See inside for Minor Hockey and Big Event pullouts!
GAZETTE NORTH ISLAND
Publications Mail Agreement No. 391275
46th Year No. 10 THURS., MARCH 8, 2012
EDITORIAL Page 6
LETTERS Page 7
www.northislandgazette.com NORTH ISLAND LIFE Page 15
SPORTS Page 13-14
Set your clocks ahead one hour Sunday, Mar. 11 Newsstand $1.25 + HST CLASSIFIEDS Page 17-19
To Brian: One step at a time — love, dad Mike D’Amour Gazette staff Bill Ray wants to raise $50,000 to make children’s wishes come true — and he plans to do it one step at a time. The 49-year-old Maple Ridge man began a 650km journey last week that began in Port Hardy and is scheduled to finish in Burnaby at the Children’s Wish Foundation of Canada “I’m hoping I can get a dollar from every working person between here and Burnaby so I can reach my goal,” said Ray, who lost his son, Brian, 15 years ago to cancer. “He died when he was just nine-years-old,” said the dad, whose eyes become red with emotion while talking about his boy. The Children’s Wish Foundation made it possible for Brian to visit Disneyland before he died. “It meant everything to him,” Ray said. “He got to play with the dolphins and do other things during his week there.” Ray said he never forgot that kindness weeks before his son passed away and
wants to do something for the foundation that helped Brian realize his dream. “It’s just something I gotta do to give back,” said Ray. “I’m doing it in Brian’s honour and of course to honour the children who are still fighting to beat their cancers.” It’s fitting, perhaps, that he is starting his trek at the beginning of March, which has been designated as Children’s Wish month. “This is a very personal healing thing for him, as well as supporting the Children’s’ Wish Foundation,” said Kim Antiffaef, fundraising coordinator for the foundation. Each year, thousands of Canadian children between the ages of three and 17 are diagnosed with a life threatening illness. This year the Children’s Wish Foundation expects to grant 1,000 new wishes. While the foundation is proud of the fact it never once turned down a child, it can use donations. “We definitely are in need and have kids waiting for wishes all the time,” said Antiffaef. With only a knapsack filled with clothing and an
Bill Ray is walking about 650-km in memory of his son and to raise funds and awareness for the Children’s Wish Foundation. Mike D’Amour photo “But I want to raise aware- learn more about it — can He’ll make his way to extra pair of New Balance runners, Ray started his Victoria, then to the ferry ness about the Children’s do so securely online by trek south from Port Hardy before he walks the last leg Wish Foundation and raise logging on at www.wishmonth.ca, and then clickfunds for it.” Thursday and plans to get of his journey to Burnaby. Those wishing to donate ing on Brian’s Walk for “I’ve never done anything on the old Island Highway to Ray’s cause — and to Wishes. like this,” said Ray. from Campbell River.
Now so easy to publicize community events Maybe you’ve noticed our new online calendar at www.northislandgazette.com. It’s definitely not the old one, but it is better and much easier to use. Our online calendar is a great way to create buzz about your organization or your event. If you do have an event or function you wish publicized on the North Island — or anywhere Black Press has a paper — this is the place to do it.
The new calendar requires no login or password, and the form to submit an item is super easy to use. You can designate where — and when — you wish the calendar item to appear within the region’s Black Press B.C. family of websites. You can also spread the word about your event to Facebook and Twitter from our calendar and, of course, it’s free.
There’s even a spot for an image, say a rehearsal photo from a high school play. Someone here in the Gazette newsroom will check each item before it posts, just to make sure it complies with our simple guidelines which lead off the submission form. Basically, please don’t post a businessoriented sale. And by the way — did we mention it’s dead simple to use?
