COLUMNS: Investing in rural development

As the MLA for Cariboo Chilcotin and the Minister of State for Rural Economic Development.

As the MLA for Cariboo Chilcotin and the Minister of State for Rural Economic Development, I was pleased to announce B.C.’s Rural Economic Development Strategy with Premier Christy Clark last week. Our plan clearly demonstrates how we will be taking immediate steps to support thriving rural communities.

Our government’s rural economic development strategy outlines targeted initiatives for rural communities across the province to ensure British Columbians in all regions have the opportunity for good-paying jobs and a high quality of life in their community. Measures in our strategy include providing $40 million to expand and enhance high-speed Internet, $310,971 of which will be invested here at home for an Internet service provider in 100 Mile House to significantly improve Internet access in the region.

We have also provided an extension to the $25 million Rural Dividend Fund to reinvigorate and diversify more local economies and ensure that British Columbians have the opportunity for good-paying jobs and a high quality of life in their community. Several organizations have been supported by the Rural Dividend Fund in the past, and I’m thrilled to say that this recent extension of the Rural Dividend translates into ongoing support for our local economy.

Another important way we’re providing support for local jobs and growth is by investing in our infrastructure. These types of investments mean a bright future for our tourism sector, because safe and reliable roadways are a vitally important element in attracting visitors to our beautiful corner of the province. That’s why our plan will continue investing in the Cariboo Connector, for a total commitment of $133 million over three years, including upgrades to gravel roads near 100 Mile House and Williams Lake, providing direct jobs and improving transportation infrastructure.

Our government is focused on creating the conditions for rural B.C. to grow and thrive, and we are determined to give rural British Columbians the tools they require to address their specific needs and shape their own future.

Donna Barnett is the Liberal MLA for Cariboo-Chilcotin.

Just Posted

Talia McKay of Williams Lake is a burn survivor who remains grateful for the support she received from the Burn Fund (Monica Lamb-Yorski photo - Williams Lake Tribune)
’You have to allow yourself the grace to heal’: B.C. burn survivor reflects on her recovery

Learning how to stand straight and walk again was a feat said Williams Lake resident Talia McKay

As a former reporter and editor at the Tribune, Diana French carries on sharing her ideas through her weekly column. (Photo submitted)
FRENCH CONNECTION: Worth taking another look at hemp for paper production

Ninety years after being deemed illegal, few are afraid of marijauna

Ranch Musings columnist David Zirnhelt. (File photo)
RANCH MUSINGS: Milking cows and strangers on the premises

Cows in a milking barn may get upset if a stranger comes

Lake City Secondary School Grade 12 students Haroop Sandhu, from left, Amrit Binning and Cleary Manning are members of the school’s horticulture club. (Monica Lamb-Yorski photo - Williams Lake Tribune)
LCSS horticulture club a growing success

Aspiring gardeners at a Williams Lake secondary school are earning scholarship dollars… Continue reading

Jim Hilton pens a column on forestry each week for the Tribune.
FOREST INK: Plenty of changes happening in forest industry

A new process produces a biodegradable plastic-like product from wood waste powder

Daily confirmed COVID-19 cases reported to B.C. public health, seven-day rolling average in white, to May 12, 2021. (B.C. Centre for Disease Control)
B.C. preparing ‘Restart 2.0’ from COVID-19 as June approaches

Daily infections fall below 500 Friday, down to 387 in hospital

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

A vial of AstraZeneca vaccine is seen at a mass COVID-19 vaccination clinic in Calgary, Alta., Thursday, April 22, 2021. Dr. Ben Chan remembers hearing the preliminary reports back in March of blood clots appearing in a handful of European recipients of the Oxford-AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
Science on COVID, VITT constantly changing: A look at how doctors keep up

While VITT can represent challenges as a novel disorder, blood clots themselves are not new

Poached trees that were taken recently on Vancouver Island in the Mount Prevost area near Cowichan, B.C. are shown on Sunday, May 10, 2021. Big trees, small trees, dead trees, softwoods and hardwoods have all become valuable targets of tree poachers in British Columbia as timber prices hit record levels. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jen Osborne.
Tree poaching from public forests increasing in B.C. as lumber hits record prices

Prices for B.C. softwood lumber reached $1,600 for 1,000 board feet compared with about $300 a year ago

The warm weather means time for a camping trip, or at least an excursion into nature. How much do you know about camps and camping-related facts? (John Arendt - Summerland Review)
QUIZ: Are you ready to go camping?

How many camp and camping-related questions can you answer?

On Friday, May 14 at Meadow Gardens Golf Club in Pitt Meadows, Michael Caan joined a very elite club of golfers who have shot under 60 (Instagram)
Crowds at English Bay were blasted with a large beam of light from an RCMP Air-1 helicopter on Friday, May 14. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Marc Grandmaison
Police enlist RCMP helicopter to disperse thousands crowded on Vancouver beach

On Friday night, police were witness to ‘several thousand people staying well into the evening’

People shop in Chinatown in Vancouver on Friday, February 5, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Vancouver community leaders call for action following 717% rise in anti-Asian hate crimes

‘The alarming rise of anti-Asian hate in Canada and south of the border shows Asians have not been fully accepted in North America,’ says Carol Lee

Sinikka Gay Elliott was reported missing on Salt Spring Island on Wednesday, May 12. (Courtesty Salt Spring RCMP)
Body of UBC professor found on Salt Spring Island, no foul play suspected

Sinikka Elliott taught sociology at the university

Most Read