West Kelowna City Hall—Image credit: City of West Kelowna

Rats, radar and rural RCMP

West Kelowna’s council resolutions were passed at the annual UBCM meeting this week

West Kelowna council’s resolutions seeking permission for municipalities to employ photo radar, a province-wide rat reduction strategy and a review of rural RCMP staff were passed by the Union of BC Municipalities membership this week.

The UBCM delegates attending the annual convention in Vancouver this week voted in favour of West Kelowna’s three submitted resolutions which include:

1. LOCAL GOVERNMENT PHOTO RADAR

WHEREAS local governments must address traffic safety challenges to ensure the well-being of our residents while balancing limited financial and RCMP resources;

AND WHEREAS traffic speed enforcement in residential areas, playground and school zones is labour intensive and the ability to use photo radar as an enforcement tool has proven to be effective and efficient in the management of speed:

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that UBCM lobby the provincial government to amend provincial legislation to permit local governments to independently implement photo radar on local roads at the local government’s expense.

2. PROVINCE-WIDE RAT REDUCTION STRATEGY

WHEREAS in recent years, the Province of BC has seen an increase in the population and distribution of rats for which no provincial strategy exists;

AND WHEREAS rat infestations lead to damage to buildings, electrical wiring and stored food supplies and rats carry diseases that could be transmitted to humans;

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the Union of BC Municipalities lobby the Ministry of Environment to develop and fund a strategy to reduce and/or control the rat population in BC.

3. STAFFING LEVELS-INTEGRATED RCMP DETACHMENTS

WHEREAS RCMP ‘E’ Division uses, in some areas, an integrated detachment model (two or more municipal or provincial RCMP units housed in one building) to provide policing to combined municipal and provincial areas;

AND WHEREAS municipalities authorise and fund increases to the number of municipal officers at the integrated detachments, but the number of provincially funded officers does not automatically change, possibly resulting in a potential imbalance and financial subsidy to provincial/rural areas by the municipalities:

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the Union of BC Municipalities lobby the Minister of Public Safety and Solicitor General to initiate a review of the number of provincial officers serving at an integrated detachment when the municipal component of the detachment is increased to ensure that the municipal and provincial areas are being funded fairly.

Resolutions passed at UBCM are submitted to the provincial government for consideration. The Province releases an annual response document, typically in February or March of the following year.