The auditor general for local government examined the District of Port Edward and sought more formalized roles for staff.

Auditor puts Port Edward under microscope

The district was examined by the auditor general for local government and the report suggested the crew formalize their roles

The District of Port Edward was put under the microscope by the auditor general for local government and the resulting report suggested the small crew formalize their roles to improve its human resources.

With 10 district employees to serve a population of approximately 470 residents the report found that human resources practices are decentralized, informal, yet generally sufficient. However, with the looming potential that the liquefied natural gas industry may develop on the North Coast, the auditor general made some recommendations to prepare for possible future growth.

The planned performance audit took place in the fall 2016 where auditors spent a week in the district examining the daily operations of the community. The focus of the audit was on “managing the inherent risks of limited human resources within small local governments.”

Five municipalities were selected, Fernie, Nelson, Squamish, Tofino and Port Edward, which was the smallest of them all. The report found that the district has no dedicated human resources capacity but despite this it has mitigated risks despite its limitations.

Chief administrative officer Bob Payette will take on the recommendations starting with formalizing roles and cross-training staff.

“We have financial processes that we need to formalize procedurally and we’ll probably tackle that first. The concept is, if our finance officer in the north gets sick for longer than a couple weeks then we’ll want to make sure that whoever is available can do the job, and we’ll cross-train,” Payette said.

Payette said they are looking at their human resource practices to make sure that they’re able to handle the workload of administering the industry in town.

“We want to make sure we’re following the best practices as possible because if LNG hits we’re going to be exponentially busy.”

Port Edward’s population has been in decline since the 1990s, but that will change, at least temporarily, once construction begins on the AltaGas propane terminal. By March or April the district expects work camps for 200 people to be up and running.

The auditor also recommended that Port Edward consider shared service arrangements with its neighbour to address capacity challenges that comes with industrial growth. Mayor Dave MacDonald said the district has shared agreements with Prince Rupert, listing the fire department, bus services, IT support and garbage disposal.

“Is there more we can share? Probably, but Port Ed is not busy enough. But if we got busier then that is something we could look at,” Payette said adding that they could look into sharing building permit inspection services.


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

Just Posted

Totem pole, first in 30 years, raised in Prince Rupert

The memorial pole was a two year project lead by local carver Lyle Campbell

Heart of our city – Fighting for the road to recovery

World champion kick-boxer wins at Trinity House recovery program

Tour recognizes Prince Rupert’s rich labour history

Epic story of the Battle of Kelly’s Cut put Rupert on the labour radar

Coastal GasLink breaks ground on meter station in Kitimat

Meter station marks final point on pipeline that stretches from Northeast B.C.

B.C. records new COVID-19 death, 85 more cases; Horgan calls on celebrity help

This brings the total number of active confirmed cases to 531 across the province

Horvat scores 2 as Vancouver Canucks beat Blues 5-2 in NHL playoff opener

Game 2 in best-of-seven series goes Friday night

Funding to support early reclamation work at acid leaking B.C. mine

B.C. Government committing up to $1.575 million for Tulsequah Chief Mine site

Teachers to get 2 extra days to prepare for students’ return, now set for Sept. 10

Students will first start with orientation and learn rules of COVID-19 classroom policies

High-volume littering at Cape Scott draws ire from hiking groups

Popular Vancouver Island hiking spot not closing, but frustration about crowding grows

SFU to drop ‘Clan’ varsity team name

The ‘Clan’ name is shortened from ‘Clansmen,’ and was introduced roughly 55 years ago

New Tory leader must build a strong team in Commons and for the campaign: Scheer

Scheer marked his final day in the House of Commons today as leader of the Opposition

B.C. to hire 500 more COVID-19 contact tracers ahead of fall

Contract tracers add an ‘extra layer’ in the fight against the novel coronavirus

Feds commit $305M in additional funds for Indigenous communities during COVID-19

Money can be used to battle food insecurity and support children and mental health

Most Read