Our new, reader friendly calendar
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Thursday, March 8, 2012
Scarlet fever not a concern Mike D’Amour Gazette staff There have been a few diagnosed cases of scarlet fever in the Triport area, but it’s nothing to get too excited about, said the North Island’s top doc. “I do know earlier (last) month we received a couple of indications there may be scarlet fever in the community,” said Dr. Paul Hasselback, medical health officer for the North Island. “There are physician diagnosed cases of scarlet fever that have occurred in the community and the number that was shared with me was not many, five to 10 ... it’s not too concerning from what my staff are seeing.” The Gazette received several calls from concerned parents and other family members who believed the disease was epidemic, but “that’s simply not the case,” said Hasselback. “There are people who believe it’s going on and the perception is a legitimate concern,” he said, from his Nanaimo office. “There’s more anxiety from people who haven’t had this disease.” Scarlet fever is typically associated with children, but doctors
What is it? Scarlet fever is a term used for strep throat with a rash and is most common in children ages two to 10, but it can affect people of any age. Scarlet fever is caused by streptococcal (strep) bacteria, the same bacteria that cause strep throat. There are many different strains of strep bacteria, some of which cause more serious illness than others. The most noticeable symptom of scarlet fever is a rough, red rash that feels like fine sandpaper. Other
symptoms are the same as strep throat — except for the rash — and include: • Fever of 38.5°C —101°F — or higher. • Sore throat and difficulty swallowing. • White or yellow spots or coating on the throat and tonsils. • Swollen lymph nodes in the neck. Other symptoms that appear before the rash, especially in children, may include general body aches, headache, stomach ache, nausea, vomiting, or listlessness. —HealthLinkBC
“There are people who believe it’s going on and the perception is a legitimate concern.” — Dr. Paul Hasselback don’t see it as often as in the past because of antibiotics and good hygiene, said Hasselback. Indeed, while scarlet fever is contagious, it doesn’t spread very well. “It’s not like every student can come down with this,” said Hasselback. And for these who
get exposed, not many of them will actually get sick. The challenge, said the doctor, is everyone who comes down with a rash does not seek out medical attention. “This is not a disease that is reportable,” he said. “If a student is off school or away they
need not tell the school why they’re ill, they need not tell us.” Another problem is there are lots of myths and misinformation about scarlet fever. “Many, many decades ago, it used to be associated with all sorts of problems,” said Hasselback. “There are 100 or so different types of strep and only a few cause a rash and occasionally when strep goes untreated it can cause other problems as well — kidney and heart specifically — but we rarely see that sort of problem anymore.” Scarlet fever has been called strep throat, but with a rash. “That’s a very simplified way of putting it, but not far off the mark,” said Hasselback. “Not all strep is the same and most of the strep throat we see don’t result in the rash that goes with scarlet fever.” The best protection against any respiratory illnesses is good solid hygiene, said Hasselback . “So when you cough, you cough into (the crook) of your elbow and you wash your hands frequently whether you’re sick or not.”
Don’t bully us A group of North Island citizens concerned about possible health risks and privacy issues surrounding smart meters protest in front of the Port Hardy BC Hydro building on Feb. 29. Desiree Conway photo
Welcome New Members
submitted by Yana Hrdy Port Hardy & District Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Submissions to Update: Fax: 250-949-6653 or email email@example.com
New members N b welcome l Alf B. Images Studio and location photography including portraits for baby, children, family, pregnancy and pet as well as profile/business/ website headshot photos, weddings, just ask Alfonse Bauer what he can do for you. 250-902-0744 www.alfbauer.com Pair of Medics First Aid Training Need to update your First Aid Ticket? Chris & Carla Wagnor at 250-902-0695 will teach you the right
stuff. CPR/ First Aid training as Canadian Red Cross. www.pairofmedics.com Seto’s Wok & Grill is a place where everybody knows your name. Seto’s is locally owned, family operated full service restaurant established in 1993, specializing in Cantonese, Chinese and Canadian cuisine. Located at Port Hardy Inn they offer beautifully decorated dining room, lounge, takeout, catering and meeting rooms and a delicious food.
