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Archive for ◊ Public Health and Safety ◊

Statement from Mayor Gregor Robertson:

“I remain fully opposed to the reactivation of trains on the Arbutus corridor, after more than 15 years of inactivity on the route. The City of Vancouver has a wide variety of significant public safety concerns about CP’s course of action, and City staff have thoroughly communicated those concerns to Transport Canada.

“The track in question was abandoned, unused, and unmaintained by CP for 15 years. The population density along the track is significant, there is a lack of upgraded crossing infrastructure on a short corridor with nearly fifty level crossings that include every major east-west arterial in Vancouver. The grade on the corridor is some of the steepest of any rail line in all of British Columbia, and the City of Vancouver has not been permitted to accompany officials for their safety inspection of the track.

“We continue to be available to CP should they wish to return to talks with the City on the future of the corridor, but Vancouver will not be bullied, and we will not accept seeing our neighbourhoods and families along the corridor having their safety put at risk. The City will continue to review our options in response to every action taken on the corridor.”

- Mayor Gregor Robertson

Vancouver City Council has approved a set of rules to control the location and operation of marijuana dispensaries. The new regulations were developed by City staff in conjunction with the Vancouver Police Department and Vancouver Coastal Health.

The new rules include strict guidelines for where dispensaries can operate. Under the City’s new rules, they must be at least 300 meters away from schools, community centres, or another marijuana-related use. Children under the age of 18 will not be allowed entry, and all applicants and staff must go through a criminal record check on an annual basis.

“These new rules will give the City the tools we need to properly manage dispensaries, while enabling those who provide a vital medical service,” said Mayor Robertson. “This is a common sense approach to a complicated issue, which has been made worse by the lack of action from the Federal government.”

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The Vancouver Police Board announced today that they had chosen a new chief constable to lead the Vancouver Police Department. He is 28-year veteran VPD Deputy Chief Adam Palmer.

“The Police Board was very pleased that we had two outstanding internal candidates as finalists. Just before the final interviews were conducted, Deputy Chief Constable Doug LePard decided to withdraw and support the selection of his colleague Adam Palmer. Following the final interview completed today, the Police Board decided unanimously that Adam was the right person to lead the VPD,” said the Chair of the Vancouver Police Board Mayor Gregor Robertson.

“We are confident that Chief Constable Adam Palmer will continue the progress of his predecessor Chief Constable Jim Chu, striving to make Vancouver the safest major city in Canada and further enhancing the reputation of the VPD as an excellent police service.”

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April 13, 2015:

I want to share with you the latest news and information on what the City is doing to support the federal and provincial governments in the clean-up of our waters and beaches following last week’s oil spill.

With direction from the Coast Guard, the Western Canada Marine Response Corporation and its teams are coordinating active shoreline cleanup operations both in Vancouver and on the North Shore. Our Park Rangers are continuing to support the professional recovery crews at our beaches, and we continue to have signs posted cautioning people to stay out of the water. The Park Rangers are also patrolling the beaches with our provincial partners from the Ministry of Environment, focusing on impact assessment and assistance for wildlife in distress.

There are still many questions that need to be answered. Both the Premier and I have spoken out regarding the unreasonable delay from the time the spill started to when the City was notified. There are also many questions about the long-term impacts from the spill, and investigations are ongoing about the extent of submersed oil.

As you know, I have also continued to raise Vancouver’s grave concerns about the federal government’s closure of Kitsilano Coast Guard station and the impacts of that decision on spill response times and local marine safety.

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Early this morning the City of Vancouver was alerted to a fuel spill in English Bay that occurred yesterday evening. The management of the spill is the responsibility of the Federal Government through the Coast Guard, the Port, and Western Canada Marine Response Corporation, and they have been working to contain the spill and recover as much as possible.

Upon being alerted to the spill early this morning, the City activated our Emergency Operations Centre and supported the response in active coordination with our partners. Marine units from the Vancouver Police Department and Vancouver Fire and Rescue Services were deployed, City staff and Park Rangers have been in place to monitor the shoreline, and biologists and wildlife experts are also on site to assist in assessing any impacts of the spill on shoreline and wildlife.

I would like to thank all first responders and officials who have assisted in today’s effort, and all of those who have volunteered to assist at this early stage. Residents and watercraft operators are still encouraged to stay away from any fuel as there may be potential health risks.

Any spill of this nature is met with grave concern by all Vancouver residents, and underscores both the importance of robust oil spill response capacity in our local waters and the need to protect our shores from all such risks in the future.

- Mayor Gregor Robertson

We’ve heard from trusted emergency response leaders across our region: Voting ‪#‎YesForTransit‬ will ensure safer roads, safer rides home for our loved ones, and faster response times in any emergency. Help spread the word:

We’ve heard from trusted emergency response leaders across our region: Voting #YesForTransit will ensure safer roads, safer rides home for our loved ones, and faster response times in any emergency.

Posted by Vancouver Mayor's Office on Wednesday, 25 March 2015