Saturday, August 31, 2019

City relays details of Friday Police incident involving an aggressive Dog in Seal Cove area

See updates at bottom of page

The City of Prince Rupert has issued a statement related to events of Friday August 30th which saw a member of the detachment address a dangerous dog report on the city's east side.

In their notes the City outlined how the RCMP were required to make the difficult decision to euthanize a "designated dangerous dog" that was at large and behaving aggressively in the Seal Cove area between 10 AM and Noon.

In the city's update they note that the response by the members was only taken in view of the serious circumstance where it was considered that there was an immediate danger to the public.

"The Prince Rupert RCMP responded to a request to assist City Bylaws with a vicious dog. Based on the history of the dog attacking a member of the community and the dangerous and aggressive behaviour displayed during the interaction, police made the unfortunate decision to put the dog down, but it was necessary in order to maintain public safety,”  -- Cpl. Alex Langley, Acting Operations NCO, RCMP.

Members of the Prince Rupert RCMP responded to a dangerous dog
call in the Seal Cover area on Friday, with a need to euthanize the  dog taken
over its aggressive behaviour

The city extended their sympathies to the owner of the dog and advise that the Prince Rupert detachment is expected to release their own statement before the weekend is over.

The city's response of late Friday afternoon can be reviewed here.

Updates: Early Sunday morning, the dog owner posted comments related to the incident to social media, which you can review here.

Also on Sunday morning, the RCMP issued their information release on the incident; relaying many of the same details as the City's update, along with some additional notes.

A dog was shot and killed by Prince Rupert RCMP that was acting aggressively in the residential neighborhood of Seal Cove ...

The Prince Rupert RCMP want to advise the public that this is not a decision that is taken lightly. This decision was made after extensive efforts to safely apprehend the animal became futile and the risk to the public became imminent.

You can review the full RCMP information release here.

The flow of information from the City of Prince Rupert continued into Sunday afternoon, as the City followed up on the RCMP statement with their own update through their Facebook page.

For more items of note related to Emergency Responders on the North Coast see our archive page here.

Other items of interest from the City of Prince Rupert can be reviewed from our Council Discussion archive.

To view the most recent blog posting of the day, click here.

Friday, August 30, 2019

BC education talks break off without agreement; mediator calls for pause until September 23

After eight days of mediation, the talks between the British Columbia Teachers Federation  and British Columbia Pubic School Employers Association still have too many issues outstanding to create a new contract,  with both sides stepping away from the bargaining table today.

As a result of the current impasse, the Mediator of the discussions over the last week has called for a pause until September 23rd when the two sides will try once again to see if enough common ground is available to continue forward.

The BCPSEA posted their advisory on the state of negotiations shortly after 4 PM today

The BCTF which represents public school teachers across the province outlined their observations on today's break in the negotiations through a twitter thread, which highlighted many of their recent discussion points and concerns prior to the mediation period.

Over the next three weeks the two sides will prepare their positions and review their options further towards the September 23rd meeting with the mediator.

In the short term, it so far, is not expected to impact on the start of school next week or the first few weeks of the new school year across the province.

We will update the latest developments. as more notes become available.

You can also access our rolling overview of the labour negotiations from our archive page here.

More items of interest on education in the Northwest can be reviewed from our Education archive.

To view the most recent blog posting of the day, click here.

Much anticipated launch of Prince Rupert to Terrace Airport shuttle could come next week

The countdown is on towards daily service between Prince Rupert and the Terrace/Kitimat Airport as SG Shuttle prepares to take to the road offering  twice daily trips between the two communities.

The new transportation service, which has been in the planning stages for a  number of months, will be looking to capture the growing number of North Coast travellers who have been taking advantage of the wider range of flight options that are offered by the Northwest Regional Airport.

As well, the Shuttle service will make a stop at the Skeena Mall for those looking to do a bit of day shopping in Terrace, which has become the central hub of the region and features a wider array of stores and services than currently are found in Prince Rupert.

Setting up shop in offices at the Highliner Inn, the SG Shuttle bus will depart from the same area that the BC Bus currently departs from, with their website now open for registration for those looking to explore the schedule options or to book a trip.

