Merritt and Princeton were hard hit by an atmospheric river in Nov. 2021, which resulted in extreme flooding that devastated both communities as the Coldwater and Tulameen rivers, respectively, spilled their banks and damaged hundreds of homes.

Now, the provincial government is providing recovery funding by way of rural development grants.

“We need to ensure that we’re supporting rural communities so that jobs and services are there for the people who rely on them during and after challenging times,” said Katrine Conroy, Minister of Forests.

“There’s no question that climate change has had a devastating impact on communities around the province, so we need to get funding to areas where it is most needed.”

The recovery grants will support the expansion of the Princeton Industrial Park Expansion and Marketing Recovery Strategy, providing $500,000 to support projects intended to target economic recovery through industrial business and resident attraction, as well as the local tourism sector.

The City of Merritt will receive $500,000 to complete a suite of economic development projects and initiatives which will support long-term economic recovery, including sustainable tourism, and business and investment attraction.

“Our province is increasingly being affected by climate change, and when communities are trying to recover from these events, we want to make sure funding is in place for residents and businesses to support their recovery needs and the economic development opportunities they identify,” said Roly Russell, Parliamentary Secretary for Rural Development.