HomeDiagramsDatabaseMapsForum About
     

Go Back   SkyscraperPage Forum > Regional Sections > Canada > Manitoba & Saskatchewan


Reply

 
Thread Tools Display Modes
     
     
  #281  
Old Posted Dec 11, 2009, 4:31 PM
hexrae's Avatar
hexrae hexrae is offline
Armchair urbanist
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Winnipeg
Posts: 922
Quote:
Urban reserve yes, legislature no: chief
New Long Plain leader changes plan for site

By: Mary Agnes Welch

The city's first urban reserve is still a go, but it won't include a long-planned First Nations government and administration complex.

Long Plain First Nation, which owns the parcel of land near Polo Park that's likely to become the city's first aboriginal economic development zone, has told the Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs that an Aboriginal legislature and administration building is a no-go.

"It offered very little benefit to our community," said Long Plain Chief David Meeches. "We didn't see the point of continuing to put our money into the project when it wasn't really serving our interests."

That leaves the AMC's $100-million project in limbo.

For four years, Governance House has been a joint project of the AMC and Long Plain. The band was to earn urban reserve status for a parcel of land on Madison Street as part of treaty land it is still owed. The AMC would then use most of the land to build a ten-storey building that was to become the symbol of aboriginal self-government. Long Plain had also planned to build a gas bar on the parcel.

But a change of leadership at Long Plain -- Meeches defeated former chief Dennis Meeches in April -- threw the idea into flux.

The band continued to work through the bureaucracy needed to earn reserve status for the land, and the final hurdle, a new service deal with the city, is almost done. But Meeches said Thursday that, contrary to a story in the Free Press earlier this week, his band will not be working with the AMC to build Governance House. At a national meeting of native leaders in Ottawa Wednesday, Meeches said he again made that clear to AMC Grand Chief Ron Evans. In an interview earlier this week, Evans suggested the Governance House project was proceeding apace at Polo Park and that Long Plain was still open to the proposal. Evans said there was no backup location contemplated. Evans couldn't be reached Thursday.

Meeches said his new council asked outside experts to review the project and just couldn't see how the band would benefit financially. Meanwhile, Long Plain had been paying about $50,000 a year in taxes on the land as the project stalled.

Instead, Long Plain has engaged architects and engineers to look at rehabilitating an old 30,000-square-foot office building at 480 Madison St. to turn it into offices and businesses for First Nations.

Meeches said he's hoping the building will be ready for tenants April 1.

Earlier this year, Meeches and Evans exchanged terse letters about the project. Meeches said he wanted more time to review the proposals put together by his predecessor, but Evans accused Meeches of stalling the project.

Asked if there was lingering ill-will between the band and the AMC, Meeches said no. "It's not bad blood," said Meeches. "I call it business."

maryagnes.welch@freepress.mb.ca
Shame, but if it doesn't make sense for Long Plain and Meeches then that's their prerogative. Perhaps this opens the door for the Governance House to be built elsewhere.
__________________
[Insert profound statement here]
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #282  
Old Posted Dec 11, 2009, 7:51 PM
Kinguni's Avatar
Kinguni Kinguni is online now
Registered User
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Tache
Posts: 1,079
Quote:
Originally Posted by hexrae View Post
Shame, but if it doesn't make sense for Long Plain and Meeches then that's their prerogative. Perhaps this opens the door for the Governance House to be built elsewhere.
Like, downtown perhaps? That building would look good on Graham. Those 2 ugly surface lots between Smith and Fort bug me to no end.
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #283  
Old Posted Dec 11, 2009, 7:54 PM
1ajs's Avatar
1ajs 1ajs is online now
ʇɥƃıuʞ -*ʞpʇ*-
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: lynn lake
Posts: 24,699
the nw cornr of higgins and main would be perfect
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #284  
Old Posted Dec 11, 2009, 8:05 PM
hexrae's Avatar
hexrae hexrae is offline
Armchair urbanist
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Winnipeg
Posts: 922
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kinguni View Post
Like, downtown perhaps? That building would look good on Graham. Those 2 ugly surface lots between Smith and Fort bug me to no end.
That could work, and the project can include a retail component to serve the Graham 'pedestrian mall'.