Departures from Prince Rupert take place at 7AM and 3:30 PM, while return trips from the Northwest Regional Airport leave Terrace at 11:30 AM and 8PM

The BC North Bus pulling away from the Highliner Inn,
the New SG Shuttle between Prince Rupert and the Terrace airport will
depart and arrive twice daily from the same location

(click to enlarge)

Taking the new website out for a test drive, and using Tuesday, September 3rd, the day that SG Shuttle hopes to launch their first trip, the cost of a one way ticket between Prince Rupert and Terrace would come to 35 dollars.

For more information about the new transportation service call 1-778-668-7180 (Monday to Saturday 9AM to 5PM)

Or by email at

The new service will operate seven days a week and may find that its popularity grows as the fall and winter weather arrives, as travellers decide to let the professionals do the driving for those out of town getaways.

The City of Prince Rupert will also no doubt be keeping an eye on how much success the new venture has and what kind of an impact it has on passenger levels out of Prince Rupert's Digby Island Airport and for the Digby Island Ferry.

The best way to try to keep local levels consistent for the airport may be to redouble their efforts in bringing a second airline to the city and increasing the number of flight options out of the city, making the Prince Rupert option more competitive towards the range of flights now offered out of Terrace.

As well, the opportunity for easier access to the commercial sector in Terrace, may require some additional work from City Council towards bringing more stores and services to Prince Rupert, if they wish to see the community rebuild its commercial options and reduce the desire for the one hour forty minute transit.

For more items of note related to Northwest air travel see our archive page here.

To view the most recent blog posting of the day, click here.

Labour Day with the MLA!

Many in the Labour movement may be dropping by
Mariner's Park on Monday, as MLA Jennifer Rice
observes Labour Day 

Monday not only marks the unofficial end of our summer, but the day when workers across Canada take time out to thank those who travelled roads well before them, providing for better working conditions, better pay and recognition for ordinary Canadians at work each day.

Labour Day in Prince Rupert this year will feature a celebration of the North Coast worker at Mariner's Park; as MLA Jennifer Rice serves up some hot dogs for those stopping by Monday from 11:30 AM to 2 PM.

Prince Rupert has a long history with the union movement with the unpredictability of the times playing out through the decades in the pulp and fishing sectors, and now with new industrial foundations being built along the Prince Rupert waterfront and the range of terminals that make for the Port of Prince Rupert.

As well, with more and more employment being created in the public sector, teachers, civic workers and support workers in many locations across the city will be taking the Monday to think towards the days of the past and what may come in the future.

Likewise, those working in the  the Transportation services, commercial sector and other ventures have also in many instances, become part of a union, seeking to protect their jobs and rights on the work site.

In anticipation of Monday, the BC Federation of Labour has released their annual Labour Day message, highlight some of the achievements of the last year and challenges still ahead.

Last year the BC Fed provided a glimpse of how the workers of today are connected to those of the past.

Unifor which represents a number of workers in Prince Rupert, primarily through its affiliation with UFAWU, provided a look at the modern era for unions today.

While Earlier this year the Canadian Labour Council provided for a look at one of the pivotal moments in the Canadian Labour movement the 1919 Winnipeg General Strike

 For those taking time off on Monday, a wish for a safe and enjoyable Labour Day.

For a look back at some of the Labour notes of the Northwest this year see our archive page here.

To view the most recent blog posting of the day, click here.

Crime Stats make for conversations in communities around the Northwest ... with one exception

With a few years having passed by, it's probably time for
Prince Rupert City Council to host an update on Policing in the community

Through much of the last month, communities along the Highway 16 corridor have been reviewing the release of crime data from Statistics Canada in July, with the figures and findings providing a snapshot of the day to day files that are handled by each communities RCMP detachments.

In some instances, the themes of the Stats release and general observations have generated comments from municipal politicians and been discussed in Council chambers from Terrace through to Burns Lake over the last month.

That as local officials share their thoughts and ask questions on behalf of their residents.

