March 5, 2014
More money for economic development projects will be available than ever before from Northern Development in 2014.
In February, the Trust’s board of directors unanimously supported a decision to increase the annual grant allocation to 7% from 5%, meaning that a total of $11.4 million in grants will be available to local governments, First Nations and non-profits throughout the region in 2014.
The decision applies to projects funded out of the Trust’s Cross Regional, Pine Beetle and Regional Development accounts, which account for 100% of the projects that Northern Development approves for funding.
The 2% increase in annual grant funding is a result of the Board’s decision to maximize the amount of dollars available to grassroots, community-led projects throughout central and northern B.C.
Since inception in 2005, the annual return on investment for the Trust’s $185 million capital base has averaged 7.5%, while its maximum annual grant allowance has remained at 5%.
That return has meant that, while the Trust has disbursed millions of dollars in funding each year, its capital base has also grown to more than $200 million to keep track with inflation and ensure a long term sustainable trust for northern communities.
As a result, Northern Development is now able to grant out a maximum of 7% of its capital base per year and continue to remain financially sustainable for the foreseeable future.
In addition to the increase in annual grant funding, the board of directors also approved several funding program changes in February that will mean that yet more dollars will be available to communities in 2014.
[quote by=”Evan Saugstad” position=”Chair” company=”Northern Development Initiative Trust”]The increase in annual grant funding allows us to support more economic development projects than ever before, while at the same time ensuring that the Trust remains a sustainable organization for years to come[/quote]
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