British Columbia Treaty Commission

British Columbia Treaty Commission

July 11, 2012 15:26 ET

Tla'amin People Vote in Favour of Treaty

VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwire - July 11, 2012) - The Tla'amin people have voted to accept a treaty agreement that provides self government, 70 kilometers of ocean front land near Powell River, resource revenue sharing and cash.

"This is truly a great day for the Tla'amin people who have voted to step out from underneath the Indian Act to chart their own future," said Sophie Pierre, chief commissioner of the BC Treaty Commission. "The democratic right to vote has prevailed and the Tla'amin people have expressed their confidence in a new future in which they will be self governing, with sufficient land, resources and capital to create a better future for their people."

The Tla'amin Final Agreement includes provisions for governance, land, capital, natural resource, fish and wildlife management, and cultural and heritage stewardship. The total value of the treaty is estimated to be over $100 million.

The treaty provides $8.5 million in annual funding for governance, programs and services; $6.9 million fo reconomic development; and $662,000 in annual resource revenue sharing.

"I applaud the Tla'amin people for enduring long and often difficult negotiations to arrive at a treaty, which has the potential to significantly change their lives for the better," said Commissioner Jerry Lampert, who represents the Treaty Commission at the Tla'amin negotiations. "The challenge now is for the governments of British Columbia and Canada to ratify the treaty in a timely fashion so the Tla'amin people can get on with their lives."

There is $1.74 million in funding for a new administration and cultural building and approximately $834,000 for culture and language programs.

Tla'amin becomes the eighth First Nation to ratify a treaty in the BC treaty process after Tsawwassen, the five Maa-nulth First Nations on the west coast of Vancouver Island and Yale First Nation.

K'omoks First Nation has ratified an agreement in principle and several more First Nations including Tla-o-qui-aht, Kitselas and Kitsumkalum are expected to complete agreements in principle this year and move into negotiations on a final agreement.

About the BC Treaty Commission

The Treaty Commission is the independent body responsible for overseeing treaty negotiations among the governments of Canada, BC and First Nations in BC. It has three roles: facilitation, funding, and public information and education. Visit www.bctreaty.ca to learn more about the Treaty Commission.

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