Under the BC Rural Dividend, the Province is providing $29,643 in new grants to the east Kootenay region, MLA for Kootenay East Bill Bennett announced today.
$9,643 is being awarded to the Elk River Watershed Alliance to develop a feasibility study and implementation plan for a composting outhouse in Silver Springs.
The Fernie Chamber of Commerce will receive $10,000 to identify and evaluate existing infrastructure for modification into shared office space and business accelerator space, confirm demand and create a pro-forma business case.
Ktunaxa Nation Council Society is getting $10,000 for Ktunaxa Image, a project that will enhance the visibility and experience of the Ktunaxa tribe within the St. Eugene Golf Resort Casino, and other tourism-related businesses.
These are three of 77 successful project development grants. More than $756,000 is being awarded to eligible communities, First Nations and non-profit organizations under the three-year, $75-million BC Rural Dividend.
One hundred eligible project development applications were received from around the province during the second application intake.
The BC Rural Dividend is designed to help eligible rural communities diversify and strengthen their economies and contribute to their overall wellness and sustainability. The program will contribute to the strength and sustainability of small rural communities. It is a key commitment from the 2015 Union of British Columbia Municipalities convention and the Province’s Balanced Budget 2016.
Funding of $25 million per year, over three years, is available in four categories:
- community capacity building;
- workforce development;
- community and economic development; and
- business-sector development.
The BC Rural Dividend is one of the ways the B.C. government is taking action to strengthen rural communities. To support the needs of rural communities and grow local economies, the Province will be releasing a Rural Economic Development Strategy in the near future. The strategy will help rural communities leverage their strengths and build on the significant contributions they have made to B.C.’s economy, creating new economic opportunities and enriching the unique lifestyle advantages rural B.C. has to offer.
MLA for Kootenay East Bill Bennett –
“Thanks to the flexibility of the Rural Dividend Fund, we’re able to offer support tailored to our communities, supporting local businesses while also helping groups like the Ktunaxa Nation Council Society increase their community exposure. For all its recipients, the fund offers an immediate economic boost that can be used to invest in future successes—for the recipients and their communities as a whole.”
Minister of State for Rural Economic Development Donna Barnett –
“The BC Rural Dividend was developed to ensure that rural British Columbians can share in economic opportunities now and into the future. These investments will build capacity in rural communities and lay the foundation for future growth, economic certainty and opportunity for all British Columbians.”
Rural Dividend: www.gov.bc.ca/ruraldividend