Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Area Reps Meet with Regional Senior Judge

The fight for a full-time judge in the Ontario Court of Justice in the Rainy River district continues today.

CFOB-News has learned Regional Senior Judge Justice Marc Bode is scheduled to hold separate face-to-face meetings with the members of the Rainy River District Law Society and the Rainy River District Municipal Association in Fort Frances

Both groups have been advocating the  need for a full time judge located at the Fort Frances court house.

The last judge assigned to this area traveled from Dryden.

Judges now travel from the Kenora area.

Power Back On

Power is back on in several parts of the Rainy River district and Thunder Bay areas.

More than 77-hundred Hydro One customers lost power this morning shortly after midnight.

Hydro One blames the outage on equipment problems.

Electricity was restored at around four this morning.

Road Work Next Week

An infrastructure project in Fort Frances will begin next week.

The work along 2nd Street East between Central and Mowat Avenues and Mowat between 2nd and 3rd Streets will upgrade sewer and water lines.

Operations and Facilities Manager Doug Brown says it means some detours for the traveling public.

The traffic lights at Central and 2nd will also be shut off and truck traffic will use be required to Central Avenue and Church Street as a connecting route to the town's main truck route.

College Summer Programs Offered

Confederation College's campus in Fort Frances will be taken over by youth this summer.

Manager of the Rainy River district campus Anne Renaud
says four different programs will be offered to those aged 11 to 15.

They are culinary, cupcake decorating, art and one combining components of the College's  paramedic and protection security program.

Programs begin in early July and some space is still available.

Trillium Foundation To Be Promoted Next Week

The Ontario Trillium Foundation is giving groups in the Rainy River district a chance to learn more about its funding opportunities.

An information session will take place next Tuesday in Fort Frances.

Program manager Maureen Brophy says they'd like to get more groups applying.

Those interested in attending the session at the Fort France Public Library are asked to call Maureen at 807-623-3822

Cash Draw Tickets Selling Fast

Riverside Foundation for Health Care's Canada Day Cash Lottery is 80 per cent sold out.

The Foundation is giving away a top prize of $10-thousand on Canada Day.

Tickets are available at several locations including Riverside Health Care Facilities or by calling the Foundation office 274-4801

Resolute Restarting Paper Machine

Resolute Forest Product is looking to resume one of its paper machines at its Fort Frances mill.

The Communication Energy and Paperworkers union says its been informed machine number 7 will start up sometime next month for about eight weeks to deal with some available orders.

The machine has down for a couple of months.

Company spokesperson Pierre Choquette says local management is still working on the details of the restart, but expects about 35 employees would be called back.

Meantime, there's still no decision yet on the future of the Kraft mill.

The company has been investigating the type of grades that could be produced at the mill, idled back in November.

Combatants Talk Up Tug Of War

The smack talk is starting early in the Pulling For Peace Tug of War between Fort Frances and International Falls.

It takes place next Tuesday.

Fort Frances councillors, Andrew Hallikas and Rick Wiedenhoeft  along with with International Falls Councillor Cynthia Jaksa and Falls Chamber Manager Faye Whitbeck joined with Andy C Tuesday morning on 93.1 The Border to promote it.

Both sides are predicting victories, but both are looking for more people to participate.

Last year's event was declared a draw after weather forced its cancellation.

Town's Financial Picture Painted

The town of Fort Frances appears to be pretty strong financially.

A draft of the town's audit financial statements presented to town council Monday night shows the town holding down an accumulated surplus of $100,000 at the end of 2012.

Jeff Savage of BDO says much
of that is based on the value of the town's assets.

Money in reserves and investments is also counted towards that surplus.

The town's general operating budget showed a surplus of $8,100.

The town ended 2011 with a surplus of just over $17-thousand in 2011

Moffat Funding Issued

The cheques are in their hands.

Thirteens organizations were handed funding from the Moffat Foundation at Fort Frances town council Monday night.

At total of $37,500 were presented by Mayor Roy Avis.

The Salvation Army will use $5,900 to purchase shoes for students who can't afford them.

Fort Frances Community Garden is receiving $2,400 to increase the accessibility of its garden.

St. Mary's Youth Group is getting $2,900 to replace a sound system.

Most Bridges OK In County

A federal report finds most bridges in Koochiching County in good condition.

Just five of the County's 93 bridges are identified as deficient by the U.S. Department of Transportation

Work to repair one of the bridges, located on Trunk Highway 65, south of Littlefork, is already underway.

Repairs to another on Highway 11 east of International Falls was completed last year.

Donations For Flood Victims Welcome

An opportunity is available to local residents wanted to help those affected by the massive flooding in Alberta.

Manager of the Canadian Red Cross in Dryden Shana Hansson says donations can be made through their organization.

Donations can also be made through the Canada Severe Weather Fund.

Search For Missing Man Ends

A search for a missing man in a river near Thunder Bay has been halted.

Thunder Bay Police say OPP divers were unable to find any sign of 26-year-old Larry Larivee.

He disappeared into the McKenzie River after diving off a cliff.

Police say some areas of the river are just too dangerous to search and will be reassessed once water levels are lower.

More Pullers Needed

Fort Frances is feeling a little "man" power shortage.

The Pulling For Peace tug of war with International Falls takes place July 2.

Fort town councillor Rick Wiedenhoeft says ten strong men are still needed to fill out the Canadian side's roster in the main power pull event.

Call Jackie Lampi-Hughes at Energy Fitness if you are interested.

Local Teacher Talks To Resume

With acceptance of the provincial deal, the Elementary Teachers Federation of Ontario is free to resume negotiations at the local level.

Chair of the Rainy River District School Board Mike Lewis expects those talks to take place in the very near future.

Lewis says discussions will focus solely on local issues as the provincial agreement can't be changed.

Last week, the board ratified an agreement with its high school teachers after their union accepted the province's deal in April.

Decision Held Over

An OPP officer in Kenora will find out next month whether he will have to stand trial on a charge of dangerous driving causing death.

A three day preliminary hearing wrapped up last week in Kenora for Constable Roy Bender.

He was charged by the Ontario Special Investigations Unit last fall in the death of 42 year old Gloria Assin.

The Grassy Narrows resident was riding in the back of an OPP cruiser when
it was involved in an accident with a transport.

The judge in the case to decide if the matter should go to trial July 12th. 

Area Aboriginal Leaders Named To Provincial Panel

A top northwestern Ontario aboriginal leader will co-chair a panel that will oversee tackling the crisis facing First Nations in Ontario's justice and jury system.

Nishnawbe Aski Nation deputy grand chief Alvin Fiddler hopes his first hand experience will be able to contribute significantly to the discussion.

Fiddler will head the committee along with Irwin Glasberg, an assistant deputy minister.