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Hafting ready to be sworn in as Annapolis Royal’s newest councillor

Family, communication, and planning are key issues for Paula Hafting who becomes Annapolis Royal’s newest town councillor on Oct. 15. She won the Sept. 14 special election to fill the vacant council seat.
Family, communication, and planning are key issues for Paula Hafting who becomes Annapolis Royal’s newest town councillor on Oct. 15. She won the Sept. 14 special election to fill the vacant council seat. - Lawrence Powell
ANNAPOLIS ROYAL, N.S. —

Annapolis Royal’s newest town councillor will be sworn in Oct. 15 at 9 a.m. after winning her seat in a special election Sept. 14.

Paula Hafting took the vacant seat and the one-year term on council with 87 votes in a two-way race with Amery Boyer, the town’s former CAO. Boyer received 48 votes with voter turnout at just 31 per cent.

“I have lived in the town for 13 years. I’m still the mother of three teenagers. I think I can bring that to town council, more about what’s happening with families in town, school, recreation,” she said. “I can speak to those issues.”

She’s also on parish council at St. Luke’s Anglican Church.

“So I kind of have a sense of what the older population of the town are looking for as well,” she said. “I think I can bring a balanced approach.”

Hafting said that overall, she thinks Annapolis Royal is great.

“It’s run well. That’s why I want to be part of the town – because it’s such a unique place to live,” she said. “There’s so much going on here and there’s been so many improvements over the years, so I wanted to be part of the planning of that moving forward.”

She said going door to door when she was canvassing for support to become a councillor, one of the things that was brought up multiple times was the lack of communication.

“There are a lot of people who live in this town who are not digital, so they don’t follow Facebook or the town website,” Hafting said. “But they do get confused and anxious over decisions that have been made or spending that’s occurred and they don’t quite know what the planning process was. I think communication to the town residents and the business owners – I think that could be changed or looked at. I’d like to maybe look at that.”

Hafting fills the seat left vacant by former councilor Owen Elliot stepped down after three years of a four-year term.

“It’s a good time for me to get my feet wet, to jump in, to see if it’s something I’d like to do long term,” Hafting said. “I’m hopeful it is. I’d like to definitely carry on with a four-year term after this one.”

Hafting joins councilors John Kinsella and Holly Sanford, Deputy Mayor Pat Power, and Mayor Bill MacDonald around the council table.

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