UBCM Executive Meeting Highlights
Dec. 4, 2019
The UBCM Executive held its first, quarterly board meeting on November 21-22, 2019. The Executive’s sub-committees also met to set priorities and work plans for the coming year. Executive members adopted goals and priorities, and received delegations from the Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing and from the Convention Finance and Sponsorship Review Panel.
Highlights of the November 22nd Executive meeting include
- welcomed all new and returning Executive members
- welcomed returning Executive appointments from the City of Vancouver and Metro Vancouver; Councillor Pete Fry and Councillor Craig Hodge, Coquitlam.
- announced and approved various UBCM Committee and external committee appointments. Any vacancies will be filled through prescribed processes. UBCM will be reaching out to the membership, through the Compass, to seek appointments to fill vacancies, as appropriate.
- received a report from the President on her activities since the 2019 UBCM Convention.
- approved conveyance of endorsed 2019 resolutions:
- 157 sent to the Province;
- 18 sent to the federal government;
- 8 sent to FCM; and
- 6 sent to other organizations.
- Delegates referred three endorsed resolutions to the Executive requesting specific UBCM action. The resolutions have now been referred to the appropriate UBCM Committees to consider as part of their advocacy efforts.
- Forty-one resolutions not considered at the 2019 Convention due to a lack of time, were referred to Executive for consideration. An additional three resolutions were referred to Executive by the membership at Convention. All forty-four resolutions have now been referred to the appropriate UBCM Committees for consideration and recommendations.
- Of the forty-four resolutions referred to Executive, the Resolutions Committee originally made a recommendation of Not Endorse for three of them. The Executive chose to follow the recommendations of the Resolutions Committee and agreed to not endorse the following three resolutions:
- B174 – Investments in Local Government and Not-for-Profit Seniors’ Services and Supports
- B175 – Voting Rights for Alternate Electoral Area Directors at UBCM
- B193 – Province of British Columbia/UBCM Memorandum of Understanding
- received a report on provincial announcements made at the 2019 Convention.
- received an update on the housing file discussing advocacy on short term rentals, the Development Approvals Process Review and Federal Housing policy.
- received a report on the federal election results.
- received an update on ALR/ALC legislative and regulatory changes through Bill 15 and Bill 52 noting that staff are continuing work through a technical advisory committee to convey local government interests. The Executive considered referred resolution B75 and proposed an amendment, that was endorsed as follows:
Therefore be it resolved that the Ministry of Agriculture undertake fulsome consultation with local governments on the development of regulations so that local governments can fully understand the implications on their residents and have an opportunity to provide input prior to the adoption of these new regulations.
- received an update on the Emergency Program Act review, including the release of a provincial discussion paper.
- received a report outlining changes to the Traffic Fine Revenue Sharing Agreement consistent with UBCM recommendations made in August 2018.
- approved the creation of a working group that will seek to establish a principled approach to negotiating RCMP detachment occupancy agreements.
- received an update on UBCM’s involvement in the FCM International Program and specifically UBCM’s work with the National League of Communities in Cambodia.
- received a report from Presidents Committee outlining actions taken via conference call to establish, and make appointments to, the Select Committee on Local Government Finance and the Short-term Rental Advisory Committee.
- received correspondence from MLA Todd Stone on his introduction of a bill titled Assessment (Split Assessment Classification) Act; and from the Lower Mainland LGA in regard to resolution 2019-C56, Widening of Trans-Canada Highway #1.
- received a report on new and amended legislation and policy put forward by the Province in the current House sitting.
- received an update on implementation of new cannabis legalization legislation, noting UBCM’s continued advocacy around sharing of excise tax revenues, and received an update on the move toward the roll-out of edibles into the marketplace.
- received a status and action report on a variety of policy areas that continue to be monitored by UBCM including: vessel operation restriction regulations; wrecked, abandoned or hazardous vessels; 911 emergency communication service delivery; RCMP auxiliary program; auditor general for local government; the Safe Drinking Water for First Nations Act; federal additions to reserve policy; federal comprehensive and specific land claims policy; national inquiry into missing and murdered aboriginal women and girls; licensing of commercial dog and cat breeding; assessment appeals: special use properties; revitalization of the ALR; and new RCMP labour relations regime.
- received the financial report for the period ending September 30, 2019.
- received reports on Victoria Operations including status of the Gas Tax Funding Program as well as various Local Government Program Services.
- received a report on staff activities including numerous post-Convention responsibilities.
- received a delegation from the Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing, the Honourable Selina Robinson and discussed: UNDRIP legislation; cannabis revenue sharing; forestry sector/mill closures and Rural Dividend; short-term rentals advisory group; Strong Fiscal Futures; assessment: highest and best use; 30-Point Plan update and broader update on forthcoming code changes; Elections BC update/election finance; and 2019 UBCM Convention de-brief.
- received a delegation from Frank Leonard, UBCM Past President and Chair of the Convention Finance and Sponsorship Review Panel who shared the Panel’s report and recommendation with the Executive. The Review Panel’s report was received and its recommendation (a set of guiding principles informing convention finance and sponsorship decision-making) was endorsed.
- confirmed upcoming conferences for 2019 including: EA Directors Forum (February 4 & 5); CAO-CEO Forum (March 24-25); and received highlights from the Group Benefits Conference held on October 24-25, 2019.
