Recovery Grants Support Jobs in Rural Communities
People living in rural communities throughout the province will soon benefit from B.C. government grants that will support new jobs and economic opportunities to help them recover from the impacts of COVID-19.
As part of B.C.’s $10-billion COVID-19 response, grants totalling $20 million for 38 rural projects have been approved. These include
In Cariboo Region:
- Cariboo Regional District, Anahim Lake Airport Runway Improvements, $300,000: correct terrain slopes so the airport can continue to support tourism, business, medevac and emergency flights.
- Dunster Community Forest Society, Inventory Storage, $88,000: expand woodworking building to air dry lumber, store finished materials and increase production abilities.
- Fraser Headwaters Alliance, Historic Goat River Trail Upgrade, $202,924: construct elevated supports for cable car operation to ease hiker crossing, reroute western portion of trail.
Regional District of Fraser-Fort George and Powder King Mountain Resort
- Regional District of Fraser-Fort George, Pine Pass Adventure Center – Highway 97 Pine Pass, $1 million: new facility at base of mountain to allow expansion of shoulder and summer season activities.
- Gold Rush Cycling Club, Wonderland Trail Network Expansion, $87,520: expansion of trail network.
- Williams Lake Cycling Club, Williams Lake Mountain Bike Trail Upgrade Project, $253,085: construct machine-built downhill mountain bike trail and improved uphill route on Fox Mountain trail network.
Beaverdell, Greenwood, Midway, Narmata and Rock Creek:
- Thompson Okanagan Tourism Association, Kettle Valley Rail (KVR) Trail Improvement, $450,000: infrastructure improvements and advance implementation of the KVR master plan.
- South Shuswap Chamber of Commerce, Establishment of Economic Development and Business Support Hub, $82,000: support establishment of year-round hub and visitor centre to address lack of commercial space and improve broadband access.
- The Clearwater Ski Club, Clearwater Ski Lodge Renewal Project, $250,000: build tourism as an economic pillar and establish the area as an attractive and affordable year-round event and wedding destination.
- Lumby and District Chamber of Commerce, MAKE IT LOCAL, $9,750: inventory of storefronts and opportunities to make local products or expand existing production.
- Osoyoos Airport Development Society, Osoyoos Airport Expansion and Improvements, $524,174: safety, service and site improvements.
This response by the Provincial Government also includes StrongerBC: BC’s Economic Recovery Plan, which protects people’s health and livelihoods while supporting businesses and communities.
“We are working to support economic recovery in every corner of the province, so families and communities can get through the pandemic and start looking towards their futures again,” said Premier John Horgan. “These shovel-ready projects will put people living in rural British Columbia back to work immediately and support building diversified economies in their communities.”
Rural Economic Recovery (RER) program grants will support communities recovering from the economic impacts of COVID-19 and build their economies for the future.
“Our government is connecting communities with the resources they need to create jobs and new economic opportunities,” said Katrine Conroy, Minister of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development. “This has been a challenging year for British Columbians, and the remoteness of some rural communities can mean additional challenges. These grants will have a positive impact as communities manage through COVID-19 and beyond.”
Funding for Indigenous government and organization, local government and not-for-profit projects will support immediate job creation through construction. Upgrades to municipal or Indigenous-owned industrial parks, airport expansions, marine access facilities, destination trail networks and improvements to rural-based mountain resorts will also help rural communities grow and diversify their economies.
“StrongerBC is about building an economic recovery that includes everyone, and it is vital our rural communities remain vibrant,” said Ravi Kahlon, Minister of Jobs, Economic Development and Innovation. “The RER program is one part of our commitment to spark job growth and help build stronger communities throughout B.C.”
The RER funding is part of $100 million of restart money administered through the provincially funded Community Economic Recovery Infrastructure Program (CERIP). CERIP provides fully funded provincial grants to support economic resilience, tourism, heritage and urban and rural economic development projects in communities impacted by COVID-19.
Stronger BC: BC’s Economic Recovery Plan: https://news.gov.bc.ca/files/StrongerBC_BCs-Economic-Recovery-Report.pdf
Community Economic Recovery Infrastructure Program: https://www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/economic-recovery/cerip