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INSIDE: Check out the stars at future Mission observatory Pg. 3 T H U R S D A Y April 11, 2013 takes 21 Phulka gold at nationals  N E W S , BRADNER SPORTS, WEATHER & E N T E R T A I N M E N T  A BLOOMIN’ BOUNTY JOHN VAN PUTTEN/TIMES Third-generation daffodil farmer Dean Warmerdam picks the bright blooms from the family farm on Bradner Road. “With the mild winter this year the colours were very vibrant,” he said. They started picking on Feb. 17 and have picked about five million flowers. The spring flowers will be the star of the 85th Bradner Flower Show. See story on page A13. YMCA plan in Abby shelved CHRISTINA TOTH A review of the city’s finances and a scarcity of senior parks administrators led to delaying a proposed $35-million YMCA recreation facility in Abbotsford, but the proponents can’t say when or if the project will be resumed. The City of Abbotsford and the Vancouver YMCA signed a memorandum of understanding about two years ago to build an activity centre on the former MSA General Hospital site on McCallum Road. The city also agreed in principle to contribute up to $17.5 million for capital costs. Parks manager Mark Taylor championed the project, but he died last month in a skiing accident. Additionally, Rick Daykin, another senior parks director, left his job last fall. He added that as the new city manager, “I’m afforded the “We have a capacity issue at (parks, recreation and culture). opportunity to take a step back and look at the overall finanThe top leadership is all acting positions. It’s cial health of the organization [the City of Abbotsford]. going to take months to get the department “Different people have different ideas on stabilized,” said city manager George Murray “Money is always an issue. Part of my review the financial situation. I’d like to make my on Wednesday. own conclusion before I made a report to the Murray himself took on his job in January, is ‘can the city afford it?’ council.” as he replaced Frank Pizzuto who resigned as We still haven’t answered Murray couldn’t say when that would be, city manager in December. but he would have to have a clearer picture The city has also faced criticism from some that question.” by the time the financial department begins community members who say the city can’t configuring the city’s $260-million budget afford to contribute $17.5 million to the YMCA – George Murray city manager in the summer, to prepare a draft budget for project. the fall. “Money is always an issue,” Murray said frankly. “Part of my review is ‘can the city afford it?’ We still see YMCA, page A11 haven’t answered that question.” The Salvation Army of Abbotsford and Mission Independent Financial Services 201-2190 West Railway Sreet, Abbotsford, BC V2S 2E2 Todd Chretien Financial Advisor 604-851-4299 Conservative Investment Advice Member CIPF Your gracious gifts of food and funds provide Hope to those we serve! To donate please call The Centre of Hope at 604.852.9305 Together, we are making a difference in our community. Visit us on Facebook at The Salvation Army Centre of Hope - Abbotsford 34081 Gladys Ave. Abbotsford • 7221 Park St. & Lougheed Mission

Abbotsford Times April 11 2013

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