2012 Resolutions

PART 1 – REFERRED RESOLUTIONS

RR1        EQUITY IN FUNDING FOR MUNICIPAL POLICE SERVICES – Victoria

WHEREAS municipalities in British Columbia who choose to establish their own municipal forces pay 100% of the costs of policing;

AND WHEREAS municipalities in British Columbia who obtain policing services from the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) through agreements between the federal and provincial governments pay either 70% (for municipalities with a population of between 5,000 and 15,000) or 90% (for municipalities with a population in excess of 15,000) of the total expenditures for policing, excluding overtime:

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that UBCM work with the Province of British Columbia to change the process for funding municipal police services so that municipalities with their own police forces receive the same subsidies as those who contract with the RCMP.

On motion, duly moved and seconded, that resolution be amended to add “to increase provincial funding for municipal police services” was endorsed.  The motion, as amended, then read:

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that UBCM work with the Province of British Columbia to change the process for funding municipal police services to increase provincial funding for municipal police services so that municipalities with their own police forces receive the same subsidies as those who contract with the RCMP.

ON MOTION, as amended, was ENDORSED

RR2        STORMWATER MANAGEMENT IN ELECTORAL AREAS – Comox Valley RD                 

WHEREAS there are numerous and significant problems with drainage and stormwater management throughout the electoral areas;

AND WHEREAS the authority for managing stormwater and drainage in electoral areas is the primary responsibility of the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure as well as the development of legislation, policies and programs, and for providing resources to plan, construct and maintain drainage systems and enforce drainage standards:

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that UBCM urge the Province of BC, through the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure to improve their approach for the effective management of stormwater and drainage in electoral areas within the province of BC.

 ON MOTION, was ENDORSED

 RR3        HYDRO SMART METERS – Gibsons

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the Union of BC Municipalities request the provincial government to monitor the effects of the installation of Hydro smart meters and to assess the impacts on public health.

WITHDRAWN BY SPONSOR

PART 2 – RESOLUTIONS RECEIVED BY THE DEADLINE

Part 2 – Section “A”

R1            DECLARED NUISANCES – Cowichan Valley RD

WHEREAS there is no legislation in place that allows regional districts to take measures to address ‘declared nuisances’;

AND WHEREAS many residents have expressed grave concerns regarding impacts from odours that are produced from composting facilities in the Cowichan Valley Regional District:

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the Province of British Columbia be requested to introduce legislation that would allow a regional district to take measures to address ‘declared nuisances’.

ON MOTION, was ENDORSED

R2            REDUCTIONS TO COAST GUARD MARINE RADIO/TRAFFIC  CONTROL CENTRES – Gold River, Sayward, Strathcona RD

WHEREAS the Canadian Coast Guard has announced its intention to reduce the number of Canadian Coast Guard Marine Communication and Traffic Services (MCTS) Officers on watch at five strategically located centres in British Columbia, three of which are on Vancouver Island, possibly posing a serious threat to the safety of coastal communities, boaters, fishers, mariners, aviators and the environment;

AND WHEREAS the lives of many residents and visitors in these communities could be put at risk by the reduction of officers at MCTS centres:

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the Association of Vancouver Island and Coastal Communities petition the federal government to maintain the current levels of staff on watch year round at all five MCTS centres on our coast.

ON MOTION, was ENDORSED

R3            DECRIMINALIZATION OF MARIJUANA – Metchosin

WHEREAS marijuana prohibition is a failed policy which has cost millions of dollars in police, court, jail and social costs;

AND WHEREAS the decriminalization and regulation of marijuana would provide tax revenues:

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that Association of Vancouver Island and Coastal Communities and the Union of BC Municipalities lobby the appropriate government to decriminalize marijuana and research the regulation and taxation of marijuana.

