Lloydminster City Council has granted the first reading of the Emergency Management Bylaw.
The bylaw is updated so it will align with the Alberta Emergency Management Act, which governs the whole City of Lloydminster.
“Emergency management is an ongoing process, and as we have seen, disasters all over Alberta, B.C., Saskatchewan in the last couple of years. It’s important to ensure that everything is up to date in the policy direction,” said Mayor Gerald Aalbers.
The proposed bylaw includes the appointment of the manager of emergency management operations as director of emergency management, establishing the emergency management agency, which includes the appointment of the entire senior management team from the city and delegates authority to declare and terminate a state of local emergency to the mayor or designate and the city manager jointly.
Aalbers noted it has been five years since the bylaw has been updated.
“Some bylaws can simply go a long time; other bylaws need much more regular attention. This one came across that it definitely needed a little attention, and that’s what I was receiving,” he said.
With the rise in natural disasters across Western Canada and the world, Coun. Ken Baker said this bylaw should be reviewed on a regular basis.
“Every unfortunate incident brings up a whole new list of things we should be looking at, as provincially and federally even if you want to look at it in the big picture,” he said.
He described events such as the grass fires in Southern Alberta or the fires in Fort McMurray as teaching people about emergency management.
“I think it’s an ongoing and moving target, and should be kept up. Every time there is an incident, we should be reviewing it and making sure we are doing the best job we can as communities to protect each other from very unfortunate situations,” said Baker.
This new bylaw will repeal Bylaw No. 06-203 and bring the city into compliance with the charter and Alberta Emergency Management Act RSA 2000.