Highlights of the January 21-22 Executive Meeting

UBCM Executive members gathered on January 21-22 for their quarterly meeting. Eight committees met; and Executive members convened to discuss a variety of matters including agri-tourism in the Agricultural Land Reserve, DNA costs, and several resolutions referred from the 2015 Convention. A delegation was received from the Honourable Peter Fassbender, Minister of Community, Sport and Cultural Development.

Highlights of the January 22 Executive meeting include:

  • Reviewed a report on agri-tourism in the agricultural land reserve and recommended that UBCM prepare a submission to the Ministry of Agriculture voicing general support for the proposed bylaw standards but continue to monitor member feedback and report back to the Executive once the comment period has closed.

  • Discussed UBCM Executive director terms and requested that a report be brought back for consideration about the terms of provincial /territorial /other associations; the implications of extending terms beyond one year; and the other impacts such as bylaw changes.

  • Received an update on local election expense limits; as a next step towards enactment, the legislation has been introduced as an Exposure Bill.

  • Received a report on the Fire Services Act noting that the Office of the Fire Commissioner has written to two regional districts directly advising that there would be no new requirements with respect to fire inspections outside of municipalities.

  • Reviewed and approved amendments to the Terms of Reference of the Local Government Contract Management Committee that would clarify the roles of the UBCM co-chair and the local government representative to the National Contract Management Committee meetings.

  • Received two reports from Presidents Committee advising that Director Ramona Faust, Central Kootenay Regional District, will serve as the UBCM representative to the Real Estate Foundation Board of Directors; that UBCM re-affirm to Minister Fassbender our desire to see concurrent progress on both compensation and Strong Fiscal Futures in any Memorandum of Agreement; and that UBCM has provided comments on the themes within the Service Plan for the Auditor General for Local Government (AGLG). UBCM will also meet with the AGLG to discuss the possible contribution of UBCM to a process to determine audit topics for future Service Plans.

  • Received a report on the Presidents activities and actions since this last meeting.

  • Reviewed and approved a terms of reference between UBCM and the Mayors’ Caucus that would provide for a formal working relationship.

  • Approved a request from Burnaby to join them as co-intervenors in the case of Windsor v. Canadian Transit Company to the Supreme Court of Canada on the basis of determining which courts should decide in cases that concern the constitutional applicability of local government bylaws.

  • Received a status and action report on a variety of policy areas that continue to be monitored by UBCM including: implementation of new Off Road Vehicle Act; Natural Resource Roads Act project; problem vessels; BC Ferries; assessment appeals on special use properties; 9-1-1 Call Answer Levy; DNA costs; National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Aboriginal Women and girls; farm assessment; Auditor General for Local Government; The Safe Drinking Water for First Nations Act; Care Home Sprinkler Safety; Municipal and Regional District Tax; Community and Rail Proximity Initiative; federal additions to reserve; federal Comprehensive Land Claims Policy; assessment of medical marijuana grow operations; mental health and policing and aggregate resource management.

  • Received the financial report for the period ending December 31, 2015

  • Received reports on the status of Local Government Program Services (funding programs) and a status report on the federal Gas Tax Program.

  • Received correspondence from City of Burnaby, Opposition Critic, Ministers Fassbender, Anton and Morris on DNA Costs; received letters from Citizenship and Immigration and Minister Bond on Syrian Refugee settlement plans; update from the Municipal Pension Plan; and from the Village of Lumby on small community grant funding.

  • Received a delegation from the Honourable Peter Fassbender, Minister of Community, Sport and Cultural Development where the following matters were discussed: legislation to establish election Expense Limits; Build Canada Update; the Province’s interest in establishing a joint working group with UBCM on the issue of compensation; discussion of UBCM/MCSCD potential for joint work on liability; MCSCD hosting upcoming webinars on electronic ticketing; and engagement of local government on Climate Action.

Highlights of the January 21 Committee meetings include:

Presidents

Presidents Committee finalized the format for the 2016 member satisfaction survey which will be issued this month; finalized the award categories and sponsors for the 2016 Excellence Awards noting a new category focusing on BC agriculture success stories; received reports on financials, member benefits and programs and discussed UBCM’s Media Relations Policy. Committee members recommended the approval of two priorities for the 2016 Advocacy Plan for the April Executive meeting:  infrastructure investment and enhanced community safety. The Committee also received a delegation from Ray Young, legal counsel, on the matter of UBCM Intervention in the case of Windsor v. Canadian Transit Company – Supreme Court of Canada.  

With respect to three referred resolutions the following actions were approved:

B90  CHANGE THE POSITION TITLE OF THE ELECTORAL AREA DIRECTOR

That the Committee refer the resolution to the 2016 Electoral Area Directors’ Forum for further discussion; and that a report be received at the April Presidents’ Committee meeting for a decision on the course of action.

B116  FIRE INSURANCE FOR RURAL BC HOMEOWNERS

That staff seek additional information from MIABC and report back to the Presidents Committee at the April meeting.

B120  DIVESTMENT OF FOSSIL FUEL RELATED INVESTMENTS IN THE MUNICIPAL PENSION PLAN

Endorse with the proposed amendment:

Therefore be it resolved that UBCM work with the bcIMC and the MPP to prepare a report that provides a ‘primer’ on the MPP, its board and governance structure as well as its role and that of others with respect to responsible investing that can be shared with the broader UBCM membership as well as other Plan partners as required.

Community Economic Development Committee

Members of the Community Economic Development Committee discussed options and approaches for advancing arts, culture and heritage within its renewed terms of reference; received updates on the rural dividend and the Province’s streamlining project for referrals and approvals on resource related applications.  Committee members reviewed the results to their forestry survey that will be shared with the Minister’s Advisory Council on Forests and Range Practices and with the UBCM membership.  Cabinet minister meetings will be sought with Ministers Bond, Thomson and Virk in conjunction with the April Executive meeting.  Committee members agreed to work with the Ministry of Jobs, Tourism and Skills Training on a renewed survey on local economic development practices previously undertaken by UBCM in 2009.  

