Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Nolalu Man Charged In Sexual Assault Case

A 42 year old Nolalu man is due in court tomorrow to answer to a charge of sexual assault.   Police aren't saying much about the circumstances of the case, but say he is being charged with, among other things, 2 counts of sexual assault, forcible confinement and one count of sexual assault with a weapon.  His name is not being released to protect the identity of the victim.

IJC Sides With Shoal Lake FN

The International Joint Commission has sided with the Shoal Lake First Nations. The IJC has ruled against the City of Winnipeg's plan to sell water to surrounding communities.The Kenora area first nations argued that the city would break the agreement in place by making a profit off the water. In a letter, the Commission supported the argument and informed Winnipeg that it could not sell the water. The decision will put a dent into the city's CentrePort project.

Public Board Budget Talk Continue

The public school board's budget talks continue tonight with presentations from various delegations.  That includes Paul Caccamo of the high school teachers union who will be fighting to keep some special needs program off the chopping block. The union will also plead for support in  early childhood education and educational assistants.

Police Asking For Info

Marathon OPP are looking into a bizarre incident that happened on Highway 17 Saturday. Constable Dave Shaw says the driver of a dark blue pickup truck was attempting to run other drivers off the road before crashing into a ditch and being arrested. The driver's name is not being released at this time.

Golf Links Road Closed Starting Tomorrow

Golf Links road is going to be closed starting Wednesday.  City Spokesperson Pat Mauro says Golf Links Road from the Harbour Expressway to Central Avenue will be closed to traffic in both directions.  The major construction project will see road widening to four lanes and new sidewalks.  The major construction project is expected to last up to 12 weeks.

Man Charged With Weapons Related Offences

Thunder Bay Police have a 44 year old man in custody after they charged him yesterday with weapons related offences.   They were called to May Street to deal with a report of a man brandishing a firearm.  Officers took him into custody and recovered a previously reported stolen shotgun.  He faces multiple charges, including unauthorized possession of a firearm, weapons dangerous to the public, resisting arrest and possession of stolen property.

New Ways Of Detecting Colon Cancer

A Thunder Bay researcher is on the receiving end of nearly 200-thousand dollars in Canadian Cancer Society grant money.  Society CEO Martin Kabat says the money will be used to look at new ways of detecting colon cancer.  Kabat says this is the single largest research grant awarded by the Canadian Cancer Society in the Northwest Region.  The funding announcement is being made today at a special 75th anniversary commemoration event.

Construction Work Approved

More construction work is now approved for the city. Councillors have given the green light to 2 and a half million dollars of work  on Frederica and Waterloo Streets. The contract has been awarded to Makkinga Contracting who submitted the lowest bid.

Canoe Not Likely To Move

It doesn't appear Atikokan will be getting the Centennial Canoe which is currently being stored at Fort William Historical Park. The Neebing Voyageur Brigade is in control of it and its spokesperson Bob Slusar doesn't believe his fellow members will agree to letting it go but says he will ask. Atikokan Mayor Dennis Brown made an impassioned plea to councillors last night to have the canoe released to them so it could be put on display in their community.

Friedman Lectures Councillors

The city is being warned not to allow businesses in the city to fail. Canadian housing and style guru Avi Friedman told city councillors that it's important to offer incentives for new businesses to arrive or we will continue to have streets with boarded up businesses saying Simpson Street will multiply. Friedman praised the new waterfront calling it an ATM machine for the city.

Global Sticks Up For Sale

The Global Sticks story is not over yet. During last nights presentation at City Hall, Paul Inksetter, of the city's Economic Development Corporation told councillors the area popsicle stick manufacturer is up for sale, but wouldn't speculate on whether it may reopen someday or not.  Inksetter says there have been 2 or 3 offers for the business, but none have panned out.

PSAC Launching Aboriginal Circle

It's a historic day for the labour movement in Thunder Bay. Judith Monteith-Farrell of the Public Service Alliance says the union is launching it's new Aboriginal Circle this afternoon.  She says the Circle will work on important issues dealing with PSAC's  Aboriginal members. The ceremony takes place at the Metis Nation of Ontario building on May Street at 5 o'clock.

