VICTORIA, B.C. – B.C. communities received nearly $1.5 million in provincial emergency preparedness funding to support emergency operations centres (EOCs) and related emergency training.
In total, sixty-three local and regional governments and First Nations communities have been approved to receive money. The Peace River Regional District received $25,000 towards EOC upgrading.
Communities and governments throughout B.C. have received more than $20.5 million through the Community Emergency Preparedness Fund (CEPF) since the September 2017 Budget update. Targeted funding specifically for equipment and supplies required to maintain or improve EOCs will help another 57 applicants in 63 communities to enhance EOC capacity through training and exercises. People in all corners of B.C.
“When an emergency situation happens, it’s crucial that communities have the training and resources they require to respond to the emergency quickly and efficiently,” said Mike Farnworth, Minister of Public Safety and Solicitor General. “This investment will increase capacity and provide training for emergency operations centres throughout B.C. so that people on the ground have the tools they need to keep their loved ones and other people safe.”
According to the government, funding for the EOC and training component of the CEPF was announced at the Union of British Columbia Municipalities convention in September 2017. This funding is part of a $33.5-million plan designed to help communities prepare for, and respond to, disasters.
“Having the right tools is key when it comes to responding to and recovering from any type of disaster,” said Jennifer Rice, Parliamentary Secretary for Emergency Preparedness. “Providing funding like this increases the capacity of our communities to respond in the event of an emergency and improves resiliency when it comes time to recover and rebuild.”
The CEPF is a suite of programs designed to enhance the resiliency of local governments and their residents, shares the government. The Province provides the funding, which is administered by UBCM and divided into five streams:
- Flood risk assessment, flood mapping and flood mitigation planning
- Emergency social services
- Emergency operations centres and training
- Structural flood mitigation
- Evacuation routes
The next deadline to apply for this program is Oct. 25, 2019, for structural flood mitigation second intake.