Quote:
Originally Posted by 1ajs View Post
the nw cornr of higgins and main would be perfect
I see the potential for a "campus" in that area. Aboriginal Center, Thunderbird House, MMF. Beautify the NE corner and that's a decent start.
__________________
[Insert profound statement here]
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #285  
Old Posted Dec 11, 2009, 8:11 PM
1ajs's Avatar
1ajs 1ajs is online now
ʇɥƃıuʞ -*ʞpʇ*-
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: lynn lake
Posts: 24,699
i have a bunch of ideas that could do some good around there such as bringing pasinger trains from up north to the old cpr station again being theres several native owned rail lines up north then were the royal alex was a hotel and office building could go up hell the amc could be there lol
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #286  
Old Posted Dec 19, 2009, 5:20 PM
rrskylar's Avatar
rrskylar rrskylar is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: WINNIPEG
Posts: 6,345
This is inexcusable:


Peguis leaders' pay beats premier's
Chief, band council remuneration 'atrocious,' taxpayers' group says


Each member of the Peguis First Nation band council made more money last year than Winnipeg's mayor, Manitoba's premier and nearly every one of the province's MPs.

According to brown-envelope documents delivered to the Canadian Taxpayers Federation recently, Peguis Chief Glenn Hudson made $174,230 in the fiscal year ending in March.

That includes a base salary of $124,000 plus $48,200 in unspecified "other remuneration." It doesn't include $32,000 in travel per diems and expenses.

But Hudson made far less than his four councillors, most of whom earned well over $200,000, tax free.

One band councillor, Glennis Sutherland, made $251,000 and charged an additional $59,000 in travel expenses in the 2008-2009 fiscal year. That's more than $160 a day in gas.

Sutherland has been a band councillor for about 20 years in Peguis, one of the province's biggest reserves and one that's routinely jolted by scandal.

On Thursday, Hudson suggested the figures were too high and possibly incorrect. Friday, he checked with his financial staff and confirmed they are accurate.

He said the high salaries are a hangover from the former regime.

Two years ago, in a battle that had been brewing for a decade, Hudson defeated notorious chief Louis Stevenson, who had also been plagued by scandal.

Instead of cleaning house the moment he became chief, Hudson said he kept many of Stevenson's staff, including the former finance manager. Salaries, travel per diems, expenses, honoraria and other payments like overtime and vehicle grants had been handled by the former manager until she resigned in March.

"Some of the patterns were not identified until now and we're still finding things out as we progress," said Hudson. "It's 26 years of practices that were in place and a lot of them were hidden."

Hudson said a forensic audit of the band's books over the last four years is underway, and the band council recently drafted a resolution capping remuneration at $170,000 for the chief and $140,000 for councillors.

Hudson also noted that's he donated $33,000 of his salary for a community Christmas party.

The reports, done by the Graham Avenue office of BDO Dunwoody chartered accountants, are year-end tallies of the band council's salaries, honoraria, travel expenses and other remuneration for the last two fiscal years. They were delivered anonymously -- Hudson believes they likely came from Stevenson's allies -- to the CTF.

"It's atrocious," said CTF Manitoba director Colin Craig of the salaries. "I wonder what the conditions are like for the average person on the reserve?"

The Interlake band has about 7,200 members and has traditionally spawned some of the province's most colourful controversies.

When Hudson ended Stevenson's 26-year reign as chief in 2007, Ottawa investigated and rejected allegations made by Stevenson and his supporters alleging election corruption. Similar allegations were made after nearly every band election.

Stevenson's tax-free salary and severance package paid during his last year as chief also sparked criticism. He made $240,000 plus a whopping $133,000 in travel expenses in 2006-2007.

