Weapons Range Settlement Coming In Lump Sum

Monday, January 22, 2007 at 13:45



Indian Affairs Minister Jim Prentice was in Beauval today, announcing details of a $15-million settlement package for four northwest Saskatchewan Metis communities.


The money represents the federal portion of a $19.5-million agreement first announced in 2005 under the previous Liberal government.


There were worries it wouldn’t be honoured by the Tories when they came to power last year.


But Prentice says not only is his government coming through with the funding, it will provide the money over one year — instead of over the five years previously negotiated.


The settlement is directly related to the creation of the Primrose Lake Air Weapons Range.


Elders in Ile-a-la-Crosse, Beauval, Cole Bay and Jans Bay used to live, hunt, trap and fish on that land up until the 1950s, when the government forced them off.


The funds announced today will be transferred to the community-based, non-profit Primrose Lake Economic Development Corporation. That group will place the funds into a professionally-managed trust fund account.


Interest earned by the trust fund will be used to support selected economic development projects, based on established eligibility criteria.