Thursday, October 20, 2016

Red Cross in emergency

By Kate Bouey - CASTANET Oct 20, 2016 / 11:59 am
Greater Vernon's five electoral areas have chosen the Red Cross to be their emergency provider in case of disaster. An inter-municipal program run by the City of Vernon's Emergency Services staff ends Dec. 31 and, under provincial law, a new service must be in place by Jan. 1, 2017. “This new agreement will take effect on Jan. 1st and, as a result, there will be no changes to the current service levels or delivery,” assured Rick Fairbairn, chairman of the North Okanagan Regional District Board and electoral area D representative. There is some concern about the breakup of the Vernon-based program that served the electoral areas and surrounding communities – including Coldstream, Armstrong, Spallumcheen, Enderby and Lumby. However a number of councils decided to pull out, leading to the collapse of the program. “This is a little cheaper,” Fairbairn said of the Red Cross deal. With the end to the inter-municipal program, the city's emergency fees will be more costly, said Vernon director Catherine Lord. “They had been offered (service with the city),” Lord said. “But with the agreement expiring, the fees are going up.”

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