Local Initiative Journalism Reporter
The seventh council of the Region of Queens Municipality (RQM) officially took office at a swearing-in ceremony October 29 in the council chambers.
The 2020-2024 members of council includes: Mayor Darlene Norman, along with councillors Kevin Muise (District 1); Ralph Gidney (District 2); Maddie Charlton (District 3); Vicki Amirault (District 4); Jack Fancy (District 5); David Brown (District 6); and Carl Hawkes (District 7).
Councillors Muise and Fancy were the only returning members to the council table.
"It was a good feeling. I believe we are going to have a good municipal unit. We have a nice variety of ages and we have people with a variety of view points, which is good," said Norman, who most recently was a manager at White Point Beach Resort. "I don't believe anyone is bringing forward any agendas with them, which is also very good, and we will all listen carefully and work together for the improvement of all of Queens County."
Following the ceremony, the first order of business approved by council was the election of a deputy mayor. Muise and Fancy were both nominated by their peers, with Muise elected by a majority vote. The deputy mayor position is a two-year term.
History was made on several fronts during the evening. It was the first time in RQM's 24-year-history that the Oath of Office was taken by a person under the age of 30 (Maddie Charlton). It was also the first time that three females took the Oath. Additionally, it's the first time in the history of Queens County dating back to 1879 that a female is holding the position of mayor.
In adherence to Public Health protocols for COVID-19, attendance at the Special Council meeting was limited to members of council and their family members. It was live-streamed on the municipality's Facebook, Twitter and YouTube pages to enable the public to be a part of the occasion.