The original Dr. Phil | DrumhellerMail
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Town issues fire ban

Due to existing extremely dry conditions the Town of Drumheller, in its capacity as Local Fire Authority and pursuant to the Town of Drumheller Fire Bylaw 04.07, is issuing a FIRE ADVISORY with respect to open air fires. The FIRE ADVISORY declared in Town of… Read More
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Council approves mill rate hike

Drumheller town council approved the 2016 mill rate on Monday and residents will see a rise in their property taxes this year. The new residential mill rate, set at 0.0070016 based on an assessment of $960,302,040, is a hike in revenue of 3 per cent. “It’s… Read More
ms walk 2016 hemming

MS Walk nets over $22k Sunday

It was a weekend of charity success stories, and the MS Walk in Drumheller is celebrating another excellent year in a community that has been a perennial supporter. Over 125 walkers and volunteers came out early Sunday morning to the Badlands Community… Read More

More Local News

Ice age epic filmed near Hoodoos

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The valley continues to shine as a backdrop to full scale motion picture productions , and this continues this spring with…

Canada Day Parade route changed

New Parade Route 2016
The Canada Day Parade will run a slightly modified route this year. The parade will begin at 10:00 a.m. on July 1 alongside…

Arrest made in connection with theft spree

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Police have made a possible arrest in relation to a string of vehicle break-ins and the theft of a 14 year olds’ motocross…

Starland County successful in passing AAMD&C resolution

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Starland County was successful in passing its resolution to the Alberta Association of Municipal Districts and Counties…

Cowboy up for cancer research

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A Drumheller steer rider is carrying on a legacy of his mother’s by supporting those who are battling cancer. Matt Howard,…

Students have World of Choices

Jordan WEbber World of Choices
World of Choices Career Forum had over 250 students in attendance from Youngstown, Delia, Hanna, Morrin, Three Hills and…

More Local Sports

Special Olympics ski team enjoys productive season

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Drumheller Special Olympic had a productive season training locally and on the slopes. Coach Martin McSween recounted the…

75 and still giving back to baseball

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A Drumheller man with 65 years of experience on the baseball field is sharing his wisdom with the next generation, and the…

New lanes installed at Sandstone Lanes

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Bowling has been a part of the fabric of Drumheller for generations, and after decades, the lanes at Sandstone Bowling Lanes…

Drumheller Dinosaur Trail Triathlon marking five years

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The Drumheller Dinosaur Trail Triathlon is marking five years and registration appears to be growing. The home grown…

Bantam Titans kick off spring training April 25

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The Drumheller Bantam Titans begin spring training next Monday, April 25 and coach Paul Redmond is already seeing the…

"Pick Pockets" win Drumheller BCA Championship

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After going two rounds of competition in the championships, the B team Pickpockets, above, claimed the BCA Pool Tournament…

Obituaries

Condolences to the family of RUDOLPH HENRY SHANDERA

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SHANDERA, Rudolph Henry September 2, 1925 - May 1, 2016 Aged 90 years, 7 months. World War II veteran who proudly served…

Condolences to the family of GLENN BURT

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BURT, Glenn Murray September 5, 1950 - April 20, 2016 Glenn Murray Burt passed away Wednesday morning, April 20, 2016 at the…

Condolences to the family of LARRY GEORGE WATTENBARGER

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WATTENBARGER, Larry George November 29, 1944 - April 16, 2016 On Saturday, April 16, 2016 Larry George Wattenbarger passed…

Condolences to the family of GARNET THOMAS SALLOWS

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SALLOWS, Garnet Thomas April 12, 1926 - April 2, 2016 Garnet (Pa) Thomas Sallows, age 89, of Grande Prairie, AB, passed away…

The original Dr. Phil

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    While television’s Dr. Phil has made a career of finding unity and balance in people’s lives, Drumheller’s Dr. Phil considers his greatest political achievement was unifying the valley.

