My first post this morning contained all of this weeks meeting details, here is my RDCK Board Chair’s report:
Chair’s Report – May 2019
Columbia Basin Broadband Committee
Attended my first meeting of the CBBC. This is not a formal board that provides operational guidance but rather, we are an advisory role that discusses policy that defines how the Basin enables broadband access.
We started with an update form Network BC. https://www2.gov.bc.ca/…/about-the-bc-govern…/internet-in-bc
They described their approach to ‘radical collaboration’ with a focus on co-developing a digital road map. Community consultation starts with ‘what do residents want to see for their communities in the next 10-20 years?’ Whether from an economic lens, recreational, health, etc. They vision big then back track to how connectivity assists them to get there with a strong focus on entrepreneurial endeavors, especially in our rural and remote regions.
The committee then shifted to a great discussion about the value and amazing capacity of our region’s Internet Service Providers (ISPs). CBBC indicated their primary focus is to get what they call the back-haul infrastructure, so ISP’s can delivery on the front end. For example, CBBC will focus work on getting the fibre in the ground where as an ISP takes the lead on getting it to your house and providing the service.
They also walked through an online portal that residents can use to measure their internet speeds. While there are many tools that offer this service, the big bonus of this one is that it is collecting regional data in real time so while a large telecon may claim to offer certain speeds and service, we know on the ground, that is not always the case. CBBC is requesting as many basin residents as possible use this app (see memo in correspondence) to ensure we have the accurate data on internet access and speeds.
The RDCK, Ministry of Forests, local Licensee’s, BC Parks, BC wildfire Service and a few other stakeholders have been involved in a collaboration process for the past two years. Purpose of this collaboration is to better define the roles, responsibilities, actions and mandate for an intergovernmental alliance on wildfire mitigation in our large, robust and beautiful forests. This work has been funded by the Province as a pilot project to inform how all stakeholders can collaborate to manage the fire risk we live within.
This cumulated into a one-day workshop that brought stakeholder’s together to hear from the experts, learn what they have found as ways to move forward and then, most importantly, engage participants on the ways forward.
I thoroughly enjoyed the cross pollinating of sectors and lively discussions that led to some strong messages. Act? yes. How? varies depend greatly on the land base, ecology and the stakeholders.
This working session generated strong solutions and I look forward to the report from staff on what those are and how we proceed. More importantly, this workshop and collaboration process has built relationships between all which is where change and possibility resonate.
Kudos to our staff, Nora Hannon and Joel Hamilton, Directors (Faust) who started this discussion years ago and all those that have pursued this file resulting in the RDCK continuing to be leaders in the province on the wildfire mitigation file.
Resource Recovery Plan Advisory Committee
As many of you are aware, the RDCK is in the midst of its Resource Recovery plan review, as mandated buy the Province. I am new to this committee, as your Chair, I am appointed to the committee. Director Jackman is the Chair with our two other resource recovery chairs as well, Director’s Newell and Popoff. The rest of the committee comprises of municipal staff, city managers from Creston, Castlegar and Nelson, and public stakeholders either in the sector providing services or with a background in waste stream management. For committee details, background information on the Resource Recovery Plan and links to the Organic Waste Diversion Strategy, previous community consultations and the TOR, please go to our website:
Goals of the plan, currently, are:
i) Continue to strive for zero waste
ii) Reduce improper waste disposal and waste management practices, including illegal dumping and contamination of waste streams
iii) Increase collaboration with community partners
iv) Achieve financial stability
v) Support the development of local waste management solutions
Association Kootenay Boundary Local Government AGM- Castlegar
Thank you to the AKBLG Executive, Mayor Tassone and his team for a fantastic conference!
Of note, UBCM working group on responsible conduct. I have had a hard time with this discussion since I first encountered it. I was saddened to hear that as elected officials, we needed guidance on respect, communication and overall rules of conduct. But then Trump was elected, so it became a little more relevant. However, now that the discussion turns to a mandated code of conduct with enforcement, I see many red flags. First, other orders of government do not have such a code and frankly, as local government is on the ground, facing their constituents daily, I would think focusing on local government misses the opportunity to ignite respectful politics where it hurts the most. I am biased, of course. With my recent witnessing of question period, I sincerely believe these efforts should be focused elsewhere. Second, enforcement will be a service local taxation would likely be covering and with our immense list of areas where we need to ramp up service, I do not see this as a priority. Water systems, climate change mitigation, fire service supports….all higher priorities in my books. Please do take the time to review the report and provide your feedback.
Resolutions were lively, as usual. I thoroughly enjoy listening to our perspectives and seeing what, as a regional body, we collectively agree with. All but one of the RDCK resolutions was approved to move forward to UBCM.
Congratulations to our colleagues from the RDCK who will continue or are new to the executive, Adam Casemore, Garry Jackman and Rob Lang (Village of Kaslo)
Columbia River Treaty- Water Use Plan teleconference
Director Faust and I, as your representative on the Columbia River Treaty Local Government Committee, participated on a webinar about Water Use Plans (WUP); history for the current ones and how the next stage of review and renewal of them will be carried out.
Please see attached WUP Backgrounder for details.