Colleagues, this is the last time we will meet formally as the 17th Legislative Assembly.
After today, we will head in many different directions. The work of the Executive Council will, of course, continue. Many of you will begin to prepare for our November election, and some of you will be looking forward to starting a new chapter in your lives.
I would like to take this opportunity to thank all Members for allowing me the honour and the privilege of serving as your Speaker. I have taken my role very seriously, to protect both the privileges of the House and for all Members and to uphold the dignity of the institution. I have tried to assist each of you to carry out your duties to the best of your ability as you serve the people of the Northwest Territories. I appreciate the respect you have shown me and the assistance you have given me over these last four years.
I would like to take a moment to share some of my most enjoyable memories with you.
I particularly enjoyed working with the youth of the territory, whether as Pages in the Chamber, as participants in our Youth Parliament, or meeting them in schools and communities during our Mace tours. It has always been a pleasure and a source of great pride to meet and speak with our young people. It gives me great hope for our future.
It was equally inspiring to meet and listen to the generous advice shared by our elders when I hosted our Elders Parliament.
I have also enjoyed my work with the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association. I am grateful to have had the opportunity to work with colleagues from all across Canada and the world. I have learned a great deal from them and have also taken the opportunity to promote and educate everyone I meet about our unique form of government and about our beautiful land.
Certainly a highlight during my term as Speaker was the honour of presiding over the 20th anniversary celebration of our Assembly building. The celebration marked the final payment on the building mortgage and was a wonderful opportunity to bring together former Premiers and Government Leaders, both former and current Members, former Commissioners and other territorial leaders. The celebration event was filled with stories and laughter and were a testament to our shared history and to this institution.
As part of the celebration, and due to the dedicated stewardship of the board of the Legislative Assembly Building Society, the Assembly was able to develop the Water’s Edge Park and add new signage to enhance the capital site. The Assembly was also able to establish a scholarship for Northwest Territories political science students.
Legislation was also adopted during this Assembly to establish the Order of the Northwest Territories, with our first investiture ceremony yesterday.
I would now like to extend my personal thanks to those people who have assisted me in my role as Speaker.
Thank you to my executive assistants, starting with the late Ms. Shirley Firth-Larsson; my current assistant, Ms. Nina Larsson; and Ms. Melanie Coleman.
On behalf of all Members, I would like to thank our contract staff for their excellent service. Thank you to PIDO Productions, Thien Huyny Janitorial, and Epic Grill for feeding all of us for the last four years.
Finally, Members, I would like to acknowledge the love and support we receive from our families and friends. They support us and care for us and we cannot thank them enough.
I wish you all safe travels and good fortune as you leave today, whatever your future may hold.
Mr. Clerk, would you ascertain whether the Commissioner of the Northwest Territories, the Honourable George L. Tuccaro, is prepared to enter the Chamber to assent to bills and prorogue the Fifth Session of the 17th Legislative Assembly.