Monday, March 18, 2024

Premier, Northwest NDP MLA's gathered in Terrace Friday for NWBCRBA celebration

Premier David Eby and a large volume of invited guests
at the official announcement for funding for the NWBCRBA
on Friday in Terrace

Friday was full of speechmaking, statement publishing, photos and social media messaging, with Premier David Eby taking part in what was the official presentation on the funding to come for the Northwest British Columbia Resource Benefits Association.

The event hosted at Coast Mountain College in Terrace, provided some additional talking points towards the Budget Announcement of February 22nd of the 250 million dollars to be distributed to 21 Northwest local governments over the next five years.

“By working together, we are ensuring people in northwest B.C. have the services and infrastructure they count on like roads, hospitals, water and housing. We are also making sure these communities can benefit from resource development in their region, and the pressures it brings. Everyone in B.C. deserves stability in their jobs and their communities today, tomorrow and for years to come.” --  Premier David Eby

The Friday statement noted of the path that led to the Budget announcement and the focus for the initiative.

The new one-time funding builds on a memorandum of understanding (MOU) signed in September 2022 between the Province and the Northwest BC Resource Benefits Alliance to help strengthen their partnership. The MOU commits to supporting local governments throughout northwestern B.C. It outlines common goals, sets out principles for future engagement and builds shared knowledge of the unique challenges faced in the region.

Among the list of many with statements coming out of the Friday gathering were MLA Jennifer Rice and Prince Rupert Mayor Herb Pond.

“This announcement is the result of so much intergovernmental co-operation and persistence, with passionate advocates on all levels. This funding will equip local governments in the northwest with additional resources to promote sustainable economic growth and will help build essential infrastructure required to sustain small communities and facilitate major projects in the area.” -- North Coast MLA Jennifer Rice

“This agreement just makes sense. We are an alliance of small remote communities servicing some of the largest industrial projects in the province. Investing back into our communities a portion of the revenues generated in the region goes a long way to aligning interests around projects that benefit every British Columbian.” -- Prince Rupert Mayor Herb Pond

Once the official work was out of the way in Terrace, the news was quickly relayed through a number of social media profiles from the participants on the day.

Of the local officials from the Northwest, Terrace Mayor Sean Bujtas provided for the most background on the day's theme.

While the day was another opportunity to celebrate the work that went into the successful conclusion to the negotiations, there was no real new information shared on Friday.

Still be announced is how the 21 members will divide up the provincial money and when the first allotment of funding will make its way into the hands of the Finance offices for the communities.

Absent from the festivities of the full on NDP Government event for the day was the MLA who represents the Skeena riding,  BC United MLA Ellis Ross.

Some past notes on the NWBCRBA can be reviewed here.

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