ON MOTION, was ENDORSED

R4            BAMFIELD ROAD SAFETY ISSUES
 – Alberni‐Clayoquot RD

WHEREAS the Bamfield Road is the only road access to and from the communities of Bamfield and Huu‐ay‐aht First Nation and their livelihoods depend on this road;

AND WHEREAS the condition and safety of the Bamfield Road has been a long‐standing issue for residents, visitors and industrial users of the road:

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure be encouraged to work collaboratively with the logging companies, private road owners, Bamfield Road Safety Association, First Nations, local government and other local groups to address safety issues and ensure regular, consistent maintenance of the Bamfield Road.

ON MOTION, was ENDORSED

R4A        BRITISH COLUMBIA TRANSIT ACT –  View Royal

WHEREAS the British Columbia Transit Act subsection 25 (7) provides specifically the persons who must be appointed as members of the regional transit commission for the greater Victoria metropolitan area and;

WHEREAS the British Columbia Transit Act appointments under subsection 25 (7) results in a disproportionate representation by population on the board.

THEREFORE BE RESOLVED that legislation amending the British Columbia Transit Act subsection 25 (7) to correct the representation on the board to affect representation on the board by population.

ON MOTION, was ENDORSED

R5            PERMISSIVE TAXATION EXEMPTION  – Parksville

WHEREAS Section 15 (1) of the Health Authorities Act provides an exemption from property taxation if the property is being used for the “purposes” of the Health Authorities Act;

AND WHEREAS the “purposes” of the Health Authorities Act have been broadly determined to include:

  • The establishment and maintenance of minimum provincial healthcare standards through provincial government mandate,
  • The co-ordination of regional healthcare service planning and delivery (including providing housing for low-income citizens, seniors, and mentally and physically handicapped persons) through regional health authorities, and
  • Providing a municipal tax exemption for property owned by regional health authorities that is being used for, or to support, the delivery of regional healthcare services;

AND WHEREAS the Property Assessment Appeal Board and the Supreme Court of British Columbia have determined that privately operated congregate care facilities located on health authority land and privately held doctor offices located in hospitals are exempt from property taxation as those properties were determined to be being used for the “purposes” of the Health Authorities Act;

AND WHEREAS the provincial government has since amended the Health Authorities Act to further require that before an exemption is granted the health authority property is also being used “by or on behalf of the health authority” for the purposes of the Health Authorities Act;

AND WHEREAS this amendment does not take effect to limit existing exemptions until the 2016 taxation year:

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the Association of Vancouver Island and Coastal Communities lobby the provincial government to further amend the Health Authorities Act to immediately exclude from property tax exemption any for profit congregate care facilities located on health authority properties.

ON MOTION, to Refer To Resolution R6, was ENDORSED

R6            TAXABLE OCCUPIERS OF HOSPITALS  – View Royal

WHEREAS for profit businesses located within hospital premises who enjoyed benefit from the hospital exempt status in 2010 continue to do so until 2015 as established by the transition provisions described in the Budget Measures Implementation Act, 2011;

AND WHEREAS the for profit businesses at these locations consume the services provided by host municipalities without making a contribution to local government:

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the Union of BC Municipalities request legislation requiring amendment to the transition provisions created by the Budget Measures Implementation Act, 2011,making land and improvements in the name of hospitals but held or occupied by profit businesses that would ordinarily be taxable occupiers be taxable in the name of the taxable occupiers effective in 2012.

On motion, duly moved and seconded, that resolution be amended to read “provincial government amend the transition provisions from the Budget Measures Implementation Act, 2011, to render taxable any for-profit business located on land or within properties held by a health authority, effective as of 2012was endorsed.

On motion, duly moved and seconded, that the amended resolution be further amended to add “non-medical, for-profit business”, was not endorsed.

The motion, as originally amended, then read:

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the provincial government amend the transition provisions from the Budget Measures Implementation Act, 2011, to render taxable any for-profit business located on land or within properties held by a health authority, effective as of 2012.