Terrace Crime Severity Index spikes 25 per cent
Telkwa council cautiously vigilant on crime stats
Smithers RCMP address crime index increase at quarterly update to council
RCMP announce new Smithers detachment commander
2018 Crime Stats out for Queen Charlotte and Masset
Crime rose in Houston statistics show
Crime up in Burns Lake in 2018, stats show

We made note of the Prince Rupert numbers in late July, taking a look at the range of data that had been released by Stats Canada at the time.

So far however, the data doesn't seem to have captured the attention of Prince Rupert's elected officials, with no mention of them in public session and little indication if the City Council has any plans to have the Detachment head come to Council during a public session to go over the findings and help interpret them for the public.

While Terrace, Kitimat and Smithers Councils frequently have those in charge of their detachments deliver reports and discuss policing issues during a public session, Prince Rupert Council rarely has provided for a public opportunity at their council sessions for such updates.

Not that there hasn't been some past interest expressed by some councillors in having the RCMP attend a Council session to provide some background or possibly answer some questions.

It has been a frequent theme for Councillor Barry Cunningham over his time in office, and in May Councillor Nick Adey has also proposed an invitation for the local detachment to be invited to council to share some notes on the state of policing in the community.

While Council did  take in a presentation of the Safe Place program in February of last year, the last time that Council hosted detachment Commander Blake Ward in a public setting was in August of 2017.

So an invitation would seem to be long overdue, with perhaps an opportunity to pencil in more frequent updates moving forward.

It's been a long stretch of time since Prince Rupert Council hosted a
public update on policing challenges and successes in the city

With just six council sessions left on the 2019 Council calendar, if they are to have some success in providing for that kind of public forum, they may have to be a bit more determined in their conversations with their fellow council members to make it happen.

For now, about the only notes we hear of policing in the community comes from the work of the detachment on the streets, some of which you can catch up on from our Emergency Responders Archive here.

You can review our archive of Council sessions here.

For more items of interest related to City Council see our Council Discussion archive.

To view the most recent blog posting of the day, click here.

Coast Mountain Students get the lay of the land today with Orientation Day session

It's orientation day at Coast Mountain College

Tuition paid, supplies purchased and for those  from out of town, living arrangements taken care of, just a few of the things on the Back to School Checklist for Coast Mountain Students at the Prince Rupert Campus.

Those new students are making their way around the building that will be their home for the next few years as the Prince Rupert campus hosts the Fall Orientation program, which got underway at 9AM and will continue through until 2PM.

Orientation provides an opportunity for the students to learn more about the campus and what services may be available for them, as well as to pick up some last minute books or other supplies.

Students at the main campus in Terrace are also participating in the Orientation session at the Terrace facility, the first day of school for all campus locations of Coast Mountain College is this Tuesday, September 3rd.

Students can follow the Coast Mountain College Facebook page and twitter feed for updates on other events related to the return to classes for the fall.

For more items of note on Coast Mountain College see our archive page here.

To view the most recent blog posting of the day, click here.

Canadian Coast Guard launch latest vessel for Pacific Coast

The Sir John Franklin, the newest vessel for the Canadian Coast Guard
was put into service yesterday in Sidney

The Canadian Coast Guard hosted a ship dedication ceremony in Sidney on Thursday, as the Coast Guard welcomed the newest vessel to take up service in the Pacific fleet, the Research Vessel Sir John Franklin.

As part of the background to the Thursday ceremony, the Coast outlined the nature of the event and some notes on the vessel.

This welcome celebration for the Canadian Coast Guard’s first of three Offshore Fisheries Science Vessel built under the National Shipbuilding Strategy was marked by an official naming ceremony, a First Nations blessing, and sponsorship, which included the traditional breaking of a ceremonial bottle on the ship’s bow.

By tradition, a civilian is invited to sponsor a vessel for its well-being and continued service, and to wish the vessel “good luck”. The Canadian Coast Guard is proud to have Dr. Verena Tunnicliffe as the sponsor for the new ship. Dr. Tunnicliffe is an accomplished marine scientist and was the first woman to lead a deep sea science expedition on Canada’s West Coast.

