The City of Quesnel has been invited to be part of a new Community Forest Agreement (CFA), something the mayor says has been a long time coming.
Mayor Bob Simpson brought a letter he received from the Ministry of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development (FLNRORD) in late January forward to the Feb. 4 council meeting.
The letter states that the Province intends to directly invite community groups to apply for a Community Forest Agreement (CFA), and the provincial government would like to invite the City of Quesnel to be part of the CFA, in partnership with other interested community groups.
“During the recent apportionment decision for the Quesnel Timber Supply Area (TSA), 50,000 cubic metres live volume and 27,000 cubic metres deciduous volume was set aside by the minister for a CFA in the Quesnel TSA,” the letter states. “A CFA is an area-based forest licence that is managed by local governments, community groups, First Nations or a combination thereof, and is for the benefit of the entire community.”
FLNRORD has invited the Nazko First Nation, Lhoosk’uz Dené Nation, Lhtako Dené Nation, ?Esdilagh First Nation, City of Quesnel, Cariboo Regional District and District of Wells to be part of the new CFA.
“We would like to encourage you to reach out to these groups to discuss and identify interest in participating and partnering in a CFA,” the letter states.
The City has until April 30 to identify its interest in participation in the CFA.
Simpson told council he and Forestry Initiatives Manager Erin Robinson will be reaching out to all the potential partners in the near future.
He says they still need more information, but this is very positive news.
“We still have a bunch of questions, but the letter we have waiting for since, I think, 1995 has finally arrived,” he said. “It’s been a long time coming, but there is a lot of work ahead of us.”
The new Quesnel TSA apportionment was announced in mid-November.