Two Terrace Tsimshian First Nations are to receive payments tied to the planned expansion of the Prince Rupert Port Authority’s container port.
The payments to Kitselas and Kitsumkalum recognize their common property interests within the Tsimshian First Nations.
Kitselas Chief Councillor Glenn Bennett said the port expansion deal is worth $1.9 million to the Kitselas and was negotiated with the port corporation and with the federal government.
“The port of Prince Rupert is undergoing an expansion …. and they have to consult and accommodate all the First Nations that are going to be impacted by this project,” said Bennett.
Negotiations are ongoing with Lax Kw’alaams, Metlakatla and Kitkatla, all of whom are First Nations located on the north coast.
The amount of the Kitsumkalum deal isn’t yet known.
The Kitselas and Kitsumkalum deals are awaiting final sign off from federal officials.
These negotiations have been going on for several years and follow similar ones which took place leading up to the $170 million first phase of the container port opening in 2007. Talks have centered around employment and business opportunities, environmental protection and archaeological protection.
Coastal Tsimshian First Nations went so far as to file lawsuits, saying the federal government failed to consult with them during that time period.
The Prince Rupert Port Authority declined to comment on the deals or negotiations.