Province to release audit evaluating disaster response in Alberta

CALGARY — Alberta’s UCP government is releasing its auditor general report Tuesday, focused on how to better respond to natural disasters such as tornadoes, flooding, and wildfires. 

The province will release findings in a report titled Provincial Hazard Assessment for Emergency Management, which will evaluate the effectiveness of Alberta’s hazard assessment system.

A provincial hazard assessment system is expected to help inform the government in making province-wide decisions around funding, policies and other planning and mitigation strategies. 

The report is set to be tabled by Joseph Schow, MLA for Cardston-Siksika and chair of the Standing Committee on Legislative Offices.

It will be available online at 10 a.m. 

All of this comes as provincial emergency officials are working to also understand the extent of disaster risk involved in the Devil’s Head wildfire, just west of Calgary. 

The blaze, which is considered to be under control, began on Sept. 4, about five kilometres north of Lake Minnewanka near Banff National park after a campfire was left abandoned. 

Smoke flared up again on Monday as the fire has now burned 697 hectares of land. 

Auditor general review of Alberta’s COVID-19 response 

In a separate review, Alberta’s auditor general, Doug Wylie, will focus on public accountability for the extra $500 million the province has spent on the COVID-19 pandemic crisis. 

Wylie was tasked with the job back in May to look at the value of investments made and inform the province of lessons learned to best respond to similar crises in the future. 

“Like other Auditors General across the country, we are paying close attention to the government’s response to the pandemic crisis,” Wylie said. 

“As it involved a significant investment by the Government of Alberta, and had a significant impact on the lives of all Albertans, it is something we examine.”

Initial findings and observations will be reported to the Legislative Assembly sometime this fall.

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