ON MOTION, as amended, was ENDORSED

R7            CREATION OF PARTICIPATORY BUDGETING SOFTWARE  – Victoria

WHEREAS many municipalities in British Columbia face severe infrastructure deficits and other competing demands for limited tax dollars as they struggle to fill the gaps left by the retreat of senior levels of government;

AND WHEREAS taxpayers are continually asked to bear the burden of capital and operating costs of municipalities:

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the Union of BC Municipalities create or secure a licence for software that can be used by all British Columbia municipalities in participatory municipal budgeting processes in order to deepen citizens’ understanding of how tax dollars are spent and to seek input on spending priorities.

ON MOTION, was NOT ENDORSED

R8            QUALIFIED ENVIRONMENTAL PROFESSIONALS –  Cowichan Valley RD

WHEREAS the provincial government implemented the Riparian Areas Regulation to protect fish habitat for future generations, and the implementation of this regulation requires a partnership between the provincial Ministry of Environment, Fisheries and Oceans Canada, and local governments to be successful;

AND WHEREAS the provincial Ministry of Environment appears to be lacking the dedicated resources to review the reports forwarded by Qualified Environmental Professionals (QEPs), which is necessary in order to ensure that the standards set under these regulations are adhered to:

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the provincial Ministry of Environment take immediate steps to provide the necessary staff resources to review the reports forwarded by QEP’s so that the provincial Riparian Areas Regulation fully achieves its goal of protecting our fish habitat.

ON MOTION, was ENDORSED

R9            EXTERIOR FULL CUT-OFF LIGHTING – Sunshine Coast RD

WHEREAS full cut-off lighting reduces light pollution and glare;

AND WHEREAS light pollution may have a negative impact on quality of life, contribute to adverse health effects and pose potentially harmful consequences to the natural environment by disrupting ecosystems:

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the Building and Safety Standards Branch of the Ministry of Energy and Mines be requested to amend the BC Building Code to allow, facilitate and empower local governments to require exterior full cut-off light fixtures as part of their permitting and inspection process for all new construction and major renovations.

ON MOTION, was ENDORSED

R10         REMOVAL OF DERELICT & ABANDONED VESSELS FROM COASTAL WATERS – Ladysmith

WHEREAS derelict and abandoned vessels in the waters of coastal British Columbia can pose a threat to the aesthetics, environment, health and safety of coastal communities;

AND WHEREAS the current regulatory regime for the removal of derelict and abandoned vessels from the waters of coastal British Columbia is not serving our communities with effective and timely removal of such vessels:

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the Association of Vancouver Island and Coastal Communities call upon the federal and provincial governments to implement a Derelict Vessel Removal Program modelled after the Washington State program, and to designate the Canadian Coast Guard as the receiver of wreck in the case of every abandoned or derelict vessel in the waters of coastal British Columbia.

ON MOTION, was ENDORSED

R11         TSUNAMI DEBRIS TO HIT WEST COAST IN 2014
  – Alberni‐Clayoquot RD

WHEREAS it is reported that a giant mass of floating debris the size of California has been swept out into the ocean by the Japanese tsunami, and this debris could reach the shores of the West Coast by 2014;

AND WHEREAS coastal communities on the West Coast of Vancouver Island do not have the resources or capacity to deal with a clean‐up of this magnitude:

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that coastal communities on Vancouver Island which may be impacted by the tsunami debris from Japan be involved in any federal/provincial planning processes, including representation on the Provincial Tsunami Debris Working Group that has been developed by the Ministry of Public Safety and Solicitor General.

ON MOTION, was ENDORSED

R12         BLUE CARBON CREDITS  – Comox Valley RD

WHEREAS local governments across British Columbia may prefer to have the opportunity to invest in local projects in order to reach their carbon neutral commitments under the BC Climate Action Charter;

AND WHEREAS blue carbon offsets, which are estuary restoration projects that reduce greenhouse gas emissions and improve estuary environments, may offer an excellent opportunity for local carbon neutral investments throughout the province:

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the Association of Vancouver Island and Coastal Communities urge the provincial climate action secretariat to enable local governments to invest in blue carbon projects in their communities in order to meet their carbon neutral commitments under the BC Climate Action Charter.