Monday, April 29, 2013

Pet Police On The Prowl

The city is going door to door to make sure your pet is licenced.  Animal Service officers will be visiting homes of owners with expired pet licences.  It will allow them to buy a licence on the spot without being hit with any retroactive fees or added fines.

Murillo Man Behind Bars

A 32 year old Murillo man is in police custody  after they say he disobeyed court orders not to be in the company of young children. Police say last week he was seen taking care of two boys at the Games Complex. They say the case against Tony Barnes is connected to child pornography charges in Manitoba. Police are asking the public to contact them if they have concerns about possible contact he's had with young people.

22 Year Old Charged With Mischief

Thunder Bay Police are charging a 22 year old man with mischief after a troubling incident over the weekend at Boulevard Lake.  Police say someone strung up fishing line on the pathways at Boulevard.  The young man was spoken to in regards to the incident and Police say he was remorseful about his actions that was meant to be a prank.

Human Remains Found

Thunder Bay Police are looking into human remains that were found in a wooded area between the Health Sciences Center and the Riverside cemetery on Oliver Road.  Police say a man called them after finding the remains just before 3 in the afternoon Saturday.  Investigators are trying to identify the deceased and a post mortem is scheduled.

Safe Cycling Group Gives Tips

Safe Cycling Thunder Bay is giving tips on how to safely ride bicycles around town. Spokesperson Doug Diaczuk says he wants cyclists to know everything they need to know about road rules and safety. Diaczuk also wants to remind cyclists that, since bicycles are technically vehicles, riding on sidewalks is illegal.

Out Of Darkness Walk Set For Sunday

The Out Of The Darkness Memorial Walk is happening Sunday. This event is a three kilometer walk starting at Confederation College. Spokesperson Margaret Hajdinjak created the event as a way for people to celebrate the lives of people they've lost to suicide. The event will go from 6-8 pm.

NOACC New President

The Northwestern Ontario Associated Chambers of Commerce has a new president.  At it's spring Annual General Meeting held this past weekend in Dryden, Michael Nitz was announced to the position and says he's excited for what's to come.  Nitz has served as past president of the Nipigon Chamber of Commerce and Thunder Bay's NOACC representative.

MNR Minister Coy About User Fees

The provinces natural resources minister isn't giving anything away before the budget.   In an interview with our newsroom David Orazetti says any news of possible service fee increases will have to wait for the budget or soon after.  The ministry has been polling anglers and hunters in the northwest about what service fee increases they might accept.

Atikokan Wants The Centennial Canoe

Atikokan wants a chance to display the Ontario Centennial Canoe and they're going to ask Thunder Bay Council for it at tonight's meeting.  Mayor Dennis Brown says they've been working on getting the canoe for several years.  Brown says the canoe is currently being stored under a tarp at the Fort William Historical Park and Atikokan has a history with the canoe.

Legal Fee Reserve Fund Up For Discussion

City lawmakers are considering setting up a rainy day legal fee reserve fund.  Councillor Iain Angus says it just makes sense to set up the account.  Council will make a decision on the matter tonight.

Campbell Has Budget Wish List

Kenora-Rainy River MPP Sarah Campbell has high hopes for the provincial budget, which will be released Thursday.   Campbell says one of her areas of concern is home health care.   Campbell has also heard from residents that they want to see a break on auto insurance premiums.

Former George Jeffrey CEO Passes

Former George Jeffery Children's Centre CEO Eiji Tsubouchi has passed away.  Tsubouchi retired as CEO in 2012.  His funeral is set for the Westfort Chappel Tuesday night.

MPAC Meeting Today

Northern Mayors are in Toronto today to meet with the Province's Deputy Finance Minister.  It's a bid to convince the government to intervene in the on-going dispute with the Municipal Property Assessment Corporation.  The Northern Mayors Coalition says MPAC assessments on mill properties are killing area communities.  The president of MPAC stated Friday that they would not alter the assessments and will continue to hand out bills and payment notices to northern municipalities.

