In the few months since her arrival at the Regional District of Kootenay Boundary (RDKB), Bylaw Enforcement Officer Brandy Rafuse has enforced physical distancing rules during a pandemic, issued evacuation orders due to flooding, and been called upon to carry out regular enforcement work from Park Siding in the Kootenays to Big White in the Boundary and every point in between.
“I have to say that this job has been very busy and very interesting so far and I’ve really had no down-time since I put the uniform on,” said Rafuse.
“I think there is no better way to get to know a region than to just jump right in to the work.”
In March, the RDKB’s first-ever bylaw enforcement officer was quickly out in the community carrying out much-needed investigative and enforcement work related to zoning and other regional district bylaws.
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Then the pandemic arrived and local government bylaw officers were ordered by the Province of BC to enforce health orders related to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“I thought I’d be doing the usual tasks of following up on zoning bylaw complaints and making sure residents understand and are able to comply with the bylaws we already have in place, as well as working to build the new bylaw enforcement program here at the RDKB,” Rafuse said.
“I didn’t expect to be leading a team of emergency responders to deliver evacuation orders or to be educating people about the reasons for physical distancing to avoid infection from a virus.”
When she arrived in Trail to start working for the RDKB, Rafuse had already lived, traveled and worked across B.C. and Alberta and was well into her law enforcement and investigation career.
She has worked as a bylaw enforcement officer for the City of West Kelowna and as a correctional officer for the Province of BC.
She hails originally from B.C.’s North Coast where her family operated a sheep ranch, so it’s no surprise she has border collies. Rafuse also worked for close to two decades in Fort McMurray, Alberta.
“I want to publicly welcome Brandy to the RDKB. I know our staff team is already taking full advantage of her considerable skills and experience in bylaw enforcement, investigation and emergency management. We’re lucky to have her,” said Diane Langman, RDKB board chair.
Rafuse holds a diploma in Criminal Justice Policing as well as certificates in Bylaw Compliance, Enforcement and Investigative Skills; Investigation and Enforcement Skills; Emergency Management; and Addiction Studies.
She is designated as a Peace Officer Level 1 and 2 and is working to complete her bachelor’s degree in Professional Arts, Governance Law and Management.
“It was a great decision to hire Brandy,” said James Chandler, RDKB general manager of operations.
“The helpful thing about having already seen her at work this past spring is that I can unequivocally say we are extremely fortunate to have someone of her calibre in the region,” he added.
“She has already proven herself in quite a number of challenging and unusual work situations.”
For more information about RDKB bylaws or to report an infraction email email@example.com or call 1.800.355.7352.