The home port for the CCGS Sir John Franklin will be the Institute of Ocean Sciences in Sidney, British Columbia, where it will ensure that Fisheries and Oceans scientists are working with modern equipment to conduct vital work and data collection in support of our marine ecosystem. The vessel will also support environmental response and search and rescue operations, when needed.

The CCG commissioning ceremony yesterday
in Sidney for the Sir John Franklin
The ship is one of up to 18 new ships that will be built for the Coast Guard, the Franklin  was built at the Seaspan Shipyard in Vancouver.

From it's Sydney base, the Sir John Franklin will be used for a range of duties, included on the list are:

Performing fishing and acoustic surveys of fish and invertebrates 

Collecting information on the abundance and distribution of marine species

Collecting data on marine ecosystems and the impacts of human activity on fisheries resources and ecosystem health.

They can also be used for Search and Rescue duties if required as they  make their patrols.

The vessel has had a bit of a rough start to its Coast Guard days, earlier this year the ship crashed into a dock in Victoria as it was taking part in its Sea Trials prior to acceptance for service into the fleet.

At some point the Sir John Franklin will make its first Northern Transit, though no schedule has been outlined by the Coast Guard as to what the short term plans are for the vessel or if it includes a debut trip to Prince Rupert.

More background on the Offshore Fisheries Science Vessels can be found here.

Notes on the work of the Coast Guard and other Emergency Responders on the North Coast can be found from our archive page here.

To view the most recent blog posting of the day, click here.

Seven teams set to launch 2019-20 CIHL season and quest for Coy Cup Supremacy

The CIHL brings some welcome news for hockey fans of the Northwest and Cariboo regions as they prepare to start the 2019-2020 season, with two returning and familiar clubs will be taking to the ice, as the Smithers Steelheads and Hazelton Bulldogs rejoin the league after varying absences.

The hockey stars aligned over the summer as both communities put in motion their plans to bring hockey back to their respective communities and with their return the CIHL sees its first growth since the Rampage joined the league, with seven teams now part of the Senior Men's circuit.

With the return of the Steelheads, the CIHL reverts to its East/West Divisional play, with the Steelheads to be grouped with Quesnel and Williams Lake in the East, while Hazelton will join Kitimat, Terrace and Prince Rupert in the West.

The Rampage, like their six fellow members of the lodge will soon be holding tryouts and moving into training camp mode, though the time frame for shaking off the rust will be pretty short with the first competitive action set for the Jim Ciccone Civic Centre on September 21st when the Steelheads bring up the curtain on the season with the host Rhinos.

The Bulldogs will make their first trip to Prince Rupert on October 19th, while the Rampage will check out the new Upper Skeena Recreation Centre in Hazelton on January 4th.

Among some of the notes of the season, the Cariboo teams come to town early in the season over the weekend of October 4 and 5, while Prince Rupert makes its annual journey deep into the Cariboo in the heart of the winter season with a mid January road trip.

January also marks the longest stretch of road games that the Rampage will see this season, the road warriors will actually start their travels on December 14th in Terrace and won't return to the Jim Ciccone Civic Centre Arena for a home game until January 31st.

Speaking of Terrace and Kitimat, the long time regional rivals will matchup with the Rampage on six occasions during the course of the sixteen game season.

The schedule will find the Rampage off the ice for most of November with four consecutive bye weeks between October 26 when they travel to Smithers  and  November 30th when they get back to work when Kitimat visits town.

The regular season comes to an end on February 1st, with another visit from the Bulldogs to put the final entries into the standings and set up the playoff positioning for February.

The sixteen game 2019-2020 regular features eight road trips and eight home stands between mid September and the start of February.

