Thursday, June 10, 2010

Hockey celebs give their time to fight cancer

Thunder Bay's Jordan Staal is one of 32 hockey players taking part in the annual Freedom 55 Hockey Celebrity Golf Classic at the Whitewater Golf Course. It's all in support of cancer care in the region. Here Staal is signing his Pittsburgh Penguin's jersey for auction. In the past four years the event has raised more than 130 thousand dollars for the Northern Cancer Fund.

Treaty Three responds to shooting death

Grand Council Treaty 3 has identified the victim of Monday's shooting incident in downtown Kenora as 39-year-old Helen Proulx. OPP responded to a domestic dispute and an officer arrived and was confronted by a woman wielding a knife, resulting in shots being fired. Treaty 3 officials say Proulx was shot twice by an OPP officer. Treaty 3 questions the use of excessive force and notes Kenora is infamous for poor relations between law enforcement and First Nations people.  Chief Diane Kelly is demanding changes to the way investigations are handled regarding incidents involving Treaty 3 members.  Kelly adds that they want the SIU to conduct a transparent and procedurally fair investigation of the incident.

More work on Highway 11/17

More details are being released on work being done on Highway 11/17. Two new bridges will be built across the Mackenzie River in the Municipality of Shuniah.  Meanwhile, a five kilometre stretch of highway from Hodder Avenue east to Highway 527 will be expanded to four lanes. Other highway improvements will include the construction of a new interchange at Hodder and Copenhagen Road, a new intersection at Highway 527 and Spruce River Road, and the realignment of the Terry Fox Scenic Lookout Access Road.

Conversion of coal plant on track

The head of Ontario Power Generation says the public company remains on track to convert the Thunder Bay coal plant to natural gas. Tom Mitchell says there's been no change in plans and no delays. He says the overall timeline remains the same, to have the plant converted by 2014. Mitchell says they want to make the conversion in "a careful deliberate way, in order to do it safely" and consider "all the different options." He says the priority now is getting the Atikokan plant converted to burn a cleaner fuel then concentrating on Thunder Bay.

OPG plants trees

Visitors to Mission Island Marsh Conservation Area can thank Ontario Power Generation for some recent enhancements to the popular recreation area.  OPG recently funded 14 new trees which were planted near the pavillion this spring. The trees include seven Sienna Glen Red Maple and seven Clump White Paper Birch.

NAN communities need more time

Consultation sessions are scheduled to take place in remote first nation communities next week. The hearings are on the Ontario Government's far north act. Nishinawbe Aski Nation Grand Chief Stan Beardy says they need more time to translate the far north document. The far north act recently passed second reading and is subject to further revision prior to the third reading which is scheduled to happen this fall.

Rafferty's pension bill off to committee

Thunder Bay Rainy River MP John Rafferty's private member's pension bill passed second reading this week.  Rafferty says the bill is now headed to committee and should be discussed sometime in October.  Rafferty hopes the bill will be passed into law by Christmas.  The NDP bill aims to change federal bankruptcy rules to give pensioners and laid-off workers of bankrupt companies secured creditor status.

Letowski retires

After over a dozen seasons playing pro hockey, 9 of them in the NHL, Thunder Bay's Trevor Letowski is hanging up the skates. Letowski says he's accepted a position as an assistant coach with the OHL's Sarnia Sting. Looking back he's satisfied with his career as a player.  He prides himself for overcoming a lot of adversity at all levels to prove himself as a professional player.   Letowski leaves the NHL with 84 goals,  117 assists and 209 penalty minutes.   He played with 4 NHL clubs, the Coyotes, Blue Jackets, Canucks and Hurricanes.

Dragon boats hit the water at Boulevard Lake

The Thunder Bay Dragon Boat Festival is going into its 11th year. To date the event has raised 850-thousand dollars for area charities.  This year's benefactors include the Canadian Mental Health Association, St. Joseph's Foundation and the Catholic Family Development Centre.  To register go on-line at

Chill set to host Springfield in home opener

The Thunder Bay Chill are getting close to their franchise's first ever sell out tonight for their home opener at Chapples field against Springfield. Co-Captain Nolan Intermoia says his teammates are geared up to play infront of such a large crowd and want to put on a good show. Intermoia says there will be a raffle held to give away two tickets with air fare, for a Toronto FC game. A portion of the proceeds will go towards the Arthritis Society.

Horwath's unfair tax tour in Thunder Bay

The leader of Ontario's NDP paid a visit to Thunder Bay today. Andrea Horwath spoke to residents about the impact the harmonized sales tax will have on their families. She says the HST will cost families an extra 800 dollars and the hst rebate cheques will not offset the extra cost.  Horwath also spoke to health care workers and took time to take a shot at the local health integration networks. She feels the lhin's are another layer of beaurocracy that's not helping area communities.  The NDP leader is currently on her "unfair tax" tour.  Horwath says the hst rebate cheques will not offset the extra costs associated with the new merged tax.