Caroline Cochrane: Designated Authority Council Training

Delivered on May 31, 2017

Mr. Speaker, our government made a commitment in its mandate to work in partnership with Aboriginal governments on a training program for First Nations governments with municipal-like responsibilities. I am very proud of the work that the Department of Municipal and Community Affairs has done to design and launch a training program to help improve the governance and management capacity of those governments.

Mr. Speaker, in order to move this initiative forward, Municipal and Community Affairs, through the School of Community Government, has partnered with Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada.  Through this partnership the Department secured a $180 thousand dollars federal contribution in 2016-2017 to fund the development of this training program.

The training program is made up of six governance workshops and the necessary support materials and documents.  The workshops are designed to be delivered to First Nations governments with municipal-like responsibilities including the nine designated authorities in our Territory.   The Department is currently in discussions with Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada in an effort to secure additional funding to support the delivery of this newly developed training to First Nations governments across the Northwest Territories.

The training workshops that have been developed cover topics including Roles and Responsibilities; Planning; Financial Responsibilities; Programs and Services; Conflict and Legal Responsibilities; and Working with Councils.  Municipal and Community Affairs identified topics for these workshops based on feedback from community governments through regular surveys conducted by the School of Community Government as well as the assessment of annual responses collected through the Department’s Accountability Framework.

Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to report that a successful pilot of the workshop and materials was hosted in Aklavik in March 2017.

Municipal and Community Affairs has made the First Nation Governance training available in a self-directed, self-paced online format so councils and individual community government councilors can take training as required. 

Mr. Speaker, in addition to this progressive work around the development of training modules, the Department continues to collaborate with Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada on the development of job descriptions for positions within First Nation governments, performance appraisal resources and council self-assessment tools. This work is part of the ongoing efforts Municipal and Community Affairs is undertaking to build capacity in all community governments across the Northwest Territories and to implement the recommendations of the Auditor General’s 2016 Report.

Thank you, Mr. Speaker.