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$1,000 licence fee keeps would-be residents away Couple says they wonâ€™t move to Castlegar after learning of breed-specific bylaw
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There are no pit bulls currently registered in Castlegar, but they can still be seen around the city, like this one that was photographed downtown in late March. The fee to license a pit bull in Castlegar is $1,000 per year.
A Castlegar bylaw requiring owners of pit bulls or Staffordshire terriers to pay $1,000 per year for a licence is deterring at least one couple from moving to the city, and former mayor Mike Oâ€™Connor says thatâ€™s exactly why the exorbitant fee was implemented a decade ago. â€œTheyâ€™re dangerous dogs and if they want to have them in Castlegar they cost $1,000,â€? Oâ€™Connor said. â€œPeople can say what they want about them but their reputation is not good and I donâ€™t want my young grandchildren ripped apart by a pit bull.â€? But the bylaw came as a shock to Theresa Hodge, who commutes daily from Salmo to Castlegar for work. With her children now grown up and living away from home, she and her husband recently started look-
ing into moving to Castlegar. In Salmo, her year-and-a-half old Staffordshire terrier/lab cross, Jessie, only costs $15 a year to license, so Hodge decided to find out about Castlegarâ€™s fees. â€œSomeone told me to check into Castlegarâ€™s because they heard it was expensive,â€? she said. When she found out how much it would be, she said moving to the city wouldnâ€™t be an option anymore. â€œIâ€™m sorry but Iâ€™m not getting rid of my dog,â€? Hodge said. â€œWe were going to move to Castlegar but not now.â€? Hodge said it isnâ€™t fair to give an entire breed a bad name based on a few horror stories of vicious animals. â€œTheyâ€™re not all the same,â€? she said. â€œI really think itâ€™s how theyâ€™re raised and how you treat them. Any dog can be mean and get in trouble.â€?
Continued on P. 3
Marijuana controversy grabs national attention ROBSON FLETCHER Castlegar News Editor
A local battle over the bounds of legal marijuana production has grabbed national attention after police raided a grow op near Castlegar and arrested a 62-yearold woman, despite the fact that she had a valid licence to grow a certain number of the plants.
According to police, the number of marijuana plants found at Velma Mullaneyâ€™s residence in Pass Creek exceeded what was allowed under the licences issued by Health Canada to her and her boyfriend. Together, the pair are legally allowed to grow 98 plants, but RCMP Sgt. Laurel Mathew said police had evidence there were
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more plants than that in production, based at least partly on high levels of power consumption at the residence. After obtaining a warrant, police searched the large rural property on Feb. 24. Mathew said three separate officers each counted more than 98 plants, but she wouldnâ€™t say exactly how many plants were counted.
Mullaneyâ€™s lawyer, Don Skogstad, said his client claims police later told her they had counted 99 plants. As a result, Skogstad told the Castlegar News he doesnâ€™t expect the Crown to pursue charges. â€œA one-per-cent error?â€? he said. â€œNobodyâ€™s going to charge her for that.â€?
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same kind of yield. as harvested marijuana and cash. Due to disease and inconsistent quality, Skogstad Mullaney is facing chrages of cultivation of a conMullaney went to great lengths to stay within the trolled substance and possession for the purpose of said even good medicinal marijuana growers “are lucky to get one ounce per plant.” limits of the law, Skogstad added, and was confident trafficking in relation to that raid. A preliminary hearing was scheduled for April 6 in While he is only representing Mullaney on her curthat she and her boyfriend had only 98 plants in proCastlegar court. rent and any pending criminal charges, Skogstad said duction. Mullaney obtained her medicinal mari- his client is also considering filing a civil suit against “She was absolutely positive,” he said. juana licence in October 2009. the RCMP for the damage she says police caused to her “When you do this type of thing, you try “Good The February raid made headlines across growing equipment. to be careful.” Canada this week, with stories carried by na(medicinal As of press time, no formal charges had tional news media outlets. yet been filed against Mullaney in relation marijuana) Mullaney told the Globe to the February raid, in which her 18-yeargrowers are and Mail she uses marijuana old grandson and a person under the age to deal with the symptoms lucky to get of 18 were also arrested. Mathew said the grandson “was found one ounce per of her arthritis and her boy- 1131 LAKESIDE DR., NELSON BC ● 250.352.2200 OR 1.800.900.9228 ● www.glaciertravelgroup.com friend uses it to control pain in the grow, tending to the grow” when plant.” caused by a bad back. police searched the property. Skogstad told the CastleMullaney’s boyfriend wasn’t present at BOOK YOUR COACH TOUR OR CRUISE BY APRIL 30TH AND RECEIVE 75.00 EUROS!! gar News that Mullaney and the time of the raid but was arrested later, Don Skogstad Imagine ﬂoating down the rhine, bus touring in Italy. her boyfriend have mediciMathew added. Talk to our expert travel consultants and make your dreams come true. nal marijuana licences alShe said the Castlegar RCMP expect CERTAIN TERMS AND CONDITIONS APPLY. to pass their files on to Crown prosecutors this week, lowing them to grow 49 plants each, and any decision regarding charges will proceed from which is based on an estimated prescription of 10 grams of daily use. there. He said 49 plants per licence may Mullaney is already facing drug charges from an arseem like a lot, but noted that merest two years ago. In January 2009 she and her husband (from whom dicinal marijuana users often have less she is now separated) were arrested after police raided sophisticated equipment than illegal their property and seized 1,200 marijuana plants as well grow ops and usually don’t get the Continued from P. 1
Council news in brief CITY BOOSTS FUNDING TO AREA CULTURAL GROUPS City council voted Monday night to approve funding agreements with the Castlegar and District Heritage Society, the Kootenay Doukhobor Historical Society and the Kootenay Gallery of Art, History and Science — all of which will receive an $800 increase. The three-year agreement will see each organization receive $40,800 annually, plus $7,000 for capital improvements this year. “The city’s support is huge for us,” Val Field, executive director of the Kootenay Gallery said. “We are really lucky to have a city that supports local culture and heritage.” The new funding agreement will end on Dec. 31, 2013.
