May 7, 2015
Community halls and recreation facilities can now receive up to $30,000 in funding multiple times from Northern Development.
In the past, proponents and facilities could only access the maximum $30,000 grant from Northern Development’s Community Halls and Recreation Facilities program once per facility. But, in recognition of Northern Development’s 10th anniversary in 2015, the Trust’s board of directors voted unanimously at its most recent meeting to alter the program and make it available on a continual basis to halls and facilities that have previously accessed grants from Northern Development.
The board also increased the maximum funding percentage for each project to 70% from 50%, recognizing that it is becoming increasingly difficult for communities to secure matching funding to support community hall and recreation facility projects. The altered program now means applicants can access up to 70% of their project budget to a maximum of $30,000 from Northern Development, and, once their initial project is complete, they can apply in the future to the Trust again for further funding.
Since 2005, the Trust has approved $7.3 million in funding through its Community Halls and Recreation Facilities program, which has been used to leverage nearly $56 million in new investment in central and northern B.C. The program is specifically designed to improve or expand existing facilities in order to increase the number of events held annually in communities, which contributes to local service sector revenues and economic development.
Past projects funded through the program have included the North Pacific Cannery Gathering and Event Centre, McLeod Lake Community Hall, the Boitanio Bike Park in Williams Lake, arena upgrades in Taylor and the revitalization of the Shames Mountain Ski Area near Terrace, among many others. The program is available to municipalities, regional districts, First Nations and non-profits throughout central and northern British Columbia.
Interested applicants are encouraged to visit Northern Development’s website and Community Halls and Recreation Facilities program page where applications, application guides and self-assessment tools can be downloaded for free. Northern Development accepts applications four times per year. The next application deadlines are May 15 and August 14.
“These changes will help ensure the Trust will continue to provide funding to important gathering spaces and amenities that, in many ways, are the heart of rural communities throughout central and northern B.C.,” said Evan Saugstad, Chair, Northern Development.