Gitsxan hereditary chiefs reject deal with Enbridge

Gitsxan hereditary chiefs have rejected an economic benefits agreement ...

Gitsxan hereditary chiefs have rejected an economic benefits agreement with Enbridge tied to its proposed $5.5 billion Northern Gateway pipeline.

But they have also left the door open for future talks.

The deal, which would have provided about $7 million in profits through a Gitxsan part ownership in the pipeline as well as other benefits, became a focal point of ongoing internal dissension within the Gitxsan community.

The deal was rejected by a vote of 28-8 among Gitxsan hereditary chiefs who met last Tuesday, January 17 in Gitsegukla.

Release of the deal December 2 resulted in a storm of protest from some Gitsxan and a blockade of the Gitxsan Treaty Office by those opposed to the pipeline and to Elmer Derrick, a Gitxsan land claims negotiator and the hereditary chief who signed the deal.

The blockaders and others have also opposed the direction Derrick and treaty society officials have taken in land claims negotiations and have had a court action ongoing to wrest control of the society and negotiations from the treaty society.

A release from the Gitxsan Chiefs Office after last week’s meeting said “much more information is required from Enbridge to inform the chiefs on the agreement and the project and how they affect Gitxsan interests.”

Speaking on behalf of the chiefs, Gitxsan negotiator Beverley Clifton Percival said she was unaware of any new approaches being planned either by Enbridge or by the chiefs to discuss any new agreement.

And she described as “too speculative” any suggestion that Enbridge and the chiefs would come to a new agreement.

Although the chiefs rejected the current Enbridge deal, Clifton Percival did say she, Derrick and another chiefs’ office official, Gordon Sebastian remain employed.

The firing of the three had been announced several times by those at the blockade and other protestors who said the decision had been made by hereditary chiefs.

“No, we still have jobs and we still work for the chiefs,” said Clifton Percival.

The meeting also tightened the relationship between the hereditary chiefs by passing a resolution so that chiefs who wish to do so, can participate in the society by appointing its directors.

That was in partial response to recent court decisions which questioned the legitimacy of the treaty society because of the way it governs itself.

Those court decisions are part of an ongoing dispute between the chiefs’ office’s way of handling land claims negotiations and those who are opposed to the direction taken by the office.

“This was done in accordance with Gitxsan law,” said Clifton Percival of the resolution that was passed. “This was done to bring together the Gitxsan hereditary chiefs with the societies act,” she said. “Our decisions are made by the chiefs.”

The resolution to tighten the treaty society relationship passed by 94 per cent.

And a resolution to lift the chief’s office blockade was passed unanimously.

But Clifton Percival conceded  there would be Gitxsan who would not be in favour of those decisions.

 

Just Posted

An example of what a mural would look like on the back wall on Ron’s Bait and Tackle Store which faces the courtyard and sidewall. The mural photos shown here are mock-ups of existing artwork on walls of interest in the downtown core to build anticipation within the community about the concept of murals. The KPAA will not necessarily be using these locations or this artwork for the actual murals. (KPAA photo)
Kitimat Public Art Alliance mural funding request denied

D’Andrea suggested she will come back to the council at a later date with a more concrete plan

L-R: Vanessa Cuoto, Montana Murray, Connor Best, Dawn Best, Natalia Lopez, Thomas Walton, and Charlotte Collier partaking in the clean-up Kitimat campaign on May 28. (Katie Peacock photo)
Kitimat’s MStar Hotel brings out staff’s competitive clean-up side

The hotel staff circulated the Big Spruce Trailhead and picked up as much garbage as they could

Kitimat’s Water Quality Advisory, which has been in place for just over a week, has been lifted. (Black Press file photo)
Water Quality Advisory in Kitimat lifted

The district has been under a Water Quality Advisory since June 2

On June 16 at 6 p.m., the Kitimat Chamber of Commerce will be hosting a public presentation and discussion with Happipad, a social enterprise, to talk about solutions for affordable housing Kitimat. (Happipad photo)
Affordable housing to be focus of Kitimat Chamber of Commerce meeting

Figures indicate the average Kitimat household needs to make more than $92,000 a year

(District of Kitimat logo)
Hirsch Creek Bridge restricted to single lane traffic

The district is restricting the bridge traffic to legal highway loads only

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau participates in a plenary session at the G7 Summit in Carbis Bay, England on Friday June 11, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Canada donating 13M surplus COVID-19 vaccine doses to poor countries

Trudeau says the government will pay for 87 million shots to be distributed to poor countries

Montreal Canadiens goaltender Carey Price (31) is scored on by Vegas Golden Knights defenseman Alec Martinez, not pictured, during the second period in Game 1 of an NHL hockey Stanley Cup semifinal playoff series Monday, June 14, 2021, in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/John Locher)
Habs fall 4-1 to Vegas Golden Knights in Game 1 of NHL semifinal series

Match was Montreal’s first game outside of Canada in 2021

Kelowna-Lake Country MLA Norm Letnick, assistant deputy speaker at the B.C. legislature, presides over committee discussions. The legislature is completing its delayed spring session this week, with most MLAs participating by video conference. (Hansard TV)
B.C.’s daily COVID-19 infections dip below 100 over weekend

Only 68 new cases recorded Monday, four additional deaths

The BC Ferries website went down for a short while Monday morning following a provincial announcement that recreational travel between health authorities can resume Tuesday. (Black Press Media file photo)
BC Ferries’ website crashes in wake of provincial reopening announcement

Website back up now, recreational travel between health regions to resume as of Tuesday

The Kamloops Indian Residential School is photographed using a drone in Kamloops, B.C., Monday, June, 14, 2021. The remains of 215 children were discovered buried near the former school earlier this month. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Communities grapple with what to do with former residential and day schools

Some tear them down as a tool to help healing, others repurpose them as tools for moving forward

FILE – Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry talks about B.C.’s plan to restart the province during a press conference at Legislature in Victoria, Tuesday, May 25, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
B.C. watching U.K.’s COVID struggles but don’t think province will see similar pitfalls

Studies show that one dose of vaccine is only 33 per cent effective in preventing B.1.617.2 spread

RCMP Const. Shelby Patton is shown in this undated handout photo. RCMP say that Patton was hit by an allegedly stolen truck that he had pulled over on Saturday morning in Wolseley, east of Regina. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO, RCMP
Pair charged in Saskatchewan Mountie’s death make first court appearance

Const. Shelby Patton was hit by an allegedly stolen truck that he had pulled over Saturday morning

David and Collet Stephan leave for a break during an appeal hearing in Calgary on Thursday, March 9, 2017. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Todd Korol
Appeal Court rejects stay for Alberta couple facing third trial in son’s death

Pair accused in their earlier trials of not seeking medical attention for their son sooner

Highway notices like this come down effective June 14. Public health restrictions on non-essential travel and commercial operation have hit local businesses in every corner of B.C. (B.C. government)
Province-wide travel back on in B.C.’s COVID-19 restart plan

Gathering changes include up to 50 people for outdoor events

Most Read