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Posted: February 11, 2013

Elk Valley Community Directed Funds program underway

Earlier this year, Columbia Basin Trust committed $200,000 per year for the next three years to the Elk Valley Community Directed Funds (EVCDF) Program to support initiatives that provide socioeconomic benefits to the Elk Valley.

The EVCDF Committee, which will oversee the Program, is made up of RDEK Elk Valley Directors Lois Halko, Dean McKerracher, Mike Sosnowski, and Chair Mary Giuliano along with community members Dan Savage, Michael Hepher, Troy Tobin, and John Baher.

Mary Giuliano

“We held our first meeting earlier this month and one of our first steps was to authorize the preparation of a Request for Proposal to prepare the Elk Valley Community Priorities Plan,” explains EVCDF Chair Giuliano. “The RFP will be available within the next couple of months and we expect the plan preparation to take about six to eight months.”

Once a consultant is hired, community consultation will be a key component in the research and development of the Priorities Plan, which will identify the priorities of the valley and outline criteria to assist in selecting or developing projects.

“What makes this program unique is that it is aimed at valley-wide projects as opposed to community specific ones and I believe this gives us a wonderful opportunity to work collaboratively toward common goals for the Valley as a whole,” adds Giuliano.

The EVCDF Program is the second program of its type in the East Kootenay.

The Columbia Valley Community Directed Funds Program was initiated in 2012 and CBT President and CEO Neil Muth says, “We’ve been talking over the years about ways to support communities to make their own decisions about using CBT money to fund the priorities they have set. This is a new way to support people across a number of community boundaries to work together to shape their future.”

The EVCDF Committee is a standing committee of the Regional District of East Kootenay. The RDEK administers and operates the Elk Valley Community Directed Funds Program in accordance with the Contribution Agreement between Columbia Basin Trust and the RDEK.

For more information on the program or the committee, contact Committee Chair Mary Giuliano at 250-423-2233 or email [email protected].

District of Sparwood

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