Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Fatal Accident West Of City

One man is dead following an accident on Highway 11, 30 kilometres east of Atikokan Tuesday afternoon.  OPP say that the crash happened at around one o'clock and involved a car and a commercial vehicle.  A female passenger in the car was taken to Atikokan General Hospital with serious injuries.  The driver of the commercial vehicle was not injured.  Police closed the highway between Thunder Bay and Atikokan for several hours until their investigation was complete.

Industrial Accident Probed

Ministry of Labour investigators are probing an industrial accident at Smurfit Stone on Strathcona Avenue this afternoon.. Police say that a 45 year old male worker fell about 1 story after his clothing got caught on some scrap material which was being thrown to the ground.  He was taken to the Health Sciences Centre where he remains with unknown injuries.  

United Way Still Pleading For Funds

On the charity beat, the United Way is still inching away towards its 2.7 million dollar fundraising objective.   So far organizers have are looking at a shortfall of just over 3 quarters of a million dollars with just two weeks left in the 2013 campaign.    

Dryden Youth Centre Gets The Axe

An 11th hour attempt to save the Dryden Youth Centre has failed. Council has officially closed the doors on the Youth Centre. Shayne MacKinnon made a passionate plea last night to save the facility. Mayor Craig Nuttall held the deciding vote and says the City can no longer afford to run the Centre.

Financial Challenges Remain In Dryden

A report from the Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing shows that Dryden is still facing high challenges in four out of seven key financial indicators. Ministry reps addressed Council last night and stated they still have concerns but realize that the City is taking steps to fix the problem. Chief Administrative Officer Andre Larabie says all of the concerns of the Ministry will be addressed.   He says a recovery plan is being put together for council's consideration. The report indicated Dryden doesn't have the ability right now to cover payments or unexpected costs on short notice as well as meet short-term capital obligations.

Dogs Go South

Thunder Bay's Humane Society is teaming up with their parent organization to transfer 9 long term resident dogs from the region to Southern Ontario. Board President Judy Decicco says the dogs will have a better chance of being adopted with the larger population in the south's urban centres.  The Southern Ontario Humane Societies are actually experiencing a shortage of dogs up for adoption.  Dogs from Timmins and Sault Ste. Marie are also moving to the greater Toronto area. The dogs will be leaving our shelter on Rosslyn Road on Thursday morning and will arrive in Newmarket the following day.

Bus-Pedestrian Collision Still Being Probed

Thunder Bay police are still investigating last weeks collision that saw a bus strike a 72 year old woman.    Sgt. Glen Porter says while no charges have been laid he believes it may be heading in that direction, but did not provide specifics.  He says his team of traffic investigators has amazed him with the information they have been able to uncover in the case. Porter wasn't able to give an update on the victim, Audrey Kahkonen who was last listed in critical condition.

Highway 11 Due For 2014 Facelift

The Province says that more construction on Highway 11 in northwestern Ontario is scheduled to begin in spring 2014. Over 27 kilometres of the highway between Geraldton and Jellicoe will be repaved.   Aecon Construction has received a 10 and a half million dollar contract as part of the government's initiative to introduce a new three-part plan that will help create jobs and boost economic growth. The project will open up 100 new jobs for Ontario workers.

Police Budget Approved

The Police Services Board is approving a 36.5 million dollar budget for 2014. Police Chief JP Levesque says its a 3.5 percent increase over last years and it's due to salaries. Other increases on the capital side of the budget include new voice recognition software for dictating officers notes, upgrades to the 911 system and a new police dog. Levesque will bring the budget to City Council for approval in February.

Hobbs Gives State Of The City Address

Mayor Keith Hobbs is reiterating the city's importance in the mining industry. Hobbs addressed the withdrawal of Cliffs Natural Resources from the Ring of Fire during his state of the city address Monday He said that the regions mining potential should not be overshadowed by one company. Hobbs adds that work still needs to be done on transportation infrastructure and consultations with First Nations communities.

Dugmore Memorial Okayed

A memorial will be placed at the end of Pier Two on Prince Arthur's Landing honoring Katherine Dugmore who passed away in March.  Community Services General Manager Greg Alexander says the estimated cost would fall between ten and fifteen thousand dollars but believes that companies may offer their work free of charge.

New Regulations For Vulnerable Occupancies

Thunder Bay's Fire Service is talking to the hospital, old age homes and all other organizations that are deemed vulnerable occupancies. Fire Chief John Hay says they want those building owners to know how they'll be impacted by new Ontario regulations which will require more scrutiny and changing habits.