Bowman sworn in, announces executive policy committee members
Browaty, Lukes, Mayes, Morantz, Orlikow, Pagtakhan named to EPC
Shortly after 8 p.m. Tuesday evening, Brian Bowman was sworn in as Winnipeg's mayor. Bowman announced the executive policy committee would be made up of six councillors, including: Coun. Jeff Browaty, Coun. Janice Lukes, Coun. Brian Mayes, Coun. Marty Morantz, Coun. John Orlikow and Coun. Mike Pagtakhan.
Browaty was appointed Chair of Protection and Community Services; Lukes, the Acting Deputy Mayor, Chair of Infrastructure Renewal and Public Works; and Mayes was named Chair of Downtown Development, Heritage and Riverbank Management.
Pagtakhan will serve as Deputy Mayor, Morantz will be sitting as Chair of Finance, and Orlikow will serve as Chair of Property and Development.
Devi Sharma was voted in as Presiding Officer, with Jenny Gerbasi earning the Deputy Presiding Officer nod.
Bowman also announced the names of a six-member support team that will be joining him in the mayor's office going forward. Most of this supporting cast was part of Bowman's election campaign team.
“I have the utmost confidence in this team to deliver real results for Winnipeggers, all bring enthusiasm, practical skills and diverse attributes that will be a tremendous asset for the City,” said Mayor Bowman in a release Tuesday night.
“We discovered significant opportunities to improve how we can engage with citizens over the past several months and I am very excited to move forward and create a new way of operating at city hall.”
'I've got a big job ahead of me': Bowman
Winnipeg's new mayor, Brian Bowman, said he had butterflies in his stomach as he and 15 councillors — including seven rookies and eight returning members — were set to take the oath of office Tuesday evening.
The swearing-in ceremony, which started at 8 p.m., saw a break with tradition for city hall and a new acknowledgement of the city's aboriginal heritage. Bowman and the councillors met with and received a blessing from an aboriginal elder.
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The blessing took place behind closed doors. It was conducted by elder Harry Bone of the Keeseekoowenin Ojibway Nation in southwestern Manitoba.
Bowman said he wanted to start off the new council with something positive and a nod to history.
"I'm excited for the city, and the excitement and the vibe that I've been getting since election night from Winnipeggers is really inspiring and it's motivating, and I know I've got a big job ahead of me," he told CBC News on Tuesday.
Even before being officially sworn in as mayor, Bowman said he's already feeling the weight of the job.
"There's going to be decisions I'm going to make that not everybody's going to agree with," he said.
"One thing I can assure everyone is that the best interests of the city is something that is constantly in my mind, and I'll be honest and just work as hard as I can."
Won't get to elect EPC members yet
There is another thing he wanted to immediately change as well to set a new tone at city hall, but he won't get the chance.
He wanted to start his new mandate by allowing city council to choose the members of the executive policy committee (EPC), but the city clerk's office has advised him rule changes are needed for that to happen — rules that only the Manitoba government can change.
That means Bowman, like previous mayors, was obligated to appoint councillors to EPC instead.
However, the new mayor and councillors will vote on a speaker and deputy speaker.
The first full council meeting takes place Nov. 12.