Highlights from the Executive Priorities session
Executive members reviewed the work plan set out in July 2019 and confirmed the following as key priorities for the year ahead:
Housing – Engage with the Province on implementation of their 30-point plan—use UBCM report “A Home For Everyone” as our policy tool
Cannabis: Revenue Sharing & Regulation of Edibles – Continue work with the provincial government on outstanding issues.
UBCM Special Committee on Climate Action – Committee tasked with reviewing opportunities for, and barriers to, taking climate action to the next level.
Strong Fiscal Futures Renewed – Refresh and repackage the 2013 Strong Fiscal Futures (SFF) Report.
UNDRIP & Provincial Land Use Planning – Engage with Province on UNDRIP & related initiatives, emphasizing the need for meaningful consultation with local governments on issues that impact their jurisdiction.
Infrastructure Funding 2019-20 – Participate in development/delivery of Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program (ICIP).
Recently elected Minority Federal Government/Minority Provincial Government – Seek opportunities to advance member positions aligned with provincial & federal priorities.
Other Issues flagged for the year ahead included: Revitalization of the ALR and ALC; the Fire Safety Act whereby UBCM has continued consultations with OFC/Province opposing the downloading of fire inspections and investigations onto regional districts; and that UBCM undertake a review of the UBCM Resolutions process based on the feedback received from delegates at the 2019 Convention.
Highlights of the November 21st Committee meetings include:
Committee members confirmed the Terms of Reference; allocated Vice Presidents to specific duties; received updates on staffing, financial statements, member services and group benefits programs, and FCM Dues and the FCM Travel Fund. Reports were considered on: intergovernmental relations; 2020 Advocacy Days program; UBCM Investment Policy; and UBCM’s Community Excellence Awards Program. Members agreed to make minor amendments to UBCM’s Convention Code of Conduct for 2020 to ensure all Convention participants are captured. Updates were also provided on the Group Benefits Marketing Review and appointments to the Municipal Pension Plan Board of Trustees and Plan Partner group.
Community Economic Development Committee
Upon renewing the Terms of Reference, the Committee reviewed the work plan for the coming year that included broad goals to support economic development opportunities; addressing a variety of policy matters including: forestry; energy; mining; agriculture; tourism; arts, culture and heritage; job training and re-training; and broadband/internet connectivity. Reports were received on the BC Utilities Commission’s Municipal Utilities Inquiry; agreed to partner with the Ministry of Jobs, Trade and Technology on a local economic development survey; identified Cabinet Ministers to meet with as part of February 2020 Advocacy Days; reviewed the Together for Wildlife document. Received correspondence from the BC Cattlemen’s Association seeking support for better rural connectivity; from the Vernon Chamber of Commerce on forest sector challenges; and from the RD of Kootenay Boundary regarding the re-allocation of Rural Dividend funding to the new forest worker support program. The Committee also received a delegation from Al Gorley, independent panel member, Old Growth Strategic Review who outlined the scope of the review and encouraged UBCM and its members to provide their perspectives using the online engagement process, or by attending a face-to-face or telephone meeting with panel members.
The Community Safety Committee reviewed its priorities for the upcoming year, including a focus on issues related to policing, non-medical cannabis, liquor policy and emergency management. Members received reports regarding 911 emergency communications; auxiliary policing in BC; various policing issues, including labour relations, provincial policing resources and occupancy lease agreements; liquor policy; the Community Safety Amendment Act; and, community safety grants programs administered by UBCM.
Health and Social Development Committee
The Health and Social Development Committee approved its Terms of Reference and work plan for the coming year. The Committee will continue to focus on health promotion and chronic disease prevention activities; address rural health care; collaborate with partners on active transportation initiatives; co-chair the Emergency Medical Assistants Education Fund Advisory Committee; lead the development of a local government child care planning resource guide; monitor the implementation of provincial strategies such as the Poverty Reduction Strategy and the mental health and addictions strategy; monitor and raise concerns regarding primary and urgent care facilities, hospitals, and Regional Health Districts; and provide feedback on the proposed provincial accessibility legislation.
The Environment Committee reviewed and approved its Terms of Reference, work plan and priorities for 2019/20 that include providing input on Phase 2 of the provincial climate action strategy; monitoring the implementation of legislative changes for site identification provisions for contaminated sites; continuing to work on spill preparedness and response; informing the development of policy and regulations for the Water Sustainability Act and the Professional Governance Act; monitor and advise on the implementation of the BC packaging and printed paper product stewardship program, including the potential expansion to the Industrial, Commercial, and Institutional sectors; working with government on the Species at Risk Charter and species at risk legislation; monitoring the implementation of legislation on environmental assessments; and monitoring the federal government’s Ocean Protection Plan initiatives.
The Indigenous Relations Committee reviewed and approved its Terms of Reference and priorities for 2019/20 that include continuing to engage with the Province on the implementation of UNDRIP; conducting reconciliation and relationship-building activities; continuing to seek opportunities to engage on urban Indigenous issues, including through the Off Reserve Aboriginal Action Plan; investigating Indigenous cultural safety & sensitivity training opportunities for local governments; monitoring implementation of the National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls; and monitoring pertinent legal cases for their implications on BC local governments.
The Committee received reports regarding several aspects of the 2019 Convention and also reviewed the Delegate Evaluation ratings and comments. Some details of the 2019 Convention Review:
- the 2019 Convention was attended by 2,125 people, compared to 1,876 last year in Whistler;
- media coverage of the 2019 Convention was strong and included approximately 900 broadcast mentions and 2778 print and online mentions between September 16-30; and
- child-minding services were offered to attendees for the third year and received great reviews.