Tuesday, December 21, 2010

L-U prez ready for 2011

The new president of Lakehead University says 2010 brought no surprises. Summing up this year, Brian Stevenson says it was exciting to get his dream job, saying it's been something he's been trained to do.  Stevenson says he's got a number of goals that he'd like to see started including attracting more international students and reviving the law school proposal.

Rickford is election ready

The MP for Kenora doesn't think there's any need for an election yet.  But Greg Rickford says he'll be ready to hit the campaign trail in the new year if necessary. Rickford says while an election is on the mind of the opposition parties, its not a sure thing just yet.  There's been widespread speculation the election could come as soon as this spring, after the government delivers its annual budget.

Rafferty on the year that was

Thunder Bay-Rainy River MP John Rafferty is looking on 2010 with some regret. He says it was a tough year for many people in the riding.   The NDP member says his goal in 2011 will be to try and make life more affordable for those people.

Gravelle recaps 2010

Michael Gravelle is hoping 2011 won't be as rocky as some spots in 2010 were. The Northern Development and Forestry Minister had to help promote the new Forest Tenure system, one which doesn't have strong support within the industry.  Gravelle says the Ring of Fire development is what he plans to focus on in 2011, an election year.

Union gas bills going down

Good news for people who heat their home with natural gas.  Spokesperson Kerry Dudley Tatsu says the Ontario Energy Board approved a decrease of about 2.3 cents per cubic metre.  That means local union gas bills will be cut a dollar a year.

Port closes January 6th

Thunder Bay's shipping season is coming to a close in two weeks time.  C.E.O. Tim Heney says 2010 was a mix of good and bad.  Heney notes grain shipments were down while potash and coal shipments were up.  The Thunder Bay port will be closed on January 6th.

Hobbs looks to 2011

Thunder Bay's Mayor plans to attack a plethora of issues in the new year. Keith Hobbs says there will be plenty on his plate including resolving the wind farm lawsuit, the Bombardier TTC contract and the new Crime Prevention Council. Hobbs adds they hope to meet with Toronto Mayor Rob Ford about the TTC contract either in January or February.

Doctor Christmas reception

The city is once again taking advantage of the Christmas holiday season to lure doctors here. It's holding the annual reception for students in the health care field on December 29th.  Community Relations Co-ordinator Cheryl Armstrong says it gives the students a chance to see what we can offer them.  This is the 10th year for the reception.

Dew Drop Inn on Christmas Day

The Dew Drop Inn Soup Kitchen is expecting up to 350 people for Christmas Dinner. Volunteers will prepare the dinner two days before the actual feast on Saturday. Board President Paul Deighton says it's a lot of food. The holiday meal will be served from 2:30 to 4.

NOMA to elect new President in January

The Northwestern Ontario Municipal Association is expected to elect a new President by the middle of January.  Atikokan Mayor Dennis Brown is filling the position on an interim basis.  Brown says he'd be willing to stay on if no-one else comes forward.  Brown took over the President's job last month after Anne Krassilowsky was defeated in the mayoralty race in Dryden.

2011 fishing regulations

Not many changes are in store for fishing regulations in Northwestern Ontario.  Just one is in the 2011 regs, and it's for the season opener for Pike on Eagle Lake.  Ministry of Natural Resources Spokesperson Mark Sobchuk says the pike and walleye fishing seasons didn't allign.  Sobchuk says the week delay for pike impacted tourist outfitters in the Eagle Lake area.

Gravelle fights to save emergency position

Michael Gravelle says he's fighting to keep the province's emergency field officer in Thunder Bay.  The Northern Development Minister says he's doing everything he can behind the scenes keep the position here from being eliminated.  The current officer is due to retire at the end of January and the McGuinty government has no plans to replace him.

More Thunder Bay Mafia details have been released.

The former Mayor of Siderno Italy, Alessandro Figliomeni who visited Thunder Bay in 2004 as part of a Sister Cities tour has been arrested in Italy. News reports say he was arrested as part of an investigation into the Ndrangheta organization. Those same reports say investigators claim Figliomeni came here last year, to ease tensions between Thunder Bay's cell and leaders in Toronto. Siderno is no longer a Sister City of Thunder Bay. City officials say they lost communication a few years ago. 

Dryden police seize over 150 guns

Two Dryden men are facing charges following an inter-provincial investigation. Police say the men were trafficking spring-loaded knives at a Gun show in Brandon Manitoba earlier this month. RCMP Detective Rob Duttchen says over 150-firearms, knives, ammunition and cash were seized from the two men who had reserved tables at the show. The accused has been identified as 71-year-old Robert MacGillvray, who was arrested by Dryden Police following a subsequent investigation. His friend, a 70-year-old, has not been identified. RCMP hope to release a list of charges and names late this week.

No injuries in two armed robberies

Two armed robberies overnight.  Thunder Bay police were first called to a south side convenience store where a man armed with a knife was scared off by a bat wielding employee.  That happened just after 9:30 last night.  About an hour later a man again armed with a knife robbed the Village Market store on Hodder Ave.