Community and Regional Economic Development - Northern SLRD

For more information, contact:

Jeannette Nadon
Communications & Grants Coordinator
Telephone: (604) 894-6371 ext. 239
Toll-free: 1-800-298-7753
Email: jnadon@slrd.bc.ca

May 7, 2014
District of Lillooet, Electoral Area A, Electoral Area B

Northern Economic Development & Intiatives (NEDI) Committee

2017 Plans & Highlights

  • The SLRD's application to Northern Development Initiative (NDI) Trust for a $50,000 Economic Development Capacity Building grant was approved. As in previous years, the 2017 grant, which comes in the form of a rebate, will be shared evenly beween Electoral Areas A & B, which are the only two electoral areas within NDI Trust's catchment zone. 
    • In Electoral Area A, funds will be allocated to the Bridge River Valley Community Association which intends to use the funds to retain contractors to work on various activities, including: implementing the "Live Where You Play" resident attraction strategy, providing support to entrepreneurs and investors, implementing tourism plans, continuing efforts to keep the Gold Bridge School open, and collecting data to support economic development (e.g. visitor economy modelling, updated asset inventories, etc.).
    • In Electoral Area B, funds will be allocated to the Lillooet Agriculture and Food Society (LAFS), and potentially other partners, to implement economic development-related recommendations from the SLRD Area B, Lillooet and St'át'imc Agricultural Plan and the CREATE Forum Report, including: implementing the 2016 Agri-Tourism Strategy, hosting workshops on the business of agriculture, improving communication and coordination between LAFS and St'át'imc agriculture projects, increasing awareness of the agriculture sector locally and in regional markets, and supporting efforts to improve regional distribution channels. 
  • The SLRD's application for a Business Façade Improvement grant through NDI-Trust was approved. The Program provides rebate funding of up to 50% of the cost of eligible improvements (to a maximum of $5,000 per building/project) to property and/or business owners in SLRD Electoral Areas A and B to renovate, restore or redesign commercial building façades and storefronts. Learn more here
  • Efforts to form a regionally-based and community-driven committee / working group to coordinate economic development in the northern SLRD and to explore the potential of creating a shared economic development service for the sub-region will continue in 2017.
  • The SLRD also intends to work with the District of Lillooet, northern St'át'imc, and interested regional stakeholders to explore the possibility of forming a Destination Management Organization (DMO) to guide tourism sector development in the northern SLRD / northern St'át'imc Territory. Forming a DMO was identified as a foundational action arising from the October 2016 CREATE Forum. Participants felt that a DMO could help to ensure that the tourism sector is developed in a way that recognizes St'át'imc Territory, produces shared benefits, and is culturally appropriate and ecologically sustainable. 

2016 Highlights

  • The District of Lillooet and SLRD were awarded $50,000 each from the Economic Development Capacity Building program of Northern Development Initiative (NDI) Trust. The grants are in the form of a rebate; funds expended by the SLRD and the District of Lillooet on eligible and approved economic development capacity building activities in 2016 will be reimbursed by NDI Trust in 2017, provided the terms of the grant have been met.
    • Like 2015, the 2016 grant was shared evenly between Electoral Areas A & B, which are the only two electoral areas within the SLRD eligible to receive NDI Trust funding.
      • In Electoral Area A, funds were allocated to the Bridge River Valley Community Association which used the funding to retain a part-time contractor to coordinate economic development activities and act as a central point of contact for investment and business development inquiries. 
      • In Electoral Area B, funds were allocated to the Lillooet Agriculture and Food Society which used the funding to implement many of the economic development initiatives recommended in the SLRD Area B, Lillooet and St'át'imc Agricultural Plan, including: finalizing and implementing a communications strategy, hosting seminars on the business of agriculture, and drafting an agri-tourism strategy.
  • The NEDI Committee continued moving forward with plans to form a regionally-based and community-driven committee / working group to coordinate economic development in the northern SLRD and to explore the potential of creating a shared economic development service for the sub-region.
    • A Community and Regional Economic Action Forum was held on Friday, October 14 (8:30 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.) at the P'egp'ig'lha Community Centre in Lillooet. The event was designed to actively engage a wide range of people—including representatives from St'át'imc and local government, businesses, community organizations, industry experts and interested citizens—in practical discussions that will inspire cooperation and mobilize the collective action needed to foster sustainable economic development in the northern SLRD / northern St'át'imc Territory. The event was planned by an Organizing Committee composed of local and St'at'imc government, business and community representatives with the support of EcoPlan International. Learn more.

