The following were among matters on the agenda or discussed at the Nov. 27 APEGGA Council Meeting in Edmonton.
Code of Ethics Review
Council received an interim report on work by the Code of Ethics Subcommittee of the Practice Standards Committee. The Subcommittee Chair, Charlie Weir, P.Eng., and David Watt, P.Eng., presented a draft version of an updated Code of Ethics. It contains five main rules of conduct, amplified by a further 45 sub-rules. The five major rules represent a reduction from the 11 listed in the existing code. The draft also has a shorter preamble. The subcommittee’s efforts received a favorable response from Councillors and the subcommittee was encouraged to continue its work.
Council was informed of correspondence from Alberta Public Works, Supply and Services Minister Stan Woloshyn regarding a delay in granting an exemption on requiring engineers to obtain municipal business licences. The exemption had been inadvertantly omitted when the Municipal Government Act was revised in 1995.
The government had intended to include the exemption in a Miscellaneous Statutes Amendment Act, but all-party support was not achieved. Consequently, an exemption for engineers requiring municipal business licences will be included in the Professional Statutes Amendment Act when it is introduced in the spring.
Wind Power Conference
Councillor Dale Miller, P.Eng., reported on his attendance at a Nov. 13 meeting in Pincher Creek, held as a prelude to the major international environmental conference in Kyoto, Japan, in December. The Pincher Creek meeting, in part, examined development of a National Wind Energy Program. Council consensus was that it is important for APEGGA to be represented at gatherings such as the one in Pincher Creek and that APEGGA supports development of new technologies, but that the Association not pronounce itself either for or against a national policy on wind power at this time.
APEGGA staff will examine whether the Association should get involved in examining supply and demand for engineers and geoscientists related to stepped-up economic activity in Alberta.
Past President Fred Otto, P.Eng, PhD, reported that he had met with senior provincial officials in October, and had a another meeting scheduled for December in connection with ASET’s requests to have its members recognized for a specified scope of licensure.
Municipal Task Force
The terms of reference of a Joint APEGGA/CEA Task Force have been approved by Council. The terms of reference build upon the existing 1992 memorandum of agreement between the two associations. The task force is working on ways for the two associations to foster positive relationships between themselves, on the one hand, and municipalities and municipal organizations, on the other.
Gordon Williams, P.Geol., PhD, reported on developments relating to the newly created Canadian Council of Professional Geoscientists (see also article page 8). Dr. Williams noted that, at a Nov. 10 CCPG board meeting, he was appointed chair of the CCPG. As a result, APEGGA Council will have to select a replacement for Dr. Williams as the Alberta director to CCPG.
Councillor Alice Payne, P.Geol., advised Council of a recommendation from the CSPG/CSEG/APEGGA Liaison Committee that the concept of a Specified Scope of Practice be broadened so that such a designation could be approved whether or not an individual were a member of ASET. The Specified Scope of Practice is a concept developed by APEGGA but not yet implemented. Under it, APEGGA would license qualified individuals to practice independently within their specific area of expertise even though, based on their educational qualifications, they would not otherwise be entitled to full professional membership.
Council has supported the signing of a revised memorandum of agreement between the Canadian Council of Professional Engineers (CCPE) and the Canadian Council for Human Resources in the Environmental Industry (CCHREI), a national organization proposing to register and certify all environmental practitioners (other than engineers) in the country. APEGGA and CCPE plan to monitor CCHREI’s activities on an on-going basis.
Subject to some further minor revisions, editing and adjustments, Council has approved publication of a revised guideline on Selecting Engineering, Geological and Geophysical Firms. The guideline was prepared by a Practice Standards Committee subcommittee and adds to previously approved changes to the guideline relating to consulting services by addressing other consulting relationships, such as design-build, alliances and partnering.
Fred Otto, P.Eng., PhD, Alberta director the Canadian Council of Professional Engineers, reported on the establishment of a CCPE International Affairs Committee, as a subcommittee of the Canadian Engineering Qualification Board. CCPE already is involved in a number of international protocols, including the Washington Accord (on equivalency of accreditation systems), NAFTA (re. provision of engineering services), and the Hong Kong Working Group (mobility on the basis of professional registrations).
“A strong case can be made that Canada needs to be involved if we are to influence standards and promote our model for governance of the professions in the global community,” Dr. Otto noted.
He also informed Council that CCPE expects projected revenues of $3.8 million in 1998 and expenses of $3.2 million. CCPE applies a per capita levy through each of its constituent associations. The levy per full paying member will stay at $8.65 in 1998.
First Vice President Dan Motyka, P.Eng., will lead preparations for a Council strategic planning meeting, scheduled for early May. Communication is expected to be a major topic on the agenda.