The District of 100 Mile is getting $235,000 from the provincial government for a Community Transition Capacity Project.
It’s one of over 150 projects receiving a combined nearly $14 million in grants to support economic development and recreational opportunities in rural communities.
“As someone who lives in a rural community, I know that rural B.C. is the backbone of our economy,” said Doug Donaldson, Minister of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development. “The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted every region of our province, and I’m glad our government is providing these one-time grants to lend extra help to people, communities and economies in rural B.C.”
Joanne Doddridge, director of economic development and planning for the District of 100 Mile House, says they’d originally applied for Rural Dividend funding to develop a plan and execute that plan follow local mill closures.
“The project was essentially for helping to transition through the downturn of the forest industry and there were many different project components to it.”
The Rural Dividend funding, however, was pulled to help communities affected by mill closures. Instead, they gave communities, including 100 Mile House, funding through the Community Support Grants Program. However, according to Doddridge, that ended up being a lesser amount of money.
Because they no longer expected to receive the funding they had initially applied to, they sought other funding for some components of the Community Transition Capacity Project.
“We were successful in getting some money to do some of those components. And so we’re working on some of those projects now.”
They were subsequently asked if they could still carry on in some fashion or form with the Community Transition Capacity Project, according to Doddridge. They said yes and are just in the process of reaccessing where things are at, she says.
“It’s not a very clear answer because we’re just sorting it all out right now. What can still be done under the original project scope? What kind of revisions do we need to do? And, how can we proceed with doing this project.”
Components might include things to attract and retain residents and investments, including marketing materials and communication, she says.
It might include specific sectors but those would first have to be identified through the planning side of the project.
Other nearby recipients include the Williams Lake Indian Band, who received $500,000 to build a cannabis production facility, the Village of Clinton, who received $10,000 for a marketing plan, the Cariboo Regional District, for low mobility trails (see past issues) and the Whispering Pines/Clinton Indian Band, who received $100,000 for a Tourism Accommodation Feasibility Study.