The full Regular Season Schedule for the Rampage can be found below:

Road Games are in Green, Home Dates in Red

Saturday, September 21 -- Smithers Steelheads at Prince Rupert Rampage
Friday, October 4 -- Quesnel Kangaroos at Prince Rupert Rampage
Saturday, October 5 -- Williams Lake Stampeders at Prince Rupert Rampage
Friday, October 18 -- Prince Rupert Rampage at Kitimat Ice Demons
Saturday, October 19 -- Hazelton Bulldogs at Prince Rupert Rampage
Saturday, October 26 --Prince Rupert Rampage at Smithers Steelheads
Saturday, November 30 -- Kitimat Ice Demons at Prince Rupert Rampage
Friday, December 6 -- Kitimat Ice Demons at Prince Rupert Rampage
Saturday, December 7 -- Terrace River Kings at Prince Rupert Rampage
Saturday, December 14 -- Prince Rupert Rampage at Terrace River Kings
Saturday, January 4 -- Prince Rupert Rampage at Hazelton Bulldogs
Sunday, January 5 -- Prince Rupert Rampage at Smithers Steelheads
Saturday, January 18 -- Prince Rupert Rampage at Williams Lake Stampeders
Sunday, January 19 -- Prince Rupert Rampage at Quesnel Kangaroos
Friday, January 31 -- Terrace River Kings at Prince Rupert Rampage
Saturday, February 1 -- Hazelton Bulldogs at Prince Rupert Rampage

You can track the results through the season through our Results page here, which will also include Game Summaries and our own notes from time to time.

More Background on the CIHL for the 2019-20 season can be found from our News/Archive page here.

Links to all of our local sports coverage can be found at the bottom end of the right hand column on our home page

To return to the most recent blog posting of the day, click here

Rampage Results/Schedule for 2019-2020 Senior Men's CIHL Season

Fresh Ice and Two returning teams mark the launch of the 2019-2020 season as the Central Interior Hockey League heads into another season of play with seven teams, up from the five that brought the curtain down in February.

Returning to the fold are the Smithers Steelheads and the Hazelton Bulldogs, the latter set to play in what will be the showcase arena of the Northwest of the Upper Skeena Recreation Centre.

And after a few years absence their return is a welcome addition and hopeful sign for continued growth for the Senior Men's circuit.

The hometown Rampage once again head into the season looking to claim a 2019-20 CIHL Championship for the North Coast and book a ticket for the AA Senior championship Coy Cup, a destination that they had reservations for last year with a journey into the Peace Country.

See our season introduction piece which includes the full 2019-2020 Rampage schedule here and follow along with week to week results from the season below.

As part of the archive, we will update the developments of the 2018-19 Regular season, posting the results and scoring summaries following each Rampage game.

Once the season gets underway in late September, results from the current week, as well as an update on the next game to come will be posted below as the season progresses.

Those looking to keep up to speed on rumours and discussions on the CIHL might want to check in at the BC Senior Hockey Forum page, where CIHL News appears on an occasional basis.

Rampage Regular Season Record 2019-2020

3 - 0 - 0

Win - Loss - Tie

Regular Season and Results
(Games added as the season progresses)

Home games in Red, Away games in Green,
Winners highlighted in BOLD
When Game Summaries are available, they will be highlighted in Blue


Saturday, October 5
Williams Lake 1 at Prince Rupert Rampage 5 

Game Summary when available
CIHL Boxscore when available


Friday, October 4
Quesnel Kangaroos 1 at Prince Rupert Rampage 4 

Game Summary when available
CIHL Boxscore when available


Saturday, September 21
Smithers Steelheads 2 at Prince Rupert Rampage 4

(Game Summary )
(CIHL Boxscore)


CIHL Standings  (click here)

Full CIHL Scoreboard (click here)

League Scoring Leaders (click here)

League Goaltending Leaders (click here)

Our North Coast Review Rampage and CIHL News Archive can be found here

Rampage on Social Media

Prince Rupert Rampage on Facebook
Prince Rupert Rampage on Twitter

Links to all of our local sports coverage can be found at the bottom end of the right hand column on our home page

To return to the most recent blog posting of the day, click here

CIHL Archive 2019-2020

Our archive of news items from the Central Interior Hockey League for the 2019-20 season, with particular note given to the Prince Rupert Rampage.

Notes on our Schedule and Game Summaries pages can be found below:

Prince Rupert Rampage Schedule is available here

Our Results Page for 2018-19 can be accessed here

CIHL Master Schedule 2019-2020

CIHL Standings 2019-2020

CIHL Scoring Leaders 2019-2020

CIHL Goaltending Leaders 2019-2020

For those looking for more information on the Rampage, the team provides background on its latest developments from their Facebook Page and Twitter Feed.

