With provincial funding having run out for the Community Development Corp. for the West Rainy River District, Geoff Gillon said his office is looking to pick up the slack.
But just how they’re going to do it remains to be seen.
Gillon and the Rainy River Future Development Corp., based here in Fort Frances, have started discussions with communities in the west end of the district on how to best meet their needs.
One option is to set up an RRFDC satellite office at the CDC’s former location in Rainy River but Gillon stressed that’s just an option.
“They’re not speaking in unison at the west end [on that suggestion],” he said.
“There will be some sort of compromise of the thing," he added. "The exact shape and form is yet to be determined.”
Another option is to have RRFDC staff stationed at the various municipal offices during certain days of the month to meet with their clients.
Gillon said working with communities west of Emo is nothing new to him, noting he’s been involved with projects in that area since 1989.
And the RRFDC does want to increase its visibility further west to make itself more accessible, Gillon said. Setting up a satellite office in Rainy River may or may not do that.
“That’s what we want to determine,” he said, noting a meticulous evaluation of the office site must be done before any decision can be made.
Although there would be a cost to establish an office in Rainy River, Gillon seemed confident the extra money could be obtained from the federal government.
Gillon said he was looking at a one-year agreement where Ottawa would match—dollar for dollar—the amount of municipal contributions.
The final decision hasn’t been determined yet and won’t be for some time. Still, Gillon stressed they would be looking at an arrangement that would best suit all the municipalities.
“We have to work with the west end to come up with something equitable,” he stressed.