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It is my pleasure to write this letter of thanks today to those of you who took part in the MD’s campaign to secure prioritized funding for the replacement of the Smith Bridge. Your letters of support have been fundamental in our recent efforts to underscore to the Province what this critical infrastructure represents to the community at large.

Thanks to the MD’s multi-front lobbying activities, including our recent drive for public letters of support like yours, I am proud to report that we have achieved a real milestone. In late February, I received confirmation from Minister of Transportation and Economic Corridors Devin Dreeshen that we’ve been approved for $1,652,850 to begin the initial stages of this project.

A separate application for $871,830 to offset the cost of interim repair work was also approved by the Province, reflecting a total commitment of $2,524,680 toward the Smith Bridge thus far in 2023.

There is much work to be done before we can cut the ribbon on a new bridge; however, this initial investment from the Province is both an endorsement of our plan, and a commitment to making it happen in a timely fashion. With this provincial funding in hand we can undertake preliminary engineering and design work, and begin the process of obtaining the environmental permits and approvals required for the project.

The Smith Bridge supports our local social framework and connects our robust industrial sector to vital markets. By replacing this bridge, we will unlock even more potential for industry, agriculture, tourism and community. As this important project gains momentum in the months ahead, you can stay apprised of any updates and documentation by visiting SmithBridge.ca.

Our campaign to rebuild the Smith Bridge was strengthened by the support, ideas and contributions from community members like you. On behalf of myself, my fellow Councillors and the entire administration team, please accept our heartfelt thanks for the critical role you’ve played in moving this project forward.

We would not have made it to this milestone without you!

Sincerely,

Reeve Murray Kerik
MD of Lesser Slave River no.124

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