HESKETH WINS FIRST $250 ‘SNOW BUSTER’ AWARD Mayor Lawrence Chernoff pulled Harold Hesketh’s name as the first “snow buster” winner at the regular council meeting Monday night. Hesketh was one of many people nominated throughout Castlegar who took the time to shovel driveways other than his own during
the winter. “We took it on people to nominate their neighbours,” Coun. Kevin Chernoff said. “We had quite a few people that wrote in their suggestions.” Hesketh will receive $250 from the city as his prize. City council hopes to have him appear at the next council meeting on April 18 to present him with the cheque.
LIMITED SUPPLY OF COMPOSTERS ON SALE Composters are once again available for purchase at city hall. For Castlegar residents only, composters can be bought for $25 (plus tax) and will be available for pick up on May 14 at the Castlegar Garden and Nature Fest. After that date, they will be available for pick up at the Civic Works yard. Coun. Kevin Chernoff said the composters sold out last year, and with only 100 available this year, he advises people to act fast or they might miss out. For more information, call city hall at 3657227. /Castlegar News
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Castlegar News Thursday, April 7, 2011
Less CBT funding for Castlegar GREG NESTEROFF Nelson Star Reporter
A change in the way the Regional District of Central Kootenay apportions Columbia Basin Trust community funding will mean more money for some places and less for others, including Castlegar and Nelson. In a narrow vote on Thursday last week, directors approved a motion to dole out money beginning in 2012 based solely on population instead of a formula combining population and assessment. “I don’t know why we started doing it years ago the way we did, but I just feel it’s more about people than the value of their homes,” says Arrow Lakes director Paul Peterson, who introduced the motion, despite the fact his area actually stands to lose money. “I love to keep within the spirit of what the Trust is about.”
Peterson says they were have more demands on able to draw from a much the only regional district them, and receive the lion’s larger tax base to provide using the population plus share of requests for funding their services. “If your cities continue to assessment formula. Al- from community groups. “We tend to have most of grow, you get more money,” though they will still receive the same amount of money the requests because a lot of she said. “We may grow a overall, the pie will be divid- groups servicing the region bit, but can never provide ed a little differently begin- are working out of Nelson,” the same level of services.” “When I lose $10,000 out Dooley says. ning next year. Chernoff added that of my allotment, it’s going to Castlegar stands to lose more than $8,000 a year — even with the present sum affect people,” Chernoff said. from $107,000 to $99,000, of money to work with, it’s “I think the system worked while Nelson’s piece will “difficult and time-consum- fine before.” drop by $6,400 — from ing” to evaluate funding Chernoff said he hopes about $133,000 to $126,000. requests, which last year when a new board of direcThe biggest winner will be totaled over $400,000. They tors is brought on in 2012 it Creston, both the town and were only able to satisfy a may reconsider the decision. rural area, which will each quarter of that amount. The motion passed with Nakusp Mayor Karen 11 directors in favour. receive more than $8,500 Hamling, however, remore. In all, funding will in- sponded that the cities are —With files from Kim Magi crease for six areas, decrease for seven, and A breakdown of the how new Columbia Basin Trust remain unchanged for funding formula will affect various communities seven others at the lowest end of the funding scale. Community 2011 2012 Change Nelson Mayor John Area I $30,000 $32,984 + $2,984 Dooley and Castlegar Area J $35,662 $38,133 + $2,471 Mayor Lawrence Cher- Castlegar $107,328 $99,143 - $8,185 noff argued that as the Nelson $132,882 $126,445 - $6,437 largest municipalities Creston $57,404 $65,913 + $8,509 and regional hubs, they
‘If you want the dog, buck up the money’ Continued from P. 1
The dog licence fees were implemented in November 2001 and passed through city council with a unanimous vote, O’Connor said. “There were a lot of problems with [vicious dogs] at the time,” he said. After the bylaw was passed, O’Connor said a couple of people moved out of the city because they didn’t want to pay the licence fee or get rid of their dogs. “It was effective while I was mayor but I think it’s less effective now,” he said. A total of 217 dogs were registered in Castlegar in 2002, according to city records, compared with 277 in 2010. A city official said the numbers haven’t fluctuated too much since the bylaw passed. Currently, there are no pit bull or Staffordshire terriers registered in Castlegar. As of March 24, a total of 215 dogs were registered in the city. O’Connor believes people have become complacent and the bylaw isn’t being enforced. Bylaw officer Rick Smith said this
isn’t the case. He said he does random checks and also investigates complaints, and has been regularly patrolling the area around the Millennium Walkway recently. “I would say probably, if I recognize the dog as a pit bull I’m going to question it for sure,” he said. Smith added that, compared to surrounding areas, there aren’t a lot of pit bull or Staffordshire terriers to be found in Castlegar. This may be because Castlegar’s licence fees for these types of dogs is the highest out of any West Kootenay community. In Trail and Nelson, it costs $300 annually to register a pit bull. Grand Forks charges $30 for any kind of dog, and in Salmo it’s $15. Licence fees for other dogs range from $25 to $45, depending on where you live and if your dog is neutered or spayed. O’Connor doesn’t think $1,000 is unreasonable. “$1,000 is prohibitive,” he said. “If you want to have the dog and think it’s
the greatest dog in the world, then buck up the money.” Current city councillors Gord Turner and Kirk Duff were also on council in 2001 and helped pass the bylaw. “It was a pre-emptive strike,” Duff said, explaining that the bylaw came to the table because there were many dog attacks throughout B.C. at the time, and council wanted to send a clear message that people would have to be very serious about wanting a pit bull or Staffordshire terrier if they lived in Castlegar. Both Turner and Duff believe the $1,000 price tag should stay, although neither had an idea of how effective the bylaw has been over the last 10 years. Current Mayor Lawrence Chernoff said the bylaw may be one to revisit. “Maybe it doesn’t have viability,” he said. “A bylaw is only as good as you enforce it.” He did agree that it should cost more to license certain dogs over others, though. “It’s a safety issue we’ve found,” he said. “I know each dog is individual but we need to set the parameters.”
