3 South Okanagan communities awarded grants to lessen wildfire risk | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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3 South Okanagan communities awarded grants to lessen wildfire risk

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March 09, 2020 - 3:15 PM

Three South Okanagan jurisdictions are benefitting from the latest round of provincial funding to help local governments and First Nations prepare for the threat of wildfire.

The Penticton Indian Band received $150,000 to reduce buildup of flammable material such as wood debris, branches and undergrowth from high risk areas near homes and crucial infrastructure, according to a media release issued by province today, March 9.

“Fuel management supports us to protect the cultural and heritage value of our forests, as well as ensure they can contribute to a sustainable economy for many generations,” Penticton Indian Band Chief Chad Eneas said in the release.

The Regional District of Okanagan-Similkameen received a $140,000 grant to update an official community plan to incorporate Firesmart principles to keep homes, neighbourhoods and communities safe. Some of the funding will also go to a FireSmart educator, for public outreach and education.

“Reducing wildfire risk and increasing our community’s resiliency to wildfire impacts are ongoing challenges. This funding will hope improve and expand our efforts to protect residents,” regional district Board Chair Karla Kozakevich said in the release.

The Town of Osoyoos also received $36,000 to assist with education and development considerations.

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