A mining company has signed an agreement with several northern Saskatchewan communities looking at sustainable investment.

Denison Mines signed a Sustainable Communities Investment Agreement with Beauval, Ile a la Crosse, and the northern hamlets of Jans Bay and Cole Bay.

The agreement acknowledges that Denison and the communities have a desire to work together on developments to enable social, economic and cultural revitalization.

Nick Daignault says the agreement will see Denison invest quarterly payments into a fund from which the communities can use the interest accrued to fund community initiatives.

“Each of our communities have limited pools of money to tap into and there is only so much tax revenue our communities can garner to tackle both the communities’ aging infrastructure as well as important community needs,” said said Beauval Mayor Nick Daigneault. “By partnering with industry, our communities will be able to develop an additional fund that will grow over time and provide us with much needed financial support to see community projects become a reality.”

Denison will begin investing in the fund when it’s Wheeler River project is developed. Wheeler River is a currently undeveloped uranium project in the eastern part of the Athabasca Basin.

The mining company will invest in the fund up to a certain point based on the agreement. Daignault says the communities will then be able to continuously draw from this fund as interest builds.

The nother mayor also says he hopes to sign similar agreements with other industry partners in the future.

“I’m just really glad that this agreement with Denison panned out,” he said. “We do believe as community leaders that this is a good sustainable agreement that has some merit.”

(Photo – the Wheeler River project, courtesy of denisonmines.com)