maryagnes.welch@freepress.mb.ca
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #287  
Old Posted Dec 19, 2009, 6:25 PM
vid's Avatar
vid vid is offline
Editor
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: Thunder Bay
Posts: 40,461
There is a real problem with leaders in First Nations communities taking excessive amounts of money from the community's coffers. There must be a system by which the people of these communities can hold their leaders accountable for this, and we need it yesterday.
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #288  
Old Posted Dec 19, 2009, 7:25 PM
Jeff's Avatar
Jeff Jeff is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: Winnipeg|MB
Posts: 1,773
the past few weeks of news on first nations issues in this province have been quite troubling - kapyong issues, $1mil fraud in norway house, governance centre at polo just turning into a gas station, this story today.. etc. etc.. all of this is just completely outrageous and unbelievable and none of the politicians in charge seem to be at all concerned.
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #289  
Old Posted Dec 19, 2009, 7:27 PM
1ajs's Avatar
1ajs 1ajs is online now
ʇɥƃıuʞ -*ʞpʇ*-
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: lynn lake
Posts: 24,699
this is what happens when u don't have proper education of the people
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #290  
Old Posted Dec 20, 2009, 12:15 AM
DowntownWpg's Avatar
DowntownWpg DowntownWpg is offline
The Loyal Opposition
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Winnipeg
Posts: 511
Quote:
Originally Posted by vidilicious View Post
There is a real problem with leaders in First Nations communities taking excessive amounts of money from the community's coffers. There must be a system by which the people of these communities can hold their leaders accountable for this, and we need it yesterday.
Exactly... I fully agree.

In response to this story, I posted elsewhere that real transparency and accountability are long overdue for First Nation's administrations, band councils, etc. There should be the same access to and scrutiny of the finances as we have with any government department, such as means of federal and provincial Freedom of Information Acts or offices of Ombudsman. Such openness is a requirement for any real democracy.

This corruption is the kind of thing that happens when people think that nobody is watching. At the very least, it certainly does seem extremely dishonest and a betrayal to those who elected them... those same people who the council are supposed to be working for at improving their lives , opportunities and living conditions.

Stories like this further reinforce that those First Nations who cry 'racism' and blame 'The White Man' for their woes cannot be more incorrect. I'd say that it is the corruption of the First Nation's own leadership that is the biggest problem, and I don't care that the CMHR-mentality would be offended and cry foul that this is my opinion.

Us 'white folk' can't exactly amass on the First Nations and Aboriginal reserves; give the boot to those leaders who are corrupt; revamp the education and child care in a way we feel would be ideal; construct new facilities and housing and demolish what is dilapidated, etc. This would, of course, be viewed as an all-out assault on their culture and land, which would be met with resistance and take us all back decades of effort in trying to create trust and understanding between our cultures.

Which makes it so very sad to see such an obvious case of corruption such as what is happening on Peguis. "Whites" will continue to be blamed for their lot in life, but we're hard-pressed to do much more than provide funding to FN leadership. It is up to their leadership and has been for quite some time, to do the hard work of improving living conditions and social systems and not over zealously line their own pockets.

Corruption and lack of accountability is the problem, and until properly addressed, not much is going to change regarding quality of life on the FN's. Real accountability and transparency is the next step needed. Hopefully, bringing forward such openness of the books and of the leadership's activities is initiated by the First Nations themselves, because if that change is forced from the outside it won't be an ideal situation for any party.

Last edited by DowntownWpg; Dec 20, 2009 at 12:48 AM.
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #291  
Old Posted Dec 20, 2009, 12:59 AM
nordique's Avatar
nordique nordique is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Posts: 263
amc is moving into a couple floors in the kensington building (portage&smith)
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #292  
Old Posted Dec 20, 2009, 1:11 AM
1ajs's Avatar
1ajs 1ajs is online now
ʇɥƃıuʞ -*ʞpʇ*-
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: lynn lake
Posts: 24,699
good perhaps they can take over the ave block
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #293  
Old Posted Dec 20, 2009, 2:43 AM
vid's Avatar
vid vid is offline
Editor
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: Thunder Bay
Posts: 40,461
@DowntownWpg: The Indian Act allows a surprising amount of undemocratic actions. The federal government has the ability to completely condemn and demolish a reserve, de-reserve it and relocated every resident to another place, for any reason and at any time. They don't do this anymore, but they used to. Quite regularly. They also have the ability to create a reserve anywhere, for any reason, at any time. I'm sure if the Indian Act in its entirety was brought up for review in the Supreme Court, much of it would be struck down upon closer examination. It's archaic and it isn't helping the situation anymore. (Arguably, it never did.)

The creation of a system by which status Indians can hold their leaders accountable will have to be approved by our parliament, which is "white". Personally, I think the Indian Act and the treaties should all be rebuilt and renegotiated. Ongoing negotiation as relationships evolve is a part of aboriginal culture, and it should be a part of ours. If we took the time to work this out as two equal parties we could see an end to most of these problems in our generation.