250-949-8381 Facebook page: Seto’s Wok & Grill Special thank you to Rob Gagnon; the owner of North Island Home Improvement (250-902-7343) for being so generous to the Port Hardy Chamber. Rob donated so many hours of work & material to make our Visitor Centre more inviting and safe. He checks in every month with a phone call asking if we need anything. What a guy. Thank you so much. this message is sponsored by the
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Thursday, March 8, 2012
A Sointula man says the bright light in his photo is a UFO that hovered over a beach for more than 15 minutes before it vanished. Jim Davis photo
Eerie light a puzzler Mike D’Amour Gazette staff Jim Davis knows some may think he’s crazy, but he knows what he witnessed. “I saw a UFO,” said the retired fisherman, who calls Sointula home. Davis said he was at the top end of Crease Island last summer, at the mouth of Knight Inlet, looking east, when he saw a bright light hovering over the beach. “I didn’t know what the hell it was,” the 68-year-old said of the
daytime apparition. “But it was right there on the edge of the beach, about 400-ft from me.” Davis said he stood transfixed for close to 15 minutes before reaching for an old disposable film camera to snap a shot through the windshield of his 38-ft trawler, the Cedar Isle. “It was about four or five times brighter than what’s in the picture and there seemed to be a steam cloud around it,” he recalled. Davis snapped a single shot before he
turned his head for a moment. “When I looked back, it was gone,” he said. The object made no sound when it disappeared into the afternoon skies. Davis, who’s been on the water since he started fishing with his dad at the age of 10, said he’s never seen anything like it before. “I’ve never seen a UFO before that day,” he said. Davis said he only came forward
after recently receiving the photo he sent to be developed some time ago. Even now he said he’s scratching his head at what he saw. “I can’t say for sure one way or the other what that was,” he said. Have you seen or photographed something eerie, odd or otherworldly? Send your story and/or pics to email@example.com.
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If only this were a colour page ... Then you’d see the pink shirts donned last week by Nuecel staff in support of anti-bullying day. Shirley Scott photo
JEFFREY ONES & COMPANY LAW OFFICE 2nd Floor - 1488 Beach Drive Port McNeill, BC V0N 2R0 Phone: 250-956-3358 After 29 years of service to the North Island, Jeffrey Jones & Company is announcing the closure of its Port McNeill office, effective April 30, 2012. As of May 1, 2012, Jeffrey Jones & Company will be relocating to their new premises located at 2nd Floor, Sointula Co-op Building, First Street, Sointula, BC. Our new address will be:
Jeffrey Jones & Company P.O. Box 43 nd 2 Floor - Sointula Co-operative Building 175 First Street Sointula, BC V0N 3E0 Jeffrey Jones & Company will be restricting its legal practice to company law. We will continue to serve as registered and records offices for our corporate clients as well as providing related legal services. It has been a pleasure serving the residents and businesses in the North Island. Thank you for the opportunity to be of service as your local law firm.
