Grants reduce wildfire risks around communities in Prince George Fire Centre

April 19, 2022 at 4:36 pm  BC, News, Politics, Provincial

The B.C. government has provided more than $1.7 million in grants to 12 local governments and First Nations in the Prince George Fire Centre to support wildfire-risk-reduction initiatives and help keep communities safe.

These Community Resiliency Investment (CRI) grants are part of more than $13 million provided to 107 recipients throughout B.C. following the latest application intake in the program’s FireSmart Community Funding and Supports category.

“Last year’s devastating fire season highlighted the importance of implementing FireSmart activities around B.C. communities and, as we saw in Logan Lake, it can make a big difference,” said Katrine Conroy, Minister of Forests. “In Budget 2022, our government committed $90 million in community grants to complete FireSmart initiatives and fuel-management activities that will help safeguard homes and communities from wildfire threats.”

The FireSmart Community Funding and Supports category of the CRI program helps fund FireSmart-related initiatives, including priority fuel-management projects on provincial Crown land and private land. First Nations and local governments can use the money to complete wildfire risk-reduction and prevention activities, including those on public, reserve and private land.

“The wildfire season last year in B.C. showed us just how important it is to give our communities the tools and support they need to be prepared,” said Jennifer Rice, Parliamentary Secretary for Emergency Preparedness and MLA for North Coast. “This funding will help ensure more communities are kept safe by supporting new wildfire risk-reduction initiatives.”

The Union of BC Municipalities administers the FireSmart Community Funding and Supports program. It processes grant applications in partnership with the Ministry of Forests and the First Nations’ Emergency Services Society of British Columbia. Eligible applicants facing lower wildfire risk can apply for as much as $50,000, while applicants facing demonstrated higher wildfire risk can apply for as much as $150,000. Communities can apply for funding to cover as much as 100% of the cost of their wildfire-risk-reduction projects.

Mitigating wildfire threats is a shared responsibility of the provincial government, local governments, First Nations, industry, stakeholders and individual British Columbians. The CRI program helps increase community resiliency by funding activities that promote FireSmart education, planning and opportunities for partnerships through regional FireSmart committees.

Learn More:

Community Resiliency Investment (CRI) program:
https://www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/safety/wildfire-status/prevention/funding-for-wildfire-prevention/crip

Information about CRI grants is available on the Union of BC Municipalities website at:
https://www.ubcm.ca/funding-programs/local-government-program-services/community-resiliency-investment

Read more about the FireSmart program and the seven FireSmart disciplines at: https://firesmartbc.ca/

A backgrounder follows.

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