Northern Rockies Regional Municipality

The NRRM Responds to Provincial Commitments

The Northern Rockies Regional Municipality issued letters to Premier John Horgan [PDF - 113 KB] and Minister of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development, Doug Donaldson [PDF - 110 KB] in response to recent comments in the Speech from the Throne and follow-up interviews.

"Government will take steps to strengthen the natural-resource sectors of our economy, including forestry, mining and energy, while supporting growing sectors, such as agriculture, manufacturing, small business, technology and tourism.

Our forest industry remains B.C.’s single largest exporter, generating thousands of jobs throughout the province. Yet it continues to face tough challenges, from beetle infestations, to trade battles, to the worst wildfire season on record. Your government believes in the future of forestry, and wants to see a strong and sustainable industry for years to come.

B.C. will continue to fight for a fair deal on softwood lumber, and seek new markets for our forest products. And government will revitalize the forest industry’s social contract with British Columbians, to ensure that the use of public timber generates good jobs in forest-dependent communities and provid fair retes aurn for the public."

- The Honourable Judith Guichon, OBC, Lieutenant-Governor: February 13, 2018 Speech from the Throne

The B.C. NDP’s latest speech from the throne and budget painted rural communities and resource development in few broad strokes, but Premier John Horgan followed it up by noting one important change coming to forestry rules in the province.

Horgan says his government plans to restore appurtenancy rules that tie timber harvests to processing at local mills. The rules were eliminated by the B.C. Liberals in the early 2000s and devastated economies in forestry dependent communities in rural B.C., including Fort Nelson, as mills shut down and processing went elsewhere deemed more profitable. Restoring the rules is part of a move to “revitalize the forest industry’s social contract with British Columbians," the government noted in its throne speech.

(The Times Colonist, www.timescolonist.com)

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