Notes on the Rampage and around the CIHL can be found below:

North Coast Review items


October 8 -- Undefeated at home, Rampage have a week to rest before first road trip of the year  NCR
October 4 -- Let's go to the video Rampage Fans  NCR
October 4 -- Twice the CIHL fun on tap this weekend as Rampage receive Cariboo visitors for home stand  NCR
October 3 -- Rampage fans will need a full tank of gas to follow the team on the road  NCR


September 23 -- Weir finds the mark often as Rampage take the win in their season debut  NCR
September 20 -- Time to hit the ice! Prince Rupert Rampage ready to drop the puck for 2019-20 CIHL season  NCR
September 13 -- Countdown is on for start of CIHL season with Rampage to open next Saturday night  NCR
September 10 -- Prince Rupert's on the map! The Rogers Hometown Hockey Tour Map  NCR


August 30 -- Seven teams set to launch 2019-20 CIHL season and quest for Coy Cup Supremacy

Off Season Notes

June 27 -- Steelheads set for CIHL Return 
June 5 -- Smithers working towards goal of return to the CIHL


Items of interest from other regional sources


September 18 -- Ammonia Leak at Upper Skeena Recreation Centre
September 17 -- Upper Skeena Rec Centre in Hazelton closed after ammonia leak detected
September 14 -- Upper Skeena Rec Centre officially open
September 13 -- Why a hockey rink is more than hockey rink in small-town BC (audio)
September 13 -- Quesnel Kangaroos to host Coy Cup
September 11 -- Grand Opening This Saturday for Upper Skeena Rec Centre
September 10 -- Upper Skeena Recreation Centre Grand opening
September 10 -- Quensel to host 2020 Coy Cup
September 4 -- Steelheads return to CIHL is official


August 19 -- Hazelton Arena Grand Opening planned (video)
August 15 -- Smithers Steelheads make plans for CIHL return (video)
August 15 -- Smithers Steelheads Prepare for return to CIHL
August 15 -- Excitement growing as opening day of new Arena Complex in Hazelton draws near
August 9 -- Northern Trust makes $125,000 contribution to Arena project in the Hazeltons
August 4 -- Al Navrot announced as 2019/20 Williams Lake Stampeders head coach
August 2 -- Expansion newcomers bolster CIHL
August 1 -- New rec centre in Hazelton gets grand opening date

Off Season notes

July 30 -- New Hazelton announces September 14 for opening of new rec centre
July 16 -- Quesnel Kangaroos looking to fill important positions at AGM
June 27 -- Quesnel Kangaroos hand out year end awards
June 26 -- Steelheads to return to Smithers
June 25 -- Council backs return of Smithers Steelheads
May 29 -- Smithers Steelheads make push for 2019-2020 return

Archive of past years


Links to all of our local sports coverage can be found at the bottom end of the right hand column on our home page

To return to the most recent blog posting of the day, click here

MLA's to get mail, mail and more mail on themes of teacher's negotiations

MLA Jennifer Rice may be getting some mail over the weekend
as British Columbia teachers look to reinforce their
bargaining points with the NDP government's members

With still no word on the progress of talks between the BCPSEA and BCTF when it comes to the current round of contract negotiations, some members of the teachers' union are making plans to take to their keyboards to forward some messages to the their MLA's.

With the teachers and their supporters looking to urge MLA's to address a range of outstanding issues.

North Coast MLA Jennifer Rice can most likely expect to find a few correspondence in the In Box in the next few days, with a number of local teachers sharing the message below through their social media feeds.

(Click to enlarge)

It's part of a continuing campaign from the teachers and their union to reinforce their position on some of the key areas surrounding the negotiations.

The focus on MLA's picks up where teachers left off as the previous school year came to an end, when Ms. Rice, along with her NDP government colleagues were recipients of a number of missives during that period of time.

