CBT recommits to Community Initiatives Program

By David F. Rooney

The Columbia Basin Trust plans to commit $634,534.28 a year until 2017 to Community Initiatives Program/Affected Areas Program in the Columbia Shuswap Regional District. That includes annual funding of $263,672.10 for Revelstoke projects and $87,812.22 for programs in the CSRD’s Area B.

Golden will receive $160,879.07 and Area A will receive $122,170.89 in funding. In total, the CBT will spend almost $3.6 million on CIP/AAP projects across the Basin.

“As we finish the third year of a three-year agreement, we look to the next five years of supporting Basin communities with this $3.6 million annual program that allows communities to shape their own futures by identifying priority projects in their area,” CBT Chairman Garry Merkel said in a statement issued earlier this week. “The longer time period will give partners and communities confidence in sustained funding, and the new minimum will provide additional resources to some small and remote communities.”

In June 2010, the CBT board conditionally recommitted to the CIP/AAP for a period of five years with funding remaining at current levels except for implementation of a $30,000 minimum (based on combined CIP and AAP funding) per incorporated municipality, regional district area or First Nations Band, pending consultation with delivery partners.

The programs are CBT’s oldest support projects identified as priorities within Basin communities. All areas receive CIP funding, while those most affected by dam construction under the Columbia River Treaty — those around the Arrow, Kinbasket, Duncan and Koocanusa reservoirs — also receive AAP funding.