General Purposes Committee Meeting Minutes - April 3, 2000





Monday, April 3rd, 2000


Council Chambers

Richmond City Hall


Mayor Greg Halsey-Brandt, Chair

Councillor Linda Barnes

Councillor Malcolm Brodie

Councillor Derek Dang

Councillor Lyn Greenhill

Councillor Ken Johnston

Councillor Bill McNulty

Councillor Harold Steves


Councillor Kiichi Kumagai

Call to Order:

The Chair called the meeting to order at 4:15 p.m.



That the minutes of the meeting of the General Purposes Committee held on Monday, March 20th, 2000, be adopted as circulated.



Ms. Loletta Lei, Business Systems Analyst with the Finance & Corporate Services (Information Technology) Division, was introduced to the Committee by the Manager, Information Technology, John Lindbergh.

The new Fire Chief, Jim Hancock, introduced himself to the Committee.



(Report: Mar. 8/00; File: 5125-03-01; REDMS 136417)

The Manager, Environmental Programs, Suzanne Bycraft, reviewed the proposed emergency management program with Committee members, during which she spoke about events and projects which had been undertaken during the past year. She also spoke about the City's existing emergency plan, how the proposed emergency management program would improve the City's existing plan, and the role of Council in the event of an emergency.

During the discussion which ensued, questions were raised about:


the rationale for requiring Council, in the event of an emergency, to report first to City Hall and as an alternative, to the South Arm Community Centre, rather than to the Works Yard, the site of the City's Emergency Operations Centre - advice was given by the General Manager, Engineering & Public Works, Chuck Gale, that the Works Yard EOC was not a large area, but could accommodate the Mayor and other members of Council in the event of a large scale emergency. He stated however, that during the time immediately following an emergency, it was important in the initial stages to keep the operations and legislative requirements separate;


the proposed training program, and whether Council members would be trained - advice was given that the training program was intended not only for staff and volunteers, but also for Council members;


how would the City respond to an emergency, especially if senior staff members or Council, were not in the community, if the such emergency occurred during non-business hours, and whether information was available on resource options which could be accessible to the City in the event of an such an emergency occurring;


how the City compared to other communities with respect to emergency preparedness - advice was given that the City was technically and structurally viable, however the emergency program required updating;


the location of the EOC at the Works Yard rather than at the new City Hall - advice was given that it was unlikely that a major emergency would occur during regular business hours and that as a result, communication would be impossible; further advice was given that the location of the EOC at the Works Yard was more practical because (i) the key people involved in responding to an emergency would be at this location, (ii) the needed equipment was located at the Works Yard; and (iii) of the EOCs location on west side of the island, it would not be susceptible to bridge access, etc. (It was also noted in the discussion which ensued on this issue that the dispatch was also located at the Works Yard, and that it would be the most appropriate site to maintain contact with emergency vehicles and response teams.)


how the City would cope in the event of a major emergency and whether any thought had been given to having reciprocal agreements with Delta and Vancouver for employees who resided in Richmond but were unable to their places of employment, to compensate for those employees who lived outside of Richmond and were unable to reach Richmond because of bridge and/or tunnel collapse - information was given that the matter not been raised at emergency planning meetings, however, it was noted that there were concerns about how staff would be paid; further advice was given that this was the purpose of the Regional Emergency Coordination Centre and would be pursued as the program was developed. (It was also noted by Mr. Gale that an informal understanding existed the City would endeavour to utilize civic employees from other jurisdictions who resided in Richmond, in the event that a major emergency should occur; however, the comment was made that there a plan B should be in place in the event that these employees were not available).

It was moved and seconded

That the concept for the Emergency Management Program (outlined in the report dated March 8th, 2000, from the Manager, Environmental Programs), be endorsed.




(Report: Mar. 11/2000; File: 8060-20-7091; REDMS 136424, 135481)

The Manager, Environmental Programs, Suzanne Bycraft, reviewed the proposed bylaw with Committee members.

Discussion then ensued among Committee and staff members on the issue of appointing alternate staff members to the Emergency Control group. Advice was given that the heads of each of the divisions knew who would be appointed as alternates within their respective divisions, and that this would be clearly defined as part of the training process. However, comments were made that if Council was appointing a General Manager to the committee then that individuals alternate should also be appointed by Council. Information was provided however that the control group would take into account those staff members who were available at the time of the emergency and their level of expertise.

Discussion ensued on the practicality of making alternate appointments, and advice was given by Mr. Gale that when staff reported further on the new emergency management plan, this matter could be addressed and information provided on how it would be accommodated. A further comment was made that the training sessions should not include General Managers but the alternates, who should be residents of Richmond.

It was moved and seconded

That Bylaw No. 7091, which establishes an emergency management organization under the provisions of the Emergency Program Act, be introduced and given first, second and third readings.




(Report: Mar. 30/00; File: 5125-16; REDMS 136064)

The General Manager, Engineering & Public Works Chuck Gale reviewed the history of this report, which had been tabled at a previous Public Works Committee meeting because of the concerns of the Committee about the designation of specific Richmond roads and highways as disaster routes by the Provincial Government. Mr. Gale stated that for this reason, he was requesting that the matter be deleted from this agenda.

Mayor Halsey-Brandt then spoke about the proposed disaster routes and the position taken by Council previously on the designation of these routes and the fact that residents trying to leave the City would use these routes. Discussion then ensued among Committee members on the implementation of these proposed routes, during which suggestion was made that a City sign should be erected below the Provincial disaster route sign, indicating that the route was for use by emergency vehicles only.

As a result of the discussion, the following tabling motion was introduced:

It was moved and seconded

That the report (dated March 30th, 2000, from the Manager - Environmental Programs), regarding Disaster Response Routes, be TABLED.




That the meeting adjourn (5:13 p.m.).


07.16.04 14:37