Message from Chief Advisor Claude Brière
Qey, Dear members,
It is a great pleasure for me to share with you the major highlights and issues we have faced over the past months. In my duties as Chief Advisor, I am responsible for the hunting, fishing and aboriginal camp portfolio, with support from Chief Advisor Amélie Larouche. I also provide assistance on the economic development portfolio in conjunction with Chief Advisor Pierre Jenniss.
In the area of hunting, fishing and trapping, it is my responsibility to ensure that our ancestral rights are protected on our territory, so that our members can continue to practise traditional activities on the land. These activities are currently gaining more and more importance among our members. We develop an “Aboriginal camp policy” which allows us to provide better oversight of camp construction on the territory. We now have the possibility of establishing forest-based camps on our ancestral territory.
During the hunting expedition season, from September to November, I do a great deal of follow-up work, especially to promote good relations between the hunting expedition clientele and the persons in charge of structured territories.
In the same context, the annual community hunt is currently encountering several difficulties due to different factors, including the warmer temperatures which have an impact on game and the lack of volunteer hunters. However, we intend to maintain our objective of community distribution by mid-December and I would like to take this opportunity to thank all the persons who filled out the form we created. This fall we had a “first” because more than 70% of the responses we received came by way of the form that was filled out on the Internet. This type of communication has many advantages and we intend to encourage it. We also wish to especially thank all those who help us with the community distribution: your volunteer work is essential and very much appreciated.
As an elected member, I sit on the Conseil du St-Laurent and on the Parc côtier Kiskotuk Committee. In addition, I am very much involved in the current affairs of our Grant Council. I work on the follow-up of agreements with various departments. I also intervene in the field both to increase the awareness of the local population of our practices and to ensure that our presence on the territory is always governed by compliance with the rules and principles established with respect to agreed resources and zones.
In the area of economic development, I represent the First Nation interests with our partners in the Énergie éolienne Bas-Saint-Laurent (ÉÉBSL) project; we devoted a great deal of energy to finalize the funding agreement for this major green energy project, which will begin operations at the beginning of December 2016. This project has great potential for the VMFN. Some of our members have enjoyed employment on this project during the construction phase. Over the next few weeks, I will devote my efforts to the pursuit of the wind energy project and to the preparation of the next hunting and fishing season. We must, however, also continue discussions with the ministère de la Forêt, Faune et Parcs and advocate for our rights. .We also expect to proceed with an update to agreement that dates back to 2008.
Between now and the future, I will continue to work with all my heart for our Nation and will take the time to strengthen the bond of trust between the members and the new team of elected officials to which I belong, particularly by providing healthy management in the area of the finances and the economic development of our Nation. These two areas are closely connected and I am fully aware that our global development will occur through the territory. This is a major issue, which motivates me to promote our rights and to ensure that they are respected by the political decision makers and the population that I encounter as part of my interventions on the territory.
I will continue to be available to listen and hear your needs. You may contact me at the administrative office or by email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Please feel free to contact me and I promise that I will respond promptly.