Hospital Shows Off New MRI

The Regional Hospital is showing off its newest medical resonance imaging machine.  It's unique in Canada according to imaging expert Matthew Fox who says with this new piece of equipment they can more detailed pictures of the lung. He says it will prove effective for exploring diseases like asthma and cystic fibrosis.  Fox says they hope to begin clinical trials in the near future.

Sunday, April 28, 2013

Kenora MPP Not Happy With Province

The MPP for Kenora-Rainy River is calling on the premier to address the social conditions in First Nation communities. Speaking at Queens Park, Sarah Campbell says it's unfair that these communities have to declare a state of emergency to get some attention from the government. A remote Northern First Nation declared a state of emergency last week due to recent suicides and the issue of prescription drug abuse.

Police Probe Potentially Lethal Incident

Thunder Bay Police are looking into what could have been a dangerous incident. Police say someone placed fishing line across the walking path at Boulevard Lake. Officials say the line was placed five to six feet off the ground at various locations around Boulevard.

Saturday, April 27, 2013

PC's Pick Their Candidate

Tamara Johnson will be the Progressive Conservative candidate for Thunder Bay - Superior North in the next provincial election. She was acclaimed at a gathering earlier today at the Italian Hall.

CAW and CEP To Form Union

Representatives from the CAW and CEP unions are promoting their upcoming merger. CAW Spokesperson Andy Savela says its good news for Thunder Bay workers.The Communications, Energy and Paperworkers Union of Canada and Canadian Auto Workers will officially be Canada's biggest union starting Labour Day.

Night Out Site Launched

A Thunder Bay woman is up and running a website dedicated to helping people find things to do around town. Cheryl Merlo created thunderbaynightout.com as a way for people to find events and bars around the city. The site can be found HERE.

Kenora MPP Against Border Fee

Keep the borders free of charge. The thoughts of Kenora-Rainy River MPP Sarah Campbell, who is opposed to border fees in order to enter the United States. Campbell says this region needs a more open concept. Campbell says politicians on both sides of the border are speaking out against the border fee and she doesn't think it will pass.

PC's To Choose Candidate

The Progressive Conservatives in Thunder Bay-Superior North are choosing their candidate to run in the next provincial election.   Tamara Johnson will be acclaimed at a party nomination meeting  taking place at the Italian Hall on Algoma today.

Friday, April 26, 2013

Anti Wind Farm Activists Protest

Anti wind farm activists in the city can't let an opportunity go by.  Spokesperson Irene Bond and dozens of other protesters picketed against the Big Thunder Wind Park in front of the Victoria Inn Friday as 8 cabinet ministers huddled inside for the municipal leaders conference.  The protest was spurred by an environmental victory by the company planning to build the wind turbines on the Norwester Escarpment

Howarth Takes Credit

The provincial NDP leader is accusing the Wynne government of being reactionary when it comes to the needs of Thunder Bay.  Andrea Horwath is reacting to the news that the province is going back to the table to negotiate more disaster relief funding for those affected by the May 28th flood. Horwath credits pressure by her party for the government's change of heart.

Hudak Outlines Plan For The North

Tim Hudak has an economic vision for Northern Ontario going into the next election.  In Thunder Bay today the Progressive Conservative leader outlined his plan which includes lower taxes, affordable energy and a plan for the Ring of Fire mining development.

Water Safety Warning Issued

The Lakehead Region Conservation Authority is warning about water safety in the area.   The Authority says recent heavy snowfall along with expected warm temperatures will result in some fast melting.  It could in turn cause a rapid rise in water levels for rivers and streams making for potentially dangerous conditions especially for children.

Jeffrey Sheds More Light On Flood Claims

Municipal Affairs and Housing Minister Linda Jeffrey is re-affirming the Province's commitment to Thunder Bay and its flood relief.  Jeffrey announced they would help reimburse the City's four million dollars in costs under the Safe Homes Program.  She also told the Disaster Relief Committee they will continue to work with them to review their estimates of eligible flood damage claims.