The Committee also provided direction on referred resolution B119 on Home Renovation Tax Credits by recommending endorsement with the proposed amendment to clarify the types of renovations that would be eligible:

Therefore be it resolved that UBCM urge the governments of the Province of British Columbia and Canada to create new tax credit programs for consumers to help encourage home renovations that focus on energy efficiency, improved mobility and aging in place projects, that are over $1,000.

Community Safety

The Community Safety Committee reviewed and discussed follow-up actions for two resolutions conveyed to the Committee by the UBCM Executive: Resolution B53, Human Trafficking; and, Resolution B122, Payday Loan Regulations. Also discussed was a report regarding a potential provincially led 9-1-1 Call Answer Levy on cellular phones. Members reviewed details of the Province’s “strategic vision”, as well as the level of engagement with local governments. Members also reviewed Committee priorities and objectives as they examined potential meetings with provincial ministers as part of the upcoming Advocacy Days. Added to the agenda was the newly released review of the Emergency Program Act. Members discussed ideas to engage local governments during the review, as well as the provincial timeline for feedback.

The Committee also received reports regarding provincial liquor policy reform; policing policy changes, including details from the most recent LGCMC meeting; a policy update on marijuana for medical and recreational use; recent information regarding the ongoing DNA analysis services cost issue; an update from the First Nations Relations Committee on Highway 16 (also known as the ‘Highway of Tears’); and an update on the resettlement of Syrian Refugees in Canada and British Columbia. Several pieces of correspondence regarding DNA analysis services were received.

Healthy Communities Committee

The Healthy Communities Committee discussed a number of referred resolutions. On resolution 2015- B72, Funding Program for Local Poverty Reduction Initiatives, the Committee agreed to write to the Province to request funds for local poverty reduction initiatives.  For resolution 2015- B114, National Pharmacare Program, the Committee referred the resolution to the LMLGA Area Association meeting for more discussion. The Committee endorsed the remaining referred resolutions 2015- B115 Accessible Birth Control; 2015- B117 Assisted Living Support for Challenged Adults; and 2015- B118 Annualized Earnings Exemption.

The Committee also discussed Minister meetings in April and received information on the McCreary Centre Society Report 2015, How Many is Too Many for BC Youth; and the Alaska Highway News report, Pharmacy changes leave small towns in lurch.  Correspondence was received from the College of Pharmacists of BC regarding pharmacy assistants.

Environment Committee

The Committee discussed a number of referred resolutions. For resolutions 2015- B59 Bio- Solid Review Process and 2015- B61 Health Impact Assessments, the Committee agreed to await the provincial response prior to deciding on a course of action. On resolution 2015- B112, Warning Labels for All Fossil Based Liquid Fuels, the Committee chose to highlight the City of North Vancouver’s initiative to require mandatory climate change warnings on gas pumps in UBCM’s Compass. And lastly, resolution 2015- B113 Wildlife Allocation Policy, was referred back to the sponsor for clarification.  

A report was received on the BC Climate Leadership Plan, which advised that the second round of consultation on the plan would begin on January 25th and last for sixty (60) days. The Committee would also seek an opportunity to make a presentation to the provincial Climate Leadership cabinet working group; and share information about the Climate Leadership Plan and the BC Climate Action Toolkit website with the membership.

An update was also provided on the status of urban and rural deer management in BC. It was noted that the Province had issued a targeted call for proposals to 18 local governments for the Urban Deer Funding Program, with funding to be rolled out in the coming months.

First Nations

The First Nations Relations Committee’s discussions began with consideration of referred resolution 2015-B111, National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls. The Committee decided to write to members to encourage their engagement, and connect them with Indigenous women’s organizations. Committee members also discussed undertaking further reconciliation activities related to the Truth and Reconciliation Commission “Calls to Action”, as well as continued promotion of local government engagement in the Provincial Health Services Authority’s Indigenous Cultural Competency Training. The Committee also reviewed a First Nations Relations survey that will be distributed as part of UBCM and CivicInfo BC’s survey month initiative.

The Committee received updates on federal policy and legislative initiatives, transportation and safety along Highway 16, and the 2016 Provincial Community to Community Forum.

The Committee’s was also pleased to have the opportunity to meet with BC Assembly of First Nations Regional Chief Shane Gottfriedson to discuss priorities and potential opportunities for collaboration.

Convention

The Committee completed its assessment of the 2015 Convention, reviewing the Sponsorship Final Report and December 31, 2015 financial statements. The basic program format for this year’s Convention was discussed, including consideration of timing for plenary addresses, the 2016 theme and keynote speaker options. A preliminary discussion was had on banquet entertainment options, with a final decision expected in April.

Resolutions

The Resolutions Committee met and discussed its Terms of Reference and the timeline for the 2016 resolutions process. Committee members reviewed delegate feedback and Committee experiences and suggested improvements for 2016. The Committee discussed the number of resolutions admitted for debate; screening of resolution topics, to ensure that the issues raised are of concern to local governments; conflicts between policy sessions and ministers’ meetings; and training by the parliamentarian for Resolutions Committee members. No changes to these procedures were deemed necessary for 2016.

The Committee did, however, commit to more proactive use of the electronic voting system, for the purpose of time management and efficient debate. They agreed to procedural streamlining of the electronic voting system, as well as for handling amendments. Committee members also discussed ways to place more emphasis on priority issues and resolutions.

The Executive approved the Terms of Reference for the Resolutions Committee.

Meta Navigation