Funding & resources update

Each month we provide an update on UBCM funding programs and information on other programs, events, and resources that may be of interest to local governments and First Nations. 

Local Government Program Services

Applications are currently being accepted for the following funding programs. A complete and chronological listing (by intake deadline) of currently offered Local Government Program Services grants is also available on the UBCM website.  

Regional Community to Community Forum: The goal of a Regional C2C Forum is increased understanding and improved overall relations between First Nations and local governments. Forum events are intended to provide a time and place for dialogue to build on opportunities, support reconciliation efforts, resolve issues of common responsibility, interest or concern, and/or to advance tangible outcomes. Application deadlines are September 10 and December 3, 2021. 

Asset Management Planning: The intent of the program is to assist local governments in delivering sustainable services by extending and deepening asset management practices within their organizations. The next application deadline is September 24, 2021.

FireSmart Community Funding & Supports: Funding for local governments and First Nations in BC to increase community resiliency by undertaking community-based FireSmart planning and activities that reduce the community’s risk from wildfire. Apply by October 8, 2021.

Other Funding 

Disaster Financial Assistance now available:  The Province of BC announced DFA is now available to local governments and First Nations impacted by the wildfires that started June 16th. The funding is available to cover disaster-related losses not covered by insurance, such as wildfire damage to public infrastructure including roads, bridges and other publicly owned infrastructure.

Community Buildings Retrofit initiative:  This Federation of Canadian Municipalities initiative is intended to help fund energy efficiency upgrades for existing community facilities. The Government of Canada, through the Green Municipal Fund, has launched this new $167 million initiative to help Canadian municipalities of all sizes retrofit existing community facilities, such as arenas, pools and libraries, to significantly reduce GHG emissions, while reviving important community assets. 

Coast Funds for First Nations:  Coast Funds is accepting new applications from participating First Nations for our current round of funding until July 16, 2021. If you have a conservation initiative or a sustainable business project or expansion in mind, please get in touch with us as early as possible if you plan to apply.

BC Active Transportation Infrastructure Grant Program:  The Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure recently created the Active Transportation Infrastructure Grant to support BC’s strategy for cleaner, more active transportation. This is a cost sharing program providing funding for network planning (up to $50,000) and infrastructure construction/implementation (up to $500,000). Indigenous and local governments have until July 30, 2021 at 11:59 pm to apply. 

Enabling Accessibility Fund:  Funding from the Government of Canada is available to help make communities and workplaces more accessible for persons with disabilities. Funding is for a minimum of $350,000 up to a maximum of $1 million per project. Not-for-profits, residential housing for persons with disabilities, municipal governments and Indigenous organizations are eligible to apply. The deadline to apply is July 29, 2021 at 5 pm Eastern time.

Regional Connectivity Plan Funding:  The Province is providing funding to assist rural communities wanting to access broadband internet with technical infrastructure assessments of current and proposed networks towards a regional connectivity plan. Funding is up to 75% of eligible project costs to a maximum of $15,000. Local governments, registered not-for-profit government organizations, First Nations and First Nations organizations are eligible to apply. Funding is first come, first served until funding is exhausted. Projects must complete by March 31, 2022.

CEA Game-Changer Grant:  It’s going to take game-changing innovation to meet local 2030 emissions reduction targets. This Community Energy Association initiative supports communities in British Columbia, Alberta and the Yukon Territory to advance game-changing climate policies/regulations, programs, or infrastructure. Learn more about the Game-Changer Grant and how to submit an Expression of Interest.

Recreation Infrastructure Program:  The Northern Development Initiative Trust supports communities to create, upgrade and repair recreational infrastructure such as arenas, gymnasiums, golf courses, fields and boat launches. This grant program supports new or substantial upgrade projects with up to $300,000 to a maximum of 50% of costs, and upgrades and repairs to existing facilities with up to $100,000 to a maximum of 70% of costs. Local governments, registered First Nations Bands, and registered not-for-profits are eligible. Intakes are quarterly.

Municipal Asset Management Program:  MAMP is an eight-year, $110-million program funded by Infrastructure Canada to support Canadian municipalities and communities in making informed infrastructure investment decisions based on stronger asset management practices.

Funding for Energy Efficient Affordable Housing:  This $300 million FCM initiative offers support to local and affordable housing providers, including local governments, to retrofit affordable housing units or build new energy efficient units. Applications are accepted on an ongoing basis until annual funds are exhausted. 

Infrastructure Planning Grant Program: The Ministry of Municipal Affairs offers grants up to $10,000 to help local governments plan, design and manage sustainable infrastructure.

Universal Broadband Fund: The Universal Broadband Fund supports broadband infrastructure projects bringing high-speed Internet to rural and remote households in areas that lack service of at least 50/10 Mbps. The program also supports mobile projects that primarily benefit Indigenous peoples.

