Metro Vancouver and UBCM testify on Bill S-8: The Safe Drinking Water for First Nations Act

On May 23, UBCM joined Metro Vancouver in testifying to the House of Commons' Standing Committee on Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development in Ottawa regarding local government concerns around Bill S-8: The Safe Drinking Water for First Nations Act. The bill provides for the development of federal regulations governing the provision of drinking water, water quality standards and the disposal of waste water in First Nations communities.

Earlier this year, Metro Vancouver conveyed its position paper, “A Metro Vancouver Position Paper on Bill S-8: The Safe Drinking Water for First Nations Act”, to UBCM, and asked that UBCM consider joining a future delegation to Ottawa to speak on the matter. Last week, UBCM joined the delegation to Ottawa to support Metro Vancouver in its concerns, and provide additional provincial context on the bill. Metro Vancouver was represented by Mayor Ernie Daykin, Chair of the Metro Vancouver Aboriginal Relations Committee and Ralph Hildebrand, General Manager, Corporate Services/Corporate Counsel. UBCM was represented by Gary MacIsaac, Executive Director.

A transcript containing Metro Vancouver and UBCM comments and audio of the meeting are available. Metro Vancouver and UBCM have submitted a joint statement regarding potential amendments to the bill that would aid in reducing local government concerns regarding participation during the development of regulations and implementation plans, as well as potential liabilities resulting from the bill.

Staff will keep UBCM Members apprised of updates as federal consideration of Bill S-8 continues. For more information on UBCM's work on Bill S-8, please contact Angela Turner.

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