VANCOUVER, B.C. — Officials from the City of Fort St. John have an action-packed week ahead of them at the Union of B.C. Municipalities Conference in Vancouver.
Fort St. John Mayor Lori Ackerman; Councillors Byron Stewart, Lilia Hansen, Gord Klassen, and Larry Evans; Strategic Services Director Moira Green; and City Manager Dianne Hunter are all making up the Energetic City’s contingent at the annual conference.
Mayor Lori Ackerman said that city officials will be meeting with the Ministers of: Municipal Affairs & Housing; Social Development and Poverty Reduction; Advanced Education; Finance; Childcare; Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations & Rural Development; Transportation & Infrastructure; Energy, Mines & Petroleum Resources; and Indigenous Relations & Reconciliation. Mayor Ackerman will also be representing Fort St. John as a member of the Northeast B.C. Resource Municipalities Coalition, and will be meeting separately with the Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing, Minister of Finance, Minister of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development, as well as with Premier John Horgan.
Ackerman explained that while the meetings are an excellent opportunity to meet with members of the provincial cabinet, they are only an initial meeting for both parties to get to know one another, especially in the wake of the change in provincial government. However, she said that the meetings are an excellent opportunity to set up future meetings and dialogue with those elected provincial officials.
Ackerman will also be sitting in on meetings for four straight days while at the conference, including a panel that will be discussing the liquified natural gas industry. “That is still very much in the forefront of our conversations because regardless of what happens on the West Coast, we are the upstream for every LNG project that goes forward on the West Coast of British Columbia,” said Ackerman. “So, we’re very interested in those conversations and interested in ensuring that the energy literacy is there with not only our colleagues but with the Ministry that put the policies in place.”