The Cortes Island Fire Department wants to expand its service to include first response for medical emergencies. File photo/Campbell River Mirror

Strathcona Regional District formalizes enhanced services with Cortes Fire Department

Tax for first responder service still has to go before voters at binding referendum

The Strathcona Regional District has agreed to an enhanced service agreement with the Cortes Island Fire Department.

The SRD board passed all readings of Bylaw 346 to authorize entering into an agreement for the fire department to provide enhanced fire protection services on Cortes Island at the Feb. 28 board meeting.

The board’s Electoral Areas Services Committee had reviewed the matter at a meeting previous to the board meeting.

At the Feb. 28 SRD meeting, Area B Director Noba Anderson clarified the item was not related to a binding referendum question for Cortes residents on a tax to support first responder services in the community but was simply to recognize what services the department is already providing.

RELATED STORY: Gulf Island fire fighters want first responder training

“This is an amendment to the contract,” she said. “It relates to changes that were made and approved though an alternative approval process (AAP) on Cortes.”

These amendments, she described, an an “administrative catch-up” to allow the fire department “to do what it has already been doing.”

“The other item of the first responder program is still in the queue,” Anderson added.

The bylaw that passed authorizes the SRD to enter into a revised contract with the Cortes Island Fire Fighters Association (CIFFA) for enhanced fire protection. Last year, the board established a contract with the CIFFA on the understanding that, if the scope of service was expanded by another bylaw, Bylaw 331, which referred to road rescue, ambulance assistance and protection of wharves, the SRD would prepare a revised agreement to reflect the full scope of the service.

The SRD board authorized seeking the approval of electors through an AAP at a meeting last July. The AAP ran until Nov. 13, with the regional district receiving no electors’ forms to register opposition. The board adopted Bylaw 331 at the Nov. 22, 2018 meeting.

RELATED STORY: Cortes referenda won’t proceed as quickly as some hope

The question of when the SRD board will bring back the binding referendum issue was still undetermined. The item is on the agenda for the latest board meeting, which took place after this story went to press.

Just Posted

Former Campbell Riverite reaches Everest summit

Clayton Matthews’ team got to the top of the world earlier this week

Campbell River RCMP arrest violent offender

Police struggle with suspect and take him down with a taser

Strathcona Regional District fiscal health gradually improving, staff say

Tax and service revenue was up for the SRD in 2018, while grant money was down

VIDEO: Campbell River highschool event marks Canadian human rights milestone

50th anniversary of the decriminalization of homosexuality

Blaney plan helps seniors late with taxes

Simple solution to important issue: North Island-Powell River MP

QUIZ: Test your knowledge of Victoria Day

How much do you know about the monarch whose day we celebrate each May?

Take-home drug testing kits latest pilot to help curb B.C.’s overdose crisis

Researchers look to see if fentanyl testing could be a useful tool for those who use drugs alone

Facebook takes down anti-vaxxer page that used image of late Canadian girl

Facebook said that the social media company has disabled the anti-vaccination page

Search crews rescue kids, 6 and 7, stranded overnight on Coquitlam mountain

Father and two youngsters fall down a steep, treacherous cliff while hiking Burke Mountain

Raptors beat Bucks 118-112 in 2OT thriller

Leonard has 36 points as Toronto cuts Milwaukee’s series lead to 2-1

‘Teams that win are tight’: B.C. Lions search for chemistry at training camp

The Lions added more than 50 new faces over the off-season, from coaching staff to key players

Rescue crews suspend search for Okanagan kayaker missing for three days

71-year-old Zygmunt Janiewicz was reported missing Friday

B.C. VIEWS: Reality of our plastic recycling routine exposed

Turns out dear old China wasn’t doing such a great job

Carbon dioxide at highest levels for over 2.5 million years, expert warns of 100 years of disruption

CO2 levels rising rapidly, now higher than at any point in humanity’s history

Most Read