The  BCTF twitter feed has been the forum for a number of the Federations recent notes on how the NDP government has approached the negotiations

The BCPSEA has for the most part kept to its website with occasional updates on the issues and themes of the current round of bargaining.

The BCTF has also made use of its website to reinforce some of their key issues during the negotiations.

Rob Fleming, B. C.'s Minister of Education expressed his belief earlier this week that the start of school on September 3rd would not be impacted by the lack of a contract or the pace of negotiations.

Though his thoughts on the length of time that the contract talks have taken did bring a quick reply from the Teachers who provided the Minister with a bit of a recent history lesson.

A news blackout has so far been respected by both sides of the negotiations, though with the current mediation sessions set to come to an end, parents, students, teachers and administrators should all have a clearer picture of where the labour situation may be heading as the first day of school draws closer on Tuesday.

For more items of note related to education in the Northwest see our archive page here.

To view the most recent blog posting of the day, click here.

2019 British Columbia education negotiations archive page

Notes on the teachers negotiations since mediation began, as well as other related issues can be reviewed below:

August 30

BC teacher contracts on hold until after school year starts
Mediation between teachers and public employers halted until late September
Bargaining between BC teachers and province paused for 3 weeks
BC education talks break off without agreement; mediator calls for pause until September 23  NCR
BC Teacher contract negotiation still without resolution
MLA's to get mail, mail and more mail on themes of teacher's negotiations  NCR
BC education minister optimistic about negotiated deal with teachers, new curriculum

August 29
Here's to a great school year (and what parent's need to know about collective bargaining)

August 28

BC Teachers, government agree on program support for most vulnerable students
BC Education minister expects 'normal' start to school year amidst teacher contract dispute

August 27


August 26 


August 24 & 25

Independent schools provide options 'a single, government-run school monopoly cannot provide'

August 23


August 22

Mediated talks underway between BCTF and Public School Employers Association
'Plenty of time for a deal': Teachers' union expects kids back in school on September 3

August 21

Offer to BC teachers surpassed standard 2 percent raise, confidential memo says
BC teachers and government start mediated negotiations

August 20


August 19

BC teachers head to bargaining table with 2 weeks until start of school year
Vancouver School Board avoids funding debate while teachers and province bargain
BC Teachers' Federation in talks with government as school year nears
Mediated bargaining starts Monday for BC teachers

To view the most recent blog posting of the day, click here.

Thursday, August 29, 2019

Ministry of Transportation issues Highway 16 'extraordinary load' advisory for early morning hours

For those that may be on the roads after midnight and through the early hours of Friday morning, the Ministry of Transportation has issued an advisory related to a large load that will be transiting Highway Sixteen between Midnight and 5AM between Kitwanga and Prince Rupert.

The advisory notes that the 'extraordinary' load will be passing through Terrace on its way to Prince Rupert on Friday, August 30th.

Few other details related to the shipment were outlined by the Ministry.

Further updates on the early morning run may be relayed through to Ministry of Transportation twitter feed.

Road Conditions and events can also be found from the Drive BC website and twitter feed.

For more items of note about Transportation in the Northwest see our archive page here.

To view the most recent blog posting of the day, click here.

Amid results of some elevated lead issues; City issues reminder for public of importance of 'flushing' of private homes and commercial buildings

The City of Prince Rupert has issued a reminder for residents today, advising that if they do not know for certain that their plumbing does not contain lead, that a flushing regimen is a wise approach to ensure that we are receiving a fresh source of water from beyond the home.

The City's information statement included some notes on recent testing in the community and the findings from that review.

Included in the review, is the advisory that letters have been sent to affected residents and building owners.

Recent water quality testing conducted by the City in conjunction with Northern Health was completed in just over 60 homes throughout Prince Rupert. This testing has revealed that approximately 10 homes of those tested had elevated levels of lead due to leaching from residential home plumbing systems. Samples were taken in the morning on the ‘first flush’ from the tap, after the water was left to sit overnight, so it should be noted that these levels are not representative of the water being drawn through the tap throughout the day once stagnant water has cleared. 

Letters have now been sent to affected residents and building owners, and homes with elevated levels are being contacted and provided the opportunity for secondary testing to help determine the source of lead within the home.