INTERNATIONAL OGE=FK<9Q Celebrating the achievements of all women across the North Island March 8, 2012 ;dYaj]Lj]n]fY ED9Fgjl`AkdYf\ Robert Scott School Box 2479–6855 Market Street Port Hardy Phone 250-949-9473 Toll free 1-866-387-5100 Fax 250-949-9403 email@example.com www.clairetrevena.ca
Thursday, March 8, 2012
And introducing ... My name is Lisa Harrison. Youâ€™ve probably seen my friendly face before from my time with Whatâ€™s On Digest. Now Iâ€™m moving on up to the North Island Gazette where I have taken the position as an advertising sales representative. I bring a wealth of North Island knowledge and history with me. I grew up in Port McNeill, then moved to Port Hardy 14 years ago when I married. My husband and I have two wonderful children and a group of North Island family and friends. I am excited, happy and thrilled to be at the Gazette where I can create and keep in contact with our local businesses and community events. We all just shared the common experience â€” and the wonderful North
Island community spirit â€” with the Hardy Buoys Big Event. We need to support each other more than ever, so letâ€™s keep this Lisa Harrison going. If we support the businesses we have on the North Island it will keep them here thatâ€™s the bottom line. This will allow them and the community to grow and this is whatâ€™s known as a WIN, WIN. I look forward to working with everyone and bringing exciting, fresh ideas to the North Island Gazette. Give me a call at 250-949-6225 or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
B.C. cancels generic drug purchase deal By Tom Fletcher Black Press VICTORIA â€“ The B.C. government is terminating its generic drug purchase agreement with provincial pharmacy groups after savings to the Pharmacare program fell short of expectations. Health Minister Mike de Jong said the three-year agreement with the B.C. Pharmacy Association and the Canadian Association of Chain Drug Stores will end April 1, a year early. â€œWe negotiated an agreement on a certain set of expectations, savings to be sure, to Pharmacare and to the purchasers of drugs in B.C., and they have not been realized,â€? de Jong told reporters at the legislature Wednesday. â€œOf the roughly $69 or $70 million in savings the parties had agreed would be realized over the first two years, weâ€™re about $36 million short.â€? De Jong said legislation will be presented soon to end the agreement, in which Pharmacare bought generic equivalent drugs in bulk on behalf of insured patients for a fraction of the cost of the
original brand-name medicines. The agreement called for the price of generic drugs to decline to 40 per cent of the original patented medicines by this year. De Jong said generic drug manufacturers have insisted on many more exceptions to the price cap than the health ministry expected, eroding the savings from Pharmacare purchases. Pharmacare buys more than $300 million worth of generic drugs a year, and seniors and other patients buy another $500 million worth directly or through their medical coverage. De Jong declined to comment on B.C. following the lead of Ontario to end the practice of pharmaceutical companies paying rebates to drug stores to stock their brands of generic drugs. The health ministry conducted market tests and found it could buy equivalent drugs from other suppliers for less than those offered under the agreement. It began delisting the more expensive drugs for a year and then decided to end the agreement.
Responsible budgeting in an uncertain world. To prosper in todayâ€™s turbulent global economy, discipline and focus are essential. All around us we see governments paying the price for overspending and uncontrolled debt. In BC, we have a different story.
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Net Debt-to-GDP ratio is a key measure of debt affordability.
Weâ€™re working to keep BCâ€™s economy strong in the face of global economic uncertainty. When other economies are looking inward, BC is reaching out to seize opportunities around the world. British Columbia. Canada Starts Here.
* Forecast for end of 2012/13. Source: Budget 2012 ** Forecast for 2012. Source: International Monetary Fund, Fiscal Monitor, September 2011
For more details on Budget 2012, visit www.bcbudget.ca or www.bcjobsplan.ca
Thursday, March 8, 2012
Triple-day protest North Island teachers took it to the streets and then to Carrot Park Monday, the first day of a three day protest of the government’s move to legislate their contract. J.R. Rardon photo North Island Community Forest Ltd Partnership
OPEN HOUSE February 4, 2012 1pm – 4pm at the Port Hardy District Ofﬁce
Fly like a, well, you know ... An eagle is released into the wilds near the airport after spending a day resting with caring North Islanders. Mike D’Amour photo
Looking for work? We can help. Get the training and support you need to find and keep a job in B.C. Job search resources • Personal employment planning • Workshops and training • Specialized services
The Directors and Shareholders of the North Island Community Forest will be hosting an Open House for all community members to come and learn what has been going on over the past year in your Community Forest! Please come out and discuss the North Island Community Forest with us. We will have displays to view, information to review and food and beverages to snack on. This is also a chance for all to review and comment on any proposed operations within the North Island Community Forest. The Open House will take place at the Port Hardy District Council Chambers located at 7360 Columbia, Port Hardy, next to the Civic Centre from 1pm to 4pm on February 4th, 2012. If you are unable to attend this open house and wish to discuss the Community Forest with one of the Directors, please email email@example.com to make an appointment. Feel free to also write us a letter or send us information via: North Island Community Forest LP Box 668 Port Hardy, BC, V0N 2P0 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
CORRESPONDENTS WANTED Looking for correspondents in Alert Bay, Sointula, Port McNeill and for First Nations coverage.