    Now 80, you’ll find Dr. Phil Bryant at the Pioneer Trail Centre in downtown Drumheller. Usually the morning sees about a dozen men playing snooker or cards, enjoying coffee, often discussing the municipal, provincial and federal political problems facing citizens.
    Bryant has always loved politics and has been active most of his life. He was part of a chapter of history which saw the amalgamation of the Municipality of Badlands and the new Town of Drumheller.
    “I was involved in bringing the valley together, of anything I have done (politically) I am most proud of that,” he said.
    Dr. Bryant, originally from Rosedale, B.C., came to the valley in 1958-1959 to work as a veterinarian for the federal government.
     He went on to practice privately in  Bow Island. There he became mayor. He came back to the valley in 1976 and settled in Rosedale as the area’s district veterinarian. He jokes that his hometown of Rosedale, B.C. had four churches, while Rosedale, Alberta has  four bars.
    Politically he didn’t rest. He was appointed to the second Advisory Council for Improvement District #7. He explains that at the time, there was no formal council for the area, which included the areas in the valley surrounding Drumheller.
    There were local advisors, but the Minister of Municipal Affairs acted as the political head. In 1983, the position became elected, and Bryant continued.
    There was a sense in the Improvement District that it needed more influence politically. Bryant said there was a feeling that land was often annexed for the City of Drumheller’s own good.
    “Whenever they wanted more land they would go to Edmonton, talk to the Minister of Municipal Affairs, our legal leader, and ask for some more land and  there got to be some bad feelings that they were gradually chipping in on us,” he said.
    In 1991 The Municipal District of Badlands was formed.
    “At that time we became a legal municipality with an elected government making our own decisions,” said Bryant who served as reeve.
    He said the arrangement was good, but the MD had too small of a base and found themselves losing money each year, eating away at its reserves.
    Bryant, and then sitting Drumheller Mayor Brock Wood, could see the valley were better off with amalgamation.
    “After about two or three years of negotiations and a lot of publicity and arguments as politics does, we made an agreement to join with the city,” he said.
    Part of the negotiators guaranteed staff severance pay or a new job within the new municipality for Badlands employees, they also retained the Ward System. The City of Drumheller became a town, according to Bryant, was so the province would be responsible for the major highways through the valley, saving the municipality.  The MD of Badlands also gave up some land to Kneehill County, which also realized savings.
 In January 1 1998, a new combined council was sworn in with 13 members. That fall, the first election for councillors of the new look town took place and Bryant became Mayor.
    He says there are sill rumblings from some that were not happy with amalgamation.
“There are some who feel we sold out, but of course they don’t realize we were going broke,” he said, adding he believes they made one mistake. He would have liked to see the Ward System stay in place. The 2004 election was the last election that allowed residents to vote for candidates in their direct community.
    “I thought in the span of six years we would all get to love each other and all be mature enough to enjoy open voting, but that didn’t happen,” he said.
    Dr. Bryant served for one term and was defeated by Paul Ainscough in the next municipal election. By then, he had been retired professionally for four years.
    “I always liked politics and I always liked promoting the town,” said Bryant.
    While he has retired from the political realm, he has remained active in the community. He served as president of the Pioneer Trail Society for about five years. He believes in this institution.
    “To me this is the ideal place for seniors that are retired. It is a recreation room, we have the quilters and shuffle boarders, we have the card players and the pool players,” he said. “To me it’s a coffee row, but it is also a place to do things.”
    The Pioneer Trail Society became a registered society in 1974, but its roots go back to the 1950’s when it was started by the Elks Club.
Looking at his career in service, the people have been important to Bryant.
    “It is the satisfaction of doing your part and working with good people,” he said.
    As for the Town of Drumheller, it is on the right path.
    “I like to think that the political group can’t cause a lot of trouble.  This is true because you can be mayor or you can be councillor and you can give them your advice, but when it comes right down to it there is a bureaucracy there that is working and it is our job as elected officials to make sure that bureaucracy is on the right track. If they are on the right track; and this is true in Canadian government and anywhere else, you can’t change that overnight, and once you find out how it works, you probably don’t want to change it.”

Alberta residents opposed to the NDP are attempting to organize prior to the next election. Would you support aligning with the Wildrose brand, the PC banner or a new conservative party?

239503925 [{"id":"118","title":"Wildrose.","votes":"0","type":"x","order":"1","pct":0,"resources":[]},{"id":"119","title":"PC.","votes":"0","type":"x","order":"2","pct":0,"resources":[]},{"id":"120","title":"New conservative party.","votes":"0","type":"x","order":"3","pct":0,"resources":[]}] ["#ff5b00","#4ac0f2","#b80028","#eef66c","#60bb22","#b96a9a","#62c2cc"] sbar 200 200 /component/communitypolls/poll?id=35&task=poll.vote&Itemid=490 MSG_ERROR_NO_SELECTION Please select either existing option or enter your own, however not both. MSG_THANK_YOU_NO_RESULTS COM_COMMUNITYPOLLS_LABEL_ANSWERS Votes ...

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