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Thursday, April 7, 2011 Castlegar News
Editor: Robson Fletcher Publisher: Chris Hopkyns Unit 2 - 1810 8th Avenue, Castlegar, B.C. V1N 2Y4 Publication Mail Agreement Number 40012905
Senseless bylaw Castlegar’s decade-old bylaw which quite deliberately discriminates against owners of certain breeds of dogs is one of those rules that doesn’t make sense in principle or in practice. The decision to charge owners of pit bulls and Staffordshire terriers $1,000 a year to license their animals was, according to the mayor who presided over its creation, a purposeful attempt to force these breeds of dog out of the city and if their owners went with them, so be it. The justification for this unusual action — pushing existing or prospective citizens out of Castlegar — was that these particular breeds of dog are just too vicious to have around. Hogwash. While behavioural tendencies do vary between different types of dogs, every responsible dog owner knows that training has a far greater influence on behaviour than breeding. A well trained pit bull poses less danger to the public than a poorly trained poodle. Need proof? Just look carefully around town and you’ll see plenty of these supposedly vicious dogs co-existing peacefully with canines and humans alike. This, of course, brings us to the practical problem with the bylaw: It’s not being enforced. There are precisely zero licences at city hall for pit bulls or Staffordshire terriers. The owners of these dogs are simply ignoring the bylaw. (The majority of dog owners in this city choose not to license their animals, it should be noted. There are currently 215 valid dog licences at city hall, but it’s safe to assume there are far more dogs than that in Castlegar.) The only thing this bylaw is accomplishing is deterring law-abiding, would-be residents from moving to Castlegar. Responsible owners of these particular breeds of dog aren’t made to feel welcome in this community when faced with such exorbitant licensing fees. Ultimately, that is our loss as a city. The current council ought to revisit this bylaw and either abolish it or replace it with licensing rules that make more sense. We want to hear from you.
Letters Policy The Castlegar News welcomes letters to the editor intended for publication but reserves the right to edit for brevity, clarity, legality, accuracy and topicality. Letters should typically be in the range of 300 words in length. Anonymous letters will not be published. To assist in veriﬁcation, name, address and telephone number must be supplied, but will not be published. E-MAIL LETTERS TO: email@example.com DROP OFF/MAIL: Unit 2 - 1810 8th Avenue Castlegar, B.C. V1N 2Y4 Phone: 250-365-6397 Fax: 250-365-6390 The Castlegar News is a member of the British Columbia Press Council, a self-regulatory body governing the province’s newspaper industry. The council considers complaints from the public about the conduct of member newspapers. Directors oversee the mediation of complaints, with input from both the newspaper and the complaint holder. If talking with the editor or publisher does not resolve your complaint about coverage or story treatment, you may contact the B.C. Press Council. Your written concern, with documentation, should be sent within 45 days to B.C. Press Council, 201 Selby St., Nanaimo, B.C. V9R 2R2. For information, phone 888-687-2213 or go to bcpresscouncil.org.
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Off the Line - Karen Haviland
A reminder of what’s right Sometimes it seems as if the world is falling apart. Epic earthquakes, tsunamis, floods, a creeping unemployment rate, and families losing their homes have become commonplace. It’s hard to turn on the TV or pick up a newspaper nowadays. These are sad times indeed, and if one was so inclined, it would be easy to crawl into a depression hole and never want to look out again. Yes, it’s easy to get mired in the everyday minutiae and the overall state of things, which is why it’s important for me to recognize and celebrate what’s right in this world. It helps balance out the not-so-right. Case in point — I recently had the opportunity, the privilege actually, of meeting a modern-day, middleincome, typical, blended family. Together, the couple who are in their mid-30s (him) and mid-40s (her) have two children; she has four in total. Three of those children, ages 20, seven and six are living at home. They have also given refuge to a single father and his two daughters age eight and six. To say their house is crowded would be a considerable understatement. Day after day I hear their family routine through the open window as Theresa Hodge Ofﬁce Manager
Kim Magi Reporter
they round up the children and get them off to school, baseball practice, parent/teacher meetings or any another of the numerous obligations of young families. I hear the crying and the laughter as it blows through the window, carried by the wind. It’s obvious their days are devoted to raising their family in the best way possible and each and every day brings a renewed commitment to do the very best they can for their children. They are a loud, boisterous family. They are a happy, busy family. They face adversity almost every day of their life by simply living in today’s world. Both parents work full time and long hours and yet they soldier on. They do it for their family. They struggle financially and yet they are the type of people who could never, not for one second, turn a person away from their table. They don’t have much, but what they do have they gladly share. I think that despite the everyday stress of simply trying to be good parents, they have learned a secret that some of us fail to remember, or in some cases, ever learn. They have learned to laugh their way through the hard times.
Robson Fletcher Editor
Chris Hopkyns Publisher
Despite their harried and busy life, they navigate their way through life with smiles and good humour. They are warm and welcoming people with warm and welcoming children. It’s pleasant to visit with them or to hear their family noises through the window. It reminds me that life always goes on and that there are good, honest and caring people in the world. It tells me that life is full of surprises, some good, some not so good. But it’s life and what would life be without those little surprises, both good and bad? It would be a simple landscape of dull gray. They add a poignant counterbalance to those thoughtless and hurtful people of the world who think that the whole world, and its inhabitants, owe them a living and haphazardly stomp through life with little, or no, regard to those around them. You know the kind I mean — we have all met at least one of those type of people in our life. It’s hard to imagine the colour of their lifescape. Our neighbours know happiness isn’t measured by the money in the bank, it’s measured in their children’s laughter. Our neighbours epitomize what is right in the world.
