New Brunswick

Quispamsis councillor resigns

An outspoken Quispamsis councillor has resigned, leaving behind a legacy of pushing for regional amalgamation.

An outspoken Quispamsis councillor resigned his seat on Tuesday, leaving behind a legacy of pushing for regional amalgamation.

Gerry Maher, who is an advocate for amalgamating Quispamsis and Rothesay, said he's spent all of his political capital in the four years he's held the seat.

"In reality, I hope that my legacy is the town of Kennebecasis Valley," Maher said.

"Hopefully the mayor of Quispamsis will be an advocate for an independent study that allows the citizens to see whether or not there are benefits to being joined."

Maher, who is planning to return to private business, said he is pleased with the building of the Qplex. Athough, he said he wishes there had been a cost-sharing agreement between Quispamsis and Rothesay for the infrastructure project.

The communities in the Kennebecasis Valley outside Saint John share police and fire departments, a library, and a shopping district, but the two councils disagree often on issues, such as the Qplex funding.

Maher had pushed for an independent study to examine amalgamation between Quispamsis and Rothesay.

The Quispamsis council voted against Maher's idea. Instead, Quispamsis councillors approved a joint committee between the two towns to discuss "amalgamation and/or greater co-operation."

Maher said he's proud of his fight to have more unity between the towns but he said he still wants more regional collaboration.

"If you look at recreation and you look at signage in the valley, signage is something that the business people really want the two towns to get together on," Maher said.

"Recreation is something where we are basically both spending money on projects where we could be combining our forces for greater effect."

The Progressive Conservative government has indicated it wants to revisit the issue of municipal reform.

The former Liberal government commissioned a study on local governance, which called for a massive restructuring of how people are locally governed.

However, the former government shelved the report saying it would cost too much money to implement.