Friday, April 14, 2017

Council to seek answers on Canada 150 Grant distributions

Councillor Cunningham and Mayor Brain
discuss the lack of successful grant
applications in the Canada 150 roll out
The delivery of Canada 150 grant funding for a number of neighbouring communities, while Prince Rupert apparently was shut out has raised the ire of a few members of Prince Rupert City Council.

Councillor Barry Cunningham first raised the issue at Tuesday evening's Special Council session, asking that Council direct staff to forward a correspondence to the funding agency responsible for the  grant allocations, to seek some answers as to how Prince Rupert was not offered at least one grant.

"It was brought to my attention today that the Canada 150 Anniversary grants have been dispersed in the province of B.C. There was 221 oI them given out. And, Port Ed got one, Terrace got four, Kitimat got one and Prince Rupert got none. Although I believe there were six or seven grant applications put in. I would like Council to give staff direction to write a letter to find out the reasoning for that. Cause I can't see how every community around us got a grant and we got zero" 

Mayor Brain, picked up the torch on the theme promising to pick up a pen as well, noting that he too had just heard of the grant situation (perhaps both members of Council discovered the story here?) and he was as surprised as Mr. Cunningham at the lack of any funding being directed towards Prince Rupert.

"I just heard about that today as well ... these aren't huge grants, between ten and sixty or seventy five thousand dollar grants, every community across the province  pretty well gets a grant. We had many community organizations here apply, the Special events, the Museum, the City applied. To not receive one grant for Canada 150 honestly, really does baffle me  ... It's a bit perplexing that our neighbouring community of Terrace gets four grants, but we don't get, I mean this is Canada 150 I don't think that it's any sweat off anyone's back to have at least one grant ...  I'm not sure how people in this community who made those applications weren't  seen as one grant  to be applied"

BC Museums will be receiving a letter
from Mayor Brain shortly inquiring about
how they allocated Canada 150 grants
To seek further information on the issue, the Mayor will personally compose a letter to the BC Museums Association to  express the city's disappointment at the nature of the funding allocation and to seek some answers as to how the selections were made, and to make note of the city's absence on the list of those that found success.

As we noted on the blog last week, the Canada 150 grants were distributed to a number of applicants from the Northwest and Haida Gwaii, with Port Edward's North Pacific Cannery Historical Site among those that found success, with Port Edward receiving 75,000 dollars towards renovation of the Working Dock at the North Pacific location.

What appears to have stuck in the craw of Council however, is the unusually large amount of success that Terrace found, having secured four grants from the available pool of money, while Prince Rupert was left off the list completely.

Should the Mayor require more research for his composition of concern, the full roll call of successful applications for the entire province can be reviewed here.

The theme of the grant discussion is expanded on our Council Timeline feature here.

You can review Council's talking points on the issue from the Council video, it starts at the 29 minute mark.

More items related to City Council Discussions can be found on our archive page.

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