Federal Support for C2C Funding in Question

The future of the UBCM's successful and popular Community-to-Community (C2C) Forum program is in doubt as a result of changes proposed by the federal funding partner. Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Canada recently signalled that they may no longer be able to fund C2C within the current program design.

Since 2001, the Regional Community-to-Community (C2C) Forums program has provided modest funding to support meetings between elected officials of local governments and neighbouring First Nations.

Grants of up to $5,000 facilitate cooperative community initiatives that take many forms, from get-to-know-you luncheons and reciprocal community visits, to collaborative planning efforts and the development of memoranda of understanding and service agreement.  A report http://www.ubcm.ca/assets/Funding~Programs/LGPS/C2C/c2c-report-2009.pdf [PDF - 317 KB] on the first decade of the C2C illustrates the extensive impact the program has had.

Up to 2011/12, the C2C program has been supported by equal contributions of $50,000 by provincial and federal governments.  Typically, two intakes of the program are offered per year, in the spring and in the fall. This year, the federal response to the annual funding request was delayed, and meant that only a summer intake was held, supported entirely by provincial dollars

Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Canada (AANDC) staff recently informed the UBCM that the 2012/13 fiscal year funding request had been approved, however with substantial restrictions on the transfer and use of program dollars.  Under the proposed changes, the federal department could fund First Nations directly, but local governments would not be eligible recipients.

It is unlikely the UBCM could continue to provide administrative services to a grant program for which our membership is not eligible.

Engaging elected officials in neighbouring communities has had myriad demonstrated social and economic benefits. These benefits are widely seen as disproportionate to the very modest cost of the program.

The UBCM has yet to receive formal notifications of these changes. For the sake of the success of this program, we hope the AANDC will reconsider the proposed changes and continue to support the C2C program in its current funding model.

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