2019-2020 Construction of Hybrid 220 kW Solar PV and Battery System
- Applied for funding to construct the solar PV and battery system at Location 4 (old rock quarry).
- Securing final funding to cover up to 98% of the project costs.
- Project will provide a new and predictable source of clean energy generation for Gwa’yas’dums.
- The outcome of the project is to supply half of the Village’s electrical needs and 72-hours of energy storage.
- Expecting to have solar PV and battery system installed and operating by summer 2020.
- This project will hire:
- 3x members to help install the solar PV system. Members will receive 5-day training course (hosted in the Village) to learn how to install the solar PV panels.
- 1x member to be the communication lead. This person will receive training from North Island College or Urban Systems to learn how to build communication and branding materials for the project. As well, to support other remote communities to learn how to build a similar project.
- This project will focus on building capacity in women and youth.
Commissioning Summer/Fall 2020.
“As a remote community, we are feeling the impacts of climate change, yet many of us feel hopeless in finding a solution. This solar PV and battery project is a way that we can contribute to fighting climate change. The funding from the NRCan Clean Energy for Rural and Remote Communities to invest in a solar PV and battery system is a welcome opportunity. Not only will this alleviate financial pressures associated with increasing diesel costs, but it is setting the stage for a cleaner and brighter future for the seven generations.”
Marine, Land & Resource Management Plan
During community engagement event in Spring 2019 – BCCI – members agreed on the following goals and objectives to guide the Marine, Land and Resource Management Planning Process:
- Protect language, culture and traditional way of life
- Assert and clarify title and rights
- Improve communication and understanding with neighbours
- Advance reconciliation and improve relationship with the Crown
- Clarify expectations for consultation or involvement in decision making
- Ensure benefits from development in the territory
- Improved environmental protection and outcomes
- Improved decision making and accountability
- Facilitate community and economic development
- Integrate and incorporate our traditional and hereditary governance systems
- Build capacity and create opportunities for our members
- Ensure local food security (e.g. agriculture and traditional foods)
- Heal the land through reclamation
- Identify protected areas off-limits to industrial development
- Address climate change
We are currently creating a Marine, Land and Resource Management Plan.
Custom Election Code
A Custom Election Code allows a band to set out its own procedures for electing government, instead of deferring to the rules set out in the Indian Act. Creating a Custom Election Code was identified as a priority in our Comprehensive Community Plan.
A team of qualified technical experts has been hired to help. This team includes:
- Jake Hughson from Urban Systems to help with member engagement
- Karley Scott an independent contractor and experienced election officer to help with drafting
- Krista Robertson from Mandell Pinder to provide legal review
Below is a high level summary of the process we are taking to develop a custom election code
1. Project Start-Up
An initial meeting with Chief and Council and our team of technical advisors to review and confirm the scope of work.
2. Community Engagement Session #1
An initial round of community meetings to introduce the project to members and obtain feedback on key election code elements (composition, term, eligibility… etc.). This was done by walking through a questionnaire with members. Three meetings took place in early 2020: (1) Gilford Island, (2) Campbell River, and (3) Vancouver.
3. Prepare Draft Election Code
A draft custom election code will be prepared based on member feedback provided during the first round of engagement.
4. Community Engagement Session #2 <– WE ARE HERE
A second round of community meetings to review feedback received during the initial round of community meetings. We will also present the draft custom election code and walkthrough a second questionnaire to confirm direction and content. Due to COVID-19 restrictions, we are now planning to do this through a series of online (e.g. Zoom) meetings.
5. Revisions to Draft Election Code
Consider member feedback and then make necessary revisions to the draft custom election code.
6. Submission to Federal Government
The custom election code will be submitted to the Federal Government for their (required) review and approval.
7. Ratification Process
All eligible voters will be sent a notification package, including a final copy of the proposed code, and a formal vote will be held to pass the code. If over 50% of voters approve the code it will come into effect.
Immediate Next Steps
The DRAFT KHFN Custom Election Code will be posted online for your review. This version of the DRAFT Code was developed based on a combination of the following:
- election code best practices; and
- feedback received from members from the first round of engagement conducted in 2020
We expect to conduct a second round of engagement in End of March/April, 2021.
Due to COVID-19 health and safety orders, the engagement sessions will be conducted by Zoom video conferences. Please advise Jake Hughson by email (JHughson@urbansystems.ca) no later than March 1, 2021 if you wish to participate in the second round of engagement. Staff from the Band office will also be following up with members to (if contact information is known) to ensure they are aware of upcoming engagement sessions and have an opportunity to participate. If you are not able to attend a meeting, you may also provide comments on the DRAFT Code in writing to Jake Hughson (JHughson@urbansystems.ca).
Based on the number of members wishing to attend, we will set several Zoom meeting dates to maximize attendance and ensure there is sufficient opportunity for individual members to speak to the Draft Code. We will also provide all participating members with a summary of all Zoom meetings.
After completing the second round of engagement on the Draft Code, we anticipate further amendments to the Draft Code to incorporate feedback received by members. Once this is complete, we expect to proceed to a membership vote on the Final Code.
Revitalizing the Shores of Gwa’yas’dums
- Hired 1x Community member as Community Planning Assistance
- Performed a Market Assessment on tourism opportunities in KHFN Traditional Territory
- Outlined tourism business opportunities to invest in, for example:
- Campground in Sawmill Bay
- Commercial kitchen to host cultural meals and programing
- Art Gallery and Live Carving Studio
- Trail network with interpretive signs to tell KHFN history
Currently seeking funding opportunities.
Community Health Plan
This will be a comprehensive Community Health Plan that will be based on the values and visions of the community, staff, and Chief and Council. We anticipate this plan to work within the broader Comprehensive Community Plan and effectively guide the development of meaningful health and social programming to support spiritual, emotional, physical and mental health.
Estimated completion Spring 2020.