It was quite the moment for RM of Snipe Lake delegate Jeremy Hartsook yesterday, as he took in the address from Premier Scott Moe at the Saskatchewan Association of Rural Municipalities (SARM) annual convention.
The first day opened up with addresses from Saskatchewan ministers, as well as SARM President Ray Orb, and the Rural Healthcare Forum was held at 4:00 PM to cap off a busy start to the 118th annual event. Yesterday featured an address from the Premier as well as the Leader of the Opposition, with the always ferocious Bear Pit session being held in between with members the provincial cabinet.
During my address to delegates at the @SARM_Voice Convention this morning, I announced a record $297 million for the Municipal Revenue Sharing Program for 2023-24.— Scott Moe (@PremierScottMoe) March 15, 2023
This is a 13% increase from last year and a 134% increase since our government took office in 2007.
Over 2,000 delegates like Hartsook have been at the meetings in Saskatoon since Tuesday, with the opportunity to discuss issues affecting rural Saskatchewan wrapping up today.
Hartsook is the Division 6 Councillor for the RM of Snipe Lake. The experience in Saskatoon so far has been great, and he has been blown away by the logistics of the operation that sees representatives from every part of the province.
Because of the wide range of representatives, when Hartsook heard Premier Scott Moe provide an anecdote from the Town of Eston during his opening remarks, he was frankly blown away.
"Moe was up there doing his speech, in a room with a couple thousand people in it representing every RM in the province," he explained, "And then he starts telling this story, he says, 'We have got this woman in Eston, Saskatchewan named Jenelle McLean, that has been working to help integrate and bring Ukrainian families into the community and get them what they need'."
Hartsook said that Moe shared a specific line from McLean's story, and then boomed his voice at the end echoing that same quote.
“You can never underestimate the power of small towns."
"That was just awesome to have that pride in someone from our community. Getting their story told by the province's leader."
Awesome indeed; even more so due to the fact that we shared McLean's story on West Central Online back in December during the holiday season.
You can read that story through the link above or the related articles section below, as it is so amazing to see a story out of West Central make its way to the forefront of the biggest rural meeting the province of Saskatchewan has running.