The Lands and Resource Department is responsible for the stewardship of the lands and resources within the Yaqan Nukiy stewardship area. The stewardship area lies within the Ktunaxa Nation Traditional Territory and follows the boundaries of the Regional District of Central Kootenay to the east and north and extends west to the east shore of the Columbia River and Arrow Lakes.
The department is managed by the Director of Development Services and is committed to working closely with government, NGO’s and the public and private sector to ensure the stewardship of the environment within our traditional lands. Recent projects with local, regional and provincial agencies include the development of a Floodplain Management Plan for the Creston Valley and participation in the Kootenay Lake Partnership.
The Traditional Territory of the Ktunaxa Nation covers approximately 70,000 square kilometres (27,000 square miles) in south-eastern British Columbia and historically included parts of Alberta, Montana, Washington and Idaho.
Representatives from the Lower Kootenay Band also participate with the Ktunaxa Nation Council Lands and Resource Sector to fulfill their stewarship responsibilities within the Ktunaxa Traditional Territory. A KNC Lands and Resource Stewardship Assistant located within the community assists the KNC L&R with community consultation regarding government and industry referrals and developments within the Traditional Territory.
The staff is responsible for managing agricultural and light industrial land leases, temporary use permits and licenses on community lands. They also enforce land related acts, regulations and bylaws, and undertake other municipal type land and planning functions.
The Lower Kootenay Band has 6,000 acres of community lands located on 8 separate reserves in the Creston Valley. The lands are located adjacent to the Kootenay River and stretch from the Canada/ US border to Wynndel, B.C.
The community lands contain over 4,000 acres of the richest agricultural lands in south eastern BC. The Lands and Resource Department works closely with local producers to manage these lands for timothy hay, cereal crop production and livestock grazing.
There are also 1,100 acres of wetlands which were established by Ducks Unlimited and are currently managed with the assistance of the Yaqan Nukiy Wetlands Friendship Society, which is comprised of Lower Kootenay and Creston Valley citizens.
The staff is always working toward improving land management through the use of legislation, policies, leasing, mapping and land use planning. A Land Use Plan to build upon the community’s Physical Development Plan is currently in development and will become an integral part of the Comprehensive Community Plan when completed. We are also improving our governance structures to accommodate and attract business investment to their lands through Zoning Bylaws, Development Standards and Development Permit Areas, Landscape Design Criteria, Development Procedures Manual and Development Cost Charges Bylaw.
The Sector also works closely with the Public Works department to manage and maintain the community’s infrastructure and capital infrastructure programs. LKB manages their own Community Water System and maintains their own infrastructure (roads, sewer, and community buildings) with the assistance of local and regional engineering firms and contractors.
The next major capital project will include the upgrade of the community water system and construction of a water treatment facility in 2013. Future plans include upgrades to the roads, construction of a new reservoir and construction of a new subdivision for future community housing.
For more information regarding the Lands and Resource Sector or to enquire about land leases, please contact the Director of Development Services @ 250-428-4428.