Cindy Amaral Production Manager
Shaun Carrigg Production
Sandy Leonard Production
Castlegar News Thursday, April 7, 2011
Letters to the Editor
Political apathy is just a symptom of a Rebels go above and beyond deeper problem with our democracy for fans and for Madeline While I can agree with some of the sentiments of Dave Carter as presented in his letter to the editor (‘Apathy threatens democracy,’ March 31), there is much more for us to consider and talk about on this issue of apathy threatening democracy. He states:“The two biggest problems with politics in our country are apathy and ignorance.” However, after giving this topic some deeper thought, it became abundantly clear to me that it would be more accurate to say that the problems of ignorance and apathy in our country are created as a direct result of a skewed political system. I am not trying to make a “fashionably disinterested in politics” statement here. Like many Canadians I am concerned with this business of yet another “election that effects us all profoundly,” but unlike Mr. Carter, I can no longer continue to believe in the illusion that this country is a democracy and that my vote matters. A through investigation of the evidence has made it clear for me and many other politically apathetic citizens, that we do not have a political system that represents and supports us as a “government for the people and by the people.” What we have is more accurately described as an oligarchy — a government in which a few wealthy people maintain the ruling power through their political minions and control of the media. If we lived in a true democracy, “we the people” would have the right to vote for the policies that effect us. However, the career politicians in Ottawa or Victoria do not ask us if we want an HST,
another election, or a war. All we are offered is the option to vote for a local representative of a “political party” that they appoint. The political parties speak to some of our interest in order to get elected, but in fact are obligated to look after the concerns of the party, big business supporters, and themselves. While some sincere individuals from our community have stepped up to the political plate to take a swing at the ball, most often they end up disheartened or resigned to the corruption of the system. I would suggest to Mr. Carter that many Canadians are “wakening up and taking responsibility for their desire for democracy,” but have yet to discern a plan of action. We haven’t arrived at a critical juncture yet where the return to democracy means rioting in the streets like in Egypt. It appears to me that the polite Canadian way that many have chosen, is to simply stop participating in the political game. This “public shunning” should be viewed as a non-violent, non-confidence vote in the present political system that continues to waste our resources and subject us to their circus agenda under the tented disguise of a democracy. Our first objective is to arrive at a consensus of understanding the nature and extent of our real problems. This is not a political issue. Then we can address the bigger question of developing the systems that will get us from where we are, to where we want to be. Steve Clement Castlegar
I am writing to thank the Castlegar Rebels and their coach Steve Junker for going “above the call of duty” and providing the most exciting hockey season our area has in years. I don’t know if most people in our area are aware that this year the Rebels set a record for having the most points in a season. The Rebels won the Neil Murdoch Division this year and it has been 15 years since the team reached this level of playoff success. Although they came up a bit short in a hard-fought league final, they have every reason to be proud of their season! Most importantly to my family was the kindness
they showed to our daughter Madeline, 9, who was nailed by a runaway puck at a game against the Fernie Ghostriders. After the tears and help from local paramedics she couldn’t find the puck to keep as proof of her “love” of the sport. (Until this happened, she put up with hockey because of her brother in PeeWee.) She was inconsolable. Steve Junker and the Rebels heard about this and delivered a Rebels T-shirt to her, fully signed by the team. Thanks guys for a great year and going the extra mile. See you next year!
Debbie Bayoff and all the family of Madeline Bayoff Castlegar
Letters Policy The Castlegar News welcomes letters to the editor intended for publication but reserves the right to edit. Letters should typically be in the range of 300 words in length. Anonymous letters will not be published. To assist in veriﬁcation your telephone number must be supplied, but will not be published.
e-mail letters to: firstname.lastname@example.org
Castlegar & District Chamber of Commerce - Business Excellence Awards Business Person of the Year A business owner or manager that demonstrates integrity, professionalism and outstanding service. Nominee: ____________________________________ Business of the Year A business that demonstrates excellence in quality of service, community involvement, leadership, image and innovation. Nominee: ____________________________________ Retail Service Excellence Award A business that provides exceptional customer service and continually demonstrates enjoyment and product knowledge in their work environment and customer service. Nominee: ____________________________________ Food & Beverage Excellence Award An individual or business that shows dedication to professionalism and demonstrates commitment to consistently providing excellent service in the food and beverage industry. Nominee: ____________________________________ Green Award The nominee business must: display environmental responsiveness through personal leadership and effort; demonstrate innovation in stewardship of the environment; display commitment to exemplary environmental responsiveness, beyond governmental requirements; encourage others to be environmentally responsible. Nominee: ____________________________________ Tourism/Hospitality Award A business or business person within the tourism/hospitality industry who has demonstrates excellence in marketing the Castlegar area as a tourism destination. Nominee: ____________________________________ Professional Business Award A business or business person in the ﬁnancial, medical or professional ﬁeld that demonstrates integrity, professionalism and outstanding community service. Nominee: ____________________________________ Name _____________________________________ Address ____________________________________ Phone: _____________________________________ Please complete and return to the Chamber ofﬁce.
All residents of Castlegar and areas I &J are encouraged to nominate the Best in Business Person(s) that have demonstrated excellence in Business/ Service and Professionalism. Please review the Chamber Membership list and nominate only one per category. Please return directly to the Castlegar Chamber ofﬁce before April 30, 2011 deadline. Awards will be presented at the Chamber Business Awards Gala on June 11th 2011.
