Tuesday, January 21, 2014

2 Vehicle Accident On High Street North

City police are on the scene of a two vehicle collision in the area of High Street and Red River Road. Two vehicles are involved there's no word on any injuries.

OLG Pays City 586K

The latest dividend to the city from the Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corporation works out to 586 thousand dollars.   The money is the City's share of the slot machine revenues from the local casino.

Events Centre Proposal Reaches Next Level

Gary Green
A huge step is being taken to make the new events centre a reality.    The city is partnering with a new consortium called Thunder Bay LIVE which will help develop the new arena.   The consortium includes True North Sports out of Winnipeg which promises to work with the Winnipeg Jets Hockey Club to operate its American Hockey League Franchise out of Thunder Bay.   Also part of Thunder Bay LIVE are: Stadium Consultants International, Global Specturm which promises to bring top entertainment to the city and the Lakehead University Thunderwolves.   The group is headed by known Canadian Hockey mogul and former NHL coach Gary Green.      

Cold Weather Program Ends In April

Shelter House wants to continue their cold weather program in the future.  The pilot project comes to an end in April and Executive Director Patty Hajdu says they need to find some money to continue to offer it. Hajdu says they've been extremely busy during the cold weather picking up homeless people and bringing them to the appropriate treatment centres.

12 Hour Shifts Going Good

City Police are getting accustomed to working new 12 hour shifts.  They've been on the new work schedule for two weeks now.  Chief JP Levesque says it's been going well.  Levesque says it also helps clear up of backlogged cases between the day and night shift officers.  Police used to work 10 hour shifts.

Mayor Clarifies

It's getting heated around the City Council table. Councillor Ken Boshcoff is taking issue with Keith Hobbs stating that he is the hardest-working Mayor in the History of the City and feels its insulting to those who have served in the role before. Hobbs is clarifying his statement saying he didn't mean to offend anyone he was speaking about how hard he feels he works.  Hobbs says the former Mayor Boshcoff misunderstood his statement.

Rickford Announces TBRRI Cash

The Harper government is putting money into the Thunder Bay Regional Research Institute.   Minister of State Greg Rickford has announced 1.4 million dollars towards an new MRI creating 16 direct and 40 indirect jobs.  He says the new jobs will be high tech and attract students from across Canada and around the world.   Rickford says the equipment will help the regional hospital to expand the scope of its research.

ATU Deal Ratified

It's now official, city council ratified a five-year agreement with the Amalgamated Transit Union during last nights council meeting.  Mayor Keith Hobbs took the time to thank those involved in the negotiations.  The deal provides a 1.75 percent general annual wage increase to all members.

Apartment Building Approved

Council is approving the development of a 4-unit apartment dwelling on Hutton Park Drive.  One of the main concerns raised by residents living near the proposed site includes an increase in traffic. Don Manahan is a consultant involved with the project and says it won't be an issue. Manahan adds the project will be even smaller than the maximum size allowed on the lot.

Public Art Debate

Funding for public art at the Transit Building Renovation is being brought into question by some city councillors.  Councillor Paul Pugh says changing funding for the transit building would make the City look bad. Currently the City is spending 80-thousand dollars for public art at the transit administration building.

Time Is Ticking

Fort William First Nation's frustration is growing over CN Rail's inaction over repairing the James Street Swing Bridge.  Chief Georjann Morriseau says they have safety concerns about the increased traffic on Highway 61 and the junction to their community.  She would like to see a slower speed and other traffic controlling measures.  Morriseau expects a meeting to be held between the City, CN and themselves in the near future.

Building Bridges

The City and Fort William First Nation want to eliminate racism.  They held a special round table discussion yesterday to discuss where the two communities go after the James Street Swing Bridge Fire last year sparked racist comments on social media websites. Fort William Chief Georjann Morriseau says the only way to eradicate racism is to talk about it.  The event is meant to shed some light on the issue and foster open communication between the two communities.

Pre-Budget Hearing Today

The Provincial Government will hear from Thunder Bay organizations about what they would like to see in the upcoming budget.  The local Alzheimer Society is going to present today and President Alison Denton says they'll ask for more financial support for their clients.  Poverty Free Thunder Bay, the Northwestern Ontario Associated Chambers of Commerce and the Thunder Bay Health Coalition will also present their requests at the Valhalla Inn today.  Meanwhile, The Ontario Nurses' Association will call on the government to end cuts to registered nursing positions and to hire more RNs.