NOMA Welcomes Canfield Back

The Northwestern Ontario Municipal Association is welcoming back Kenora Mayor Dave Canfield as President.  Canfield was last President in 1998 and says he looks forward to carrying NOMA's goals forward.  Canfield is taking over for O'Connor Mayor Ron Nelson.

Orazietti In T.Bay Today

Natural Resources Minister David Orazietti is one of eight provincial cabinet ministers in the city for the Northwestern Ontario Municipal leaders conference. Orazietti says since he was only recently appointed as minister today's session is part of the learning curve.  Orazietti says the will also be looking for ways the ministry can support economic development and jobs in the region.

Bear Pit Session Welcomes 8 Cabinet Ministers

Eight cabinet ministers are in the city today for the Northwestern Ontario Municipal Association conference.   Northern Development Minister Michael Gravelle is among them. He says it's a chance for him to update area leaders.  Gravelle says he worked hard to get as many cabinet minister to attend as possible.

Jeffery In Town Today

Ontario's Municipal Affairs Minister meets with members of Thunder Bay's disaster relief committee today. It's Linda Jeffery's first visit to the city since it was revealed the government rules means the committee will only be getting 20 cents for every dollar raised for May 28th flood victims. Jeffery tells our newsroom, the process continues.  Jeffery hopes to get an update on the claims process.

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Fire Hall Tenders About To Go Out

The City's Fire Chief is preparing the paperwork needed to get two new fire halls built. John Hay hopes to get the tenders out for construction shortly. One fire hall is to be built at Frederica and Neebing and one on the 20th Sideroad. In addition there will be modifications made to two other stations.

Weather Seminar Coming

Calling all storm watchers!  A program is being offered in  Thunder Bay by Environment Canada Meteorologist Geoff Coulson, and he says it gives folks the chance to learn more about   specific weather patterns and possibly even become a spotter for Environment Canada.  The free session is taking place in Thunder Bay June 3rd.

Summer Sentencing In Murder Case

On the court beat this week, 23 year old Leif Hobson of Thunder Bay is going to be sentenced July 5th on charges relating to the murder of 65 year old Edgar Marion in 2009. Hobson plead guilty this week to all charges including second degree murder and committing an indignity to human remains. Meantime a former treasurer for the Canadian Energy and Paperworkers Union in Nipigon has been sentenced to 18 months in jail for stealing 178 thousand dollars from union coffers.

Mauro Remains Opposed To Horizon Project

MPP Bill Mauro isn't giving up the fight. Mauro says even though Horizon Wind has passed a crucial environment hurdle from the government there is still time for those opposed to the building of wind turbines on the Norwester Mountains to voice their views. Mauro stopped short of saying the this weeks decision is a setback for opponents.

MPAC Fails To Appease NOMA Crowd

The Municipal Property Assessment Corporation is failing to win any friends at the regional municipal conference.  MPAC President Antoni Wisniowski spoke this morning and told angry mayors in the audience that MPAC understands their concerns about the changes to mill assessment rates.  Dryden Mayor Craig Nuttall called Wisniowski's speech a standard prepared presentation and says they'll continue to withhold their assessment payment.


Kristen Oliver is taking over as Executive Director of the Northwestern Ontario Municipal Association.  She replaces Charla Robinson. Oliver said she was extremely happy to have been given the position, and is looking forward to the challenges it presents. Oliver will be officially starting May 1st.

CEDC Has Interim CEO

A veteran senior administrator at City Hall is taking on some new duties on a temporary basis. Karen Lewis has been appointed to take over as the Interim CEO of the Thunder Bay Community Economic Development Commission.

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Police "Maced" By Man

A 28 year old man is to make a court appearance tomorrow after police say their officers were allegedly sprayed with bear mace.  They say it happened early this morning on McIntyre Street when they tried to take a man into custody who was carrying around a machete. Police say they drew their guns to make the arrest.