Photography skills a must. Must be interested in learning to write for the newspaper.
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YOUR LIFE. YOUR COMMUNITY. YOUR PAPER.
Thursday, March 8, 2012
COMMENTARY Comments? Box 458, Port Hardy, B.C. V0N 2P0 250-949-6225 Fax 250-949-7655 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
A numbers game It’s tough to decide which side of the teacher v. province argument to fall on. We want our teachers to be happy when they go to work educating our children, no question about that. We also want the province to show a willingness to deal with the issues. No question there. But it’s the bickering and creative use of numbers that’s throwing us at the moment. Here’s an example: not too long ago, the BC Teachers’ Federation stated our educators are the ninth best-paid in the country. The government fired back that teachers were, in fact, the fourth best paid. That, of course, is when benefits are factored in. The teachers’ union countered with this: “BCTF uses current salary figures — 2011-12 — for Category 5 — five years of university and Category 6 — master’s degree — from salary grids in teacher collective agreements across Canada. The maximum salary for a B.C. teacher with Category 5 qualifications ranks 9th in Canada, including the provinces and territories. Based on provinces only, the rank shifts to 6th among the (10) provinces.” Nobody loves the serve and volley of semantics more than we who toil in the news industry. However, we say to both sides: it’s time to quit nit-picking and manipulating facts to serve selfish purposes and get back to the job of educating our kids.
We Asked You Question:
Should the province legislate the teachers’ contract?
www.northislandgazette.com Total votes received for this question: 66 Voting deadline is Monday at 3 p.m.
There’s a pleasant mood on the North Island right now. Not sure if it’s a hold over from last week’s hoopla, but we like it.
We really tried, but it’s been a great week with no complaints, so no Thumbs Down from us today, which is always a good thing.
BCTF indoctrinating our kids Perhaps the single most ridiculous stunt in the leadup to this week’s teachers’ strike was at an elementary school here in the capital when a Grade 1 teacher gave her class an assignment: write to Education Minister George Abbott, demanding he stop bullying their teacher and address class size and composition. This North Korea-style political indoctrination of six-year-olds was a mistake, says the local teachers’ union boss, who vaguely indicated the unnamed teacher would apologize to parents. Students across B.C. were skipping class in solidarity with their teachers, led by budding campus radicals suddenly conversant with B.C. Teachers’ Federation talking points about “Bill 22.” This left-wing groupthink pervades the education system from public schools through taxpayer-supported colleges and universities. After a couple of generations of this indoctrination,
B.C. Views Tom Fletcher
almost everyone “knows” that government under-funding is at the heart of every school problem, standardized testing is an assault on the fragile self-esteem of students, and reducing class size is the top priority for improving educational outcomes. B.C. Teachers’ Federation president Susan Lambert announced the strike on live TV with a remarkable string of rhetoric about the “Orwellian” legislation that will soon put an end to this
The North Island Gazette is published Thursdays at Port Hardy, B.C. by Black Press Ltd. Canadian Publications Mail Agreement #391275. We acknowledge the financial support of the Government of Canada through the Canada Periodical Fund of the Department of Canadian Heritage.
and Benito Mussolini, to illustrate a multiple-choice question about “fascism.” In Vancouver, a protesting teacher got big media play, holding up a sign proclaiming that “it’s not about a wage increase, it’s about classroom conditions.” This too is a lie. The BCTF trotted out its standard “children first” rhetoric, then tabled its breathtakingly outof-touch benefit demands. For his part, Abbott started out pretty keen about students and parents heading down to occupy their local school and replace striking teachers with volunteers for a couple of days. But he changed his tune after the support staff union started grumbling about parents colouring too close to their craft lines. One fight at a time, I guess. The next one will be teacher performance assessment and the choke-hold of union seniority on school jobs.
