Voters in the Slocan Valley (Area H) have said ‘yes’ to joining the Regional District of Central Kootenay Local Conservation Fund service. Photograph by Joel Pelletier.

October 16, 2022
Nelson, British Columbia

Voters in the Slocan Valley (Area H) have said ‘yes’ to joining the Regional District of Central Kootenay (RDCK) Local Conservation Fund service. This service, which provides dedicated funding for high priority local conservation projects, was passed by referendum on October 15, 2022. The official results of the referendum were 435 in favour and 228 against.

This new service is great news for local organizations and Indigenous communities that can now apply for funding for conservation projects that benefit wildlife, habitat and water. Community groups and individuals that partner with an eligible organization can also apply.

“For the past six years, the Kootenay Conservation Program (KCP) has been a partner of the Regional District of Central Kootenay (RDCK) to deliver the Local Conservation Fund in the Kootenay Lake area,” said Juliet Craig, Program Director of KCP. “We are now excited to extend this service to the Slocan Valley. We look forward to working together with the RDCK to provide tangible, on-the-ground results for nature, and for the residents in the Slocan Valley.”

The Local Conservation Fund on Kootenay Lake was originally established by referendum in 2014 in RDCK Areas A, D and E. Between 2016 and 2021, this fund on Kootenay Lake generated $468,000 and has leveraged an additional $2.1 million in additional funding and in-kind support.

Now that Area H is joining this service, the RDCK Local Conservation Fund will provide financial support for important local projects in the Slocan Valley region as well. Examples of the projects that have received funding in other areas include incentives for farmers to steward their land for habitat as well as food production, cost-share electric fencing to reduce conflicts with grizzly bears, fish habitat restoration, creation of native plant meadows to increase pollinators, and the acquisition of important local properties like Cottonwood Lake. The funding for this effort comes from an annual parcel tax of $15/parcel within the participating RDCK Areas.

“This referendum was an important opportunity to bring this service to the residents of Electoral Area H to decide,” said Walter Popoff, RDCK Electoral Area H Director. “By voting in favour of joining the Local Conservation Fund, our community has determined funding for projects that directly impact our natural environment in the Slocan Valley is of significant value.”

Support for this service demonstrates residents’ commitment to healthy wildlife, habitat and water for now and future generations.

To learn more about this Local Conservation Fund service, contact KCP directly at or visit their website: .




Juliet Craig
Program Director
Kootenay Conservation Program (KCP)