Saturday, July 16, 2022
10:00 am – 5:00 pm
Location – In-person
North Vancouver: Chief Joe Mathias Centre – 100 Capilano Rd, North Vancouver, BC V7P 0A7
Squamish Valley: Totem Hall – 1380 Stawamus Rd, Squamish, BC V8B 0B5
Location – Online
Register below to receive video streaming link.
Nexwsxwníw̓ntm ta Úxwumixw (Council) is pleased to invite Members to a People’s Assembly on Saturday, July 16, 2022. Members are welcome to attend in person or online.
This meeting will be held according to Chapter 6 of the Squamish Nation Election & Referendum Law regarding People’s Assemblies.
The Squamish Nation Resolution Technical Working Group are available to assist all Squamish Nation Members drafting resolutions to be shared at the People’s Assembly. Please contact us for more information about preparing a resolution: CASadmin@squamish.net
To be announced. Please stay tuned.
Q: I want to know the way you are hiring in the finance department and others, is the Council involved or is it the HR Department?
A: Hiring is a collaborative process between the department and the Talent Acquisition Team (HR). Senior roles, such as Finance Director, involve executive leadership and Council.
Squamish Nation is committed to providing opportunities for community members, with preference given to Nation Members and other Indigenous candidates.
Q: How many outstanding loans are we accountable for, and why so many loans?
A: There were 13 loans outstanding at the end of the last fiscal year (March 31, 2021) with a total value of $22.2 million.
The Nation is proactively paying down principal balances and examining our debt holdings to see if we can secure better rates. During the last fiscal year, the Nation paid the loan due to the Squamish Nation Trust and secured a separate commercial loan, which reduced the over all debt by $6.6 million and a reduction in the interest rate from 4.9% to 3.0%.
Since the end of the last fiscal year, the Nation has paid down approximately $4.7 million of the total loan balance principally through early payment of loans.
Q: With no financial report from the driving range facility, is there any development plan in the future for the Seymour lands?
A: Nch’ḵay̓ Development Corp has been mandated by Council to explore potential new business opportunities including on a number of pieces of land around Linwood Marina. These plans are at a very preliminary stage. As with the Sen̓áḵw reserve, Nch’ḵay̓ and the Nation will present membership with proposals and ideas once they are more developed.
Q: What percentage of the transactions were actually sampled in the audit?
A: The number of samples as a percentage of the total is not tracked specifically. In any event, there is substantial variability in the number of samples requested based on the nature of the transaction. For example, Cash may be assessed at a different risk level than Loans Payable.
Assessed level of audit risk generally determines the sample size in a particular area. As audit risk increases, so does sample size for that area. Therefore, more transactions will be sampled in a financial statement area that the auditor assesses as higher risk. This approach ensures that certain areas prone to error or misstatement are given sufficient audit coverage.
Q: What have been the actual legal costs spent on all ongoing court cases (i.e. opposition to the Trans Mountain project)?
A: Whilst the Nation spent a significant amount of money over the course of the legal battle around the Trans Mountain pipeline, the vast majority of the expenditure was covered by the federal government being required to pay the Nations’ costs and through charitable fundraising. In terms on ongoing legal costs, $0.25 million was budgeted for this fiscal year.
Q: What is the historical date range in which annual budgets are accessible prior to being posted online for members access?
A: The Nation has been posting the budgets at the line-item level for the last two years. Prior to that, budget information was shared with Members however not to the same level of detail.
Q: Are we still getting COVID funding for the Nation? And how is that dispersed besides the food that we are occasionally getting delivered?
A: The Nation has continued to receive COVID-19 funding as distributed by ISC both as part of the general government transfer to First Nations, and in response to needs based initiatives launched by the Nation.
Beyond addressing food security, support has been provided in the form of:
Q: Have any tenants requested the Nation participate in federal subsidy programs because tenants have trouble making lease payments? Do you foresee any challenges collecting rents due to the pandemic?
A: The Nation did not to participate in federal subsidy programs, as this required that the Nation has to forgo rents. The Nation’s tenants have not experienced trouble the making the lease payments with all payments currently up to date.
Q: Is there going to be increased budget for cultural activities for off-reserve Members, continued language, et cetera?
A: Over the last few years, and in particular over the last two years, the Nation has increased the budget for language and cultural activities considerably. The budget for the 2021/22 fiscal year for ta na wa Ns7éyx̱nitm ta Snew̓iyálh (the Language & Cultural Affairs department) is $2 million with further work undertaken by the Education Employment & Training Department.
The Nation has invested money to create more language teachers; expand programs such as the language nest; and launching the Tel̓tel̓númut Cht program (which focuses on sharing advice, teaching and cultural knowledge with members.)
Q: We heard that there are supposed plans to redevelop down by the Main Office and I was wondering if that was true, and if so, what is going to happen with our sacred house that is down in that area?
A: There are currently no active plans to redevelop the area around the current Main Office and nearby the longhouse.
Q: Why does the nation have $2 million in vehicles? How many vehicles do you have and who is driving these vehicles?
A: The Nation’s vehicles were valued at $0.36 million at the end of the last fiscal year (March 31, 2021).
This number includes all Nation vehicles (for example; School buses, Community Operations trucks, etc.) and associated equipment (such as boat trailers at the marinas). Vehicles are used by staff from the Community Operations, Member Services, Education Employment and Training, Squamish Valley Operations, Rights & Title and Ayás Mén̓men. The vehicles are used to support case or client work such as Ayás Mén̓men visits to children in care; fisheries guardians field work; and drop off and pick up of Elders.