Getting Down to Business (Planning) for First Nations Infrastructure

Chief Kimberly Bressette, second from left, with other panelists at Leading the Way: from left to right, James MacKinnon, Paula Pictou, Darcy Gray and Jason Calla. The number “two” has several applications for the Chippewas of Kettle and Stony Point First Nation. The Nation is made up of two reserves and the distinctive rock features […]

Maximizing Development Muscle – a How-To Story

From left to right: FNII Technical Advisor and panel moderator Jason Calla; Paula Pictou and Rose Paul of the Paqtnkek Mi’kmaw Nation; and James MacKinnon, Atlantic First Nations Water Authority. When you’re a small First Nation with big plans, you use every tool you can to leverage your in-house expertise. For the Paqtnkek Mi’kmaw Nation […]

FNII Helps Lead the Way to Greater First Nations Autonomy

FNII booth at Leading the Way, staffed by contractor Stephanie Slater

More than 350 people from First Nations across the country met in Gatineau, Quebec last November for the sixth annual First Nations Leading the Way conference. The First Nations Infrastructure Institute (FNII) joined its institutional colleagues to highlight the achievements of Nations using First Nation-led agreements and legislation. The stories in this edition of the […]

Procurement – Getting it Right When Getting Infrastructure Projects Off the Ground

“Excuse me, what’s this ‘procurement’ thing that you keep talking about?” The question brought John Dumbrell up short. As a member of the technical team for the First Nations Infrastructure Institute (FNII), Dumbrell had visited a First Nations community several times to discuss a plan to improve their wastewater system. At one of several public […]

FNII Mourns Death of Development Board Member

The team at the First Nations Infrastructure Institute is mourning the death of FNII Development Board Member Geordi Kakepetum. Geordi passed away Aug. 2 in Thunder Bay. He had a long and successful career as a leader – first as Chief of Keewaywin First Nation and then as the founder of Keewaytinook Okimakanak Tribal Council. […]

FNII Development Board Members Look Back and Forward Following Institute’s Creation

In 2017, First Nations leaders from across the country formed a Development Board. Their mission? To guide the creation of an organization called the First Nations Infrastructure Institute (FNII). Why? To help First Nations and other Indigenous organizations develop their infrastructure projects in a faster, more cost-effective, and sustainable manner than the status quo. Manny […]

First Nations Infrastructure Institute Now Formally Established

The First Nations Infrastructure Institute is now officially established under the First Nations Fiscal Management Act. The milestone took place June 20 following Royal Assent of amendments to the Act. The amendments address some of the barriers to First Nations’ economic development by providing First Nations communities and other Indigenous organizations with increased supports and […]

In Their Words: Infrastructure Institute Attracts Widespread Support

Bill C-45, which amended the First Nations Fiscal Management Act, was introduced in Parliament on March 23, 2023 and received Royal Assent on June 20, 2023. The amendments included formally establishing the First Nations Infrastructure Institute (FNII) – a development that drew support across party lines. Here are some of the comments made during the […]

Sharing the FNII Story in Atlantic Canada

As Members of Parliament and Senators were closing in on final passage of Bill C-45, members of the First Nations Infrastructure Institute’s technical team were headed east. The technical team spent the day with First Nations community leaders at a workshop sponsored by the Atlantic Policy Congress of First Nations Chiefs. Each has unique infrastructure […]

Shovel Ready – The Steps To Break Ground on an Infrastructure Project

The term “shovel ready” indicates an infrastructure project is ready to start construction. But what does it take to get to that state? The short answer is: a lot! Technical advisors and Development Board members from the First Nations Infrastructure Institute (FNII) can elaborate on that. “What we think about when we think shovel ready […]