teacher tantrum. The government needs to negotiate “clearly, rationally and respectfully,” said the boss of union representatives who have spent the last year insulting the taxpayers’ negotiators by telling them to “go back to your masters” and get a couple of billion more. Clearly? It was the BCTF that announced its work-torule plan for the fall and then took the summer off. It was the BCTF that didn’t even present its outrageous 16-percent wage demand until January, a full 10 months after formal negotiations began, and accompanied it with a false costing. Orwellian? At a sparsely attended rally on the legislature lawn, local teachers’ unions marched out their most strident tame trustee to demand the government “come to the table” with billions. One teacher in the crowd held up a large sign adorned with three mug shots: Premier Christy Clark, ex-premier Gordon Campbell
Tom Fletcher is legislative reporter and columnist for Black Press and BCLocalnews.com
A member of
This North Island Gazette 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 to B.C. Press Council, 201 Selby St., Nanaimo, B.C. V9R 2R2. For information, phone 888-687-2213 or go to www.bcpresscouncil.org
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Thursday, March 8, 2012
How about some whine with that halibut? Dear editor: I think the public is getting sick and tired of the whining from the recreational sector regarding halibut allocations. They claim the Minister of Fisheries has let them down. This is nonsense considering the 25 per cent increase they just received in their total allowable catch. The only people here who were let down are the commercial fishermen, and the people they feed. Fishermen are a lot like farmers, who produce beef, poultry, fruit and vegetables. Fishermen harvest salmon, crab, prawns, halibut, etc. Without these farmers and fishermen, there would be no food on the shelf of your local grocery store, nor anything on the menu at your favourite restaurant. Like with agricultural land, which should stay in the hands of the farmers, the vast majority of the fish should be kept in the hands of commercial fishermen. After all, the 85 per cent of halibut harvested by the commercial fishermen is for the masses, not for the fishermen themselves. If commercial fishermen want halibut they have to buy it like everyone else. The recreational sector has an estimated 100,000 anglers who fish halibut. It is a small, elite group who are fishing to fill their own freezers, especially compared to the 30 million other Canadians who have no other choice but to purchase halibut from the store or at a restaurant. That fish is provided by the commercial sector. As for the anglers who claim to be the original conservationists, they have obviously lost their way considering they have gone over their total allowable catch for five years running by a total of 1.3 million pounds — 270,000 pounds last year alone.
This is a conservation issue. With the lack of enforcement there is wide range poaching and irresponsible fishing practises with no accountability within the recreational sector. Six or seven years ago the Department of Fisheries told commercial fishermen unless they cleaned up their act there would be no more commercial halibut fishery. They succeeded with lots of sacrifices. Now with 100 percent monitoring they never exceed their total allowable catch, are accountable for all species of by-catch and have achieved a sustainable fishery. Perhaps the same measures need to be taken by the recreational sector. This is the 21st century and accountability and conservation come first. The days and practices of the wild west fishery are over and no longer acceptable. This continuing argument of unfairness and push for more quota is an ill-conceived scheme by the powerful for-profit charter and lodge industry. The unfair part is that the lodge industry harvests 70 per cent of the recreational quota while dragging the everyday recreational angler into the fight to line their own pockets. The other unfair part is that this for-profit lodge industry is fighting to take quota from the commercial industry without compensating them, when the commercial fishermen have made huge investments in the industry. What is wrong with one halibut a day? If you’re still hungry you can take 200 prawns, six crab, four salmon, three ling cod, three rock fish and a bucket of clams as well. Maybe you need a bigger boat. Let’s hope Ottawa stops treating the recreational sector like a bad parent treats an unruly child- they gave in once to the complaining but it’s time to say: No more. Skye Johnston Courtenay B.C.
