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Posted: December 20, 2021

Local projects getting ETSI-BC funding support

Communities in the Southern Interior of B.C. have some much-needed good news to cap off a year which has brought its share of hardship for this part of the province.

The Economic Trust of the Southern Interior (ETSI-BC) Dec. 15 awarded over $620,000 in funding to support 23 projects that will help build and diversify the region’s economy, as part of its Fall Funding Intake, including three in the region.

Two of the projects are in Ktunaxa Nation, including ?aqam Community Enterprises’ Light Industrial Park Project Implementation and Ktunaxa Enterprises Ltd.’s ʔamakʔis Transport Business Expansion Plan. The third is Elkford Chamber of Commerce’s Co-Working Office and Retail Space Feasibility Study.

“With this latest batch of approved projects, ETSI-BC has provided a record-breaking level of grant funding this year to help grow local economies. Over $3 million has been awarded to projects worth almost $8 million. Over $1.26 million of that total was awarded through three Funding Intakes, another $225K was provided to post-secondary entrepreneurship initiatives, research partnerships and networks of economic development practitioners, and $1.7 million was awarded through the Rural Business & Community Recovery Program, which supports 36 Economic Recovery Advisors working directly with businesses and communities across the region,” noted Laurel Douglas, CEO of ETSI-BC.

“On behalf of the ETSI-BC Board, I am delighted to share this news,” said Chris Pieper, ETSI-BC Board Chair and Mayor of Armstrong. “These projects will help build economic development capacity in our communities, support innovation and help advance key sectors of our region’s economy.”

The projects received endorsement by both ETSI-BC Regional Advisory Committees in a meeting on Friday Dec. 10, which saw record turn-out by the community leaders who are members.

“As a new member of the Columbia-Kootenay Regional Advisory Committee, I was really impressed with the progressive and really awesome projects that were approved in this Intake,” said Steve Morrisette, who also serves as an ETSI-BC Board Member and is Mayor of Fruitvale.

The Economic Trust of the Southern Interior, was created in 2006 with a $50 million endowment to assist in the growth and diversification of the economy of the Southern Interior of BC. The Trust is governed by a 13-member Board of Directors, receiving input from Regional Advisory Committees made up of elected officials from both the Thompson-Okanagan and Columbia-Kootenay regions.


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