Greater Victoria area First Nations will soon play a greater role in decision making at the Capital Regional District.
The CRD board approved bylaw changes that allow for representation from local nations on the standing and advisory committees which make recommendations to the board on a wide range of regional issues.
While B.C. laws prevent First Nations representatives from participating on regional boards unless their nation has a signed treaty with the province, the addition of Indigenous voices on the committees will be welcome, said CRD board chair Colin Plant.
“This is truly a significant and important change to CRD governance,” he said in a statement. “I am so proud that we are taking this step in bringing together First Nations’ elected representatives and CRD directors to support more collaborative decision-making as part of our commitment to reconciliation.”
Board members and staff reached out to nine area First Nations before the bylaw change for advice and input. Those conversations are to continue as the new model of more inclusive and collaborative governance takes shape.