2015 Highlights

  • The District of Lillooet and SLRD were awarded $50,000 each from the Economic Development Capacity Building program of Northern Development Initiative Trust (NDI Trust). The grants are in the form of a rebate; funds expended by the SLRD and the District of Lillooet on eligible and approved economic development capacity building activities in 2015 will be reimbursed by NDI Trust in 2016 provided the terms of the grant have been met.
    • The SLRD grant was split between Electoral Areas A & B, which are the only two electoral areas within the SLRD eligible to receive NDI Trust funding.   
      • In Electoral Area A, $4,500 was used to complete a Tourism Asset Inventory of the northern SLRD and $20,500 was allocated to the Bridge River Valley Community Association (BRVCA), which used the money to retain a part-time contractor to coordinate economic development activities and act as a central point of contact for investment and business development inquiries. The following activities were undertaken: (1) developed a Bralorne relocation campaign (to be implemented in 2016), (2) researched various 2016 tourism marketing opportunities and provided recommendations to the BRVCA Economic Development Committee, (3) populated a statistical model for high non-resident population areas (to be used in advocacy efforts), (4) explored models for cooperative retail, (5) estimated the value of tourism in the Bridge River Valley, (6) developed a business case for re-paving Route 40 (to be used in advocacy efforts), (7) organized a working group to create a sustainability plan for the Gold Bridge School, and (8) supported entrepreneurs seeking information and advice on business opportunities. Learn more about economic development in the Bridge River Valley.
      • In Electoral Area B, the focus was on supporting the implementation of three economic development-related projects identified in the 2014 SLRD Area B, District of Lillooet and St'át'imc Agricultural Plan (Ag Plan). Specifically, funds were used to hire two part-time contractors who were tasked with the following: (1) Establishing a not-for-profit society, the Lillooet Agriculture and Food Society, to implement the Ag Plan, (2) providing support to the "Lillooet Grown" Food Hub, and (3) hosting a brand-building workshop. Learn more about these initiatives.
  • ​The NEDI Committee moved forward with plans to form a regionally-based and community-driven committee / working group to coordinate economic development in the northern SLRD and to explore the potential of creating a shared economic development service for the sub-region. The initiative is a key recommendation of the Economic Development Governance Model Feasibility Study conducted by the Fraser Basin Council for the NEDI Committee in 2014. Funding to establish the working group and see it through the initial development phase is being provided by the SLRD. An independent third party organization, EcoPlan International, was hired to establish the working group, recruit members, and provide secretariat support. 

2014 Highlights

  • Northern Development Initiative Trust (NDI Trust) announced that annual funding through the Economic Development Capacity Building program will increase from $35,000 to $50,000 per year.
  • NEDI Committee brought renowned community economist and author, Michael Shuman, to Lillooet.
  • The SLRD allocated $20,000 of its NDI Trust Economic Development Capacity Building grant to Area A for economic development initiatives (e.g. wayfinding signage project, Value of Tourism model, economic leakage analysis, relationship building, contractor fees). Lead organization: Bridge River Valley Community Association (Economic Development Committee) 
  • NEDI allocated $5,000 to the District of Lillooet to enhance Tourism Opportunities grant projects, including the Lillooet Welcome Kiosk initiative.
  • NEDI allocated $2,500 to District of Lillooet to enhance regional business and investment information on www.lillooetbc.ca.
  • Fraser Basin Council completed its work on the four Community Economic Development projects which were started at the end of 2013.
  • ​The Board also directed the NEDI Committee to support the timely implementation of Project A, Governance and Feasibility Study of the report, subject to identification of the local government staff lead and the available budget for the staff lead and implementation of Project A. The Committee will meet early in 2015 to discuss next steps. 

2013 Highlights

  • The Squamish-Lillooet Regional District Board formed a Standing Committee, the Northern Economic Development & Initiatives (NEDI) Committee, to formalize the efforts of the Working Group formed in 2012. NEDI is composed of elected officials from Electoral Areas A and B and the District of Lillooet and supported by staff from both organizations. Funding is provided through annual NDI Trust Economic Development Capacity Building grants. 
  • The SLRD and the District of Lillooet entered into an agreement whereby the District of Lillooet will be responsible for the governance and implementation of the objectives and budget of the NEDI Committee for the 2013 year. 
  • The SLRD allocated $13,000 of its 2013 NDI Trust grant to Area A to enable the Bridge River Valley Community Association to hire an economic development contractor to develop a statistical community profile and begin work on an economic development strategy for the Bridge River Valley.
  • NEDI Committee adopted a Community Economic Development (CED) approach. CED moves away from traditional economic development approaches that tend to focus on attracting outside investment as a means of creating job growth. Rather, CED is based on the belief that people have the capability and the responsibility to undertake community-based and community-directed initiatives for the benefit of the community.
  • NEDI Committee hired the Fraser Basin Council to deliver four CED initiatives, with work to take place in 2013 and 2014 (value of contract: $43,900 over two years):
    • Economic Development Shared Service Governance Model study
    • Community Visioning Process
    • Community Asset Inventory for Area B and the District of Lillooet
    • Economic Leakage Analysis
  • NEDI Committee allocated $4,200 to enhance community engagement opportunities for the Area B, District of Lillooet & St’at’imc Agricultural Area Plan.
  • NEDI Committee allocated $5,900 to enhance Agricultural Area Plan Technical Workshops. 

2012 Highlights

  • The Squamish-Lillooet Regional District applied for (and was awarded) $35,000 in funding through Northern Development Initiative (NDI) Trust's Economic Development Capacity Building program.
  • The SLRD formed the Northern Areas Economic Development Working Group composed of elected officials and staff from Areas A, B and the District of Lillooet with the goal of fostering balanced, equitable and sustainable economic development in the northern SLRD. 
  • The SLRD hired EDCD Consulting to complete an Economic Development Strategy and Action Plan for the northern region with funding provided through the SLRD’s NDI Trust Economic Development Capacity Building grant. The report identified several priority goals including increasing community involvement and communication, strengthening and expanding partnerships and increasing support for the tourism and agriculture sectors. Close to 250 residents and businesses from across the northern sub-region of the SLRD had direct input into the Economic Development Strategy through a community consultation process that included focus groups, one-on-one interviews and online surveys. 
  • The SLRD worked with the Bridge River Valley Community Association to develop a Community Asset Inventory for the Bridge River Valley (Area A).
  • The SLRD worked with Northern Development Initiative Trust and other partners to develop www.investcariboochilcotincoastbc.ca – An investment attraction web portal designed to feature communities, economic sectors and investment opportunities throughout the Cariboo Chilcotin Coast region.
  • The SLRD worked with Northern Development Initiative Trust to develop a Regional Profile.

 

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