AFN Chief Candidate Raises Alarm About Leaked Memo

Wednesday, February 25, 2009 at 15:14



A Native leader hoping to become the next national chief of the Assembly of First Nations says leaked government documents show the federal government is looking at unilateral changes to how First Nations get their money.


John Beaucage of Ontario’s Anishinabek Nation says he’s heard word the Tory government wants to change funding-delivery methods without consultation.


The leaked document is apparently titled “Remedial Change, Transformative Change and Legislative Governance Reform” and is designed to improve accountability measures on reserves.


Beaucage says it goes beyond simple changes to post-secondary funding, and encompasses a wide range of areas.


An official with Indian Affairs says nothing has been decided yet.


However, Patricia Valladao confirms the department is looking at improving the process used to obtain effective and accountable governments on reserves.


She says the program used to deliver funding for band employee benefits, tribal council funding, band advisory services and other band support funding will expire in March of next year.


But Valladao says before that happens, talks will be held with groups like the AFN to get their feedback on the idea.