide innovative solutions. »
Assaly listed a variety of municipal improvement projects that have taken place during her past term as mayor. They include rebuilding the Mill Creek retention wall at the intersection of Main Street and McGill streets, renovation work at the municipal water plant, storm sewer upgrades below the intersection of Cameron and Main streets. All of these projects included cost-sharing between the municipality and senior governments.
She noted that interior renovations at the Robert Hartley Sports Complex are in progress, a study is underway about the future cost for shoreline work on Isle Chenail to deal with erosion issues, and the municipality is working with the United Counties of Prescott-Russell to lobby the provincial government on traffic safety issues related to planned reconstruction of the overpass at the intersection of County Road 17 and Highway 34.
Assaly also noted that in 2019, before the pandemic, Hawkesbury was designated a “Welcoming Francophone Community” and received $1.8 million in federal funding for two dozen related projects, including the multicultural festival in July, a community garden project at Old Mill Park, and recruitment missions in France and Belgium for francophone immigrants with needed skills or investment potential.
The municipality also now has an asset management plan to help future budget planning for municipal infrastructure improvements. The town is also involved in a climate change partnership project to help determine potential energy savings for municipal buildings.
Assaly repeated her desire for a council with “new blood” that includes young people sitting at the table “with new ideas” to help guide the municipality during the next four years after the October municipal election.