B.C. Premier David Eby was in Terrace on Friday, March 15 with Municipal Affairs Minister Anne Kang to announce funding for the Northwest BC Resource Benefits Alliance (RBA). The province has committed to distribute $250 million to the RBA over 5 years, first announced during the province’s budget presentation on February 22.

“Thank you to our provincial officials and everyone who made this possible,” said RDKS chair Cyra Yunkws.“I especially want to thank our elected officials, both past and present. Along with our staff, they put in a significant amount of effort in engaging with the province to advocate for our region. This funding is a result of their hard work and will be extremely beneficial for our residents.”

The RBA has engaged with the B.C. government since 2014, advocating for the Northwest. They have discussed the region’s challenges in raising the revenue needed to build and maintain the infrastructure to support resource development and to ensure that Northwest B.C. communities are places where residents, industries, and businesses can thrive.

The first payment is expected later in the spring, and allocation information will be provided as it becomes available.

The RBA is an association of 21 local governments across the Northwest from Masset to Vanderhoof. Formed in 2014, the RBA includes all member municipalities and electoral areas of the Regional District of Bulkley-Nechako, the Regional District of Kitimat-Stikine, and the North Coast Regional District. The RBA was formed to seek a sustainable funding agreement with the province that ensures more of the revenue generated from the northwest remains in the region. A funding agreement will allow local governments to better encourage economic development in the Northwest and ensure that development creates good local jobs and sustainable, livable communities.