Thursday Presentations

"The Times are A Changin'" for natural resource professionals throughout BC.

Presentations on Thursday will examine the changes professionals must be aware of in governance, regulation of firms,  practice rights and competencies and compliance.

8:50 - 9:45 am 

The Implementation of the Professional Governance Act

The Professional Governance Act received royal assent on November 27, 2018 and is now law however many of its provisions have not yet been proclaimed. .  The new legislation applies to following five natural resources sector professions, and is expected to replace the respective existing governing Acts by fall 2020:

  • Applied Science Technologists & Technicians of BC (Applied Science Technologists and Technicians Act)
  • Association of BC Forest Professionals (Foresters Act)
  • BC Institute of Agrologists (Agrologists Act)
  • College of Applied Biology (College of Applied Biology Act)
  • Engineers and Geoscientists of BC (Engineers and Geoscientists Act)

Some sections of the Professional Governance Act have now been implemented, including the composition and nomination of registrants to Council and Committees..   Most of the other provisions will be proclaimed on or before November 16th, 2020 other than provisions respecting regulation of firms. It is as yet unclear as to whether practice rights will be granted to the profession in 2020 or at a later date. .  Paul Craven, Superintendent of Professional Governance will discuss the sections of the Professional Governance Act currently implemented, and how the Office plans to move forward to full implementation of the Act. 

Paul Craven, Superintendent of Professional Governance  

Paul Craven has 15 years of experience serving at senior levels in the B.C. public service. From 2013 to 2019 he was an executive director at the B.C. Environmental Assessment Office where he led the strategic services and compliance division to administer the Environmental Assessment Act. He was responsible for the branch that ensures proponents are in compliance with the act through administrative and field inspections, as well as through investigations and enforcement of major projects. Craven also led policy development at EAO and led the team responsible for the recent revitalization of environmental assessment process resulting in the passage of the new Environmental Assessment Act in 2018.

Prior to this time, he served as executive director of federalism and Canadian intergovernmental policy at the Intergovernmental Relations Secretariat in the Office of the Premier. He is a lawyer by training and began his career as an associate at a major Vancouver law firm where he practiced commercial and business litigation in a wide range of areas, including professional regulation, administrative and corporate law.

10:00 - noon 

Practice Rights for Agrology Professionals

Implementation of practice rights will ensure that all persons providing agrology services within the province are subject to the same level of educational, professional development, practice standards, code of ethics and discipline procedures. This will ensure increased and continued competency and professionalism thereby protecting the public interest of the citizens of British Columbia.   As practice rights will restrict, to a degree, the practice of agrology exclusively to members of BCIA, it is necessary that the definition of agrology and of each area of practice be clarified and confirmed. Enforcement of practice rights would be impossible unless a clear definition of each activity is implemented.

In early 2020, the Professional Governance Act working group, composed of agrologists from each region of BC, was established to make recommendations regarding practice rights for agrologists and develop a strategy on moving forward.  Representatives from this working group will present their recommendations for discussion.

1:30 - 3:00 pm

BC Institute of Agrologists Annual General Meeting

3:15 - 4:30 pm

Regulation of Firms under the Professional Governance Act : White Paper on Regulation of Multi-Profession Firms

Under the Professional Governance Act, regulation of firms is intended, in part, to address potential conflicts between employees and their employers, by making employers legally responsible for the professional work provided by their employees.   Peter Mitchell, P.Eng. will discuss the two-year pilot project on regulation of firms which is currently being conducted by the Engineers and Geoscientists BC.

Peter Mitchell, P.Eng. –  Director-Professional Practice, Standards and Development, Engineers and Geoscientists BC    

Peter Mitchell is responsible for developing and directing proactive quality assurance programs addressing members' practice standards at Engineers and Geoscientists BC, including the Practice Review Program, the development and adoption of practice guidelines, and the Organizational Quality Management Program. In addition he is in charge of the regulation of firms program being implemented under the authority of the Professional Governance Act. Peter provides staff support to numerous committees, task forces and boards dealing with professional practice issues and directs the association’s response to various government legislation impacting the practice of professional engineering and geoscience in BC.