Indigenous Agriculture and Food Systems Initiative: The objective of this initiative is to increase economic development opportunities of Indigenous Peoples and communities in Canada by supporting Indigenous communities and entrepreneurs who are ready to launch agriculture and food systems projects, and others who want to build their capacity to participate in the Canadian agriculture and agri-food sector. Proposals invited until July 31, 2021.

First Nations Adapt Program: This federal program supports First Nations communities to assess and respond to climate change impacts on community infrastructure and emergency management. It prioritizes communities most impacted by sea level rise, flooding, forest fires, and winter road failures. Applications are reviewed on an ongoing basis.

New Relationship Trust: The NRT is an independent non-profit organization dedicated to strengthening First Nations in BC through capacity building. Numerous funding, initiatives and resources are available on their website 

Columbia Basin Trust: CBT offers the grants and programs to help residents and communities in the Basin take action on issues that are important to them.

Funding Opportunities for Clean Energy Projects: Since 2011, the Province of BC has updated a clean energy funding guide that helps Indigenous communities and local governments in British Columbia find appropriate funding to support energy planning, energy efficiency, and clean energy generation projects.

Other Funding Opportunities: BC Healthy Communities has compiled a list of funding opportunities worth knowing about, along with guides and resources to support your grant writing activities. 

Events & Resources

Healthy Communities, Equity and Economic Recovery: Creating Healthy Public Policy:  BC Healthy Communities and SFU’s Community Economic Development team are hosting the Local Government Leaders Speaker Series. This on-demand webinar series has already posted one event, Living Wage Policies. An upcoming webinar is BC Housing presenting Building Knowledge and Capacity for Affordable Housing. Visit to view upcoming additional webinars. Participate live or view recorded sessions.

Local FireSmart Representative (LFR) Training: On the heels of a very successful BC FireSmart Symposium, and with many approved Community Resiliency Investment grants with Education, and Residential and Critical Infrastructure activities, this is the next opportunity to train as an LFR. July 14 & 15, 2021, 8:00 am – 12 pm PST (two consecutive morning sessions).

External Resources for Councils & Boards: The Working Group on Responsible Conduct has developed a database of external resources to support local governments. The consultants included a range of services that support responsible conduct by elected officials, including conflict management and resolution, coaching, counselling, and elected official training. 

BC FireSmart: This website introduces the FireSmart program and its seven disciplines and is intended as a one-stop shop for all things FireSmart. The site includes links to training, education, an events calendar, resource library and downloadable content. It also features a short video inviting everyone to become involved in prevention and to learn about the benefits of the program. 

Building Knowledge & Capacity for Affordable Housing:  BC Housing is partnering with the Community Development Institute at the University of Northern British Columbia to offer a series of 2-hour webinars from June through October. The series, aimed at the building industry and local and regional governments, focuses on understanding the unique needs and challenges small communities face in providing viable options for affordable housing. 

Virtual Reconciliation Engagements: Interested in raising awareness about reconciliation for your community, organization or business? In light of the COVID-19 crisis, Reconciliation Canada is currently providing all our engagements online.  They can provide a virtual gathering with our inspiring speaker to help engage reconciliation in a meaningful way.

The State of the Economy in Northern BC: This issue of Northern Dispatch asks the question, “How has COVID-19 impacted the economy in Northern B.C.?"

Advancing Your Asset Management Practice: If you missed this recent Asset Management BC webinar, you can now view the recording. Meet our speakers and learn more about how this unique training program will benefit you.

Rapid Action Resources for Local Governments - Community Food Production: Over the coming months, PlanH will be releasing a series of Rapid Action Resources to provide local governments with an understanding of the equity considerations around various aspects of food security, as well as examples of good practices in food security from other local governments in the province.

Financing tools for local climate action: Canadian municipalities are reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions through pilot projects, municipal programs, and more. However, financing these initiatives can be a significant challenge. FCM’s toolkit explains how your municipality can leverage private and community investors to help you take action on climate change in your community.

ReTooling for Climate Change: The Fraser Basin Council hosts this first-stop website on climate change adaptation. Here is the place to find top tools and resources for BC local governments, First Nations and the natural resource sectors as everyone prepares for the impacts of climate change, now and in the years ahead.

BC Rural Centre: The Centre provides a wealth of links to assets, news, videos, services, and resources of value to rural British Columbians. 

Resources for Rural & Small Communities: BC Healthy Communities has launched a collection of resources related to PlanH action areas, with a rural and small community lens.

Building sustainable communities with asset management: This guidebook is designed for staff or elected officials in medium and large municipalities who are responsible for green projects or who are interested in municipal sustainable development.

CivicInfo BC: British Columbia's local government information hub offers comprehensive organizational and grant directories, events listings, tools for training, research and career development, bids & tenders, and other resources.

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