Since returning to office last Thursday, Mayor Larry O’Brien said the information being thrown at him has felt like “trying to drink water out of a fire hose.”

The mayor was on a leave of absence for three months during his trial on two charges related to influence peddling. Both charges were dismissed last Wednesday.

Yesterday, O’Brien attended his first public function since returning to office with the ninth annual Mayor’s Golf Classic in support of Child and Youth Friendly Ottawa.

With less than a year and a half left in the council term, O’Brien said there were major projects to tackle, such as securing the funding for the downtown transit tunnel, sorting out the future of Lansdowne Park, as well as issues related to sewage, which is spilling into the Ottawa River and flooding in Kanata.

O’Brien said he plans to make “a really substantial statement” on a number of the major files that are before council.

“I won’t do so from the perspective of just the mayor’s office,” he said. “I will make sure I talk to councillors and make sure we are on common ground on all these files moving forward.”

Details on when he plans to make that statement will be announced later.

Registration for next year’s election opens in January, and though he won’t commit to running again, O’Brien said he expects some jockeying to begin as campaigns for the next term begin to ramp up. But he said he believes there is a general consensus that everyone wants to move ahead on these files.