FVRD chair asks Abby to reconsider vote to leave

Patricia Ross, FVRD chair, is asking Abbotsford City council to reconsider its decision leave the regional district.

Patricia Ross, chair of the Fraser Valley Regional District, is asking Abbotsford City council to reconsider its decision to leave the regional district.

“Abbotsford’s withdrawal from the FVRD would prove costly and damaging to Abbotsford as well as the region,” Ross said in a Thursday news release.

“We’ve seen no sign that the Province is interested in dismantling the FVRD,” she said. “The Local Government Act is very specific on the function of regional district government and on the importance of coordination among municipalities.”

Abbotsford city council voted earlier this week to ask the B.C. government for permission to leave the FVRD, and to form its own single-tier governance, citing a staff report that the city could save close to $759,000 a year by the move.

The report said the city could provide all the services now delivered by the FVRD for $1.6 million, including 9-1-1 dispatch and solid waste management.

But Ross, who is also an Abbotsford City councillor, said the report contains “a number of inaccuracies.”

She said the report states the city had to “sacrifice” $300,000 in regional gas tax revenue to other municipalities in the region.

“This is not correct,” she said. “The money in question is allocated specifically to regional districts for regionally significant projects.”

“If Abbotsford wasn’t part of the FVRD, there’s no guarantee the city would get any revenue grant at all,” she said.

Abbotsford Mayor George Peary said in an earlier interview that city taxpayers can’t help but save, if the regional layer of government is eliminated.

Ross said Abbotsford taxpayers currently pay about $2.42 a month for FVRD services that include 9-1-1, regional fire dispatch, solid waste management, weed and mosquito control, data collection on homelessness and transportation, and “liaison” with the B.C. government planners.

She said Abbotsford has never made use of a “clear process” in provincial legislation to resolve disputes, and invited city officials to meet with the FVRD.

“It would make sense for the city to bring its concerns into a constructive dialogue with the FVRD, rather than taking a confrontational approach,” she said in the  news release.

Ross was the only city councillor who voted against the motion to seek withdrawal from the FVRD.

The FVRD includes Abbotsford, Chilliwack, Kent, Hope, Mission, Harrison Hot Springs and seven electoral areas.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Rude awakening: 1.6-magnitude earthquake rouses residents from their sleep

The quake was detected 3 km east-northeast of Agassiz

Chilliwack Visual Artists Assocation calling for artists to display

Works will be on display at O’Connor Group Art Gallery

UPDATE: Jack-knifed semi closes Coquihalla northbound

A red liquid is reportedly spilled down the side of Highway 5

Seabird Island school partners with UFV for Halq’eméylem language course

UFV professor Mary Stewart traveling to Seabird Island to teach the for-credit course to staff

Fashion Fridays: The basics you need for your body type

Kim XO, helps to keep you looking good on Fashion Fridays on the Black Press Media Network

VIDEO: Mass coronavirus quarantines seen in China won’t happen in Canada, authorities say

‘If a case comes here, and it is probably … it will still be business as normal’

Owner surrenders dog suffering from days-old gunshot wound to B.C. SPCA

The dog was also found to be emaciated and suffering from a flea infestation

B.C. man dies after police called for ‘firearms injury’ in rural Alberta

Victim is 30-year-old Greater Victoria man, say police

VIDEO: Silvertips edge Giants 2-1 Thursday in Langley

Vancouver falls just short, dropping hard-fought, one-goal decision to Everett at home

Was Bigfoot just spotted on a Washington State webcam?

Sherman Pass is rougly 70 kilometres south of Grand Forks, B.C.

B.C. employer health tax wins ‘paperweight award’ for red tape

Businesses forced to estimate payroll, pay new tax quarterly

Most Read