THOMAS KERVIN PHOTO Port Hardy council agreed to direct staff to apply to the BC Rural Dividend grant program to fund a boatyard and haul-out facility feasibility study and authorize district funding of up to $15,000 be included in the district’s 2020-2024 financial plan.

New boatyard and haul-out facility could be on the horizon for the District of Port Hardy

The BC Rural Dividend 2019/2020 application process will commence on June 15, 2019.

Could the District of Port Hardy be getting a new boatyard and haul-out facility in the future?

At the district’s last council meeting on June 25, council agreed to have staff apply to the BC Rural Dividend grant program to fund a boatyard and haul-out facility feasibility study and authorize that district funding of up to $15,000 be included in the district’s 2020-2024 financial plan.

According to a staff report from Chief Administrative Officer Allison McCarrick, “The BC Rural Dividend 2019/2020 application process will commence on June 15, 2019 with an application deadline of August 15, 2019. Projects must demonstrate that the project will be completed within two years from the project start date.”

The BC Rural Dividend program is to assist small rural communities across BC with populations less than 25,000. The program is open to local governments, First Nation communities, and Not-for-profit organizations. An eligible applicant is limited to one project development application and one single or partnership application.

McCarrick noted that “Application decisions are expected within six months after the application deadline.”

According to the staff report, objectives of the BC Rural Dividend program are as such:

1. Increase community resilience and support economic development and diversification through enabling rural communities to implement their vision for long-term vibrancy, as well as prepare and respond to economic disruptions;

2. Support Indigenous communities and organizations to develop and lead traditional and/or

emerging economic opportunities, including in the natural resource sector;

3. Strengthen the capacity of small and remote communities to address unique challenges in

realizing their economic potential; and

4. Assist rural communities to pursue innovative economic opportunities that support climate mitigation and/or adaptation for a cleaner future for BC.

McCarrick’s report stated that “The District will apply under the Community and Economic Development stream which is described as projects that help rural communities plan to build a foundation for economic development, economic resilience and/or growth, or improve community vibrancy. Projects that implement strategies or initiatives to support economic development, resilience, diversification or growth.”

If awarded the grant funds, the project would start early January 2020, with a completion date of no later than Dec. 31, 2020.

McCarrick noted it is “the district’s intention to involve our neighbouring First Nation communities to have input and take part in this study.”

Financial implications for the project are as follows:

Rural dividend funding – $60,000;

District of Port Hardy funding – $11,500;

District of Port Hardy in-kind – $3,500;

Total project – $75,000.

After voting, council passed a motion to authorize the submission of an application to the BC Rural Dividend Program for the District of Port Hardy Boatyard and Haul-out Feasibility Study, and that council support this project through its duration.

Council also agreed for the authorization of up to $15,000 to be included in the District’s 2020-2024 Financial Plan to fund its financial contribution towards this project.


@NIGazette
editor@northislandgazette.com

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