Penticton Indian Band take big step forward

The Penticton Indian Band are going to have less bureaucratic hoops to jump through when it comes to decisions made regarding band land.

Penticton Indian Band Chief Jonathan Kruger at an announcement that the PIB will be joining a land management program.

Penticton Indian Band Chief Jonathan Kruger at an announcement that the PIB will be joining a land management program.

The Penticton Indian Band are going to have less bureaucratic hoops to jump through when it comes to decisions made regarding band land.

The PIB announced it would be joining the First Nations Land Management Regime, a step towards self-government and resource control, at the Outma Sqilx’w Cultural School on Tuesday.

“This will allow them to operate a lot like a municipality. So there’s less of Ottawa’s direct approvals and whatnot, which can really significantly hold up the process,” Okanagan-Coquihalla MP Dan Albas said. “They can act on economic development opportunities that come up and not wait for Ottawa to get around to approving things.”

The PIB joins 90 First Nations operating and developing land codes under the Land Management Regime, 47 of which are in B.C. The federal government is providing $30.3 million over the next five years, which is expected to add another 25 First Nations to the agreement.

Chief Kruger said he had a lump in his throat during the announcement.

“I got emotional just thinking about how far we’ve come so far in the last number of years. We’ve gone through some vast changes in the last 10 years being so progressive,” Kruger said. “We’ve talked a lot and planned a lot and now we’re putting those plans into action.”

The agreement will make decision making more community based and more efficient according to Kruger.

“We don’t have to have the say-so from our community and then I have to go over to Vancouver and spend $2,000 of extra money out of our budget to get the stamp of approval, we just need it from our community members,” Kruger said.

“This legacy that we’re creating for our families is great and it’s got momentum behind it.”

Chief Robert Louie of the Westbank First Nation and chair or the First Nations Lands Advisory Board said a study done on self-governing First Nations by KPMG in 2013 found that of all the bands involved in the study there wasn’t one that wanted to abandon the self-governing model.

He added with the new agreement First Nations bands are finding that land management activities are faster, there is better accountability of third parties to First Nations, more consistency with land use plans and First Nations values and visions are being strengthened.

“The reserve system and expropriation of our land splintered our people into remnants of our previous existence. Those were days past,” Louie said. “The (Syilx) Okanagan and the First Nations people across Canada are survivors, we survived and despite the many injustices suffered under the Indian Act, we have prevailed.”

The announcement is the beginning of a two-year process designed to engage community members and bring together active community consultation.

“We’re just getting started. In the last seven years we’ve been so progressive and doing things instead of talking about things,” Kruger said, adding some First Nations communities have the process done in less than the two-year time frame.

The PIB has also created a pilot project using government funding to create a land use plan and is one of two communities in B.C. doing a land use plan.

Louie said because the PIB is the largest reserve in B.C., with 46,000 acres, decisions need to be made on how much land will be set aside for environmental protection, community development and economic development. It’s a head start for the band according to Louie.

“I think we’re way ahead of the game,” he said.


Just Posted

Summerland cidery Millionaires' Row is hosting a Father's Day car and art show. (Facebook)
Vintage cars, art and cider for Father’s Day

Summerland’s Millionaires’ Row Cider Co. is hosting the car and art show

This undated file photo provided by Ernie Carswell & Partners shows the home featured in the opening and closing scenes of The Brady Bunch in Los Angeles. Do you know the occupation of Mike Brady, the father in this show about a blended family? (Anthony Barcelo/Ernie Carswell & Partners via AP, File)
QUIZ: A celebration of dad on Father’s Day

How much do you know about famous fathers?

James Miller, the managing editor at the Penticton Herald, has been voted in for Jake Kimberley’s vacated council seat. (Submitted)
James Miller elected as Penticton city councillor

Penticton also voted yes to allowing up to 25 years for a Skaha Marina contract

The Eyes of the Tigers on the 2021 Beer Run on June 19. (Brennan Phillips - Western News)
Penticton Beer Runners take trip around local beaches and brews

Over 160 people signed up to come back after the 2020 run was cancelled

There was high voter turnout for the first of three advance voting days for the Penticton city by-election.
Penticton city by-election general voting day is today, June 19

737 voters on June 9 in comparison to 2018 general election, which had 1,001 on first day

Marco Mendicino, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship during a press conference in Ottawa on Thursday, May 13, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Canada to welcome 45,000 refugees this year, says immigration minister

Canada plans to increase persons admitted from 23,500 to 45,000 and expedite permanent residency applications

Barbara Violo, pharmacist and owner of The Junction Chemist Pharmacy, draws up a dose behind vials of both Pfizer-BioNTech and Oxford-AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccines on the counter, in Toronto, Friday, June 18, 2021. An independent vaccine tracker website founded by a University of Saskatchewan student says just over 20 per cent of eligible Canadians — those 12 years old and above — are now fully vaccinated. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
At least 20% of eligible Canadians fully vaccinated, 75% with one dose: data

Earlier projections for reopening at this milestone didn’t include Delta variant

Emily Steele holds up a collage of her son, 16-year-old Elijah-Iain Beauregard who was stabbed and killed in June 2019, outside of Kelowna Law Courts on June 18. (Aaron Hemens/Capital News)
Kelowna woman who fatally stabbed Eli Beauregard facing up to 1.5 years of jail time

Her jail sentence would be followed by an additional one to 1.5 years of supervision

Cpl. Scott MacLeod and Police Service Dog Jago. Jago was killed in the line of duty on Thursday, June 17. (RCMP)
Abbotsford police, RCMP grieve 4-year-old service dog killed in line of duty

Jago killed by armed suspect during ‘high-risk’ incident in Alberta

The George Road wildfire near Lytton, B.C., has grown to 250 hectares. (BC Wildfire Service)
B.C. drone sighting halts helicopters fighting 250 hectares of wildfire

‘If a drone collides with firefighting aircraft the consequences could be deadly,’ says BC Wildfire Service

A dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine is pictured at a vaccination site in Vancouver Thursday, March 11, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
NACI advice to mix vaccines gets varied reaction from AstraZeneca double-dosers

NACI recommends an mRNA vaccine for all Canadians receiving a second dose of a COVID-19 vaccine

A aerial view shows the debris going into Quesnel Lake caused by a tailings pond breach near the town of Likely, B.C., Tuesday, Aug. 5, 2014. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Updated tailings code after Mount Polley an improvement: B.C. mines auditor

British Columbia’s chief auditor of mines has found changes to the province’s requirements for tailings storage facilities

Starting in 2022, the Columbia Shuswap Regional District is extending dog control to the entire Electoral Area D. (Stock photo)
Dog control bylaw passes in Shuswap area despite ‘threatening’ emails

CSRD board extending full dog control in Electoral Area D starting next year

A North Vancouver man was arrested Friday and three police officers were injured after a 10-person broke out at English Bay on June 19, 2021. (Youtube/Screen grab)
Man arrested, 3 police injured during 10-person brawl at Vancouver beach

The arrest was captured on video by bystanders, many of whom heckled the officers as they struggled with the handcuffed man

Most Read