ON MOTION, was ENDORSED

R13         VANCOUVER ISLAND SPINE TRAIL – AVICC Executive

WHEREAS the Province of British Columbia wishes to enhance tourism and citizen use of our unique wilderness areas, and to provide new trails throughout British Columbia;

AND WHEREAS the Vancouver Island Spine Trail is a proposed non-motorized multi-use wilderness trail the length of Vancouver Island, that links 150 km of existing regional trails into a continuous long-distance route of about 700 km;

AND WHEREAS this trail traverses land over which First Nations, regional districts and municipalities have jurisdiction and the Association of Vancouver Island and Coastal Communities is the body representing these regional districts and municipalities:

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the Association of Vancouver Island and Coastal Communities endorses in principle the concept of the Vancouver Island Spine Trail.

ON MOTION, was ENDORSED

R14         REINSTATEMENT OF FARM FUNDING FOR DEER FENCING – Central Saanich

WHEREAS the excessive deer population has a detrimental impact on an already economically challenged farming industry and poses a serious deer management problem;

AND WHEREAS the Province previously allocated funding for farmers through the Environmental Farm Plan for perimeter fencing, but has since withdrawn this avenue of funding:

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the provincial government be urged to reinstate funding to farms for perimeter deer fencing as part of the Environmental Farm Plan.

ON MOTION, was ENDORSED

R15         FARM MENTORSHIP PROGRAMS – AVICC Executive

WHEREAS it is important to ensure that information about local farming practices is shared in the farming community;

AND WHEREAS local expertise on soils, crops and land improvements is being lost as farmers and provincial government staff retire:

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the Association of Vancouver Island and Coastal Communities request that the Ministry of Agriculture develop agricultural advisory services to promote mentorship programs and peer to peer networking programs that will encourage local farmers to share their expertise with new farmers coming into the industry.

ON MOTION, was ENDORSED

R16         INCREASED QUOTA LEVELS TO SUPPORT REGIONAL FOOD SELF‐SUFFICIENCY –  Alberni-Clayoquot RD

WHEREAS agricultural producers within the Alberni‐Clayoquot Regional District currently produce between 5‐11% of all food consumed in the region, which is not dissimilar to the rest of Vancouver Island, and partial food self‐sufficiency would require an increase in regional production to 40‐48%;

AND WHEREAS the Natural Products Marketing (BC) Act provides a system to allow individual commodities to promote, control and regulate production, transportation, packing, storage and marketing of natural products in the province:

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the provincial government be petitioned to amend the Natural Products Marketing (BC) Act and any other piece of pertinent legislation or provincial policy to increase quota and production levels in all agricultural sectors on Vancouver Island to support regional food self‐sufficiency.

WITHDRAWN BY SPONSOR

R17         BC HYDRO RATE INCREASES – Parksville

WHEREAS the BC Auditor General has expressed concerns about BC Hydro accounting methods, particularly the decision to record major expenditures as deferrals, resulting in a reported $2.2 billion dollar debt;

AND WHEREAS this may result in significantly increased hydro rates to cover deferred amounts, negatively affecting hydro customers on Vancouver Island and across the province:

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the Association of Vancouver Island and Coastal Communities request that the Union of BC Municipalities and its local government members request the provincial government establish limits on hydro rate increases in order to ensure electrical power remains affordable for citizens and local governments across British Columbia.

ON MOTION, was NOT ENDORSED

Part 2 – Section “B”

A motion, duly moved and seconded, that all the recommendations of the Resolutions Committee for Part 2, Section “B” Resolutions be adopted, was endorsed.

R18         DEVELOPMENT COST CHARGES FOR FIRE SUPPRESSION  –  Sunshine Coast RD

WHEREAS development can result in capital funding burdens for local governments for purposes other than sewage, water, drainage, highway facilities and parkland;

AND WHEREAS a number of resolutions have been previously endorsed by UBCM members requesting that the use of development cost charges be expanded to include costs related to increased demand on protective, cultural and recreation services:

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the Ministry of Community, Sport and Cultural Development be urged to reconsider their position and amend section 933 of the Local Government Act to allow development cost charges to be imposed to assist local governments in funding the capital costs of fire halls and fire suppression equipment and other purposes deemed appropriate by the local government that are required as a result of increased development.

