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New Surrey Police Board no substitute for referendum and public input: Councillor Linda Annis



Surrey, B.C. Councillor Linda Annis is congratulating the members of the new Surrey police board for wanting to serve the community, but says the board is no substitute for a referendum on policing. The board is meeting today for the first time.

“I always applaud anyone who wants to serve the community, but we could have had this board with the RCMP, and frankly the board is no substitute for a referendum that gives the people of Surrey the final say on who will police our city,” said Annis. “The entire police transition process continues to ignore the people of Surrey and with the mayor as chair of the board, I expect the lack of transparency to continue.”

Annis said policing is the single biggest budget item for the city, and the fact that residents have been completely left out of the process is frustrating and dividing the community.

“The transition budget tops $129 million, money we don’t have, and a police force that more and more residents don’t want,” noted Annis. “Board members can see the frustration right across the community in the lawn signs going up across the city and the nearly 50,000 signatures on the petition supporting the RCMP. To ignore the community is completely tone deaf and no way to start a city police force.”

Annis also believes that all of the board members should have come from the community.

“We have nearly 600,000 people in Surrey, surely we could have found nine people from our city to sit on the board, rather than including people who don’t call Surrey home,” Annis added.

Annis said she is also disappointed that the provincial government has ignored the concerns of Surrey voters throughout the transition. “The province could insist on a referendum, instead they are standing back and watching as Doug McCallum and his remaining Safe Surrey councillors completely disregard Surrey residents,” added Annis.

Surrey604 is an online magazine and media outlet based in Surrey, BC. Through writing, video, photography, and social media, we secure an intimate reach to the public. We promote local events and causes.

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Civic Distinction Awards 2020 Nominations Are Now Open



The Surrey Civic Distinction Awards 2020 nominations are now open.

The 2020 Civic Distinction Awards (formerly City Awards) are awards of excellence that acknowledge business and community leaders who have made a major contribution to the City of Surrey in their respective fields. By recognizing their work, these awards foster a culture of excellence in Surrey and highlight the people and projects that are leading the way. The award recipients will be announced in early December 2020.

These awards are held every four years and include the following Award Categories: Beautification and Enhancement Award, Design Award, Environmental Award, Heart Award, Arts and Heritage Award, Mayor’s Choice Award and Sport Tourism Award.

Nominate a Surrey resident, organization, group or business at for an award of excellence and demonstrate your civic pride by recognizing outstanding projects that positively impact the City of Surrey.

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City of Surrey launches new website at



Surrey, BC – The City of Surrey has launched its new website at with many enhanced customer features, including easier to find content, better connections to MySurrey accounts, and improved navigation and menu with a vibrant new look.

“This is an exciting next step for the City of Surrey as we continue our focus on providing exceptional services online,” said Mayor Doug McCallum. “The new website enables us to provide engaging and dynamic content to inform and better serve our residents. I invite you to explore and make full use of the services, features, and content at the new” is the City’s primary digital channel and source of information, receiving over 4 million visits in 2019. During COVID-19, has been an especially valued source of information, providing access to services for residents and businesses and demonstrating the importance of a continued shift and emphasis on digital communication and service delivery.

Key features of the new website include:

  • Citizens will be more easily able to access website information and content, through a new, user-focused website menu and filters created in consultation with over 1,400 internal and external stakeholders.
  • New vibrant site design, focused on improving usability, including a focus on accessible design.
  • Connecting MySurrey Account into, enabling quicker access to MySurrey online services.

The project moves the City’s website onto a modern open-source Content Management System used by both public and private agencies globally. In 2018, staff commenced developing a new website featuring a new design and changing systems, laying the foundation for future website improvements.

For more information on the City’s new website and to give your feedback on the site’s new design, structure or features, visit

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Surrey Libraries Reopening All Branches With Limited Services



Surrey, BC – Beginning Wednesday, September 9, eight Surrey Libraries branches (City Centre, Cloverdale, Fleetwood, Guildford, Newton, Ocean Park, Semiahmoo, and Strawberry Hill) will reopen to the public for borrowing and returning materials, computer access, and picking upholds. Port Kells branch will offer curbside holds pick-up service, returns during library hours, and other staff-assisted services. Access inside the building is not available due to limited capacity.

Safety precautions in line with directions of the Provincial Health Officer and WorkSafeBC regulations have been implemented at all branches such as access to hand sanitizer, physical distancing signs, enforcing occupancy limits, erecting plexiglass barriers at service counters, frequent cleaning of high-touch surfaces, and enforcing a 72-hour quarantine for all returned library materials. To help contribute to a safe environment for everyone, visitors to the library are encouraged to wear a mask and are also asked to stay home if they have any symptoms of illness.

“The measured approach we have taken in reopening our public facilities has been done to ensure the health and safety for our library patrons and staff,” said Mayor Doug McCallum. “I would like to thank all of our Surrey Libraries patrons for their patience and our staff for their due diligence and care as we work through the COVID-19 pandemic.”

