There is some good news for forestry workers in Fort St. James.
The district will be releasing funds to workers impacted by the downturn in the forestry sector starting March 16, the municipality announced Tuesday.
A total of $250 per applicant will be provided in ‘Fort St. James Bucks’, at the municipal office which will assist in “purchasing recreation activities, groceries and other household items”, officials said.
The Fort St. James Bucks Initiative is being used to promote local purchasing in the district, in order to further support local businesses as well.
A Buck provided through this program may be worth $2 for every $1 spent on certain services at participating businesses, stated a March 10 news release.
These funds are coming from the $75,000 that the district received through the Community Support Grant Program of the province.
A total of $875,000 in short-term funding was provided via these grants, to eleven Interior B.C. communities who were impacted by a permanent or indefinite mill closure.
“We understand for many families this contribution will only offer a small relief but are confident that every bit will help,” Mayor Bev Playfair said.
Fort St. James staff is continuing to seek senior government support, Playfair said, noting they are also continuing to work with partners to advocate for other supports.
Eligible applicants can apply for the Fort St. James Bucks Initiative online at fortst.james.ca/fsj-bucks-initiative/ or at the municipal office located at 477 Stuart Drive West.
To find more information about supports available for Interior Forestry workers, visit www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/industry/forestry/support-for-forestry-workers.