Alberta Liberal MLA David Swann says that the government should legislate the timing of the release of post-disaster reports.
“Natural disasters are an unfortunately predictable occurrence in Alberta and reporting on them should be just as predictable,” says Swann. “Last night’s hastily arranged and awkward release of two independent reports on the Fort McMurray wildfire is something that should never be repeated.”
The comments come after it was revealed that the NDP government had not released a damning report into the Fort McMurray wildfire, which it received months earlier, until it was forced to do so as a result of the information being leaked to media.
Swann is calling on the NDP to amend the Municipal Government Act to require the public release of any such disaster event reports within a specified time period.
“The government amended the Municipal Government Act three times in as many years, yet chose not to make this a requirement,” says Swann. “There should be a specific amount of time, perhaps one year, in which all post-disaster reports must be released to the public.
“Leaving the release of disaster event reports up to those may be most embarrassed by its contents undermines the process and politicizes a matter of critical public importance.”