Games to continue Dear editor: Since it looks like some sort of school disruptions may occur between now and the end of the Charlie Cup (checkers) Championship, I wish to make one thing clear (to) students who really want to play. I (am) planning to set up at events such as school fun fairs, community events such as Rumblefest, Sointula seniors' annual plant sale on Mother’s Day, Sointula annual May long weekend baseball tournament, Alert Bay
June sports, and other events taking place. If community clubs or recreation clubs have events coming up before Father’s Day and I would be welcome or allowed to set up to offer students new entries, could you please let me know either by phone 250-9736932 or send me an email chkrking@ cablerocket.com I will work on school noon hour times as best I can as long as the labour dispute doesn’t prevent that.
Letters to the editor
tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions. In terms of cost-effectiveness and well-proven technology, wind energy ranks right alongside run-of-river energy as one of the most cost-effective renewable energy sources available with one of the smallest environmental footprints of any form of energy generation. Moreover, wind energy and run-ofriver energy complement each other perfectly because wind energy peaks in the stormy winter months when hydro resources are typically at their low point. And neither energy technology
most inspirational player, and from a non winning school the best sport. The MVP gets first choice then the MIP then the best sport takes the remaining item available. Other smaller prizes will be available at the end for those who deserve something, but didn’t get in on the special prizes. The bottom line is, students if you want to enter you will get your chance strike or no strike. David Lyon Sointula, B.C.
Thanks, older generation Dear editor: It is scary to think I was barely four years old the last time a major hydroelectric dam was built in this province. That was 28 years ago, back in 1984, when the Revelstoke dam was built on the Columbia River system. And nothing of significance has been added since then. There were fewer than three million people living in B.C. in 1984 and more than enough power for them all. Now, B.C.’s population is over 4.6 million and new uses for electricity pop up every day.
Wind farms complement RORs Dear editor: For most in B.C., February 16, was just another day. But in the annals of B.C.’s energy sector it was an historic day marked by the official completion of the Dokie wind farm project near Chetwynd. The Dokie wind farm is now B.C.’s largest wind farm, supplying enough cost-effective renewable green energy annually to power nearly 30,000 average B.C. households. If that same amount of energy had been generated by burning coal it would have resulted in close to 300,000 metric
Non public schools are always welcome to contact me for arrangements to have me visit either their school or their public or recreational event for new entries to get the chance to play. Entry is always free. Since there are several excellent special prizes students who play, (they) will have a chance to possibly win one of them. (From) the winning school there will be both the MVP and MIP,
harms salmon as traditional hydro dams have in the past. If it was not for B.C.’s incredibly abundant hydro resources, we would probably have tapped B.C.’s equally abundant wind energy and other renewable green energy resources much sooner than now. The fact that we are now doing so, and diversifying B.C.’s renewable energy portfolio, deserves not only acknowledgement but a hearty two thumbs up. David Field, B.C. Citizens for Green Energy Burnaby, B.C.
Unfortunately, you can only stretch an elastic band so far before it snaps which sums up the state of B.C.’s aging hydroelectric system. Yes, my generation —i.e., today’s 30-somethings — has enjoyed low electricity rates for most of our adulthood courtesy of the previous generations in this province who built and paid for B.C.’s hydroelectric infrastructure. It’s been the equivalent of having had a mortgage-free house handed to us. However, that mortgagefree, low cost electricity production is rapidly coming face-to-face with the cost reality of major upgrades needed to keep this vital energy infrastructure safe and operational. The John Hart dam and generating station in Campbell River is a prime example. The facility dates from 1947. Its generators are now old
and in poor condition while the dam itself is a seismic risk. Modernizing the facility is going to cost at least $1.35 billion and that cost is going to have to be reflected in the electricity rates we pay. The same goes for the $718 to $857 million being spent on the 80 year old Ruskin dam built in the 1930’s. I’m certainly not complaining about the major investment our generation now needs to make in our province’s vitally important hydroelectric infrastructure. However, I’m definitely realizing what an incredible debt of gratitude we owe to the previous generations in this province for the investments they made, investments we’ve all benefitted from greatly and for such an incredibly long time. Jesse McClinton Victoria, B.C.
