Monday, April 28, 2014

Debt Reduction Approved

The City is taking steps to make up their 5.7 million dollar deficit in the 2014 budget.  They approved a 2.49 million dollar debt reduction strategy Monday night.  Extra spending was required for snow removal, legal services, police and several other areas.  Council voted down increasing the tax levy to cover the cost over run and instead will take 1.6 million dollars out of a reserve fund.

CEDC Speaks To Council

The head of the Community Economic Development Commission is promoting his group's recent efforts. CEO Doug Murray spoke to City Council Monday night and says Thunder Bay's economy is becoming more diverse.  Murray adds according to reports our economy is more varied than Sudbury.

Wilks Sentenced To 30 Months

A former military medic, convicted of sexually assaulting 16 women during breast exams is going to jail for 30 months.   James Wilks was sentenced in military court Monday in connection with Canadian Forces medical exams he conducted in Thunder Bay and London,  Ontario between 2003 and 2009.  Phillip Millar is the lawyer for some of the victims and says they're satisfied but says he and his clients thought the jail time might be longer.

Police Looking For Suspect

Thunder Bay Police are asking for the public's assistance to identify the woman responsible for a robbery at a north side Safeway. Police say the woman entered the Court Street Safeway on the evening of April 24th. When she was confronted by a security guard, she pulled a knife on the guard, and fled the store. Officials say the woman was last seen heading towards Cumberland Street.

Fair Elections Act Under Scrutiny

Bruce Hyer
There's nothing fair about the Fair Elections Act according to Green Party MP Bruce Hyer. Hyer says that the piece of proposed federal legislation is flawed in many ways. Hyer suggests that Canada needs an electoral system known as proportional representation. According to Hyer, with proportional representation, the number of seats won by a political party is proportionate to the number of votes received. Hyer says that if 20% of people voted for a particular party, that party would represent 20% of seats in the House of Commons. Hyer adds that the entire electoral system needs to be reformed.

Edgar Laprade Dead At 94

Edgar Laprade
A family friend confirms Port Arthur native and Hockey Hall of Famer Edgar Laprade is dead at the age of 94. Laprade was inducted into the Northwestern Ontario Sports Hall of Fame in 1982, and the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1993. Laprade played his entire ten year NHL career with the New York Rangers. He played 500 games scored 108 goals and had 172 assists.

Nipigon Fire Department Receives Funding

The Nipigon Fire Department is receiving some new equipment. Union Gas is helping the fire department with a $3000 grant to purchase a new hydraulic rescue tool. Nipigon Mayor Richard Harvey says finding funding is often difficult, and they are thankful for the cash.

Province Commits Cash To ROF

The provincial government is committing one billion dollars towards the Ring of Fire infrastructure development. The announcement was made in Thunder Bay this morning by Mines Minister Michael Gravelle.
Gravelle challenges the federal government to do the same. The promise will be included in this weeks provincial budget which would require NDP support in order to pass.

TB Chamber Weighs In On Budget Overage

A potential tax levy increase to balance the city budget overage is not sitting well with the Thunder Bay Chamber of Commerce. Chamber President Charla Robinson is urging city council to explore cost saving options rather than a tax levy increase. Robinson adds that they support city council in finding a solution.

Four Arrested In Drug Busts

Nearly $12,000 dollars in drugs have been seized from two south side homes. OPP say marijuana and cocaine were found at residences on Home Avenue and Brock Street last week. Officials say four people have been charged with drug related offences.

Busy Weekend For Police

A 33-year old Thunder Bay man is in hospital suffering from stab wounds following an assault in the 400 block of George Street.  City Police say the incident occurred around 8:30 Saturday night.  A 23-year old man from Weagamow Lake was arrested near the scene and is charged with aggravated assault.  He'll appear in court today.

City Police investigating an overnight break-in at County Fair Plaza.  Just after 1:30 this morning, three people set off the alarm in the mall but managed to bust into the lottery store and stole an undisclosed amount of lottery tickets and cigarettes.  The thieves were last seen running behind the Landmark Hotel.  No one was injured and no arrests have been made.

Police are requesting the public's assistance in locating a missing person.  54-year old Wayne MacDonald was last seen leaving his home on April 25th.  He may have been spotted a couple of days later in the area of West Arthur Street and Highway 61. MacDonald is described as caucasian - 6-foot, 180 pounds - with dark/grey hair and blue eyes. He was last seen wearing a beige hooded jacket.  Anyone with information is asked to contact City Police.