Aaron Hamilton, operations manager for the Lake Cowichan First Nation, said there could be many potential uses for the 30-hectare piece of Crown property the band is hoping to acquire as part of its ongoing treaty process. (File photo)

Lake Cowichan First Nation looks to acquire 30-hectares of Crown land as part of treaty

Town of Lake Cowichan voices no objection

The Lake Cowichan First Nation is hoping the province will transfer a 30-hectare parcel of Crown land located within the Cowichan Valley Regional District to their ownership and control as part of the First Nation’s ongoing treaty process.

The Town of Lake Cowichan agreed at last week’s council meeting to sign a letter stating it has no objection concerning the initiative to the province.

The property, known as DL 27, is adjacent to the First Nation’s reserve and is bisected by Youbou Road.

A letter to council written by the First Nation’s Chief Councillor Georgina Livingstone said the property is ideally situated to provide for the future expansion of the band’s community.

RELATED STORY: LAKE COWICHAN FIRST NATION’S PLANS FOR RESIDENTIAL DEVELOPMENT MOVE FORWARD

“[The Lake Cowichan First Nation] has undertaken extensive research and analysis over the last 10 years to determine the Crown lands that best fit the objectives of the community,” she said.

“DL 27, due to its adjacency and proximity to the current reserve lands, was a natural fit. Additionally, there is cultural importance of this site to various members (past and present) that have lived off the land since time memorial.”

The Lake Cowichan First Nation, also known as Ts’uubaa-asatx, is one of five member nations of the Hul’qumi’num Treaty Group that is currently negotiating a treaty with the province and Canada under the B.C. Treaty Process.

Under the First Nation’s proposal for DL 27, the province would transfer fee-simple title to the land to a company owned by the band.

Once transferred, the property would remain subject to local government bylaws for at least 10 years, unless a final treaty is concluded prior to that time and the property becomes treaty settlement lands.

RELATED STORY: LAKE COWICHAN FIRST NATION RECOGNIZED FOR EXCELLENCE

Aaron Hamilton, the First Nation’s operations manager, said the initiative is just in its very early stages, with one of the first steps to ensure that the town had no objections to the proposed transfer of the land.

He said there are no plans for the property at this time, if the province agrees to the land transfer, but DL 27 is also adjacent to the busy Laketown Ranch and the First Nation might consider development plans related to that.

“The Lake Cowichan First Nation will begin a strategic planning process to determine what would be the best use of our lands within the next six months, and the uses of DL 27 could be considered at that time,” Hamilton said.

“This is the first piece of property we are looking at acquiring as part of our treaty process, but there could be others as we move forward and we’ll be working on that.”

As for the status of overall treaty process of the Hul’qumi’num Treaty Group, Hamilton said it’s not easy to gauge.

“Each process with the five First Nations is different, and all are operating at different speeds,” he said.



robert.barron@cowichanvalleycitizen.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

First Nations

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

VIDEO: Internet famous Yukon-based bhangra dancer explores Vancouver Island

Gurdeep Pandher spreads joy through dance, forms cross-cultural connections amid pandemic

Mary Lowther column: Time to plan the winter garden

Weeds have gotten away on me, I’ve just finished laying out my soaker hoses

Sarah Simpson Column: Finding nature at home

It was time to call in reinforcements.

Shady Lady: legendary Catalina touches down on Cowichan Lake

Two flying boats test the waters west of Youbou

Under new ownership, Cowichan’s Isles prepare for 2020-21

The Isles have gone through some ups and downs in recent seasons

53 new COVID-19 cases, no new deaths cap off week of high infection rates in B.C.

Roughly 1,500 people are self-isolating because they either have COVID-19 or have been exposed to it

Unofficial holidays: the weird and wonderful things people celebrate around the world

On any given day of the year, there are several strange, silly or serious holidays to observe

Missing teen visiting Courtenay found safe

She had last been seen going for a walk on Aug. 6

Moving on: Tanev scores 11 seconds into OT as Canucks oust Wild

Vancouver beats Minnesota 5-4 to move into first round of NHL playoffs

Fitness non-profit challenges citizens to invent a game to be physically active

The campaign was launched after a study showed only 4.8 per cent of children and youths in Canada met required standards of the 24-hour movement guidelines

Gene editing debate takes root with organic broccoli, new UBC research shows

Broccoli is one of the best-known vegetables with origins in this scientific haze

VIDEO: U.S. Air Force pilot does fly-by for B.C. son amid COVID border separation

Sky-high father-son visit plays out over White Rock Pier

3 Vancouver police officers test positive for COVID after responding to large party

Union president says other officers are self-isolating due to possible exposure

New mothers with COVID-19 should still breastfeed: Canada’s top doctor

Dr. Theresa Tam made the recommendation during World Breastfeeding Awareness Week

Most Read