Or we could just keep saying we have to "ignore the racism" while doing nothing to make the racism ignorable.
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #294  
Old Posted Dec 20, 2009, 3:09 AM
rrskylar's Avatar
rrskylar rrskylar is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: WINNIPEG
Posts: 6,345
Peguis First Nation

Population: 7, 200



CHIEF GLENN HUDSON

Salary, honoraria and other remuneration: $174,230

Travel: $32,151 (For 2008-09 fiscal year)

COUN. MARY SUTHERLAND

Salary, honoraria and other remuneration: $185,486

Travel: $39,932

COUN. GLEN COCHRANE

Salary, honoraria and other remuneration: $213,683

Travel: $48,313

COUN. DARLENE BIRD

Salary, honoraria and other remuneration: $220,366

Travel: $37, 239

COUN. GLENNIS SUTHERLAND

Salary, honoraria and other remuneration: $251,747

Travel: $58,984




Manitoba

Premier: $153,769 (According to the province's latest public accounts docu­ments, former premier Gary Doer made that much in the year ending March 31, 2009. Premier Greg Selinger will make roughly the same.)

Population: 1.2 million
Winnipeg

Mayor: $114,053 (In 2008, Mayor Sam Katz made that much. A third of it was tax­free.)

Population: 670,000
Federal government

MPs: $157,731 (That's the base salary this year for MPs. It was a little less last year. Cabinet ministers like Treasury Board president Vic Toews make an additional salary, bringing their pay up to $233,247 this year. They also get a car allowance of $2,122.)

Population: 80,000 average for Manitoba ridings

Wpg Free Press
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #295  
Old Posted Dec 21, 2009, 7:06 PM
ScrappyPeg ScrappyPeg is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Posts: 211
It seems archaic to continue a practice whereby taxpayer money is used to support a certain race of people for an eternity.

But why would anyone expect that to ever change - it's just much easier for the government to dole out billions of dollars, with very little accountability, in order to keep a certain group of people pacified. And who are those that are getting pacified? It certainly doesn't appear to be your average aboriginal person living on the reserve.

Billions of taxpayer dollars earmarked for one race of people - money given for all sorts of reasons (housing, social services, education etc) and yet we hear that many on the reserves are living in 3rd world conditions. The finger then gets pointed back at the government that not enough is being done - what about the billions of dollars?!

I dunno -- someone better come up with some good ideas soon. Last I heard the number of aboriginals in Manitoba is growing at a faster rate than non aboriginals (don't ask me the stats..). If Manitoba ends up with more non tax paying citizens than tax paying ones we are in trouble!
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #296  
Old Posted Dec 21, 2009, 7:32 PM
vid's Avatar
vid vid is offline
Editor
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: Thunder Bay
Posts: 40,461
Quote:
Originally Posted by ScrappyPeg View Post
It seems archaic to continue a practice whereby taxpayer money is used to support a certain race of people for an eternity.
Yes, but like the monarchy (Magna Carta), we agreed to it (the Treaties).

Quote:
Originally Posted by ScrappyPeg View Post
But why would anyone expect that to ever change - it's just much easier for the government to dole out billions of dollars, with very little accountability, in order to keep a certain group of people pacified. And who are those that are getting pacified? It certainly doesn't appear to be your average aboriginal person living on the reserve.
Money isn't going to them to "keep them pacified", it is going to them because we agreed that in exchange for letting us take away their sovereignty, we would support them financially and in other ways.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ScrappyPeg View Post
Billions of taxpayer dollars earmarked for one race of people - money given for all sorts of reasons (housing, social services, education etc) and yet we hear that many on the reserves are living in 3rd world conditions. The finger then gets pointed back at the government that not enough is being done - what about the billions of dollars?!
Just giving money to someone or something isn't doing anything. It is how they use it that does something. The government has failed aboriginal people by not allowing them greater self-governance to hold themselves accountable, and by not strengthening their political and education systems. (Democracy simply doesn't work is the people aren't educated and reasonably well off.) Aboriginal people have failed us and themselves by not being responsible with their money in the first place.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ScrappyPeg View Post
I dunno -- someone better come up with some good ideas soon.
Greater self-governance and self-justice systems, reworking or abolishing the Indian Act and re-negotiating the treaties aren't good ideas?