“While Surrey Libraries was able to quickly shift its focus to digital services and offer takeout service with the closure of the branches to help stop the spread of COVID-19, our community has been eager for the library branches to reopen,” said Neelam Sahota, chair of the Board of Trustees of Surrey Libraries. “We’re also eager to welcome our community back to the branches but with new guidelines and precautions to ensure the health and safety of our patrons and staff.”

Services available at all branches except Port Kells include: picking upholds and brief browsing of shelves to select material, computer access (45-minute limit), printing, self-checkout, washroom access, and book drops.

The following services will not be available: in-branch programming, reading or studying in the branch, scanning, booking meeting rooms, and toys and games for children. Patrons are asked to limit their time in the library (up to an hour) and for parents to remain with their children at all times.

Opening Hours at the Branches:

Tuesday, Thursday & Friday: 10 am to 6 pm
Wednesday: 10 am to 8 pm
Saturday: 10 am to 4 pm
Branches will be closed Sundays and Mondays

Port Kells hours will be the same as they were pre-pandemic:

Tuesday: 10 am to 12 pm
Wednesday: 1 pm to 5 pm, 6 pm to 8 pm
Thursdays & Fridays: 1 pm to 5 pm
Saturday: 12 pm to 5 pm

More information can be found on Surrey Libraries’ website,

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We Need to Open Surrey’s Aquatic Centres Now, Not Later: Councillor Linda Annis



Surrey, B.C. (August 11, 2020) | Councillor Linda Annis wants city hall to reopen Surrey’s pools and aquatic centres this month, rather than waiting until October which is the current plan.

“The mayor is keeping pools and aquatic centres closed to reduce the city’s deficit coming out of COVID-19, meanwhile the $129 million police transition budget remains untouched,” explained Annis.

“There is absolutely no reason not to get on with reopening our pools and aquatic centres. We can meet every COVID-19 requirement today. Instead, the mayor is keeping things closed and those savings are being used to help fund the police transition bill.”

Annis said that after pressure from the community the city recently moved to open more sheets of ice faster than originally planned, and she wants the same approach taken to Surrey’s pools.

“COVID cannot be an excuse any longer, there is no provincial health regulation prohibiting reopening with the right rules in place,” noted Annis. “So, staying closed isn’t a health decision, it’s a political decision by the mayor and his four councillors to save money and then spend those savings on the costly police transition bill.”

Annis said families, children, seniors and swimming and diving teams are all being left out in the cold, something that isn’t necessary.

“No city has better aquatic facilities than Surrey,” Said Annis. “We also have the staff and expertise to open our public facilities and keep them open safely. Community facilities are important to our quality of life and so we should get on with reopening them without delay. If city staff were given instructions to open we could be up and running in days, rather than waiting until October.”

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Seeds of Change Surrey partnership addresses COVID-19 food security challenges



SURREY, BC | In partnership with Seeds of Change Surrey, the City of Surrey is proud to support the launch of two new food security programs that will address the challenges many residents are facing as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Seeds of Change Surrey secured $77,000 in funding through the United Way of the Lower Mainland, in addition to in-kind support from the City of Surrey.

“Having access to affordable and healthy groceries during COVID-19 is essential for our community,” said Mayor Doug McCallum. “Together with the Seeds of Change Surrey organization, we are mobilizing resources to support residents in meeting their everyday food needs as well as building community food systems resilience. On behalf of Seeds of Change, I would like to thank the United Way for their support on such an important project.”

Seeds of Change Surrey will immediately implement two programs to address food access challenges:

Seeds of Change Surrey Food Box (SOX BOX)

SOX BOX will assist those requiring food support through a systems-level coordinated grocery box approach. Food will be sourced, sorted and distributed to community organizations throughout Surrey, targeting households in need through neighbourhood pick-up locations or community agency locations. This program is complementary to the existing emergency food programs in Surrey and adds the greatly needed inter-agency coordination required to see more residents fed.

Yard to Garden Program

Yard to Garden is an initiative that supports residents in transforming their yards into gardens with the goal of growing more food and feeding more people locally. Participants are provided the materials needed to volunteer in growing vegetables at home. When possible, gardeners are asked to donate their excess harvest to local food banks and community organizations. Materials provided to participants include soil, seeds, educational resources, and gardening support.

The first food box deliveries under the SOX BOX program took place on July 25, and the Yard to Garden program is scheduled to launch August 4, with registration opening on July 31, 2020. To ensure that the greatest impact can be realized over the growing season, and while the pandemic continues to effect residents’ income, Seeds of Change Surrey intends to have these programs in operation until October 2020, with the ability to extend as needed.

City staff continue to work closely with Seeds of Change Surrey to explore collaborative approaches that address building community food system resilience citywide for all Surrey residents.

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