FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. – This was to have been the last week for proponents to submit proposals to the Peace River Regional District for provision of Secondary Safety Answer Point Fire Dispatch Services.
However, late last month the PRRD board extended the deadline from July 15th to August 15th and copies of the Request for Proposal Documents may still be obtained from the regional district office at 1981 Alaska Avenue in Dawson Creek.
The PRRD, which provides local government service to about 63,000 residents in seven incorporated municipalities and four electoral areas, is seeking proposals from qualified agencies to provide the aforementioned fire dispatch services to eleven fire departments within the region.
It claims to be committed to a review and evaluation process by regional district staff to identify the proposal which offers the best service at the best value based on nine different factors, with cost, dispatch staff resources, and technological capability ranked as the three most important.
Proposals must be submitted to the office of Community and Electoral Area Services at the Dawson Creek PRRD office prior to the noon deadline on August 15th, and they will not be accepted by e-mail or fax.
Currently the PRRD receives Primary Safety Answer Point Services from the Prince George RCMP operational call centre and fire calls are then forwarded to the North and South Peace Fire Dispatch Centres at the Fort St. John and Dawson Creek Fire Departments, respectively.
The North Peace Fire Dispatch Centre provides emergency service for the Fort St. John and Charlie Lake Fire Departments and Hudson’s Hope and Taylor Fire and Rescue Service, while the South Peace Fire Dispatch Centre does the same thing for Fire Departments in Dawson Creek, Pouce Coupe, Tomslake, Tumbler Ridge, Chetwynd, Moberly Lake, and Arras.
The request for proposals is known to have critics, and while none has yet issued a public statement citing specific concerns, they will get the chance to do so.
The PRRD has now issued a new set of tentative approval and implementation dates, and hopes to meet publicly as a committee of the whole on September 22nd, with board approval of an agreement pushed back to October 21st, and fire dispatch service cutover on May 5th of next year.