Groundwork will be laid at the first meeting of the town's economic recovery task force tonight, May 13.

The mandate of the body is to collaborate with local businesses, community organizations and provincial and federal governments to create opportunities to support our local economy.

According to its terms of reference, it's authority includes working with the Emergency Command Centre to coordinate the reopening on non-essential services and large-scale events as directed by Alberta Health Services. 

It will also work in conjunction with the social recovery task force to engage with the mental health industry for opportunities to support business owners, and stakeholders as well as provide opportunities or social-economic development,

The economic task force includes Mayor Jeff Genung, councillors Tara McFadden and Marni Fedeyko, the town economic development manager, finance manager. Representatives of the chamber of commerce, Cochrane Tourism, business advisory network, Rotary Club, and development liaison committee have been invited to participate.

The social recovery task force is set to have its first meeting on May 19.

Shovel-ready projects

What will likely be part of the discussion is the three shovel-ready projects the town has presented to the provincial government.

In his May 11 update to town council, Interim CAO Drew Hyndman said they have been submitted to the provincial government for financial consideration.

As of yet, the town has not responded to a request to name the three projects.

"We're also reviewing our 2020-2023 capital projects, and looking for opportunities to stimulate our own local and regional economy by advancing some of this work," said Hyndman.

In addition to the work of the task forces, Mayor Jeff Genung says he wants town council to find a way to keep Cochrane on the map.

"Those conversations are going be interesting in the next few weeks," says Genung.