99 Cent Store A&W Acme Excavating Ltd Affolter Financial Group All Hit KBS Astral Media Inc AM Ford Sales Amy Enns/Highmark Realty Anderson Insurance Agencies Andres Audiotronic Andrew Sheret-Splashes Ltd Apple Auto Glass Arica Gardens Bed & Breakfast & Gift Shop Ashland Training Resource Training Centre Avenue Hairdesign Ltd. Back In Balance Family Chiropractor Bagels & Brew Bank of Montreal Bargain Shop BC Billboards BC Hydro Benjamin Moore In Color Decorating Centre Best Western Terra Nova Hotel Black Rooster Classic Bar & Grill Boardwalk Enterprises BookCo Services Boston Pizza Brian Brown CGA Canadian Cancer Society, West Kootenay Canadian Tire Cascade Lock & Safe Castlegar & District Heritage Society Castlegar & District Public Library Castlegar Arts Council Castlegar Golf Club Castlegar Hospice Society Castlegar Hospital Foundation
Castlegar Hyundai Castlegar Ink Spot Castlegar Kitchens Plus Castlegar Machine & Chrome Ltd. Castlegar Medical Aesthetics & Day Spa Castlegar Medical Clinic Castlegar News Castlegar Realty Ltd Castlegar Rec Centre Central Rentals Ltd Century 21 CIBC Clean-Scene Enterprises Ltd Columbia Auto Service Columbia Basin Trust Columbia Power Corporation Common Grounds Coffee House Community Futures Central Kootenay Cowan Ofﬁce Supplies Creative Edge Gallery Deebles Transport Ltd Deep Forest Enterprises Detailed Chocolate Expressions Doug Johnstone, CA & Pinnacle Projects Downtown Shell Downtown Subway Dundee Wealth E.H. (Beth) Hickey Bookkeeping Management Services Edward Jones Investments Element Club Bar & Grill EMPAC Engineering Ltd Endless Adventure Erica Ortega Ernies Towing Inc Evolution Creative Communications
Fashion Foundations Fireside Inn Hotel & Conference Centre Flamingo Motel Fortis BC GAIA Janitorial Services Inc Genelle House Bed & Breakfast Gift Box Imports Greg Gritchin - Mountainview Realty Growth Financial Corp Guillevin International Co
H.G. Insurance Hall Printing Halls Basics & Gifts Ltd Hanson Decking Heddles Holdings Heritage Credit Union Home 2 Home Transition Services HTR Designs Hughes Contracting Idependant IT Solutions Independent Respiratory Services Inﬁnite Vitality Massage Therapy J.J.’s Fashions Ltd Jim’s Dirt Works & Bobcat Services Joeys Only Seafood K2 Contracting Ltd Kal Tire Kalawsky Pontiac Buick GMC Kat’s Trophys, Signs & Storage Kathie Robertson Keystone Appraisals Inc Klassic Gift Box Klohn Crippen Berger Ltd Kootenay Assoc. for Science & Technology (KAST)
Kootenay Biznet Kootenay Columbia Appraisals Kootenay Columbia Collection & Bailiff Services Kootenay Columbia Seniors Housing Coop Kootenay Family Place Kootenay Floral & Gift Kootenay Gallery of Art Kootenay Innovative Wood Ltd Kootenay Liquidators Ltd Kootenay Market Ltd Kootenay Mobile RV Service Kootenay Petopia Kootenay Plumbing Supply Kootenay River Kampground Kootenay Savings Credit Union Kootenay Smile Studio Kootenay Society for Community Living Kootenay Valley Water & Spas Kootenay Weed Control Krueckl Financial Services Inc Lalo Co Animation Lemon Creek Lodge Lions Lair Body Piercing Lower Columbia All First Nations
M&M Meat Shops Magnet Signs Mallards Source for Sports McDonalds MediChair Castlegar Mike’s RV Ranch Mitchell Supply Ltd More Than Fair-Global Giftware Mother Natures Mount Sentinel Chiropractic Corp Mountain FM (Vista Radio Ltd) Mountain High Lighting Mountain Transport Institute MS Steel Design
Nealy O’Briens Pub & Liquors Inc Nu-Tech Construction Services Ltd Oglow’s Paint & Wallcovering OK Tire & Auto Service Paciﬁc Coastal Airlines Panago Pizza Paragon Columbia Pharmacy Pass Creek Regional Park & Campground Pharmasave Philip Kanigan, Notary Public Inc Polonicoff & Perehudoff Quality Inn Quality Tires Reinvented Apparel R.J. Woods Productions RHC Insurance Brokers Ltd Roger Herrick Independent Pharmacy Rona Building Centre Rosetown Antiques Boutique Rossland Motel Safeway Sandman Hotel Scottie’s Marina Ltd Selkirk College Selkirk Massage Therapy Selkirk Security Shoppers Drug Mart Simone Jewelers Ltd Smiling Otter Wilderness Adventures Soap ‘n’ Suds Laundromat Ltd Super 8 Motel Sutherland & Associates
The Brick The Castlegar Source The Greek Oven Restaurant The Lions Head Smoke & Brew Pub The Village Bistro Thirsty Duck Neighborhood Pub Ltd Tim Hortons Tina Popoff Jewelry TNI Broadband Solutions Toby’s Doggy Do Trowelex Rentals & Sales Tse Tse Travel & Vaccine Clinic Turning Pointe Dance Studio Twin Rivers Motel Two Grey’T Grams Pet Pampering Valhalla Physiotherapy Valhalla Technologies Inc Van Hellemond Sporte Ltd Venn & Now Bookkeeping-Sandy Venn Venture Mechanical Systems Ltd Walking Tree Ranch W L D-synz Waste Management of Canada Weezie’s Borscht Hut West Arm Truck Lines West Kootenay Fire Safety West Kootenay Tours Windborne Bed & Breakfast Wine Kitz Castlegar Workman Home & Yard Your Dollar Store With More Zaytsoff Holdings Zellstoff Celgar Limited Partnership
Teck Cominco Metals Ltd The Bargain Shop
Castlegar & District Chamber of Commerce t1995 6th Avenue, Castlegar, BC t 250 365 6313
Thursday, April 7, 2011 Castlegar News
Calendar Want your event advertised here? Please e-mail a brief description of the event as you would like it to appear in the paper. Submissions must be sent by Friday prior to the week you want the listing to be printed. Your listing may be edited for length. Send your event to: email@example.com.
