BC Government: New long-term revenues help build new homes in First Nation community
Nov. 4, 2019
FORT FRASER – Nadleh Whut’en First Nation is currently building six new homes in its community west of Prince George, supported by funds shared as part of the Province’s gaming revenue-sharing commitment.
“We are pleased that the gaming revenue-sharing funds are available to support our home building program,” said Chief Larry Nooski, Nadleh Whut’en First Nation. “Over the next two years, we plan on building up to 30 new homes for our members. I applaud Premier John Horgan and First Nations leadership on getting such an important revenue-sharing agreement done this year.”
After the 2018 Shovel Lake Wildfire and subsequent comprehensive home inspections this summer, some family homes in the community were found to have irreparable smoke and water damage and deemed unfit to live in. In response, Nadleh Whut’en First Nation is building two three-bedroom homes and four one-bedroom tiny homes to replace them.
The first six family homes will provide safe new accommodations for two families — one with a baby, the other with a toddler and a new baby on the way. In addition, four members of the community in need of proper housing will move into the tiny homes.
“The Nadleh Whut’en home building project is great news for this community, demonstrating how a stable, predictable source of funding can bring immediate and significant benefit to people and families,” said Scott Fraser, Minister of Indigenous Relations and Reconciliation. “Nadleh Whut’en saw a clear need for new housing and is making real changes now, but this funding also means the Nation will be able to continue making community improvements that will have a positive impact on families for generations to come.”
In August 2019, the Province transferred nearly $200 million to the BC First Nations Gaming Revenue Limited Partnership, providing the first two years of shared gaming revenue available to all eligible First Nations in B.C. Distribution to individual First Nations began in October.
Nadleh Whut’en’s share of the gaming revenue is being leveraged with other sources to finance the Nadleh Housing Program. Construction on the homes has already begun. Depending on the weather, they will be completed as quickly as possible, since displaced community members have been forced to stay with friends and family since early September.
Overcrowding, along with aging and deteriorating homes, is a widespread problem in the community. Seventy-six people are on a waiting list for housing in the community.
- Nadleh Whut’en First Nation has approximately 560 members and is located in Fort Fraser, 183 kilometres east of Prince George.
- With 280 people living in Nadleh, there are only 74 homes, which results in overcrowding and maintenance issues with the housing stock.
- The BC First Nations Gaming Revenue Sharing Limited Partnership was formed in March 2019 as an independent body, managed by and for First Nations. In August 2019, the Province transferred $194.84 million to the limited partnership for the first two years of shared gaming revenue committed to in Budget 2019.
- The Province has committed to sharing 7% of net gaming revenues annually over 25 years with all eligible First Nations through the limited partnership. The Gaming Control Amendment Act, introduced on Oct. 31, 2019, will allow government to finalize a long-term agreement to share approximately $3 billion in revenue with eligible First Nations by 2045.
BC gaming revenue-sharing: http://ow.ly/oW2f30pJgPo
BC First Nations Gaming Revenue Limited Partnership: https://www.bcfngamingrevenue.ca/
Nadleh Whut’en First Nation: http://ow.ly/MQK230pJgRh
Ministry of Indigenous Relations and Reconciliation
250 208-9621Chief Larry Nooski
Nadleh Whut’en First Nation