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Minister Duncan Congratulates Marcel Colomb First Nation on Opening of New Water Treatment System

Ref. #2-3754

Ottawa, Ontario (January 23, 2013) – The Honourable John Duncan, Minister of Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development, today congratulated Marcel Colomb First Nation on the grand opening of their new drinking water treatment system.

“The Harper government is committed to working with First Nations to assist them in improving the quality of drinking water in their communities,” said Minister Duncan. “Working in partnership with Marcel Colomb First Nation helped make this drinking water treatment facility a reality and I would like to recognize the hard work and dedication of the Chief and the community.”

The Marcel Colomb reserve is currently under development and the completion of the drinking water system on the reserve represents the last milestone before homes are completed and band members can begin to move into the new community. Band members currently live off reserve, with most residing in the nearby town of Lynn Lake.

“For Marcel Colomb First Nation and for the federal, provincial and municipal governments involved, and for our Mother Band, Mathias Colomb Cree Nation, who worked with us to achieve our goal, it’s very exciting to accomplish. I have to acknowledge our trailblazers that once had a dream, a vision, and now that dream and vision have become a reality,” said Chief Andrew Colomb. “We have a place to call home now. We’re moving one step forward, and now it’s our turn to work towards helping our children and grandchildren to prosper in a healthy environment.”

The Government of Canada contributed more than $8.9 million from 2006-2007 to 2011-2012 towards the design and construction of Marcel Colomb First Nation’s new drinking water treatment system, which will provide trucked water and wastewater services to the community. The Government of Canada previously funded construction of a new sewage lagoon and road infrastructure for the community at a cost of $3.27 million.

The community’s first homes are being built with a loan of approximately $3 million provided by Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation   and guaranteed through theAANDC Ministerial Loan Guarantee Program. A total of 15 units are to be completed by the end of March, 2013.

Between 2006 and 2014, the Government of Canada will have invested approximately $3 billion to support First Nation communities in managing their water and wastewater infrastructure and in related public-health activities.

Marcel Colomb First Nation has 376 band members and the reserve is located at Hughes Lake approximately 255 kilometres northwest of Thompson, Manitoba.

For more information, please contact:

Minister’s Office
Jan O’Driscoll
Press Secretary
Office of the Honourable John Duncan
Media Relations
Aboriginal Affairs and Northern
Development Canada