Thursday, March 7, 2013

School To Wait On Final Decision For Sturgeon Creek

The Rainy River District School Board is holding back on an immediate decision on the future of Sturgeon Creek School.

A committee, tasked with studying the Barwick-area school, presented its report to the board this week, recommending it remain open.

Committee chair Jackie McCormick says during their public meetings, no one called for closure in the several presentations and submissions received.

Education Director Heather Campbell says a board decision on the school will likely come in the fall when its receives a recommendation about Crossroads School.

A review of that Devlin-area school is currently underway

Bus Loop Questioned

Google Earth
Concern is being expressed over a plan to construct a loop for buses to drop off and pick up students attending J.W. Walker School in Fort Frances.

The Rainy River District School Board says the loop off Flinders Avenue it will alleviate traffic congestion now experienced in front of the school on Keating Avenue.

Resident Bob Daiken would rather the loop be used by parents who drop off and pick up their children than buses.

Under the board's proposal, parents will be required to use a loop in front of the school and the school's parking lot beginning this fall.

Homelessness Tackled In Fort Frances

File photo
It may not be visible seen, but homelessness exists in Fort Frances.

Agencies, who help people without a home or struggle to stay in one, outlined their work to members of the Celebrating Diversity Committee yesterday.

Danielle Spuzak of the United Native Friendship Centre says many of the area's homeless are people who couch surf, staying at friends and families for a day or two, before moving on to another place.

Official says some people go to Thunder Bay to use the shelter in winter, but return to the area in the warmer months.

Junior Career Fair Planned

It's never too young to consider your future.

Fort Frances Public Library will be hosting a junior career fair next Wednesday.

Program director Andrea Avis says the "I Wanna Be"  fair will highlight some career ideas to young people.

Avis says a wide spectrum of local professionals will be on hand to speak with the youngsters who attended the free event.

Pre-Budget Hearing In Thunder Bay

Northwestern Ontario residents get to add their ideas to a province-wide consultation on the Ontario budget tonight.

The Ontario Federation of Labour is holding a series of "People's Budget" consultations across the province with a stop in Thunder Bay.

Vice-president Irwin Nanda says they've heard some common themes.

Input collected will sent to government.

Train Crossing Waits Drawing Criticism

Koochiching County is raising concerns about C.N. Rail trains blocking at area crossings.

Board Chair Kevin Adee says discussions with rail officials in the past led to some improvements, but he says the frequency and length of time the road is blocked is reoccurring.

In one situation, he says he sat at a crossing on Van Lynn Road for a train that was 10 cars shy of clearing.

The County plans to discuss action it may take at its meeting next week.

Mining Needs Identified

The Northwest Training and Adjustment Board says there's going to be a huge need for workers in northwestern Ontario's ever expanding mining industry.

Labour Market Economist Jamie Wolcott says their release of a 10-year hiring forecast will help those in education, industry and government prepare.

The Board's report says the Rainy River district's mining sector will need 640 workers by 2022.

Changes To Home And Leisure Show

FFCC photo
The Fort Frances Chamber of Commerce is re-tooling its annual home and leisure.

It includes renaming the event the Business and Community Expo.

Manager Annely Armstrong says its puts the focus back on what the event should be.

Armstrong says it means Strongman competition will be dropped, but comedian Don Kelly, originally from Onegaming First Nations, will be coming to put on a show at the conclusion of the event.

Show participants will also get a break on the costs of their booths if they register early.

Area Liberal Supporting Trudeau

There's still another debate to come, but the president of the Kenora-Rainy River provincial Liberal Riding Association know who he wants heading the federal party.

Anthony Leek sees Justin Trudeau the best candidate.

Leek will among Liberals to participate in the April 14 vote.

MPP Supports Calls To Ban Declawing Of Cats

Kenora-Rainy River MPP Sarah Campbell is supporting a petition to ban the declawing of cats.

The petition has been spearheaded by a Dryden-based animal protection group.

Campbell says declawing a cat takes away their natural defense and leaves them helpless.

Gas Tax Increase Suggested In Minnesota

A five-cent increase in the state gas tax is among proposals to raise more money for transportation needs in Minnesota.

Democrats say it will help raise $3.8 billion for roads, bridges and transit projects.

Governor Mark Dayton, though, is expressing doubts about a gas tax hike getting final approval.