The goal is to publish every letter, so keep them brief, clear and to the point. Be hard on the problem, not the person; skip quotes except where readily confirmable; accept editing for length and legality. Include full name and home community (plus phone number to confirm authorship). Mail, fax, email or drop off c/o the editor by 4:00 pm Friday.
Thursday, March 8, 2012
March 10 North Island Concert Society presents legendary West Coast folk/rocker Barney Bentall with multi-instrumentalist Eric Reid, 7:30 p.m., Port Hardy Civic Centre. Single tickets $25 on sale in Port Hardy at Cafe Guido, PH Museum, Hobby Nook; in Port McNeill at The Flower Shoppe; in Port Alice by calling Gail Neely at 250-284-3927. Visit niconcert.ca or call 250-902-2228 for more information. March 11 Dinner and a movie at Port Hardy Baptist Church. Two showings: 3:30 p.m. (doors open at 3 p.m.) and 6:00 p.m. (doors open at 5 p.m.) Dinner is served between 5 p.m. and 6 p.m. Cost is $4 per person and max. $15 per family.
Port Hardy Youth Soccer Registration will be held at the Civic Centre from March 12-27. Mon.-Fri. - 8:30am - 4pm FMI contact Sarah at 250-949-6687. Coaches, referees & volunteers needed.
March 11 Spring Fling and Auction with a French twist. Avalon School from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Many exciting and enjoyable events. Concession will be serving quality food. March 31 Port Hardy Chamber of Commerce Annual Business Awards and Social Gala. 6:30 p.m. at Port Hardy Civic Centre. Country and Western theme. $35 per cowpoke includes grub and live music. Silent Auction and Cash Saloon. Tickets now on sale at the Chamber office, the Hobby Nook and the Museum. April 2 North Island Youth Soccer Association AGM at 6 p.m. at NISS. NIYSA coordinates the soccer league for tots through grade 12 for all North Island communities. Please come out and help organize. FMI call Kim at 250-949-1477 April 8 Alert Bay Royal Canadian Legion Ladies Auxiliary hosts Breakfast with the Easter Bunny, 8:30-11:30 a.m. Info, Donna, 250-974-2909. April 8 Alert Bay Lion’s Club hosts its annual Easter egg hunt, 1-2 p.m. Info, Casey Chapman, 250-974-2235. April 14 North Island Concert Society presents Infinitus, a classical string trio with a fresh, modern and sometimes humorous approach to the genre. Single tickets $25 on sale in Port Hardy at Cafe Guido, PH Museum, Hobby Nook; in Port McNeill at The Flower Shoppe; in Port Alice by calling Gail Neely at 250-284-3927. Visit nicon-
cert.ca or call 250-902-2228 for more information. April 15 Relay for Life Committee, our committee would like to invite the Survivors and Team Captains to a Relay Tea at 2 p.m. in Malone’s Banquet room. Please call Debbie at 250-949-3050 or Sabrina at 250-949-3431 to let us know you’ll be attending. April 28 101 Squadron Silent Auction at the Thunderbird Mall across from the Lotto Booth 11:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. Previewing and bidding Thursdays 1-3 p.m. and Saturdays noon-2 p.m. Proceeds go to 101 Sqn. Cairn projects, scholarships and North Island RCAF history projects. April 28 Float Camp Life exhibit opening at Port Hardy Museum 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. Refreshments May 13 Alert Bay Royal Canadian Legion Ladies Auxiliary hosts its annual Mother’s Day Tea, 1-4 p.m. Info, Donna, 250-974-2909. May 26-27 Relay for Life 2012. 6 p.m. to 6 a.m. Port Hardy High School track. Standard registration $20 until May 7, late registration $25 May 8 to May 25, youth $15 until May 25. For more information contact Sabrina Dent at 250949-3431 (w) or 250-949-8485 (h). email@example.com.
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