Ahtahkakoop Cree Nation has received a $43.3 million dollar settlement for their Treaty Land Entitlement Claim.

The settlement agreement comes from a deal made between Ahtahkakoop and both the federal and provincial governments.

Ottawa will pay $30.7 million of the settlement with the province taking care of the rest.

“We recognize the harms caused to the Ahtahkakoop Cree Nation and are committed to addressing them through concrete actions, for the development of the community – and all future generations,” said Indigenous Services Minister Mark Miller in a media release.

“This settlement demonstrates the Government of Saskatchewan’s commitment to reconciliation, and provides for Ahtahkakoop Cree Nation with opportunities to invest in land, economic development, and community enhancement,” added Saskatchewan’s Minister of Métis and Northern Affairs Don McMorris.

Treaty Land Entitlement Claims are intended to remedy historic practices where First Nations received insufficient reserve land promised to them under Treaty.

According to the government, Ahtahkakoop was shorted over 4,000 acres when they signed Treaty 6.

In addition to the compensation, the Cree nation will have the option to acquire over 40,000 acres to add to their reserve land.

The government says, $6.7 million dollars will be put aside for compensation for any rural municipality or school division that may be affected by an increase in reserve land.

Members of Ahtahkakoop Cree Nation voted to approve the settlement in October of 2021.

“Thinking of our future generations, this settlement will provide for hunting and trapping lands, cultural and ceremonial lands, as well as additional lands for our members to benefit from,” said Ahtahkakoop Cree Nation Chief Larry Ahenakew. “In the not too distant future, this settlement will also provide for our members, economic development opportunities and create much-needed employment on Ahtahkakoop owned commercial and urban lands.”

The First Nation originally submitted the claim in 2001.

(PHOTO: an aerial photo of Ahtahkakoop Cree Nation, courtesy of ahtahkakoop.ca.)