ON MOTION, was ENDORSED

R19         GENERATING SUSTAINABLE FUNDING FOR RURAL FIRE DEPARTMENTS – Cowichan Valley RD

WHEREAS regional district fire departments provide essential lifesaving and emergency response services to communities throughout British Columbia;

AND WHEREAS the funding of essential capital infrastructure and equipment such as fire halls and emergency vehicles is very challenging for small fire departments and communities:

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the Province of British Columbia work with the Union of BC Municipalities to identify mechanisms and strategies to assist in generating sustainable funding for rural fire departments.

ON MOTION, was ENDORSED

R20         FUNDING FOR BC CONSERVATION SERVICE –  Sunshine Coast RD

WHEREAS underfunding is having a negative impact on the ability of the BC Conservation Officer Service to meet the needs of the communities served;

AND WHEREAS the ability to respond to environmental concerns is hampered by the lack of human and financial resources:

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the Ministry of Environment be urged to provide appropriate budgets and staffing to fully support the continued and sustained operation of the conservation service.

ON MOTION, was ENDORSED

R21         SCHOOL BASED YOUTH MENTAL HEALTH SERVICES – Colwood

WHEREAS youth mental health services need to be conveniently located for vulnerable youth and their families;

AND WHEREAS the number of youth who are supported by youth agreements increased by more than 152% between 2007 and 2010, demonstrating the increasing numbers of youth for whom school may be the most consistent point of accessible community contact:

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the Province support integrated services and work with school districts and local governments to provide and evaluate youth mental health services in a school setting.

ON MOTION, was ENDORSED

R22         HOUSING FOR ADULTS WITH DEVELOPMENT DISABILITIES – Duncan, Nanaimo City, Gold River

WHEREAS:

  1. The provincial government is cutting funding and supports for adults with developmental disabilities, resulting in the closure of group homes and mounting waiting lists for services;
  2. These group homes form a vital and necessary part of the housing continuum that has won broad support from members of the public at large, families of adults with developmental disabilities and the communities in which they are located;
  3. We support the creation of new supportive housing options to provide appropriate options for parents and their adult children with developmental disabilities; and
  4. The BC Community Living Action Group, which represents more than 65 affected agencies and organizations, thousands of families, and adults with developmental disabilities, has called for an end to service cuts and closure of group homes:

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the Association of Vancouver Island and Coastal Communities and the Union of BC Municipalities urge the provincial government to end funding cuts, implement a moratorium on the closure of group homes and provide sufficient financial resources both to maintain this vital housing resource and address growing waiting lists.

 ON MOTION, was ENDORSED

 RESOLUTION OFF THE FLOOR

OF1        SUPPORT FOR CATALYST PAPER – Port Alberni, Alberni Clayoquot RD 

WHEREAS Catalyst Paper has mills in three Vancouver Island and Sunshine Coast municipalities which create thousands of jobs and a strong economic base in the Region which has a $2 billion overall impact on the B.C. Economy;

WHEREAS Catalyst Paper is currently in bankruptcy protection and its future is uncertain;

WHEREAS on April 23rd, 2012 decisions will be made by the bond holders of Catalyst regarding restructuring or sale of the company; and

WHEREAS Catalyst Paper’s CEO, Kevin Clarke, has made several requests to Federal and Provincial Ministries for assistance that would help them to survive;

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED THAT the AVICC requests that the Province with support as required from the Government of Canada take action to assist Catalyst Paper’s survival in the following ways:

  1. Make available $30 million over five years to support new hiring and high-tech training programs at Catalyst Mills.
    Provide certainty in BC Hydro rates and take action to eliminate financial risks to Catalyst due to a switch from HST to PST on electrical purchases.
  2. Release Catalyst HST credits of approximately $5million per month which are currently frozen under the CCAA process and in the interim the Province “backstop” these funds with approximately $30 million until released by the Government of Canada.
  3. Provide pension regulation modifications allowing Catalyst’s pension plan members an option of surrender of their lifetime pensions in exchange for a lump sum transfer from the plan in the approximate present value of their pension.

