Monday, March 26, 2012

Council approves budget increase

City Council has approved an increase to the 2012 budget.  Councillor Andrew Foulds brought forward an amendment to the budget to include about 84 thousand dollars to fund 4 not for profit organizations.  Foulds says the funding will help protect some of Thunder Bay's most vulnerable citizens.  Council decided to vote on each of the organizations seperately but passed each one.

Council approves Waterfront Land Transfer deal

The City is ready to close the land transfer deal for Prince Arthur's Landing.  At Monday's Council meeting our Municipal representatives were advised that the developer has approved the final document implementing the land sale.  City Manager of Community Services Greg Alexander says an official signing ceremony will be held April 12th and more details of the transfer will be released then.

Council looks at its investments

Our elected officials got a look at the city's investments at Monday night's meeting. Currently the city has around 97 million dollars invested mostly in Government Bonds. After a small amount of debate council decided to shift a small amount of investments from cash assets to the Equity One Fund. Councillor Paul Pugh voted against the increase in equity investment because he felt it was smarter to keep that money in less volatile types of investments. 

Three ships heading here

There are three ships vying to become the first vessel in the harbour for this shipping season in the Port of Thunder Bay. Harbour Master Guy Jarvis says they are all due before 6 a.m Tuesday. The captain of the first ship in will be given the ceremonial top hat in the afternoon.

Card could fetch 1.5 M

A million dollars is a lot to pay for a baseball card, but Thunder Bay collector Frank Wenzell says it's worth that and more. The 1909 Honus Wagner is considered one of the most sought after sports collectibles in the world, so Wenzell says now that it's up for auction, anything can happen. There's talk the card could even go for a million and a half dollars and Wenzell agrees.

Police target River Terrace park

Thunder Bay Police are cracking down on partying at River Terrace Park.  Officers dealt with about 50 youth in the area of the park over the weekend and seized a large amount of alcohol from minors and also charged 2 people with drug offenses.  The park has a reputation as a party location for many youth in the area.

Hobbs to Bradley: Don't leave us holding the bag

Thunder Bay's mayor is hoping a proposed new law designed to protect the Great Lakes will not be a financial burden to the city. Keith Hobbs says past experience has shown the city has been left holding the bag on some initiatives. As an example he says the city didn't get "a whole lot of money from the province" for our new the waste water and water treatment plants. Hobbs' comments follow a meeting in the city with Ontario Environment Minister Jim Bradley on the proposed Great Lakes Protection Act.

Bradley seeks local input on bill

Ontario's Environment Minister is travelling the province getting input on his proposed legislation he says is designed to protect the Great Lakes. Jim Bradley has just completed meetings in Thunder Bay with area mayors.  He says on some of the issues there is a northern "slant" but says for the most part our leaders have the same concerns they do in southern Ontario.  Bradley hopes to have the bill introduced in the legislature by the summer.

Transit fare going up

It's going to cost more to ride the bus as of this weekend.   Starting Sunday Thunder Bay Transit is increasing the adult cash fare by ten cents to two dollars and sixty cents.   Spokesperson Jon Handel says the increase is needed to keep up with the cost of inflation.   The last time transit fares were increased was back in 2009.

Community learns to heal

Community leaders are meeting today to talk about how the community can heal relationships when harm is done. Spokesperson Sheena Albanese says it could be used in a variety of settings such as the legal and school systems. The one day conference will also look at ways of keeping students connected to the school system.

Garage Fire on west Mary Street

Thunder Bay's Fire Department is still looking into the cause of a garage fire on the City's south side over the weekend.  Crews responded to the blaze on west Mary Street Saturday morning.  The garage was completely destroyed.  A fire spokesperson says they're treating the fire as an accident not arson.  The investigation is continuing today.

First Nations evacuated

About 300 residents of two First Nations were evacuated Sunday after their communities declared states of emergency. Ice breakup on a nearby river is causing ice jams and flooding in the First Nations of Kashechewan and Fort Albany on the James Bay coast. A spokesman with Ontario's Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services says the evacuated residents were taken to Kapuskasing and Wawa.

Shannon heads N.S. Human Rights Commission

A Thunder Bay lawyer is now the head of the Nova Scotia Human Rights Commission.  Dave Shannon was recently appointed as the organization's CEO.  Shannon who has been a quadriplegic since he was 18 will work towards making that Province more accessible for all residents.

Police investigate robbery

Thunder Bay Police are looking for two men they suspect in a robbery over the weekend. A 26 year old woman on Nelson Street was jumped from behind, knocked to the ground and had her purse stolen.  The suspects are described as wearing hoodies and being 5'5 to 6 feet tall. The woman was taken to Thunder Bay regional with non life threatening injuries.