View Royal mayor says Saanich had a take-it-or-leave-it approach to fire dispatch

Re: Communities pull the plug on Saanich fire dispatch.

Mayor Richard Atwell says “Saanich stands to lose money.” That statement seems inconsistent with their justification for a cost increase. Saanich’s cost increase was based on the claim of having subsidized the five communities for years. The proposed cost increase was made on behalf of financial stewardship and the elimination of the subsidy. One would expect that eliminating the subsidy would improve the Saanich financial outlook.

Why is dispatch in Saanich so expensive? I would expect that Saanich wants to provide the best possible service at the best price. Those five communities have found a solution. Perhaps Saanich needs to do a service review to more clearly understand if residents can afford the Saanich dispatch model as it is currently configured.

We live in an age where the Fort St John fire department is dispatched from Campbell River, Kootenay municipalities are dispatched from Kelowna. The technologies available today make long distance dispatch possible. It easily facilitates dispatch across borders. The success of Mutual Aid Agreements has more to do with the actual administration of the emergency service departments than the origin of dispatch services.

When the region establishes a single regional dispatch center on Vancouver Island, we expect the service established will still be the best possible service for our region at the best price. Hopefully Saanich will be a participant and partner with other local governments in that regional model.

We thank Saanich for the last five years of dispatch services. It is unfortunate that instead of meaningful discussions with its client municipalities on extending those contracts Saanich chose to adopt a “take it or leave it” philosophy.

David Screech

Mayor Of View Royal

Just Posted

Greater Victoria enjoys sunny first day of spring

Summer-like temperatures of 21 degrees hit Wednesday for first day of spring

Saanich forwards student-targeted development to public hearing

Proposed development advertises itself to individuals who want a car-free lifestyle

Development replacing Fairfield United Church gets final approval

The new Unity Commons Development will take over the space at 1303 Fairfield Rd.

Victoria police search for missing man, his vehicle and travel trailer

Last seen on March 17 driving white Honda Ridgeline bearing B.C. licence plate CG 4316

Bitter Saturna land-use dispute highlights legal grey areas

Unhappy Tsawout accuse leadership of cultural destruction

VIDEO: Can you believe it? This B.C. hill pulls cars backwards up a slope

Sir Isaac Newton had clearly never been to this Vernon anomaly when he discovered gravity

Greater Victoria Wanted List for the week of March 19

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

POLL: When do you think the next major earthquake will hit Vancouver Island?

According to seismologists, Vancouver Island is overdue for a magnitude 7 earthquake.… Continue reading

European, Canadian regulators to do own review of Boeing jet

Air Canada plans to remove the Boeing 737 Max from its schedule at least through July 1

Prime minister defends Liberal budget measures as sales effort gets underway

Conservatives under Andrew Scheer say it’s a spree funded by borrowing against the future

Mayor meets with B.C. health minister on homeless taxi transfers

Two homeless people were discharged from Surrey Memorial and sent to a Chilliwack shelter

B.C. lottery winner being sued by co-workers

They claim he owes them $200,000 each, in a lawsuit filed in B.C. Supreme Court in Vancouver

Teacher reprimanded for conduct towards special needs student

Alan Stephen Berry told vice principal he did not have time to use positive strategies

Volunteer green team joins forces to restore local habitats

Partnerships with schools educate and facilitate remediations

Most Read