Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Taxi Committee Continues To Meet

The Police Service Board's Taxi Committee wants the service to fall under City by-law officer's authority. Councillor and Police Services Board Member Brian McKinnon says they'll spend their next meeting bringing the idea to local taxi companies.  McKinnon says the recommendation also needs to be approved by the Police Board before it can go to City Council for final approval.

Ride Check Stats Out

City Police are releasing their latest RIDE stats from December.   21 drivers were charged with drinking and driving and 12 of those were as a result of the RIDE program.  Traffic Sgt. Glenn Porter says police also noticed several of the people they pulled over were in their pj's which is a sign more people are acting as designated drivers at the end of the night.  Porter adds one man was found passed out behind the wheel at a local fast food drive-thru window and tried to pay the police officer for his order.

City Preparing Appeal Strategy

The Resolute Forest Products tax appeal hearing will be continuing in the city January 27th.   City Manager Tim Commisso says he plans to lay out the reasons for appealing the province's decision to reduce the amount of money the company pays in property taxes to the city.  The hearing takes place at City Hall and could run until the middle of next month.  

LU Undergoes Sustainability Tracking

Lakehead University is undergoing a tracking and rating system to see how sustainable their two campuses are.  It will look at the facilities achievements in economic, environmental and social sustainability.  The review should be done in a year from now.

Sharp On Team Canada

Chalk up another milestone for Thunder Bay's Patrick Sharp.   He has been chosen to play on Team Canada at the Olympics in Sochi,  Russia. The Chicago Blackhawks forward was named along with 24 others at a news conference in Toronto this morning.  Regionally,  Duncan Keith, who played his minor hockey in Fort Frances, also made the team.   Canada's first game is on Feb. 13 against Norway.

Camp Fire Near Vermillion Bay

Fire crews continue to investigate the cause of a major fire at Willard Lake Resort, west of Vermilion Bay.Officials were called around 2 o'clock yesterday afternoon.  The flames spread from cabin to cabin as firefighters had to deal with limited water in battling the blaze.  Damage to the gas station and restaurant is unknown at this time. No one was injured.

Cell Sorter Goal 3K

Northern Hearts and several other charity groups are teaming up to help raise 300-thousand dollars to purchase a cell sorter for the  Regional Research Institute.  Northern Hearts Chair Jack Playford says the cell sorter will help improve heart health research. Anyone who wants to donate can do so by dropping off a cheque at the Northern Hearts office, or at the Curans Heart Centre.

New & Old Faces In Municipal Race

There's some added names to the 2014 Municipal election race. David Polhill is running in Northwood. Meanwhile, Councillor Joe Virdiramo is seeking re-election in Westfort,  Brian McKinnon in Red River and Aldo Roberto at large. Andrew Brigham is also joining the at large race.

Highway Closure

The blustery conditions has forced the closure of Highway 17 east of Thunder Bay.  OPP report Highway 17 is closed between Highway 556 and Wawa due to reduced visibility.  Provincial Police closed that section around 3 o'clock this morning.

Wood Stove Warning

Wood stoves and heaters are working overtime as northwestern Ontario continues to sit through a deep freeze. Richard Wetelainen is a fire official in the region and he is urging local residents to ensure their heating instruments are properly inspected.  He says sometimes people may put off inspections for various reasons.He points out that dirty chimneys are a major cause of fires in our area during this time of year.

Hospital Gets More Props

The regional hospital is tooting its horn again about another recognition.  Spokesperson Nella Lawrence says the facility recently made sixth place on a list of the world’s 30 most architecturally impressive hospitals.  She thinks it's an award the community can share, since many people participated in making the hospital a reality.  Lawrence calls a recognition an reward in itself