Quote:
Originally Posted by ScrappyPeg View Post
Last I heard the number of aboriginals in Manitoba is growing at a faster rate than non aboriginals (don't ask me the stats..). If Manitoba ends up with more non tax paying citizens than tax paying ones we are in trouble!
In Thunder Bay, aboriginal and visible minority population growth is more than cancelling out white population decline. Most of those new people do pay taxes and work. Not every aboriginal is on welfare, and the number one complaint from young aboriginals in this city today with regards to employment is "people won't hire us, even though we have skills".
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #297  
Old Posted Dec 21, 2009, 7:58 PM
ScrappyPeg ScrappyPeg is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Posts: 211
How can you argue that only one part is archaic (assuming that is what you are doing here) - if it is archaic for the government to control and determine what happens with reserves and it's people than it is also archaic to expect taxpayers to continue to financially support one race of people.

Laws, policies, legislation - they all change over time. New rule - taxpayers are no longer financially responsible to support one race of people. You can include that with your suggestion of abolishing the Indian Act and rewriting treaties.

As for the comment about how many aboriginal people pay taxes -- you and I both know that those who do work are in the minority among their people. The reality is there aren't many employment opportunities on remote reserves, many living on the rez are on band assistance. The ones that relocate to the city from the reservation have no work history and they are ill prepared to work for various reasons. We also both know aboriginal people are 'over represented' in jails and of the issue of poverty among aboriginal people. Those are all facts that no one likes to hear. Billions of dollars and these are still prevalent issues among and within the Aboriginal population.

Despite being frustrated, I strongly disagree with a statement that suggests giving billions of dollars is doing nothing - that is a complete insult.
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #298  
Old Posted Dec 22, 2009, 3:41 AM
DowntownWpg's Avatar
DowntownWpg DowntownWpg is offline
The Loyal Opposition
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Winnipeg
Posts: 511
Quote:
Originally Posted by vidilicious View Post
@DowntownWpg: The Indian Act allows a surprising amount of undemocratic actions.
Yup, in fact I believe there are still many hereditary chiefs.

Quote:
Originally Posted by vidilicious View Post
The federal government has the ability to completely condemn and demolish a reserve, de-reserve it and relocated every resident to another place, for any reason and at any time. They don't do this anymore, but they used to. Quite regularly. They also have the ability to create a reserve anywhere, for any reason, at any time. I'm sure if the Indian Act in its entirety was brought up for review in the Supreme Court, much of it would be struck down upon closer examination. It's archaic and it isn't helping the situation anymore. (Arguably, it never did.)

The creation of a system by which status Indians can hold their leaders accountable will have to be approved by our parliament, which is "white". Personally, I think the Indian Act and the treaties should all be rebuilt and renegotiated.
Also agree with you here. A priority being bringing forward requirements for transparency, and make open democratic elections a requirement, among other things.

Would be most ideal if this can be done amicably and by working together, because parliament ramming it through wouldn't be good for anybody. FN leadership does have to be prepared to accept real accountability and transparency for their people and, in fact, all Canadians.

Last edited by DowntownWpg; Dec 22, 2009 at 4:31 AM.
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #299  
Old Posted Dec 22, 2009, 3:44 AM
1ajs's Avatar
1ajs 1ajs is online now
ʇɥƃıuʞ -*ʞpʇ*-
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: lynn lake
Posts: 24,699
perhaps when the new king is crowned we will open up the table to talks?
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #300  
Old Posted Dec 22, 2009, 7:59 AM
jmt18325's Avatar
jmt18325 jmt18325 is offline
Heart of the Continent
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Winnipeg
Posts: 6,477
Quote:
Originally Posted by 1ajs View Post
perhaps when the new king is crowned we will open up the table to talks?
God help this country if we open up the wrong talks. We could literally lose the entire country. Without the Crown, there are no treaties, and without the treaties, there is very little of Canada left for the Crown.
Reply With Quote
     
     
This discussion thread continues

Use the page links to the lower-right to go to the next page for additional posts
 
 
Reply

Go Back   SkyscraperPage Forum > Regional Sections > Canada > Manitoba & Saskatchewan
Forum Jump


Thread Tools
Display Modes

Forum Jump


All times are GMT. The time now is 11:47 PM.

     

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.