© Eric Bourque
Digby Warden Linda Gregory
Work continues towards establishment of a regional enterprise network for southwestern Nova Scotia.
The Town of Digby and Municipality of Digby are two of six municipal units that will be part of the new regional enterprise network (REN).
The two local units have signed a memorandum of understanding “to continue working and making REN happen,” said Mayor Ben Cleveland.
“We are looking for board members. That process is underway. We want this to succeed so we need successful people from the area to make it happen.”
Announced by the province last year, the REN initiative is meant to help fill the void left by the shutdown of regional development authorities.
The focus of the regional enterprise networks will be on economic or business development and not extend to community development.
Warden Linda Gregory says the regional enterprise network will be a great asset to the area.
“Council feels that whatever we can do to promote economic activity in the region is a benefit to all,” she said.
The town and municipality of Digby had been part of the Annapolis Digby Economic Development Agency, which was closed earlier this year.
“Were we disappointed that had to close? Of course we were,” the warden said. “It was running well. It was doing great, but you must move on if that is the mandate.”
She said she is pleased to see how those involved in the REN discussions have worked together to bring the process to this point.
The REN initiative was launched, in part, as a result of the loss of federal funding for regional development authorities.
The REN in this region of the province will include the Digby town and municipality, as well as Yarmouth (town and municipality) and the municipalities of Clare and Argyle.
Barrington and Clark’s Harbour were to have been part of it, but decided not to be involved.
According to the province, the regional enterprise networks “will provide regional economic leadership and help develop regional economic strategies, while supporting small, local businesses.”