APRIL: APPLICATIONS, FOR THE HOUSE BEING BUILT IN CASTLEGAR, BY HABITAT FOR HUMANITY ARE AVAILABLE. They must be
submitted by May 6. Applications are open to low income families, with sub-standard housing, who wish to own their own home. Applications may be picked up from the Castlegar Community society, 1007 2nd. St., local thrift shops or schools. For more information call 3042790. APRIL: SENIORS’ ACTIVITIES AT THE COMPLEX. Mon: 10 a.m. darts, 1
p.m. whist. Tues: 9:30 a.m. floor curling & carpet bowling, 1 p.m. crafts, 7 p.m. pool. Wed: 7 p.m. rummoli, 1st Wed. only: 1 p.m. bingo. 20th Raspberry Reunion & coffee. Thurs: 9:30 a.m. floor curling, 1 p.m. bingo (not first Thurs.). First Thursday 2 p.m. general meeting. Fri: 1 p.m. crib & bridge. Sat. the 16th: Sr. Soup Days 11:30-1 p.m. APRIL: 2011 WEST KOOTENAY CAMERA CLUB - 21ST ANNUAL PHOTO SHOW COMPETITION. Entry Dead-
line: April 29. Choose your best image; Categories: Nature – Human Interest – Photojournalism – Creative Images – Flowers – Open category – Portraits – Architecture & Old. Open to all ages. Competition rules & regulations, entry forms available at www.westkootenycameraclub.com or contact Eileen at firstname.lastname@example.org. APRIL 7: CASTLEGAR COMMUNITY FOUNDATION INFORMATION MEETING. 2–4 p.m. in the basement
meeting room of the Castlegar Library @ 1005 3rd St. All residents, businesses and organizations welcome. Guest Speaker: Barb McMillan, Director of Regional Strategies for Com-
munity Foundations of Canada. Hosted by Castlegar Social Planning Society. APRIL 7: TARUN OF DELHI 2 DUBLIN AT SPIRITBAR. Tarun, the pro-
ducer behind Delhi 2 Dublin, has recently finished a globespanning solo album, bringing together electronics with live recording sessions from around the world. On April 7 he’ll be performing the album live. This is a one-time event, won’t be happening again! $5 at the door. APRIL 8: DJS SYNTHESIS, BILLY BANGERS AND BREAKER AT ELEMENT. Doors 10 p.m. $5 cover
before 11 p.m., $7 after at Element. APRIL 8: SELKIRK YEAR-END BASH AT SPIRITBAR. The Selkirk Col-
lege Students’ Union (SCSU), in collaboration with Spiritbar invite you to come celebrate the end of the school year! Selkirk’s band Sound-Splash! will be kicking off their tour by opening the night. DJ Bryx will be finishing it off like only he knows how... Admission is FREE with a VALID student card (ISIC or Selkirk College’s library card) before 11pm, only $5 thereafter. See you there! APRIL 9: 1ST ROBSON SSCOUTS HAVING ANNUAL SPRING BOTTLE DRIVE. Saturday from 9 a.m. to
12 p.m. Drop off at Pass Creek Ex. Grounds. Thank you to the community! APRIL 9: A SECRET DESTINATION DINNER AND DANCE. Habitat for
Humanity is partnering with local restaurants. Each participating restaurant creates a dinner within its individual restaurant which will be attended by ticket holders for the event. It is “secret” because nobody will know which restaurant they will be attending or who they will be attending with until they receive an email the day before. When the dinner is over, all ticket holders will meet at The Portugese Hall for a dance and live auction. Tickets are $40 and includes dinner and the dance. If you are interested in tickets, please email Colleen Allarie (callarie@
Tell us about your upcoming event, email: email@example.com
thebrick.com) or phone Colleen at (250)304-2700 during the day. APRIL 9: PROPATINGZ AT SPIRITBAR. PROPATINGZ; a name
synonymous with the thunderous, uncompromising sound of now known as dubstep. The man in question, Anthony Traynor, is responsible for some of the biggest dance floor bangers in the scene. Tickets on sale at the Hume Hotel. APRIL 12: CASTLEGAR MINOR HOCKEY ASSOCIATION ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING. 7 p.m. at the Complex.
All attendees will have a chance to win ONE free registration. Motions can be submitted to Anita Croteau at anitac@celgar. com prior to April 1 at 9 a,m. Additional information is available at our website: www.castlegarminorhockey.com All Executive positions will be available for volunteers come on out and make a difference with CMHA! APRIL 12 & 13: FISHBONE AT SPIRITBAR. The first night will feature
a screening of their highly acclaimed documentary entitled ‘Every Day Sunshine: The Story of Fishbone’ narrated by Laurence Fishburne. The second night will feature a band who has been influenced greatly by Fishbone, Funkarelli, who give a high-energy performance every time. Tickets on sale at the Hume Hotel $30. Early show with doors open @ 8 p.m. APRIL 21: DJS TOM NEMESIS AND BASS SKIDZ. From melodic to raw &
dirty, Nemesis is renowned for his emotion & energy charged brand of house music with sets that unwind like a high octane rollercoaster through the sounds of grinding electro house, indie electro, breaks, and progressive. Synthesis is a true crowd pleaser and has earned his way in the underground music community. Cover $5 at Element. APRIL 22 & 23: SWEET TEQUILA.
Straight from cowboy and cattle country Alberta... Live at Element all Easter weekend. Come and check out one of Canada’s sickest country and rock party cover bands. Sweet Tequila playing one of
the most diverse cover band playlists. Doors open at 10 p.m. Cover at the door starting at $7. Reserve a table for dinner and make a night out of it! Call 365-8066 to reserve. APRIL 26: ABRACA DAZZLE! STARRING JOHN KAPLAN. 90 minutes
of fun and laughter PLUS some all-new magic innovations and never-before-seen illusions! A show that parents can enjoy with their children and grandparents - everybody has a terrific time as they share some truly magical moments. Presented by KE Grade 6/7 classes. Doors open at 5 p.m. at the Castlegar Complex for food and refreshments, show time is 6:30. Tickets available at the Complex or at Movie Company (by Safeway). Individual: $11, Family of four: $40. APRIL 30: 6TH ANNUAL SPRING FLING 2011. 11 a.m. - 7 p.m.
downtown at Kinsmen Park. Join the citizens of Castlegar as they celebrate spring. Events include a 3-on-3 hockey challenge, Show and Shine Car Show, vendors in the park, 2 stages showcasing local talent as well as activities for children. A day of fun for the whole family. For more information or to volunteer to assist with the event, call Peter 250-365-5655.
Ongoing ONGOING: THE TRAIL MAPLE LEAF BAND IS LOOKING FOR EXPERIENCED BRASS, WOODWIND AND PERCUSSION PLAYERS. If you are
interested in joining us please call: 365-6405 Castlegar or 3642803 Trail for more information. ONGOING: CASTLEGAR GARDEN CLUB MEETS THE FIRST TUESDAY OF THE MONTH. 7 p.m. at the
Castlegar Community Complex, Columbia Room. New members are always welcome. Share your love of gardening with other garden enthusiasts and expand your gardening horizons. Information: Dorothy: 304-2885 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
messages need to be repeated several times......
us at the Castlegar & District Public Library on Wednesdays at 10-11 a.m. starting April 6 until June 1. To register call 365-6611. In partnership with Columbia Basin Alliance for Literacy and Castlegar & District Public Library.
