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Batchewana's new Chief ready to work

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The new chief of Batchewana First Nation is preparing to meet with band council to go over priorities for the upcoming term.

Mark McCoy defeated long-time Chief Dean Sayers in an election seemingly centred on the Robinson-Huron Treaty Annuities settlement reached with the federal and provincial governments this year.

"Dean's been Chief for a long time, and I know he had a pretty strong following," said McCoy, who expressed surprise at his landslide victory over Sayers, who had served as Chief for 17 years.

McCoy has served two terms on band council. He's worked as an officer with the Correctional Service Canada for 20 years, and is now the Native Inmate Liaison Officer (NILO) at the Algoma Treatment and Remand Centre.

McCoy told CTV News there were two issues from the election campaign that stand out.

"The community needed change and wanted change," he said.

"The other thing was the annuities. My position with regard to the Robinson-Huron Treaty, I'm for 100 per cent payout and speaking with the community, that's what they wanted."

McCoy said he is looking forward to getting to work with the new band council.

Meantime, outgoing Chief Dean Sayers has submitting the following statement to CTV News:

"I'm looking forward to witnessing the continued progressive nature of Batchewana under the leadership of the new Chief and council. I wish Mark and his council well in the future. I also want to thank the people for your support over the many years. It's been an incredible experience." 

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