The McLeese Lake Volunteer Fire Department is one of 10 independent fire departments that will no longer be eligible for grants for assistance from the Cariboo Regional District, while 14 volunteer fire departments currently operating as CRD-funded and managed organizations will not be impacted. (Photo submitted)

Grants for assistance extinguished for independent fire departments within Cariboo Regional District

Ten fire departments will be impacted, CRD-funded and managed fire departments will not be impacted

Citing legal risks, the Cariboo Regional District (CRD) has determined 10 volunteer independent fire departments within the region will no longer be eligible for CRD grants for assistance.

Those fire departments are in Big Lake, Horsefly, Chimney Felker Lake, Greeny Lake, Tyee Lake, Hawkins Lake, Likely, McLeese Lake, Riske Creek and Watch Lake-North Green Lake.

The move comes after the CRD received legal opinion highlighting the CRD’s exposure to legal risks with regard to grants for assistance, noted a CRD news release Friday.

“This was a hard decision, and our board thought long and hard before taking this step,” CRD chief administrative officer John MacLean stated.

“Given the totality of the information we have received we felt we would be putting the district and its taxpayers at risk if we maintained the status quo.”

Read more: Dream comes true for McLeese Lake fire department

The CRD sought advice and direction from other regional districts looking at similar circumstances, its legal advisors, and the Office of the Fire Commissioner before making the decision, made mostly because of the fact three of the halls are member societies and seven are unincorporated societies.

The CRD has concerns that providing grants for assistance may be seen as support for the independent departments.

“This leaves the regional district open to lawsuits if it is perceived as an ‘authority having jurisdiction’ — liable for actions taken by an independent volunteer fire department,” the news statement noted.

CRD communications manager Chris Keam said all of the impacted fire departments knew about the change.

Five of the 10 independent fire departments had applied for grants for assistance this year, he added.

We have reached out for an interview with CAO John MacLean.



news@wltribune.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

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

Just Posted

Students, athletes recognized with awards for achievements at Columneetza

Lake City secondary’s Columneetza Campus handed out its end-of-year awards recently

EDITORIAL: Coronavirus limits the right medicine

Opening up the economy a risk with cases overall still not under control

BCWS plans for woody debris burning in Esler area near Williams Lake

The debris is from wildfire risk reduction work

FOREST INK: Using observations until detailed results are available

Reliable test results often includes thousands of subjects and many years of observations.

Williams Lake RCMP seek assistance locating missing youth

Angel Emile has not been seen since Monday, July 7

Amber Alert for two Quebec girls cancelled after bodies found

Romy Carpentier, 6, Norah Carpentier, 11, and their father, Martin Carpentier, missing since Wednesday

B.C. man prepares to be first to receive double-hand transplant in Canada

After the surgery, transplant patients face a long recovery

Grocers appear before MPs to explain decision to cut pandemic pay

Executives from three of Canada’s largest grocery chains have defended their decision to end temporary wage increases

Bringing support to Indigenous students and communities, while fulfilling a dream

Mitacs is a nonprofit organization that operates research and training programs

Northern B.C. First Nations call for reversal of grizzly bear hunting ban

Growing grizzly populations have led to fewer ungulates and increased fear of attacks says Chad Day

RCMP ‘disappointed’ by talk that race a factor in quiet Rideau Hall arrest

Corey Hurren, who is from Manitoba, is facing 22 charges

NHL’s Canadian hubs offer little economic benefit, but morale boost is valuable: experts

Games are slated to start Aug. 1 with six Canadian teams qualifying for the 24-team resumption of play

‘Made in the Cowichan Valley’ coming to a wine bottle near you

Cowichan Valley has the honour of being the first sub-GI outside of the Okanagan

Most Read