NDP house leader Mike Farnworth (left) and B.C. legislature speaker Darryl Plecas are among the few MLAs present in person as the B.C. legislature reopens, June 22, 2020. (Hansard TV)

B.C. legislature resumes with most MLAs, votes ‘virtual’

John Horgan NDP extending cabinet’s emergency powers

The B.C. legislature has resumed the sitting it abruptly ended in March, with the NDP government moving to give cabinet the authority to extend COVID-19 pandemic measures beyond the provincial state of emergency.

Premier John Horgan and Attorney General David Eby were among a handful of MLAs physically present in the chamber June 22, which has been modified for virtual votes and debate with seats removed and large video screens installed.

Eby introduced three bills, one of which gives the B.C. cabinet authority to extend pandemic-related orders by up to a year. Specific orders already in place can be extended by 45 to 90 days after a provincial state of emergency is ended, which would automatically end them under the existing Emergency Management Act.

“This legislation will support the delicate work of formalizing and unwinding emergency measures relied on by British Columbians during the pandemic in a way that recognizes that the impacts of COVID-19 may still be felt for an extended period after the state of emergency is over,” Eby said.

RELATED: No surge in pandemic pot purchasing, B.C. sales show

RELATED: Canada’s economy recovering, Conference Board says

Eby also introduced amendments that allow wills to be witnessed virtually, making permanent an option that was introduced under the provincial state of emergency for COVID-19. Another bill gives the Insurance Corp. of B.C. authority to issue licence decals valid for longer than one year, or non-expiring.

Jobs Minister Bruce Ralston also introduced changes to the Mines Act that allow appointment of a new “chief permitting officer” to operate separately from the chief inspector of mines.


@tomfletcherbc
tfletcher@blackpress.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

BC legislatureCoronavirus

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

Just Posted

Missing Richmond man last seen in Chilliwack

Shawn Johnson last seen on June 30 on Main Street

Double homicide investigation leads Vancouver police to Eagle Landing

A VPD forensics unit was in Chilliwack Saturday collecting evidence connected to East Van murders

Abbotsford man wins $1 million in Lotto 6/49 draw

Kenneth Giffen wins prize after deciding to stop in Agassiz gas station after fishing trip

Overnight paving work near Abbotsford could snarl highway traffic

Fraser Valley motorists told to expect detours as the paving work continues until July 14 at 5 a.m.

Provincial COVID-19 data can now be used for B.C. to prepare for a second wave

In the past week, B.C. has seen a slight spike in daily test-positive case counts

B.C. records 62 new COVID-19 cases, two deaths since Friday

Province has just over 200 active cases

Hotel rooms for B.C. homeless too hasty, NDP government told

Businesses forced out, but crime goes down, minister says

Wage subsidy will be extended until December amid post-COVID reopening: Trudeau

Trudeau said the extension will ‘give greater certainty and support to businesses’

B.C. government prepares for COVID-19 economic recovery efforts

New measures after July consultation, Carole James says

COVID-19 exposure on Vancouver flight

The Air Canada 8421 flight travelled from Kelowna to Vancouver on July 6

Double homicide investigation leads Vancouver police to Chilliwack

A VPD forensics unit was in Chilliwack Saturday collecting evidence connected to East Van murders

VIDEO: Former Abbotsford resident giving away $1,000

Langley native Alex Johnson creates elaborate treasure hunt to give away cash

Tree planters get help with COVID-19 protective measures

Ottawa funds extra transportation, sanitizing for crews

UPDATE: Abbotsford shooting victim was alleged ‘crime boss,’ according to court documents

Jazzy Sran, 43, was believed to have been smuggling cocaine across the border

Most Read