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BC Rural Dividend grants support Central Kootenay

Press Release

April 16, 2019

NELSON – Under the BC Rural Dividend Program, the Government of British Columbia is providing over $1.6 million for eight projects throughout the Nelson-Creston area.

“Whether it’s promoting partnerships with First Nations at the Nelson Museum, helping the Village of Kaslo develop opportunities for aviation and recreational tourism or building local government capacity to attract new business, these grants will go a long way to boost our rural communities,” said Michelle Mungall, MLA for Nelson-Creston.

Almost $19 million in 153 single applicant and partnership project grants are being awarded to eligible local governments, First Nations and not-for-profit organizations through the Rural Dividend Program.

These grants help fund projects that support economic development and diversification in rural communities throughout the province. Grants can be up to $100,000 for a single applicant project or up to $500,000 for partnership projects.

“This funding supports the diverse needs of small towns throughout the province and the people who live in them,” said Doug Donaldson, Minister of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development. “Our government is getting results for people in small cities and towns in every region, creating jobs and enhancing everyday services and amenities for families around the province.”

The Rural Dividend is one aspect of government’s rural development mandate, which commits to making rural communities more resilient.

Quick Facts:

  • Over $4.6 million in grants are being provided through the program’s special circumstances stream to support 23 applicants responding to economic challenges resulting from the loss of a main employer or the impacts of a natural disaster.
  • Additionally, $673,124 were awarded through the project development stream to communities around the province to complete preliminary work to support future projects.
  • The Rural Dividend encourages economic diversification through community capacity building, workforce development, community and economic development, and business sector development.
  • The Government of British Columbia has committed to extending the $25-million-per-year Rural Dividend to 2021-22.

Learn More:

BC Rural Dividend Program:

A backgrounder follows.


Media Relations
Ministry of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development
250 356-7506


BC Rural Dividend project awards for Central Kootenay

The Village of Kaslo is being awarded $97,359 to produce development and management plans for two priority areas identified in a Lands Investment Attraction project funded through the Rural Dividend — the aerodrome lands and Kaslo Bay area. This will create opportunities for aviation and recreational tourism.

Community Futures Central Kootenay is being awarded $100,000 to hire a manager to co-ordinate operations of the Nelson Innovation Centre, including a technology business mentorship program and membership framework.

The Regional District of Central Kootenay is being awarded $991,324 for three projects:

  • $500,000 to build local government capacity by hiring and providing economic development training to a project co-ordinator and 10 interns, with emphasis on business attraction, land development and disaster resilience.
  • $170,124 to address priority areas of the Kaslo and Area D Economic Development Commission — business and community economic development, and farm innovation.
  • $321,200 to hire an economic development officer, tourism co-ordinator and project co-ordinator to help implement the Stronger Together Creston Valley-Kootenay Lake Economic Action Strategy, funded by a previous Rural Dividend intake.

Nelson Civic Theatre Society is being awarded $336,806 to develop architectural and engineering plans for a three-space venue to house the Kootenay Screen-Based Industry, hire a program co-ordinator to develop and launch the industry, and develop an online portal for screen-based industry professionals in the Kootenay region to buy, sell, lend and trade gear, space and services.

Nelson and District Chamber of Commerce is being awarded $32,000 to implement five key actions from the West Kootenay Destination Development Strategy, including a backcountry safety awareness campaign and environmental code of conduct for residents and visitors.

Nelson and District Museum, Archives, Art Gallery and Historical Society is being awarded $98,209 to enhance educational and cultural capacity in the city by developing a full-time co-ordinator position to increase offerings at the museum and introduce an Indigenous education position to develop programs in partnership with local First Nations.


Media Relations
Ministry of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development
250 356-7506

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