Monday Study Sessions & Tour

Monday, September 12, 2022

UBCM Agricultural Study Tour

8:00 AM - 4:15 PM

Join the BC Ministry of Agriculture and Food on a tour of the Squamish Valley to showcase a broad and diverse range of farm operations that help support the resiliency of the agricultural industry in the sea-to-sky corridor. By visiting several agricultural operations, you’ll discover the opportunities and challenges related to planning for agriculture in the Squamish Lillooet Regional District, where increased development, limited commercial transportation options and high land prices have put pressure on farmers and farm operations. You’ll hear about the intensification of agriculture and learn about logistical challenges and the way this is shaping the farming industry in the sea-to-sky corridor.

The tour will showcase traditional forms of agriculture such as soil-based vegetable production and raising livestock as well as highlight the changing face of agriculture in BC by including more contemporary types of farming operations. Stops at each farm will include a tour of the operation and the opportunity to connect with the farmers to gain a better understanding about their operation as well as more general information about the industry. Tour stops could include:

  • A vertical farm that produces a variety of leafy greens;
  • A livestock operation that finishes beef, lamb, pork and chicken;
  • A bio-dynamic farm that showcases a diversity of crops and livestock; and
  • A recently formed community farm focused on addressing food security in the region.

Breakfast is not included but lunch that highlights products grown in the sea-to-sky corridor will be provided and there may be an opportunity to purchase local farm products. Please dress for the weather and wear farm-appropriate footwear. Partners/spouses are welcome but must formally register for the tour as there is a fixed limit to the number of people that can attend.

Investigating Public Safety Reform 

9:00 AM - 12:00 PM

Policing is the most expensive budget item for many local governments, with costs increasing at an unsustainable rate. In addition to financial concerns, there are growing calls for police reform, which have only increased following the events of 2020. That same year, the Province announced a review of the Police Act, appointing a Special Committee to consider matters such as complex social issues, systemic racism and broader public safety modernization. This session will examine public safety reform in B.C., including the work of the Local Government Policing Modernization Roundtable, a committee tasked with analyzing the Special Committee’s recommendations and other related issues.

Housing Futures, Housing Solutions 

9:00 AM - 12:00 PM

The continuing crisis in housing affordability threatens the foundations of local economies, the strength of community connections and the health of British Columbians, and is a matter of significant, ongoing concern for local governments across the Province. It also remains a hugely challenging issue involving many parties, each facing significant barriers, challenges and opportunities that might be addressed to advance affordability. This session will explore the critical housing issues facing communities and point towards effective solutions.

Learnings from the Lytton Fire: Preventing Future Wildfire Disasters

9:00 AM - 12:00 PM

An examination of the Lytton community wildland-urban (WU) fire disaster found the same pattern of destruction as other WU fire disasters in Canada and the US. You will discover how local ignition conditions of a structure and its immediate surroundings within 30 meters principally determine structure ignitions during extreme wildfires. Reducing a structure’s local ignition potential provides the basis for an alternative, structure ignition resistance approach for effectively preventing community WU fire disasters without necessarily controlling wildfires.

Inclusive Local Governance = Diverse Voices at the Table 

1:30 PM - 4:30 PM

Does your council/board reflect the diverse voices within your community? What actions are being taken, and by whom, to encourage under-represented groups to run for local elected office? How can local governments support governance that is inclusive and representative of the constituents you serve?

Focus will be on actions local governments can take to increase underrepresented groups’ participation around the governance table, including but not limited to: women; BIPOC; 2SLGBTQIA+ and youth. Delegates will learn about funding programs, initiatives, and success stories that can assist BC communities in fostering local governance that is more inclusive.

This session will build on the 2019 UBCM workshop Toward Parity: Breaking Down Barriers, Building Momentum that highlighted work by FCM, the Province and local governments to remove barriers and support women leaders to run, win, and stay in elected office.

Power & Pride: Supporting Women, Two-spirit, & LGBTQ+ Individuals to Stand for Rural Municipal Government
Elect Her! Northwest BC
Policy Briefing Note: Maternity & Parental Leave Policy for City Councillors in Northwestern British Columbia
Policy Briefing Note: Childcare Expense Policy for City Councillors in Northwestern British Columbia

Decriminalization and Harm Reduction: Key Considerations for Local Governments 

1:30 PM - 4:30 PM

This session will address both decriminalization and harm reduction. On decriminalization, attendees will learn about the Health Canada exemption, which will allow adults in B.C. to possess a small amount of certain illicit substances for personal use, without being at risk for criminal charges for simple possession or having their substances confiscated. Presenters will also address the public use of illicit substances and concerns regarding public safety. For the harm reduction portion of the session, presenters will explore the role of local governments, how local governments have overcome challenges, and highlight positive examples in BC.

Reconciliation in Action

1:30 PM - 4:30 PM

The Truth and Reconciliation Commission, National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls, and Federal and Provincial legislation to implement the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples have brought the need for meaningful action on reconciliation into increasingly sharp focus. This session will explore how local governments can advance their journey towards reconciliation, through concrete examples of reconciliation in action, updates on the implementation of the Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples Act, and more.