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The Inuvik Native Band (INB) held its annual general assembly on Sunday, Feb. 4, the first since
its re-establishment last year.

Edward Wright, left, and Chief Lawrence Neyando pose in the Inuvik Native Band office after the 2018 Annual General Assembly. Samantha McKay/NNSL photo

In his report, Chief Lawrence Neyando said the INB’s renewal is well underway now that
they’ve acquired a suitable permanent location.
“Our new office is inviting and friendly and everyone is welcome by the staff to drop in casually
or for business,” Neyando said. “We are still organizing in relation to some of the office space to
accommodate for interested parties wanting to rent available office and meeting space.”
Neyando said income from renting out INB space will help with operations and maintenance
costs of the building. The INB is also in the process of locating supplemental funding from other
sources.
Neyando also highlighted three main areas for development in the coming year.
The first area of focus is the well-being of INB’s membership. The second is to develop a
strategy for suitable and sustainable housing.
“We have been seeking out related programs and initiatives from across Canada and other First
Nations, and that is a starting point. We need to develop a solid plan, and by doing so, must
engage with our members who have these needs, and issues around those needs,” Neyando said.
The third area of focus for the INB will be exploring economic development prospects from a
different angle.
“With the recent road opening, and the lack of facilities and ventures to address the coming
needs and requirements of the tourism industry, we will have to be creative and energetic to
devise ways to help meet some of these unique and challenging needs,” Neyando said. “That
could be a certain and solid way of starting out to invest in the future developments of Inuvik
Native Band.”
Neyando said the INB is working closely with Nihtat Gwich’in Council on the self-government
file.
“Through this process we are seeking funds to work more on the community-based self-
government areas that need addressing and to go forward,” Neyando said.
The Gwich’in Tribal Council’s 2018 Special Assembly for Self-Government is taking place in
Fort McPherson Feb. 13 and 14.
According to Edward Wright, the INB’s manager, at the time of the meeting, the INB was only
invited to the special assembly to observe. However, Wright said he is working to gain active
participant status for the INB members that will attend the special assembly next week.

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