Province signs development agreement with two First Nations

A development agreement between two First Nations and the province will support community priorities related to roads, housing, youth and wellness.

New Brunswick Indigenous Affairs Minister Arlene Dunn signed an agreement with Indian Island First Nation on Friday, followed by another agreement with Welamukotuk (Oromocto First Nation) on Tuesday.

Dunn said economic development partnerships that provide long-term financial sustainability to First Nations are a top priority.

“This is our second new, modern agreement since June, and it demonstrates our commitment to working with First Nations to address their priorities,” she said.

Under the agreement with Indian Island First Nation, the Regional Development Corporation will provide $4.72 million to Indian Island First Nation over five years.

The community, with support from federal funding programs, will contribute $1.48 million over the same period, for a total investment of $6.2 million.

In addition, the province will provide up to $291,082 to Welamukotuk in the 2023-24 fiscal year.

The province said several priorities have been identified for Indian Island First Nation, including housing, safe drinking water, road resurfacing and the design of a gymnasium.

“Indian Island community members need to be sure their drinking water is clean, that they can live in houses that are not overcrowded, and have safe roads to travel on to get to work, school and home,” said Barlow.

“We have reached an agreement to help address the urgent needs of our community but there are still many discussions that our community and Nation must have with the government of New Brunswick.”

As for Welamukotuk, they’ll be using the money for an assessment of residential housing needs, site preparation for a tiny home development, a subdivision design and a needs assessment for a youth centre.

This is the third development agreement signed between the government and a First Nation in the province.

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