Band and district build active transportation plan
Formally, since 2019, Shuswap Indian Band and District of Invermere have participated in the First Nation – Municipal Community Economic Development Initiative (CEDI), a national program delivered jointly by Cando (the Council for the Advancement of Native Development Officers) and the Federation of Canadian Municipalities (FCM).
Utilizing the CEDI program supports, including third-party neutral facilitation, monthly meetings, bi-annual workshops, and joint strategic and work planning, Shuswap Indian Band and District of Invermere elected officials and staff identified several shared priorities. Using co-created selection criteria, their partnership has prioritized the development of a Joint Active Transportation Network Plan.
The shared vision for the plan, is: “as neighbouring communities, we commit to removing barriers by creating a physical and symbolic connection through the development of an active transportation corridor. By respecting and leveraging our unique strengths, this corridor will enhance cross-cultural understanding and create mutually prosperous economic, social and environmental opportunities.”
In February 2020, Shuswap Indian Band and District of Invermere submitted a joint application to the Province of BC, Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure for the BC Active Transportation Network Plan Grant. The partnership also has support from the CEDI program (Capacity Building Grant of $35,000), and in addition, both councils have adopted resolutions to commit financial support for development of this joint community economic development initiative.
“I am pleased to participate in this important initiative with Mayor (Al) Miller and the District of Invermere. This has been so important, not only in working with the municipality of Invermere to share our culture and the exchange of governance, but to be working together on a common goal to address our economic challenges that will strengthen our relationship and the regional economy, and move our communities forward,” said Chief Barb Cote.
“I am confident that our common goals for local economic development and social wellbeing will foster benefits that extend to many other aspects of community building, and CEDI is giving us the framework to work together to achieve strong local results. I look forward to working with Chief Barb Cote and the Shuswap Indian Band for the benefit of both communities,” said Mayor Miller.
Lead image: Invermere Mayor Al Miller, far right, Shuswap Band Chief Barb Cote, third from right and committee members gathered for a socially distanced photo alongside the Columbia River recently. Photos submitted