Millbrook receives housing, culture centre money

Monique Chiasson
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DEBERT - Millbrook First Nation is the recipient of hundreds of thousands of dollars for housing needs and a yet-to-be-built cultural centre.
Peter MacKay, Minister of National Defence and Minister for the Atlantic Gateway, made the funding announcement in Debert Sunday. A federal investment of $3.8 million to improve housing conditions in First Nations communities across Nova Scotia was announced yesterday. Thirteen First Nations communities in Nova Scotia will benefit from the funding, including $324,000 for Millbrook. The funding comes from Canada's Economic Action Plan.
"It's a historic day for us ... that's a good Christmas present," said Millbrook's Chief Lawrence Paul.
Paul said the money will be used to build an apartment for a Mi'kmaq resident in Cole Harbour, which is one of three satellite First Nations communities under Millbrook's administration, including Beaver Dam and Sheet Harbour.
The funding will also provide for the extension of two existing houses in Millbrook needed because they are "overcrowded," said Paul.
But that wasn't the only good news for Millbrook yesterday. An additional $400,000 from the federal government's Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency was committed for preliminary work at the future Mi'kmawey Debert Cultural Centre, including site assessment and reforestation.
Also, Truro-Bible Hill-Millbrook MLA Lenore Zann announced a $100,000 provincial commitment through the Economic Rural Development's Mi'kmaq Community Development Fund as well as $12,000 from the Department of Natural Resources for the cultural centre.
"It feels very good. It will create a lot of jobs and in the recession a lot of jobs were lost," said Paul.
"This will also draw people internationally to see the centre."
It's estimated construction of the centre will begin in 2012, with an opening date of 2015. It's anticipated it will cost $14 million to build to centre on Lancaster Drive in Debert.
Zann said the centre will be the "cornerstone of the emerging aboriginal cultural tourism industry in Eastern Canada."
Millbrook's Crystal Dorey said the funding announcements are welcome news.
"There is a need for aboriginal housing ... for the bettering and creation of more houses," said Dorey. "And the (cultural) centre blows all others out of the water. We're very excited today."

Organizations: First Nations, National Defence, Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency Debert Cultural Centre Truro-Bible Hill-Millbrook MLA Lenore Zann Community Development Fund Department of Natural Resources

Geographic location: Millbrook, DEBERT, Nova Scotia Eastern Canada Beaver Dam Sheet Harbour

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Recent comments

  • Susan
    March 01, 2010 - 14:40

    I'm very excited about this new opportunity for not only the community of Debert but also for the Mi'kmaq people. Their culture is so rich and interesting and important and any way to showcase it is welcome. The other so called Heritage Centre in this area is a joke and does not do a good job at all. It is a disgrace. Bring on this new centre!!

  • Tasman
    March 01, 2010 - 14:39

    It's funny how all of a sudden there is some of this so called action plan money for the area after a Conservative member was voted in instead of someone else.

  • TryingtoComment
    March 01, 2010 - 14:39

    This is my 3rd try on posting my comment. Seems to be a normal thing for this website! So does this mean our taxes are going up even more because of this and the new Civic Centre or does someone have a secret money tree??

  • Jon
    March 01, 2010 - 14:39

    Tasman - that's politics. Elect from the leading party and reap the benefits. It's not how politics is supposed to go, but alas, here we are.

    I voted Armstrong because he would bring us the money - not because he is qualified (which he very well may be). I dislike the Tory agenda, but our riding needs the money.

  • MacL
    March 01, 2010 - 14:39

    the money comes from the easiest source , we the taxpayer. Message for all of us that work and pay taxes- keep working, the government needs the money.

    March 01, 2010 - 14:39

    I'm not mad all I'm going to say is, where is all this $$$ coming from ?

  • flogger
    March 01, 2010 - 14:39

    So TASMAN, let me ask the question: Would you rather have had a Liberal or Dipper elected and have no money? Or have an elected member (elected by a large majority BTW) and have some funds injected to our area? I am sure if there were a Liberal govt. in Ottawa and a Liberal MP from this area, the money would be flowing. Difference is, Liberal governments over-tax us, keep YOUR money in surpluses, kick back to their own faithful, and kindly give some back to the ridings that elected them to keep everyone happy. Sound familiar?

  • chief wiggam
    March 01, 2010 - 14:39

    mister 902, same place as YOUR medical needs that are paid for come from.