ONGOING: CALL FOR VENDORS AND NON/PROFIT GROUPS: GARDEN AND NATURE FEST. Castlegar Garden
and Nature Fest is looking for vendors and nonprofit groups to participate in this year’s 2nd annual fest. Saturday, May 14 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. (Please note: this is the weekend AFTER the Nelson Garden Fest,.) 10 x 10 space is $30 for vendors, free for non-profits. Contact: email@example.com or 3994439.
ONGOING: LOVE 2 LEARN. Come
and enjoy this free program with healthy snacks, circle, art, games and activities for preschoolers and parents/caregivers. On Fridays from 9:30 – 10:45 a.m. starting on April 1 until May 13 at Castlegar Primary School. For more information call Alana at 304-6862, or to register call 3655744.
ONGOING: COMMUNITY VOLUNTEER INCOME TAX PROGRAM. Trained
volunteers will give a free service to help people on low income to prepare their income tax and benefit return at Castlegar and District Community Services Centre, 1007 2nd St. Call 250365-2104 to inquire if you are eligible for an appointment. Program runs from March to April on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 9:30 a.m. to noon and from 1 to 3:30 p.m.
ONGOING: THE TWIN RIVERS CHORALE SOCIETY rehearses 7:00
p.m. every Thursday night at St. Peter Lutheran Church in Castlegar (two blocks towards the river from the downtown post office on 4th Street). If you enjoy singing in an adult S-AT-B community choir, please come on out and join us!
The more often a consumer sees your advertising message, the better your chances are that they will remember you when they’re ready to buy!
ONGOING: CUDDLE, CONNECT AND COMMUNICATE WITH YOUR 0-12 MONTH OLD AT THE PARENT CHILD MOTHER GOOSE PROGRAM. Join
“Sit” “Good dog!”
Castlegar News Thursday, April 7, 2011
Divided trustees face challenge of how to deal with public feedback ROBSON FLETCHER
The Castlegar & District Chamber of Commerce invites you to attend the
ALL CANDIDATES FORUM
(BC Southern Interior electoral district) Fireside Inn 6pm-8pm April 12, 2011 more infor @www.castlegar.com
Castlegar News Editor
Now that they have collected volumes of feedback from area residents on the future use of education facilities in School District 20 (SD20), trustees are mulling over what to do with all the information. “It’s time to roll up our sleeves,” chairman Gordon Smith said at Monday’s school board meeting. “There’s a lot of data here,” It’s not entirely clear, however, exactly what trustees will do with all that data. The feedback was collected from the series of “focus group” meetings the district held in Castlegar, Rossland and Trail last month, which were organized in the wake of a public outcry over the possibility of school closures in Castlegar and Rossland. Pages of comments from parents, educators and other concerned citizens were presented to trustees last night and were to be posted on the SD20 website Tuesday for the public to peruse as well. But, other than having another meeting to discuss the feedback, trustees weren’t entirely sure how to proceed from this point. “What is the game plan?” asked trustee Mickey Kinakin. “I mean, we’ve met so many times over this issue.” Supt. Jean Borsa said the Board of Education as a whole needs to use this new information to come up with a five-year plan for education facilities in the district, but trustee Lorraine Manning noted the district is already three years into its “Planning for the Future” process, which was initially supposed to be a five-year plan, itself. Trustee Mark Wilson echoed that concern.
April Apr 7th - Tarun from Delhi 2 Dublin Solo Project Apr 8th - Selkirk Year End Bash Feat Bryx Apr 9th - Propa Tingz w/Buck Lee & Lady AK Apr 12th - Fishbone w/screening of documentary Apr 13th - Fishbone w/Funkarelli Apr 14th - Ab Rude, 2Mex & Awol One Apr 15th - DJ Czech Apr 16th - Five Alarm Funk Apr 19th - Funkhunters & Jpod Free Show Apr 21st - Dj Dopey, w/Rochester & Tassnata Apr 22nd - True Story w/Leif, SnailRider & R Bank$ Apr 26th - Tokyo Police Club w/Said The Whale & DB Apr 28th - IMTV Live Apr 29th - Sticky Buds Apr 30th - Mochipet Album Release Party
May May 6th - Gaza Fundraiser
A Shaikh, L Meyers & J West
May 13th - Mimosa
Downstairs at the Hume Hotel File photos
CLOCKWISE FROM TOP LEFT: Trustees Lorraine Manning, Mark Wilson, Gordon Smith and Mickey Kinakin.
“We’ve done a facilities plan. Now we have some new information from the three major areas,” he said. “We’re not starting over again.” Wilson also took issue with some of the feedback received from the focus groups, pointing out one comment in particular from a Rossland parent who threatened to leave the country if there were school closures in that city. “It is unacceptable to not have K-12 in Rossland,” that particular comment reads. “We will move back to Australia with our three children and just return for the ski season if K-12 in some form is not maintained in Ross-
land.” Wilson said trustees need to look at the district’s needs as a whole and it would be a “waste of time” to concern themselves with every single “negative comment” contained in the voluminous feedback summaries from each community. “We have to be able to weed out some of these comments,” he said. Smith disagreed. “I’d say that all comments are legitimate from the public and all comments need to be considered,” he said. Kinakin, meanwhile, pointed out the obvious obstacle the board will face as it tries to move forward, name-
ly the significant differences of opinion which exist largely between trustees from Trail and those from the Castlegar and Rossland areas. “The proverbial 800-pound gorilla in the room is the fact that there are huge divisions here,” Kinakin said. “We’re going to have to deal with the divisions on this board.” Trustees are currently working to come up with a date or series of dates to meet, go over the latest public feedback and try to work out their differences of opinion on how to address future facilities use in the face of enrolment declines and financial pressures.
An invitation to
Millennium Park Design Charrette Dates: April 13th and 14th. Community Forum, 445 - 13th Ave. The City of Castlegar invites you to participate in a design charrette to plan the future activities of Millennium Park.
