The Doig River First Nation is in a stronger financial position in 2015 than it was in 2014, according to financial documents filed with Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Canada earlier this month.
The band’s First Nations Financial Transparency Act documents were posted online on Oct. 1. Overall, the First Nation posted a $1.2-million operating surplus for the fiscal year ending March 31, 2015.
In 2015, Doig River brought in about $8.67 million in revenues, up from $5.7 million in 2014. The band's expenses also went up, from about $6 million in 2014 to about $7.4 million in 2015.
In an email to the Alaska Highway News, Doig River said its council and administration manage "extensive operations" for its members, including public works, housing, social assistance, health services, education, skills training and employment, economic and business development, lands and resources management, and membership registration.
“In doing so, the council and administration are accountable to the membership for its’ own-source revenues and expenses, this includes a strong commitment to improving the Nation’s assets and revenues for the future generations of (Doig River),” the email read.
“(Doig River) is actively at the table with government and industry on a number of projects, programs, and initiatives that will further enhance the quality of life for its members, while most importantly protecting its land base and treaty rights.”
Doig River Chief Norman Davis was paid $126,335 in remuneration, and posted $9,606 in expenses.
Coun. Shirley Acko was the highest paid councillor, earning $101,957 and posting $7,146 in expenses. Coun. Gerry Attachie was the least paid councillor, earning only $13,947 and posting $4,166 in expenses. Coun. Kelvin Davis took home $69,274, and posted expenses of $7,242.
Included in Doig River's list of revenues was $130,000 attributed to Site C revenues, while the band listed $45,000 in Site C impact benefit agreement negotiations.
Doig River was one of the First Nations to join a federal legal challenge launched against the dam last November, but later backed out in August of this year.
Meanwhile, the First Nation pulled in less money from Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Canada, receiving $1,151,623 in 2015, down from the $1,236,748 it received in 2014. The band also recorded $1.197 million in revenue from TransCanada Pipelines Ltd. It also saw increases in revenue from company sponsorship and donations, $128,477 in 2015 compared to just $39,764 in 2014, and also saw a $58,000 boost in Oil and Gas Commission revenue.
Doig River spent $1.6 million in industry agreements for the year. Other expenses include $9,000 on a caribou study, $19,300 on a reclamation plant, and $54,983 toward the ongoing development of its K'ih tsaa?dze Tribal Park.