QUEBEC CITY, Que. — Quebec Premier Bernard Landry and the Grand Council of the Cree have met to sign a $3.4-billion deal that includes a hydro development on Cree territory.
The agreement was recently ratified by about 70 per cent of Cree voters in nine communities. The deal includes a cash payout for the Cree of $23 million this year, followed by $46 million next year and $70 million a year for 48 years.
The Cree will also get greater control over their community, more power over logging, and more jobs with Hydro-Quebec.
In return, the Cree agreed to accept Hydro-Quebec installations on the Eastman and Rupert rivers and to drop $3.6 billion in environmental lawsuits they had launched against Quebec.
An agreement in principle was originally reached last October after more than 25 years of campaigning by Cree-rights activists.
“The signing of a final agreement between the Quebec government and the Grand Council of the Cree opens the door to a new era of co-operation and a real nation-to-nation relationship between the Cree and Quebec,” says Premier Bernard Landry.
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