Canadian Manufacturing

Nova Scotia economic development agency set to close as federal funding dwindles

Strait-Highlands Regional Development Agency CEO says organization will close doors July 19



PORT HAWKESBURY, N.S.—A regional development agency in Cape Breton is winding down operations as the federal portion of its funding dries up.

Blaine Gillis, CEO of the Strait-Highlands Regional Development Agency, says the organization will close its doors July 19.

The Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency (ACOA) announced last year it would cut $5-million in annual funding to some 50 economic development organizations in the region.

The organizations also receive funding from the provincial and municipal governments.

Bernard Valcourt, minister of state for ACOA, said at the time that the government wanted to find more cost-effective ways to create jobs and grow the economy.

Gillis says his agency, which opened in 1994, once employed eight staff members but that number has dwindled to four since Ottawa announced the funding cuts.

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