On June 6, 2017 the District of Houston council was presented a request from district staff to submit a grant funding application to Regional Community to Community Forum for $5000 to promote an increased understanding of and improved overall relations between First Nations and local governments.
In the recommendation it was also requested that the total project cost would not exceed $10,000.
“The goal of the Regional Community to Community Forum is to provide a time and place for dialogue to build on opportunities, support reconciliation efforts, resolve issues of common responsibility, interest or concern, and or advance tangible outcomes,” stated the report.
The maximum grant is $5000 to which the applicant is required to provide 50 per cent of the total eligible costs of the forum.
Michael Glavin, Chief Administrative Officer for the District of Houston said that a lower level the District of Houston does perform such relations, “but this might be a formal way of doing it and also receive funding to do this.”
“These community to community forums, do they usually involve the regional district?” asked counsellor Jonathan Van Barneveld?
“No, this is a new program,” said Glavin.
“So we would be responsible with coming up with content and material?” asked Van Barneveld.
“Yes,” said mayor Shane Brienen.
“Is this something we want to spend $5000 of our own money on?” asked counsellor Rick Lundrigan.
“We have talked about strengthening that relationship, so we are working towards that. If we had some grant money to work with then maybe it is a good idea for us,” said Brienen.
“If we are successful, would this meeting take place this year, or will it be put into the budget for next year?” asked Van Barneveld.
“I believe it would be this year,” said Glavin.
“Are we budgeted for this?” asked Lundrigan.
“Yes,” said Glavin.
Glavin said that the District of Houston could then hold an event with a meal, “and educate us and each other in relations between First Nations and local governments.”
Houston council approved the recommendation to apply for the grant.