Monday, May 17, 2010

Library costs expected to increase

City councillors will likely be asked to approve added costs for the construction of the new Mary J. L. Black Library. While the original budget of 4.1 million dollars to build the facility isn't expected to change, there are added costs that City Manager Tim Commisso has drawn to the attention of council. He is recommending that the entire parking lot at the proposed site be totally replaced as part of the process along with a complete rebuilding of a nearby children's playground. Commisso says the costs are expected to be about half a million dollars or so. He says he will report back to council by the end of June or early July on where the money will come from

More uses approved for Red River Road building

There will be some added uses for the old Safeway store at the corner of Red River Road at Clarkson Avenue.   Councillors have voted to include the uses of a community clinic and a mini-warehouse.   One of the concerns raised was whether there would be a methadone clinic located at the site.   Mark Smith the General Manager of Development Service says while there is nothing that the city can do to prevent such a clinic from operating, it's his understanding that the applicant has no intention of setting one up.  Pictured:   Officials with Red River Square state their case before councillors.

Forest industry finds an ally in NOMA

The Northwestern Ontario Municipal Association is going to bat for the Ontario forest industry.  It's started an effort to exempt the industry from more red tape under the Endangered Species Act.   NOMA President Anne Krassilowsky says that forest companies are already required to file to identify threatened and endangered species when they prepare a Forest Management Plan.   NOMA has launched an email writing campaign to lobby the government on the issue.

Forest fire season heats up

Be careful with your outdoor fires this May long weekend.
Ministry of Natural Resources Information Officer Mitch Miller is urging the public to take caution when burning outdoors because of the hot dry conditions.
5 forest fires were reported in the Northwest Region over the weekend.

Local health coalition ponders report

The local chapter of the Ontario Health Coalition is still reviewing the finer points of a report on rural and northern hospitals.
The Ontario Health Coalition penned the document that deals with health services.
Thunder Bay Health Coalition Co-Chair Barb Maki says they want to ensure all health services in the region stay intact.
Maki says the local health coalition will keep an eye out for any possible service cuts to emergency departments or other areas of care.

Global Sticks open in July

The manager of Global Sticks is hoping to have the company's Thunder Bay operations up and running by July.  It will make sticks for ice cream bars, corn dogs and paint stirring paddles.  Earl Metcalf says they look forward to hiring up to 100 staff.  Metcalf adds they're in the process of ordering the equipment and building the plant.

Etienne wows 'em at the Gardens

School students in Thunder Bay are still buzzing about a performance Monday by a popular children's entertainer. Steven Langlois, who goes by the stage name Etienne, sang his eduational french songs to about 4 thousand students at the Fort William Gardens. He says the concert was as wonderful as he imagined it to be. Langlois says students respond well to his energy and motivation. There is video on our news website.

OPP arrest impaired drivers

A 35 year old woman is facing impaired charges after being arrested over the weekend. OPP pulled her over on the Expressway Saturday after noticing her driving erratically. Officers say her blood alcohol level was over three times the legal limit and was driving with her 9 year old child. The next day officers arrested a 30 year old man at a RIDE checkpoint for being impaired.