Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Chamber Planning Many Events

It's shaping up to be a good year for the Fort Frances Chamber of Commerce.

President Mark Caron says the Chamber has accomplish a lot in the past few months that have included brainstorming sessions with International Falls.

The Chamber is also working with others on a week long festival tying in Canada Day, the tug of war and July 4 celebrations.

A new business directory is being developed for 2014.

Membership has also increased with 19 new members coming on board in recent months.

The helped strength the Chamber's bottom-line as it ended the year strong financially.

Vehicle/Wildlife Accidents Prompt Warnings

A rash of motor vehicle accidents in the Rainy River district involving wildlife has prompted warnings from provincial police.

Constable Anne McCoy says there have been fifteen such accidents in the past month and driver need to be more alert.

Along with deer, otters, bobcats, raccoons and even a rabbit have been responsible for some of the crashes.

Auto Insurance Premium Cuts Coming

Ontario's budget tomorrow will set a target for auto insurance premiums to drop by 15 per cent on average.

But the province's finance minister, Charles Sousa, says it's unclear when drivers will start seeing lower rates.

He says the 15-per-cent goal doesn't mean all Ontario drivers will get the same amount of relief.

Wynne Testifies

Premier Kathleen Wynne says she takes responsibility for the Liberals' decision to cancel gas plants in southern Ontario, but won't apologize.

Opposition members on a legislative committee claim Wynne was evasive in her testimony about the decision.

Wynne says it was next to impossible to get accurate figures for cancelling the plants.

Spending Habits Questioned

A northwestern Ontario MP has some questions surrounding one of the findings by federal auditor Michael Ferguson.

Thunder Bay-Rainy River's John Rafferty says the auditor found $3.1 million in unexplained spending for anti-terrorism initiatives.

Rafferty serves as a member of the Public Safety and Security Committee and is curious how the Harper government will explain the spending.

Outage Cancelled

A lengthy power outage that had been scheduled for this Sunday effecting Fort Frances and much of the western part of the Rainy River district has been cancelled.

Hydro One was preparing to do some maintenance work and equipment upgrades.

No word yet if it will be rescheduled.

Make Your Pitch

The province is offering a new program entitled Make Your Pitch.

The Northwest Business Centre's Diane Schwartz-Williams says high school students are encouraged to submit a two-minute video to pitch a business idea in six different categories.

The areas are technology, environment, social enterprise, retail goods, services, culture and tourism.

The entry deadline through the Northwest Business Centre is  this Friday.

Canada Post Hopes For New Hire Soon

Canada Post says it expects to have someone as early as next week assigned to delivering mail along one of its rural routes in Alberton township.

Residents along the route have been complaining about not getting mail on a regular basis.

Canada Post spokesperson John Cairns says a person they had quit, but the position will be filled soon.

The job, in the meantime, is being performed by a supervisory who's working to deliver mail as quickly as possible until the new person comes on board.

Cairns admits the hiring, which includes getting security clearance, has taken longer than expected.

First Forest Fires Of The Season

The first forest fires of the season have been recorded by the Ministry of Natural Resources.

The MNR says it's battled three small fires over the past week, two coming on the weekend.

All three were located in the Kenora and Dryden regions.

No fires have been reported in the Rainy River district.

Coventry Finding Gold And Other Minerals

Another mining company doing work around Rainy River Resources gold project north of Barwick has released findings.

Coventry Resources drilled 46 holes, it says has helped define two significant high-priority gold anomalies.

Another 15 precious and base metal anomalies were also identified.

Mayor Still Hopeful In Acquiring Historic Canoe

Atikokan isn't giving up on trying to obtain the Centennial Canoe.

A Thunder Bay group has control but is reluctant about handing it over.

Mayor Dennis Brown is still hopeful the canoe can be acquired for display.

Brown feels the canoe, used during Canada's centennial, should be preserved.

He says their offer to present the Neebing Voyageur Brigade with a new canoe in exchange for the Centennial Canoe still stands.

Take Your Studs Off

OPP says it's time to get those studded tires off your vehicles.

Ontario's traffic laws allow studded tires during the winter, but must be removed by April 30th each year.