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Sechelt’s grant applications list grows

Sechelt’s grant applications list grows

Like watching sports teams’ game time roster changes, tracking Sechelt’s applications for senior government grants is hard to do without a program. At the Feb. 23 budget public engagement session, Director of Finance David Douglas provided a summary list of the municipality’s grant applications and their status. True to the dynamic nature of the grant landscape, that summary was rendered out of date with the announcement of $234,000 in improvement funding for Rockwood Lodge earlier that day.
The list reveals that Sechelt is awaiting decisions on more than $12 million in project grants. These include a $1 million Tourism Dependent Communities grant for a number of initiatives, a $3.8 million Northern and Rural Community Infrastructure grant to assist with the second phase of Trail Avenue reconstruction, and a request for $2.7 million to the New Spaces Daycare program.
Douglas also reviewed grants awarded to the District in recent years, totalling over $18 million. Those grants have been for airport enhancements, COVID-19 recovery efforts, a range of planning activities and road improvements. He included a $3.8 million grant for the Operations Centre project in that total. To receive that funding, the District must be able to raise the additional money needed for that project. Sechelt’s current plan is to take a loan of up to $2.7 million. The results of the Alternate Approval Process related to the securing of that loan are due to be announced on March 17.
Another update to Douglas’ list of “District grants requested” came out of a committee meeting on Feb. 24. At that event, a commitment was made for Sechelt to apply for seed funding for a shared application planning project related to community reconciliation and the Trail Bay waterfront. Sechelt will apply to the Sunshine Coast Foundation (SCF) on behalf of the Syiyaya reconciliation group and the shíshálh Nation for a $7,500 Responsive Community Grant. The purpose is to hire a coordinator to investigate and potentially develop an application for a larger grant from a national organization. The larger project the three groups have in mind is a public walking route with historical markings and information along Trail Bay in the area along municipal and the Nation’s lands.
Syiyaya is a grassroots movement launched in 2018 by Indigenous and non-Indigenous residents of the Coast. It is working to strengthen relationships between communities through cultural programming.
The grant application was a late addition to the committee agenda. This was done at the request of Mayor Darnelda Siegers, who said she was advised that the proposed project meets the SCFs grant program criteria. Siegers noted that a committee recommendation to apply was needed as the current program intake was ending March 1. The committee’s recommendation will be brought forward for council ratification at its March 3 meeting. Connie Jordison

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