July 27, 2005

NORTH BAY, Ontario, July 27, 2005 – Anthony Rota, Member of Parliament for Nipissing-Timiskaming, today announced FedNor support totalling $545,000 to the NECO Community Futures Development Corporation (CFDC).  Of this amount, $295,000 will go towards the organization’s ongoing operations, as well as to provide for the support of services in both official languages, and $200,000 will assist the CFDC in coordinating the communication and training needs of the Northeast Development Network (NDN).  The remaining $50,000 is for a Local Initiatives (LI) contribution in support of area economic development projects.

“This funding allows this organization to address local economic needs and priorities by capitalizing on opportunities to share expertise with other CFDCs and invest in area businesses and communities,” said Mr. Rota.  “It also enables NECO to continue contributing to the development of numerous regional initiatives.”

The NECO CFDC is one of 61 CFDCs in rural and Northern Ontario funded by Industry Canada’s Community Futures Program through FedNor.  CFDCs deliver a wide variety of programs and services to support community economic development and small business growth.  They employ local staff and are each governed by a volunteer board of directors, made up of local residents representative of the community.

The Northeast Development Network is comprised of 16 CFDCs stretching from Parry Sound to the James Bay coast and from the Quebec border to the eastern shores of Lake Superior.  As part of this initiative, the NECO CFDC will coordinate training and communication sessions for the group, as well as organize the NDN’s two regional meetings, an additional two planning sessions and two professional training sessions over a 24-month period, including the recent regional meeting that took place in North Bay in May 2005.

In the last five years, Northern Ontario CFDCs have successfully invested more than $101 million through their loans and business counselling activities to help the small business sector create or maintain 10,621 jobs in the North.  Last year, the NECO CFDC invested $752,704, and assisted in creating or maintaining 159 jobs, contributing to an enhanced business community.

“This funding allows us to support local community economic development efforts as well as valuable training opportunities for our organization and other CFDCs,” said Caren Gagne, Chair of the NECO CFDC.

FedNor helps rural and northern communities strengthen their economies and create jobs.  By partnering with CFDCs, FedNor is opening doors and building futures for a prosperous Northern Ontario.

Funding for this initiative was provided for in the February 2005 federal budget and is therefore built into the existing fiscal framework.

To find out more about Ontario CFDCs, visit:


For more information, please contact:

Graeme Wilkes
Director of Communications, Office of the Honourable Andy Mitchell, Minister of State (FedNor)
(613) 947-5850

Mélanie Mayer
Communications Officer, FedNor
(705) 671-0720 or 1 877 333-6673