Labrador Innu to vote on New Dawn deal

Members of Labrador's Innu Nation will vote later this month on a landmark deal that could help clear a major obstacle for the Lower Churchill hydroelectric project.

Members of Labrador's Innu Nation will vote later this month on a landmark deal that could help clear a major obstacle for the Lower Churchill hydroelectric project.

A vote on what's known as the New Dawn agreement will take place June 30.

The proposed deal came out of a September 2008 agreement with the Newfoundland and Labrador government, although a ratification vote has not been scheduled until now.

Without a ratified deal, the Newfoundland and Labrador government's plan to generate power at Muskrat Falls on the Churchill River will not be able to proceed.

The deal encompasses far more than the Lower Churchill, though, as it includes a land claim as well as compensation for the Upper Churchill hydroelectric project that was launched in the late 1960s.

Innu representatives took part in last November's announcement of a Muskrat Falls deal, but noted that formal approval is contingent on a New Dawn ratification.