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INSIDE: Poor economic conditions driving more adults to steal Pg. 3 T U E S D A Y January 22, 2013 Chiefs assist. 14 Chilliwack coach under investigation  N E W S , S P O R T S , W E A T H E R & E N T E R T A I N M E N T  Contact Centre plans to open this summer Facility will help homeless, drug addicted and the mentally ill BY TYLER OLSEN F inally, Tom McMahon has an answer for homeless clients who ask when Chilliwack’s much-talked-about Health Contact Centre will finally be open. For years, McMahon, an outreach worker with Fraser Health, has fielded questions from clients asking just when, exactly, the centre would begin taking in homeless, mentally ill and drug addicted patients. But as organizers hammered out the details over the past four years, McMahon could only respond that “It’s going to happen; we just don’t know when.” He now has a more satisfying answer. On Friday, politicians, health officials, local stakeholders, community organizers and government functionaries gathered to celebrate the start of a renovation project and the imminent opening this summer of the contact centre. The event was held in a chilly tent that, for Lee-Anne Hansen, only served to remind her of the desperated need for the new facility. “I was just thinking about the 111 homeless people,” Hansen, the centre’s future manager said. “To be homeless and to be out in this kind See CONTACT, Page 11 Paul J. Henderson/TIMES Leader Adrian Dix celebrates with Chilliwack-Hope MLA Gwen O’Mahony (left) and Patti MacAhonic who won the NDP nomination for Chilliwack Saturday. NDP chooses MacAhonic BY PAUL J. HENDERSON C hilliwack New Democrats chose former Chamber of Commerce executive director Patti MacAhonic on Saturday as their candidate for the May 14 provincial election. MacAhonic faced off against Fraser Valley Regional District Area A director Dennis Adamson, who had previously lost to Chilliwack-Hope MLA Gwen O’Mahony for the NDP nomination for the 2012 byelection. O’Mahony was acclaimed to run again in Chilliwack-Hope on Saturday. O’Mahony acclaimed on Saturday, making it an all-female slate in Chilliwack seeking your vote In a speech before the vote, MacAhonic expressed her belief that Chilliwack is a progressive city. “I believe that the NDP is wellpositioned to win the province,” she said. “And don’t we want Chilliwack at the table?” After MacAhonic’s speech, which drew considerable applause, Adamson, too, said he was impressed. “Wow, that was good,” he said before addressing the crowd with- out notes and getting a little choked up. “Chilliwack families deserve better. Chilliwack families deserve the NDP.” There were about 150 people at the meeting held at the Chilliwack Cultural Centre. Voting took place after the speeches and the delegates chose MacAhonic. The former Chamber executive director joked about the controversial situation in which the Chamber board told her she had to resign if she won Saturday’s nomination. “I’m officially unemployed as you all may know,” MacAhonic said after being chosen. After she spoke, O’Mahony said a few words before party leader Adrian Dix stepped up. “I think Chilliwack is NDP country,” Dix said. “I think [MacAhonic] See NDP, Page 21 Plumbing Service Department WWW.OCONNORGROUP.COM 06198229 8645 Young Street, Chilliwack 604-792-5151 FREE 143 PT pre-owned inspection and one year membership! only at 604-792-2754 DL#5952 02124924 Price 60¢

Chilliwack Times January 22 2013

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