Photo: Energy Minister Blair Lekstrom signs one of the agreements at the Treaty 8 headquarters in Fort St. John on Thursday. (L-R) Chief Norman Davis, Chief Lynette Tsakoza, Minister George Abbott, Chief Roland Willson and Energy Minister Blair Lekstrom – Christine Rumleskie/Energeticcity.ca
Local and provincial dignitaries signed five Treaty 8 agreements on Thursday afternoon.
The goal of the agreements is to provide collaborative planning, management and operation of Treaty 8 lands between the First Nations and the province.
Minister of Aboriginal Relations and Reconciliation, George Abbot, says the signed documents are a stepping stone for both the parties.
Four of the agreements are new, while the ‘Economic Benefits Agreement’ had to be amended after Fort Nelson First Nations withdrew its position.Nothing has been changed in the amended agreement, other than the fact that Fort Nelson is no long a part of it.
The other agreements include a Government-to-Government protocol, Parks Collaborative Management, Wildlife Collaborative Management, and Strategic Land and Resource Planning.
Treaty 8 Tribal Chief Liz Logan says the partnership has been in the works for the past six years.
[asset|aid=2283|format=mp3player|formatter=asset_bonus|title=6e509e14861710d4ae4bbde6574f880e-Liz Logan 1_3_Pub.mp3]
Chief Lynette Tsakoza from the Prophet River First Nation, Chief Norman Davis from the Doig River First Nation, and Chief Roland Willson from the West Moberly First Nations took part in the historic signing.
Minister of Energy, Mines and Petroleum Blair Lekstrom also attended the event….
[asset|aid=2284|format=mp3player|formatter=asset_bonus|title=6e509e14861710d4ae4bbde6574f880e-Blair Lekstrom 1_6_Pub.mp3]
Upon signing the Amended Economics Benefits Agreement, the Province presented Treaty 8 with a cheque for more than $3.9 million.
Logan hopes that the next four agreements will be signed by April of 2010.
For more information on each agreement, visit the Provincial Government’s information page by Clicking Here.