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October 27, 2017 4:23 pm

“It’s like running a second city”- Mayor Lyn Hall

Wednesday, July 26, 2017 @ 5:56 AM

Prince George, B.C. – When Prince George was called upon to be the evacuation centre for  fire fleeing residents of the Cariboo,  the scope of that  request  and responsibility was  huge.

“It’s like running a second City”  says Prince George Mayor Lyn Hall.  “We’re running the City of Prince George, and now we’re running   a second city for all the folks who have come  from the Cariboo”

“You don’t think about it right away” says Mayor Hall, “when you start to realize the services that  will be required and  it’s things you didn’t anticipate.  So all of a sudden we realize we need health services in a central location,   transportation,  shuttles  from  CNC to UNBC,  shuttles to different locations,  the Red Cross, the Salvation Army,   First Nations.  One of our important  pieces,  was to have the Lheidli  T’enneh there, that was very important because  some of the evacuees  wanted that particular  connection with the Lheidli T’enneh, so that  First Nation’s component was big.  You just don’t  realize on a Saturday morning when  you’re in a level 3 emergency,   you don’t realize  all you have to do.”

Providing food and lodging  for the evacuees was  just the  beginning  says the Mayor, ” and it just grows from there,  how do you support these people from a transportation perspective, how do you make sure that you’re getting out to the RVers and making sure that they can use the sani- dump,   a mobile  sani- dump,  garbage collection,  we’re running a second City.”

Mayor Hall says  while there will be a briefing  and evaluation  of how Prince George handled the situation once the evacuees return home,  he says there was one issue that needs changed “The evacuees have been unbelievable, but the issues that was  talked  about,  not so much the initial registration because it takes time to   get all the information from them, but it was about the subsequent   process in order to give them more vouchers, they said  ‘boy it should would be nice if this was more streamlined and we  could do it  electronically’.”   The reissuing of the vouchers  meant  evacuees  had to line up  and go through the process again.  “That piece ( reissuing system)  is  one we would like to see changed, that’s probably the major one, it would loosen  up the need to have resources focused  for such  a long period of time, and a  lot  of resources,  in some cases, a hundred, or 120 people (needed)  to get  (evacuees) through that registration.” process .”

Mayor Hall says  there will be  something organized for all the volunteers who  gave their time  to assist the City in this  emergency  situation “Absolutely,  As you see,  perhaps a light at the end of the tunnel,  you start thinking about   how  do we thank them,  how do we thank the businesses , how do we thank  the individuals  who have  come forward?  Absolutely we are going to do something.”


The whole system is running as it needs to and is serving the evacuees. One of the major points of contention in how this system was/is run is that the City of PG wanted complete control and wanted to utilize PG Fire in a command and control structure. Many of the experts available from places like EMBC and PEP were barred from using their expertise to allow for the City to call the shots.

Does anyone know if there are garbage bins set up for evacuees?
Or is there collection going on on camping sites.
If yes where?

Mayor Gregorson from Vancouver should come and see how we deal with the homelessness..

Kudos to Mayor Hall for the big responsibility that was put on his shoulders

    That’s Mayor Greg Robertson.

    If the Vancouver Mayor were to come to Prince George to see how we deal with homelessness, be sure to take him to the area of Third and George. Be sure to do it in the early am so that he can see all the people sleeping on the sidewalks.

Must be tough, Mr Hall, having to actually earn your paycheck

    I’m not looking forward to finding out how much overtime we’ve paid out to the City employees.

A second city without sani dumps…

    and no bike lanes… :(

      in PG they are called sidewalks

There is no doubt that there was a lot of time and effort put into looking after these evacuee’s. All those involved were doing their best under the conditions that they had to work with.

There is no need to criticize how these people managed to get the job done. Fact of the matter is, with short notice, and not knowing how many people were coming this way, they did a stellar job.

The Mayor put in a lot of time, and effort to make this work, and to show that the City of Prince George can and will step up to the plate when necessary.

So lets give credit to those who actually got involved and helped to make this a success, rather than find fault with a few (not very important) issues.

    Well said Palopu. I agree wholeheartedly.

Thanks Palopu, well said! Frankly, the negative comments are totally unwarranted, methinks. Instead of critizing, perhaps doing or something positive to help these people would make you feel better. And yep, I’m totally on the Mayor’s side!

Did PG get anymore Cops on Duty since this has happened ?
After all — we did get all there “BAD PEOPLE” too.

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