Like my interview with Mayor Hansel, I selected council member Hawley to give her views on what the main issues Wellington faced over the past year.  She also discusses what Wellington faces in the new year..  In the coming weeks, the newspaper hopes to have comments from the new council members as they prepare to take office next month. 
The council continued working on their vision for the future of Wellington during 2017.  We continued our budgeting efforts to increase reserve funds and reduce expenses.  Rather than quick fixes, we really tried to look down the road and foresee the future results of our actions. 
2017 brought important topics.  The Cowley College project and the Combined Trades Board’s recommendations to change city building codes were two important ones.  Each one of these issues, and others, fired up conversations on social media.  Learning to understand the importance of social media was a learning process for council and staff.
As I look out on 2018, I hope to see this new council focus on quality of life issues that make Wellington a desirable place to live.  I’d like to see efforts to expand our tax base, to recruit new citizens, and to improve our technology to enable us to better reach our citizens.  We need to acknowledge that changes are necessary to allow small, rural towns to surviive.  Wellington is like so many other small towns...the only difference is how we choose to uniquely deal with the issues at hand.