Capital infrastructure improvements announced in Canada for First Nations in Atlantic region

April 16, 2010
MONCTON, NB, April 16, 2010 -- Canadian officials announced an investment of approximately CAD$7 million to assist 11 First Nations with 17 capital infrastructure projects, including water and wastewater infrastructure, throughout the Atlantic Region...

MONCTON, NB, April 16, 2010 -- The Honourable Chuck Strahl, Minister of Indian Affairs and Northern Development and Federal Interlocutor for Métis and Non-Status Indians announced an investment of approximately $7 million* to assist 11 First Nations with 17 capital infrastructure projects including water and wastewater infrastructure, road construction and maintenance and emergency management throughout the Atlantic Region.

"Canada is proud to support First Nations with infrastructure projects that address the health and safety needs of First Nation communities," said Minister Strahl. "This Government continues to work in partnership with First Nations to ensure long-lasting infrastructure is in place to support their current needs and future development."

Of the funding announced today, approximately $3.2 million is dedicated to water and wastewater projects in six First Nation communities; $3 million goes toward road maintenance and construction in three First Nation communities; and $820,000 is provided to seven First Nation communities for emergency management within the Atlantic Region.

"These investments in community infrastructure for First Nations are helping to stimulate economic growth, fostering sustainable First Nation communities and supporting stronger, safer and healthier communities," noted Honourable Keith Ashfield, MP for Fredericton.

Today's announcement includes the following 17 projects:

Sheshatshiu Innu Nation - Water and sewer lot development; and purchase of a fire truck
Chapel Island First Nation - Water tank maintenance
Eskasoni First Nation - Upgrades to sewage system; a generator for Emergency Operations/Reception Centre; and purchase of a fire truck
Pabineau First Nation - Water storage and system upgrades
Eel Ground First Nation - Replacement of water/sewer asbestos lines and upgrades to lift-stations
Abegweit First Nation - Water and wastewater improvements and generators for water system
Kingsclear First Nation - Fire fighting training and equipment
Lennox Island First Nation - Generator for a health centre and a road construction project
Pictou Landing First Nation - Fire protection equipment and water system repairs
Eel River Bar First Nation - Subdivision project
Burnt Church First Nation - Shoreline erosion project

"The Atlantic Chiefs, Councils, and First Nation communities are encouraged by the announcement of these 17 Atlantic capital infrastructure investments and are grateful to the Minister for this much needed support," said Chief Peter-Paul. "Many First Nation communities throughout Canada are severely lacking in the basic road, water, sanitation, and emergency management infrastructure necessary to adequately address the rising health and safety needs of their burgeoning populations. It is our sincere hope that continued investments, like these, will be made in First Nations throughout Canada in an effort to address the current and future infrastructure requirements of our communities."

Funding for these infrastructure projects is provided through Indian and Northern Affairs Canada's Capital and Facilities Maintenance Program and is in addition to the $46 million provided in 2009-2010 from this program for First Nations Infrastructure, including funds for one school and three water projects under Canada's Economic Action Plan.

*Dollar amounts mentioned are Canadian CAD unless otherwise stated.