Chief and Council met with Membership on September 19, 2013 in Sault Ste. Marie for the annual presentation of the Audited Financial Statements. Also included was a community engagement session on the Magino Mine project.
The Membership Meeting of September 19, 2013 opened with an honour song by member Theresa Binda and then the Chief said a few welcoming words to approximately 50 members in attendance, and then introduced George Trevisan of BDO Canada to present the audited Financial Statements as of March 31, 2013.
The presentation was done in an very informal manner whereby Mr. Trevisan opened with a comment that when BDO audited the First Nation almost thirty six years ago, they had $413 in the bank, quite a difference from the assets today. As he explained the various sections of the Financial statements, walked among the tables of members and responded to their questions. The Financial Statements indicated that the reserves which had been built up over the years through Casino Rama, had been expended primarily through Education; that the State of Emergency due to extreme flooding last fall, had cost the First Nation an additional $300,000 in expenses to repair roads, most of which was subsequently recovered from Indian Affairs. Funds were drawn from the Boundary Claim trust funds in order to facilitate the Per Capita Distribution over a two year period, for those members turning 18 who were registered members on January 12, 2008.
One member commented that the First Nation needs to generate income in order to continue to manage costs and another noted that financial notes should clarify specific unusual expenses but generally response was positive and Mr. Trevisan pointed out the letter from Indian Affairs congratulating the First Nation on responsible financial management.
The Chief reported that Hydro One, Great Lakes Power and the six First Nations in partnership did not get the designation for the East/West transmission line and that the new proponent would have to consult individually with the First Nations. The Chief also advised in response to a members question regarding short falls for the Better Living Policy, that revenue funds from the Community Trust should be directed to the membership and the continued high cost of administration would be addressed through the Court system, as a court date is scheduled sometime in November of this year.
After a short break, a full project description on the Magino Mine (Prodigy Gold) project was given by Michelle Tanguay, going through the open pit gold mine concept and giving time frames through the permitting process and various requirements from government agencies, continuing information sessions with the members and projecting a start date, if all is approved, of 2016 or 2017. A copy of the presentation is available on our website here, a printed copy is also available by contacting Lynn Lavigne, EDO 705-856-1993 Ext. 227 or email email@example.com.
Copies of the audited Financial Statements as of March 31, 2013 are also available by contacting the Administration Office.