The Minister of Justice for British Columbia, Suzanne Anton, toured both the streets and the skies of Port Hardy July 7.
Anton’s portfolio includes Emergency Management British Columbia (EMBC) which is tasked with protecting and improving public safety by providing advisories of active emergencies, disaster readiness and recovery, fire safety and death investigation.
Anton flew up to Port Hardy to see how the community had fared during the Tsulquate Fire and State of Emergency.
“The coordination in Port Hardy is remarkable,” said Anton.
Part of the Minister’s visit included a helicopter tour of the wildfire area.
“It was quite dramatic to see how close it was to the town, the peril to the water treatment plant,” Anton said.
“I wanted to thank people for the hard work that they did” and for the services that were provided “both fighting the fire and mobilizing the community in terms of keeping people safe,” Anton said.
“It was a very well-coordinated effort and successful,” she said.
The Minister said EMBC will cover the costs associated with evacuating people such as meals, hotel rooms, etc. The cost of the fire itself comes out of the Wildfire Management Branch budget.
“It’s going to be a very costly year,” said Anton.
Anton was elected to represent the riding of Vancouver-Fraserview in 2013 after a distinguished career at the municipal level. She was appointed Attorney General and Minister of Justice on June 10, 2013.
A lawyer and former prosecutor with the Criminal Justice Branch of B.C., Anton was elected to Vancouver City Council in 2005 and re-elected in 2008. Before becoming a city councillor, she served three years on the Vancouver Park Board.