Open com­mu­ni­ca­tion

Gander mayor Percy Far­well out­lines some chal­lenges in new role

The Beacon (Gander) - - News - BY CLARENCE NGOH clarence.ngoh@gan­der­bea­

GANDER, NL – From the stages of Avion Play­ers’ pro­duc­tions to the mayor’s chair, a very dif­fer­ent spot­light is cast upon Percy Far­well.

Far­well, well- known for his in­volve­ment in com­mu­nity theatre, has now turned his at­ten­tion to run­ning the Town of Gander. Far­well stepped aside from mu­nic­i­pal pol­i­tics 12 years ago due to the chal­lenges of bal­anc­ing fam­ily com­mit­ments and a full time- job with coun­cil re­spon­si­bil­i­ties.

This is a more con­ducive time to re­turn, Far­well says, “now there is no full- time work, the chil­dren have all grown up, and I have the full sup­port of my wife to get out of the house.”

As Gander’s new mayor, Far­well aims to im­prove com­mu­ni­ca­tion with res­i­dents.

“I am a huge fan of in­formed de­ci­sion mak­ers lead­ing the com­mu­nity, and the only way the coun­cil can be in­formed is to have strong com­mu­ni­ca­tion both ways.”

Far­well says com­mu­ni­ca­tion of­ten oc­curs in an ad­hoc man­ner when there is a “hot is­sue,” but he would like to en­gage more voices in the com­mu­nity on a reg­u­lar ba­sis.

“We need a more for­mal­ized com­mu­ni­ca­tion strat­egy to en­sure we are do­ing the best pos­si­ble job to get the in­for­ma­tion out and get in­put back in,” he told the Bea­con.

“We need greater lines of com­mu­ni­ca­tion – a free flow of in­for­ma­tion, and not just from the loud­est voice.”

Far­well also said the town has to be care­ful with its fis­cal obli­ga­tions.

“We do not gen­er­ate enough tax rev­enue from our com­mu­nity – we can’t out­pace our­selves in our com­mit­ments,” he said. “It is find­ing that bal­ance to get what we want or what we need.”

Far­well urges res­i­dents to be more en­gaged with coun­cil and to pro­vide feed­back, and to col­lab­o­rate on mat­ters to move the town for­ward.

“There are a lot of challen- ges within the fis­cal frame­work,” he said. “We don’t have all the an­swers, but there are a lot of peo­ple in the com­mu­nity who have great ideas and a lot to of­fer.”


Gander mayor Percy Far­well hopes to open chan­nels of com­mu­ni­ca­tion with res­i­dents. He wants them to know the town is in­ter­ested in their in­put.

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