The Union of BC Municipalities membership will debate 170 resolutions at their convention Sept. 15 and 16.
The resolutions are classified into 14 categories including legislative, community safety, elections, transportation, taxation, finance, environment, land use, health and social development and housing.
Special resolutions by the UBCM executive recommended for the membership to endorse include calling on the province to develop a replacement for the cancelled Climate Action Revenue Incentive Program (CARIP), which began in 2008. The special resolution consolidates five resolutions submitted by the membership this year on the issue, including one from the Regional District of Nanaimo. The executive’s resolution calls for a replacement program to include annualized funding that is equal to or greater than CARIP, formula-based funding that recognizes varying local capacity for climate action and maximum flexibility on eligible projects that support local needs and priorities.
The executive will also put forward a special resolution on forest management; specifically requesting the province engage and consult with local governments and Indigenous communities while it implements recommendations of its Modernizing Forest Policy in BC intentions paper released in June, including matters related to old growth designations and deferrals. The resolution consolidates seven separate resolutions related to forests submitted by members.
“The special resolution put forward by the executive reflects the need for continued local government consultation as the province moves forward to implement forest policy change that will impact B.C. communities,” the resolutions package says.
An Islands Trust resolution on electronic permit and public hearing notification, is recommended for endorsement. It asks for an update to the Local Government Act “to allow temporary use permit and public hearing notifications to be provided electronically, via an application or website if the local government can demonstrate equal or greater ability to reach relevant constituents than a regular printed local newspaper.”
The Regional District of Nanaimo submitted three resolutions in addition to one related to CARIP; all are recommended for endorsement. The first highlights the continued challenge of illegal dumping on Crown land and provincial rights-of-way and calls for further action from the Ministry of Environment and Climate Change Strategy and improved partnerships with local governments. The second resolution calls for an amendment to the Local Government Act to give regional districts the same authority as municipalities to enact tree protection bylaws.
The third resolution from the RDN requests a review of the 60-40 hospital district-provincial government cost-sharing model for hospital capital projects and consultation with regional hospital district boards to reduce the reliance on property tax funding at the local government level.
Rachelle Stein-Wotten, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Gabriola Sounder