ON MOTION, was ENDORSED

AVICC RESOLUTIONS COMMITTEE REPORT ON RESOLUTIONS RECEIVED AFTER THE DEADLINE

A.             LATE RESOLUTIONS:  ADMIT FOR PLENARY DEBATE

LR5   SUPPORT TO RETAIN SECTION 35(1) HABITAT PROTECTION PROVISIONS OF CANADA FISHERIES ACT (Qualicum Beach)

B.             LATE RESOLUTIONS:  NOT APPROPRIATE FOR DEBATE

LR1  DISPOSAL OF GYPSUM CONTAINING ASBESTOS (Sunshine Coast RD)

LR2  FUNDING FOR AIRSTRIPS IN SMALL COMMUNITIES (Alert Bay)

LR3  OIL TANKER TRAFFIC IN COASTAL WATERS (Metchosin)

LR4  PROVINCIAL FUNDING FOR RURAL CYCLNG INFRASTRUCTURE (Metchosin)

LR5    SUPPORT TO RETAIN SECTION 35(A) HABITAT PROTECTION PROVISIONS OF THE CANADA FISHERIES ACT – Qualicum Beach

WHEREAS habitat is the life support of any species;

AND WHEREAS the alteration or destruction of habitat is a common cause of the decline of many species, including fish;

AND WHEREAS the protection of habitat is the most effective means of preventing species decline;

AND WHEREAS the current Section 35(1) provisions were developed to provide a science-based approach to the protection of fish whereby qualified professionals can successfully argue against deleterious impacts;

AND WHEREAS the current Section 35(1) provisions form the basis of most other legislation to protect aquatic ecosystems, including local government provisions such as Riparian Areas Protection regulations, and represent the only tool left to help local governments carry out environmental protection in light of the progressive withdrawal of federal government (including DFO) involvement in habitat assessment, planning, monitoring and enforcement;

AND WHEREAS the current Section 35(1) provisions effectively protect a host of environmental goods and services other than fish for Canadians;

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED THAT the Association of Vancouver Island and Coastal Communities support the retention of Section 35(1) Habitat Protection provisions of the Canada Fisheries Act.

ON MOTION, was ENDORSED

LR3   OIL TANKER TRAFFIC IN COASTAL WATERS – Metchosin

WHEREAS a crude oil spill could have devastating and long lasting effects on British Columbia’s unique and diverse coast, which provides critical marine habitat and marine resources that sustain the social, cultural, environmental and economic wealth of coastal communities, including First Nations communities:

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the Association of Vancouver Island and Coastal Communities oppose projects furthering the expansion of tanker traffic through coastal waters without additional safeguards in place.

 A motion, duly moved and seconded, that the resolution be amended to remove “without additional safeguards in place” was ruled to be not in order by the Chair as it was considered to be a different resolution than provided by in the context of the original resolution.

A motion, duly moved and seconded, that the resolution be amended to replace “additional safeguards” with “substantive increases of safeguards” was endorsed.

The resolution then read:

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the Association of Vancouver Island and Coastal Communities oppose projects furthering the expansion of tanker traffic through coastal waters without substantive increases of safeguards in place.

 ON MOTION, as amended, was ENDORSED

B.             LATE RESOLUTIONS:  NOT APPROPRIATE FOR DEBATE

LR1  DISPOSAL OF GYPSUM CONTAINING ASBESTOS (Sunshine Coast RD)

LR2  FUNDING FOR AIRSTRIPS IN SMALL COMMUNITIES (Alert Bay)

LR4   PROVINCIAL FUNDING FOR RURAL CYCLNG INFRASTRUCTURE (Metchosin)

 ON MOTION, as amended, was ADOPTED