PAREDA to sign MOU expanding membership Thursday

Herald file photo. City of Prince Albert planning and development director Craig Guidinger speaks during the signing of the original PAREDA MOU in March 2019.

The Prince Albert Regional Economic Development Alliance (PAREDA) will welcome two new members at an official signing on Thursday, March 31.

The Métis Nation-Saskatchewan (MN-S) and Sturgeon Lake First Nation (SLFN) will become the two newest members to sign an memorandum of understanding (MOU) with the group. Current members will also meet to extend the original MOU, which was signed in March 2019.

“We are pleased to be joining the Prince Albert Regional Economic Development Alliance as we work together to advance economic growth in the Prince Albert region,” MN–S President and Economic Development Minister Glen McCallum said in a press release. “Many of our citizens live, work and thrive in this region and it is important for our Métis Nation–Saskatchewan Government to continue supporting the economic, social, and cultural health and wellness of this great area.”

The MOU signing will be taking place at Prince Albert City Hall on Thursday morning. The new members join four original founding members including the City of Prince Albert, the Rural Municipality of Prince Albert, the Town of Shellbrook and Peter Ballantyne Developments LP.

An extension of the Prince Albert Regional Economic Development Alliance (PAREDA) Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) will take effect immediately and will run through until the end of 2024.

“Sturgeon Lake First Nation is proud to be a member of PAREDA,” SLFN Chief Greg Ermine said. “Working together towards advancing one’s goals and developing is a proven efficient and positive approach to building capacity.”

Over the past three years, PAREDA has focused on building the foundation of the organization including recruiting employees, establishing the Tourism arm of the organization, reopening of the Visitor Centre and developing a new welcome package to support labour attraction. The board recently approved a strategic plan that focuses on the core areas of job creation, revenue generation, collaboration with provincial and federal governments, investment strategy, tourism, and capacity building.

PAREDA is a grassroots driven approach to regional community economic development that aims for a cooperative and coordinated approach in looking to work together to support the region’s business climate and encourage investment across all jurisdictions.

The RM of Buckland also signed the original MOU in 2019, but chose to leave the group in December 2021.