WHEREAS the Government of Alberta has an effective emergency management system and an effective Provincial Operations Centre; and
WHEREAS the Government of Alberta regularly requests emergency response deployments from municipalities to assist with regional disaster situations; and
WHEREAS municipalities typically respond quickly to disaster situations and support one another during times of need; and
WHEREAS municipalities are required to submit detailed accounting of expenses incurred during deployments under the provincial Disaster Recovery Program (DRP); and
WHEREAS the Government of Alberta is required to ensure fiscal responsibility in DRP payments;
THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that the Rural Municipalities of Alberta advocate that the Government of Alberta review its Disaster Recovery Program processes to ensure municipalities receive payments within a defined timeline for resources deployed to assist during regional disasters.
In the past few years, the Government of Alberta has experienced an increased frequency of regional emergencies where resources from unaffected municipalities were deployed under provincial direction or at the request of an affected municipality.
Municipalities are quick to respond to regional emergencies and support one another in times of need. During such disasters and corresponding responses, municipalities incur additional operating and administrative costs.
In 2018, the Government of Alberta developed the Alberta Structure Protection Program Operational Guidelines document, which is intended to “strengthen the capacity for Provincial structure protection while providing flexibility to deploy trained and capable resources with clear rules of engagement and reimbursement requirements.”
The processing of Disaster Relief Program (DRP) claims is lengthy, and Alberta municipal elected officials are concerned with the timelines required for DRP payments.
A recent example is the May 2019 Chuckegg Creek Wildfire for which reimbursements are still outstanding for the local municipality and responding regional partners.
RMA has no active resolutions directly related to this issue.