Monday, October 7, 2013

New Billing Model Proposed

Ontario Provincial Police are deferring contract renewal discussions with municipalities.

It's a response to an announcement by the Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services which is coming up with new billing model for how municipalities pay for policing.

The province says the new model will give municipalities more control over costs and help them tailor crime prevention strategies particular to their needs.

It intends to solicit input this fall

Municipalities whose contracts expire before January 1, 2015 are being given options to consider until the new billing model takes effect.

Police Costs Savings

The town of Fort Frances is seeing some savings with its policing costs for last year.

The total cost has come in at just under $2.6 million - $123-thousand less than what OPP has estimated.

The cost is still $65-thousand over 2011.

OPP are estimating this year's cost to be about $100-thousand dollars over last year's actual figure for the equivalent 18 uniformed staff assigned to policing the community

Summer Crime Stats

An ordinary summer for provincial police in Fort Frances.

Statistics released show OPP responded to about 950 calls during the months of June, July and August - about 50 less than last summer.

A total of 275 charges were laid during the summer months, compared with the 359 in the summer of 2012.

Some of the charges were laid by the OPP's Community Drug Action Team who were involved in 9 separate incidents, seizing such drugs as oxycodone, methadone and marijuana.

New Interim Chief Starts Job

The interim chief for Treaty 3 Police Service begins his first day today.

Dan Davidson is taking over the retiring Conrad Delorande.

Davidson is originally from the Morson area.

Promoting Respect

There's a little more respect going around the Rainy River district.

It's because of the work by the group Celebrating Diversity which is out promoting its "Respect - It Lives Here" initiative.

One of the trainers Nancy Daley-Fulton feels they are making a difference.

Daley-Fulton says they've held workshops with a wide array of organizations and businesses
across the district and welcomes other to take part as well.

Safe Welcome Program Now In Effect

Rainy River District School Board is putting its Safe Welcome Program in place today.

The front doors of all of it's elementary schools will now be locked while students and staff are in class.

Visitors to the school will be required to press a buzzer at the front door to request access.

Prescribed Burn Still Active

The Ministry of Natural Resources continues to monitor a prescribed burn on Lake of the Woods.

The blaze was lit on an island near the Aulneau Peninsula September 26.

The MNR says the fire is quietly smouldering and demonstrating minimal fire activity.

Shipwreck From 60 Years Ago Found

A group of shipwreck hunters have made a record breaking discovery near Thunder Bay.

The group found the sunken Scotiadoc which sank near the Sleeping Giant in 1954 after colliding with another ship.

A member of the group, Jerry Eliason says it's a significant find because it's in 870 feet of water, the deepest a shipwreck has been found in the Great Lakes.

The discovery of the Issac Jenkins in Lake Ontario held the previous record at 750 feet.

OPP Like Cameras In Downtown Fort Frances

OPP would like to see more video surveillance of downtown Fort Frances.

Detachment Commander Inspector Steve Shouldice made the remark during Friday's police services board meeting as he updated it on the ongoing investigation into last month's incident at the Northern Lights Credit Union.

Shouldice says the recorded evidence can be useful for police in piecing together movement of people and events in their search for suspects.

Investigators are still reviewing forensic and some video tape evidence from businesses as they look for someone who left a bag at the Credit Union's back door with a note to fill it with money.

Stationary Christmas Parade Planned

File photo
There will be floats - they just won't be moving.

Organizers of the annual Parade of Lights in Fort Frances are planning to have a static display in the downtown area as part of a festival-type event to kick off the Christmas season.

Causeway Insurance will still stage the event and spokesperson Robin Payeur says it was suggested by the Downtown Business Improvement Association.

Payeur says it also take away the worry of children running into the path of floats as they chase for candy being tossed.

What do you think?

It's our question on our website

In response to last week's question, 60 per cent of respondents support Fort Frances council dedicating funds in next year's budget to knocking down the former Rainy Lake Hotel.

Highway Contract Awarded

File photo
The provincial government is fixing up a stretch of Highway 11 west of Atikokan. 

Pioneer Construction is getting the $6.7 million contract.

More than 20 kilometres of Highway 11 is being repaved.

Vets Speak Out

Military veterans are speaking out against the planned closure of some Veterans Affairs Offices in Canada.

The office in Thunder Bay is among them.

Second world war vet Roy Lamore says refocusing some the government's current spending could help keep the office open.

The Public Service Alliance of Canada says closure of the Thunder Bay office will force veterans from northwestern Ontario having to access services in Kirkland Lake which has experienced its own staff cuts.

Area Paramedics Receive Awards

Supplied photo
Recognition for some paramedics with the Rainy River District Emergency Medical Service.

Gabrielle Emond, Marty Emond and Deputy Chief Ed Carlson have been awarded Governor General Emergency Medical Services Exemplary Service Medals.

The medals recognize both exemplary service and longevity.

They received the medal in a ceremony in Toronto last month.

Governor To Visit International Falls

International Falls is about to get another visit by Minnesota's Governor Mark Dayton.

He's scheduled to be in the city Wednesday.

Details of his visit have yet to be released, but his visit coincides with the official opening of Good Samaritan Society's new facility.

Dayton was last in the Falls in August 2012 to help in a groundbreaking ceremony of the city's planned multi-modal facility.