Wildfires are just one of the emergencies detailed in the Fraser Valley Regional District’s emergency management plan, which was recently audited by the auditor general of local government. (Kim Piper photo)

Wildfires are just one of the emergencies detailed in the Fraser Valley Regional District’s emergency management plan, which was recently audited by the auditor general of local government. (Kim Piper photo)

FVRD emergency plan only ‘partially meeting’ expectations, says auditor

Regional district says they are already working on shortfalls in emergency management

  • Dec. 12, 2019 11:47 a.m.

A performance audit of the Fraser Valley Regional District’s emergency management plans and programs found that the regional district had some foundational elements of an emergency management program, but many aspects of it were not developed or only partially developed, said Gordon Ruth, auditor general for local government (AGLG).

“I was pleased to see the Fraser Valley Regional District beginning to make some changes to its emergency management program in anticipation of our audit,” Ruth said, “and I hope our report will assist the regional district to continue strengthening its emergency management program.”

An 88-page report on the audit’s findings was released Thursday, and it includes 15 recommendations for the regional district.

It says the audit found that the regional district only partially met the expectations included in the AGLG audit objectives and needs to take steps to significantly strengthen its emergency management and business continuity practices to be better prepared for potential emergencies.

In response, FVRD has noted that it has already taken steps to address the recommendations in the report.

The audit report identifies specific areas where the regional district should take action, including ensuring that its emergency management program is fully compliant with the Local Government Act and provincial emergency management regulations. The report also recommends that the regional district develop a strategic and cohesive approach to emergency management and business continuity that is supported by revised or new bylaws and comprehensive plans.

Emergency management is a shared responsibility of all levels of government and its importance has been demonstrated in recent years, as various B.C. communities have dealt with the impacts of flooding and wildfires, as well as increasing concern for coastal communities about tsunami preparedness. Provincial legislation provides local governments with direction on emergency management and is currently being updated by government.

“Given the increasing importance of emergency management and business continuity planning at the community level, I hope all B.C. local governments will review this report and use it to help focus their own efforts to enhance their emergency management practices,” Ruth said. “Emergency management is particularly essential for local governments, given the fundamental nature of many of their services that may be affected by emergencies, such as drinking water, wastewater, roads, protective services and others.”

The report’s 15 recommendations to the Fraser Valley Regional District cover areas ranging from statutory requirements and governance to emergency planning, resourcing, training, exercising and testing emergency plans, raising public awareness and continuously improving its emergency management program.

This is the AGLG’s fourth report on emergency management in local governments. Reports have previously been released on the emergency management activities of the Capital Regional District, Town of Sidney and District of Mission.

The Fraser Valley Regional District’s performance audit report is available on the AGLG’s website: www.aglg.ca.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

A memorial of flowers, notes and photos grew quickly on the median adjacent to where Paul Prestbakmo died on Aug. 16. (Tracy Holmes photo)
Witness in South Surrey murder trial says he saw Paul Prestbakmo get stabbed

Defence questions difference between witness’ statements to police, testimony

BC Human Rights Tribunal. (The Canadian Press)
Human rights tribunal rejects complaint against Surrey brewery

Tribunal dismisses former worker’s claim he was bullied because of his ethnicity

Outside Surrey council chambers. (File photo)
A third Surrey councillor says she’ll be donating her pay raise to charity

Jack Hundial, Steven Pettigrew and Linda Annis say they’ll give their increase to charity after council voted itself a pay hike in a meeting closed to the public

An eight-week Anti-Racism Circle program will be hosted by Alexandra Neighbourhood House in April. (Contributed image)
Alexandra House to host eight-week anti-racism workshop

Program, conducted via Zoom, begins in April

Emergency crews are on scene at Walnut Grove Secondary School for what Langley RCMP are calling a “serious incident” on March, 3, 2021. The school has been evacuated. (Matthew Claxton/Langley Advance Times)
Langley high school evacuated after ‘a possible threat,’ district says

Police are asking the public to avoid 88th Avenue and Walnut Grove Drive

A vial of Oxford-AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine is pictured at a family doctor office, Thursday, Feb. 25, 2021 in Paris. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP -Christophe Ena
Trudeau ‘optimistic’ that timeline for rollout of COVID vaccines can be accelerated

Canada set to receive more than 6M COVID-19 vaccine dose than initially expected, by end of March

Beginning late Tuesday, anti-pipeline protesters blocked the intersection of Hastings Street and Clark Drive in Vancouver. (Instagram/Braidedwarriors)
Demonstrators block key access to Vancouver port over jail for pipeline protester

They group is protesting a 90-day jail sentence handed to a fellow anti-pipeline protester

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Two Vancouver police officers were struck by a car when the driver learned he was being arrested for allegedly using a fraudulent credit card to pay for food. (Vancouver Police Department)
Driver being arrested for alleged food order fraud rams Vancouver police with car

Two officers are in stable condition, suffering with soft tissue injuries following the incident

A discarded blue surgical mask is shown hanging in a bush in Montreal, Sunday, Dec. 6, 2020, as the COVID-19 pandemic continues in Canada and around the world. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Graham Hughes
B.C. RMT suspended for not wearing a mask after confirmed by undercover clients

College of Massage Therapists has 5 open files, said suspension necessary to protect public

Most Read