» WEDNESDAY, APRIL 13TH 6:00pm 6:15pm 6:30pm 6:45pm 7:00pm 7:45pm
Introductions & Welcome Park Planning & Design 101 Ideas for Future Use Report Back Park Planning/Design and Report Back Closing Remarks & Next Steps
» THURSDAY, APRIL 14TH Daytime- Design Team Working Session (to create park plan options from community input) 6:00pm Open Public Review Session 6:30pm Discussion and Selection of a ‘Preferred Concept’ 7:15pm Closing Remarks & Opportunity to Provide Additional Feedback
For more information please visit: www.castlegar.ca/millenium_master_plan.php
Thursday, April 7, 2011 Castlegar News
Selkirk students pay 45% less for the first two years of a degree than if they had gone straight to university.*
I totally recommend Selkirk to anyone
looking for affordable, close-to-home schooling.
I really appreciate the kind staff, great learning environment and amazing support I receive
from instructors. I like it so much that I’ve decided to take several of my courses through Selkirk College while pursuing my degree!
Ashley Zeboroff – 2010 Alumna of Professional Management and current student of Thompson Rivers University Open Learning.
After graduating from Stanley Humphries Secondary School in 2008, Ashley earned a two-year diploma in Professional Management at Selkirk College. Her diploma transferred directly into the third year of a Bachelor of Commerce degree at Thompson Rivers University Open Learning (TRU-OL). With the exception of a few upper level electives and core courses, Ashley will complete her degree at Selkirk’s Castlegar campus. Ashley will graduate in April 2012 with a major in Human Resources (HR) and hopes to work in the college’s HR Department one day.
Apply now for September entry. Visit
selkirk.ca/s/learnmore or call 1.888.953.1133.
*Ministry of Regional Economic and Skills Development, “BC Public Post-Secondary Institutions, Historical Tuition Fees for Full-Time Students by Sector”, September 2010.
Castlegar News Thursday, April 7, 2011
Reducing radon exposure a personal quest KIM MAGI Castlegar News Reporter
In 10 years, Dana Schmidt hopes to eliminate Castlegar’s radon problem through education and prevention. When Schmidt’s wife, Donna, passed away of lung cancer two years ago, he took it upon himself to research different causes of the disease. He found Castlegar had the highest rate of radon gas in the province (the first is Clearwater) and it’s the second leading cause of lung cancer after smoking. He started the Donna Schmidt Memorial Radon Abatement Fund to inform people about the risk of radon and the effect of lung cancer and to help people detect radon in their homes. Radon is a colourless, odorless and tasteless gas found in the granite and rock around Castlegar. It occurs naturally as the decay product of uranium and flows through gravel
into the air. Through testing, Schmidt says 46 per cent of Castlegar’s homes are above Canadian standards and 57 per cent are above U.S. Environmental Protection Agency standards. Some homes, he said, are 60 or 70 times the standard. “There is no safe community or safe neighbourhood,” he said. “You really can’t tell until you test.” Over the last two years, close to 1,000 test kits have been distributed throughout Castlegar. The kits Schmidt distributes for free stay in your house for a minimum of 90 days and are then evaluated. Despite having almost half of the radon detectors coming back with values over the standard, Schmidt suspects less than 10 per cent of people will do anything about it. He thinks this is because the “only” problem that comes with high exposure is lung cancer. However, he points out
that people have so much fire prevention equipment in their homes, yet you’re 100 times more likely to die from radon-related lung cancer than fire. Schmidt says the lung cancer caused from radon is difficult to detect because the tumour starts out very small (he said if his wife would’ve had a chest Xray when the tumour first started it would’ve come out clear) and it’s only detected once it’s spread – and by then it’s too late. “The radon gas is relatively radioactive,” he said. “Once you breathe it in, it turns into a solid.” Due to the dangers of radon, Schmidt is committed to educating people about the levels of gas in their homes and showing them what they can do to bring the levels down. Currently, he’s working on brochures for homeowners and potential homeowners that he hopes to distribute to local realtors so those in the market to buy a house know the lev-
Kim Magi photo
Dana Schmidt shows two examples of radon detectors that can be placed in the home. Since losing his wife to lung cancer linked to radon, Schmidt has been focused on educating Castlegar residents on the dangers of the gas.
els of radon in the house. It’s a short commitment of time to have your house retrofitted for radon protection too. “Radon-resistant construction is really what’s needed,” he said. By sealing the floor, gas
can’t come through the foundation. Radon can also be vented from the home through the use of small air pipes that go through the house and exit above the windows so the gas doesn’t come back through into the house. A fan above
the pipe blows the gas away from the house. Schmidt says the cost in electricity to mitigate the radon in a home is about $40, and the installation costs about $500 for a new house and $2,000 for a house that’s already built. The next project Schmidt is taking on is through the city’s evening Rotary Club, of which he’s the president. The club will provide the funds for someone to retrofit their home if they’re five times over the accepted amount and aren’t able to afford the renovations. Schmidt said he’ll continue to provide the tests as long as there is a demand for them. They’re available through Schmidt at Golder Associates (201 Columbia Ave.), any Rotary Club member or at city hall. Schmidt says it’s a small price to pay to prevent lung cancer. “This is one of these issues where ignorance can kill you.”
Clothesline Project RIGHT: Jake Pottle and Keegan Christianson, Grade 5 students in Patrick Kinghorn’s class at Kinnaird Elementary, paint T-shirts on Tuesday in advance of the Clothesline Project. FAR RIGHT: Christian Barlow, a Grade 5 student in the same class, shows a T-shirt he decorated. On April 19, the T-shirts, along with ones decorated by other Castlegar students and other residents, will hang in Spirit Square outside city hall to raise awareness about domestic violence. Kim Magi photos
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Thursday, April 7, 2011 Castlegar News
Arts & Culture
Dancers display a diverse
The Turning Pointe Performance Company presented their annual spring repertoire at the Brilliant Cultural Centre Saturday night. The company is made up of dedicated dancers who train in ballet, modern dance, tap, jazz, lyrical, musical theatre and hip hop. The dancers ranged in ages from eight to 18 and perform in festivals, competitions and community events. Fifty-one dancers showed off their skills in 38 different performances throughout the evening. The performance company is run by artistic director Julie Teindl.
Photos by Kim Magi
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