Economic Development Minister Deron Bilous, left, and Jonathan Clarkson
111 projects already receiving close to $9 million in support through first and second intakes of CARES program
The Alberta Government announced the approval of 62 new projects through the Community and Regional Economic Support (CARES) program, with Economic Development and Trade Minister Deron Bilous making the announcement in Grande Prairie, according to a press release.
“We launched the CARES program two years ago, so local leaders could build on their economic strengths and create new jobs. This funding will help communities with common interests tackle projects that they might not have been able to alone,” said Deron Bilous, minister of economic development and trade.
“With more than 170 CARES initiatives across the province, we are growing and diversifying our economy. That’s why, in addition to supporting the latest round of projects, Budget 2018 will extend the CARES program for two more years – as we work together to build a recovery that lasts.”
The new projects receiving funding are from the third round of the CARES program.
Two of them are in the Grande Prairie region:
- The Grande Prairie Regional Tourism Association will receive $35,000 to develop a destination management plan that will help coordinate tourism development and economic growth across the region.
- The Van Horne Institute will receive $90,300 to support the development of a rail-based inland container terminal in the Peace Country by assessing shipment potential between the Peace Region and central Alberta.
“Funding from CARES will provide the opportunity for Grande Prairie and region to bring stakeholders together to develop a Destination Management Plan: a regional coordinated approach in respect to tourism,” said Jonathan Clarkson, board chair, Grande Prairie Regional Tourism Association.
“It will be a plan that will provide direction to tourism development, marketing and management in the Grande Prairie region, and will be a framework in which tourism industry partners can work together towards a shared vision.”
The Van Horne Institute is an independent think-tank focused on trade, transportation, infrastructure and workforce development. The institute is committed to undertaking practical research to identify and help develop tangible economic development benefits for regional communities across Canada.
“The Van Horne Institute appreciates the Government of Alberta’s leadership in supporting the development of economic opportunities in regions throughout Alberta,” said Alex Phillips, president and CEO, Van Horne Institute.
“CARES support for The Peace Region Access to Container Transportation Project will strengthen and diversify Canada’s supply chain and help Alberta businesses reach global markets.”
Through the CARES program, communities across the province apply for funding to help pay for locally developed projects that promote long-term economic growth and diversification, particularly projects that communities and municipalities could not necessarily fund on their own.