Jay Hill (Federal MP for the Peace River/ Prince George region), and Blair Lekstrom (MLA) were in town for a meeting with Mayor, Council and senior staff to go over some of the Economic Development initiatives for 2004.
?The future is bright for Tumbler Ridge?s economy and all signs are pointing to a busy, prosperous era ahead of us?, commented Ray Proulx, Tumbler Ridge?s Economic Development Officer, who went on to say, ?A projected resurgence in coal mining, thriving entrepreneurial spirit and continued developments in the tourism industry are all contributors to this positive outlook.?
Some of the specifics that were discussed were the District of Tumbler Ridge partnering with the McLeod Lake Indian Band and the signing of a protocol agreement that solidifies a working relationship between the two communities. Expectation is that the agreement will maximize benefits for both.
A letter from the two communities has also been submitted to Forest Minister Mike DeJong voicing interest for the joint acquisition of secure forest tenure in the surrounding area. An issue for consideration that was raised was the importance of facilitating the accessibility of salvage wood to horse loggers and small millers/manufacturers without penalizing the large companies that hold the forest tenure containing the wood.
Also on the agenda was the possibility of establishing a coal-based ethanol generation plant. Council asked for letters of support for the project from both Lekstrom and Hill, as this would greatly enhance our chance of securing the funds needed to implement a feasibility study.
The meeting ended with both elected officials having a better understanding of the direction and initiatives that Tumbler Ridge has chosen to take towards a secure and prosperous future.