 This higher proportion of homes with noted issues has highlighted the need for additional public messaging, with this notice being accompanied by a video available on the City’s social media platforms and YouTube channel. Due to the prevalence of lead in home plumbing solder prior to 1989 (and lead content in fixtures further reduced in 2012), combined with the age of Prince Rupert’s housing stock, it is possible that many homes throughout the community may have some level of exposure to lead through home plumbing. 

A similar notice was provided and mailed to all residences in the community in August of 2018, however given these test results, we would like to reiterate the importance of flushing, filtering water, and/or replacing home/commercial plumbing containing lead to avoid possible exposure.

The statement goes on to advise that regular samples are collected from testing stations within the community and show lead results which have been noted as well below Federal and Provincial standards.

The notes from the city also highlight how the City does not have lead service lines within municipal infrastructure, and have not encountered lead service lines on private property. Recent test results support the absence of municipal lead service lines, as residences with elevated levels were broadly dispersed within the community, and not in one or two ‘problem’ areas that could be tied to underground infrastructure.

The reminder on flushing for the community also provided the City with an opportunity to once again to make mention the Funding award of earlier this week towards a water treatment facility, as well as to offer up some helpful advice for homeowners when it comes to their own plumbing within the house.

We encourage people where possible to consider replacing all plumbing components containing lead, or to continue to conduct regular flushing until such time as replacement is feasible.

The City has also included a video featuring an update from Mayor Lee Brain who speaks both to the lead issue and recent progress on water issues.

You can review the city's full statement on water from today from the city's website and Facebook page.

You can review more notes related to the city's infrastructure issues from our archive page

To view the most recent blog posting of the day, click here.

With fall and winter approaching ongoing housing issues will again come to the forefront of discussion

One of the units of the Crow's Nest Lodge, at 36 units it's a good 
start to the housing crisis, but the need for more
Social housing seems to grow 
by the day around Prince Rupert
( Photo from the Transition Society Facebook Page)

Last weeks deluge and cooler temperatures served to remind us that Fall and Winter will be arriving quicker than we may like and for those in the community seeking a safe and dry place to live the ongoing issue of housing in Prince Rupert will offer up some challenges.

For most that wander around town from time to time, evidence of homelessness is easy to spot with makeshift camps found in any number of locations. With those on the streets seeking out shelter from abandoned buildings in the area, under bridges or from the number of wooded areas around town.

The topic of the fate for the homeless has become a bit of a theme on some of Prince Rupert's social media feeds of Facebook in recent days and in some cases the nature of the discussion at times was harsh towards the homeless.

Something that was somewhat mis-directed, as the real discussion should be directed towards our elected officials who need to pick up the pace of addressing the issue.

Such was some of mis-information generated by the discussion that  Grainne Barthe  from the North Coast Transition Society offered some helpful clarification on the issues of homelessness in the community and what supports are currently available.

(click to enlarge)

Prince Rupert has had some success in addressing the need for more social housing, with the City working with the Province in the creation of the above noted Crow's Nest Lodge,  a successful conclusion that they should be congratulated on.

Though it should be noted that the Crow's Nest did arrive later than had been anticipated and with fewer units  (36) than previously planned for.

As well, the Third Avenue Shelter remains in operation, once described as a temporary measure to help with the transition to the new facility on Park; it has since become more or less a permanent fixture and is still providing shelter services for a large number of the homeless community.

The November 2017 announcement of the
Temporary Homeless shelter on Third Avenue West
(click to enlarge)

Some of the homeless however, whether through addictions or mental health concerns are not fitting into either of those options; as well there are others who are homeless that still prefer to find their own shelter somewhere in the city.

Adding to the housing misery in recent months has been the disappearance of some units which previously housed those on the margins of our society. Those units now are off the rental market, their future that of renovation and re-purposing it would seem.

That indicates that there is still a need, if not more of one now, for much more social housing.

As well, there is clearly a need for some kind of addictions and mental health services for this community, and the urgency does not lessen as the weeks and months pass us by.

Earlier this summer we noted that Terrace has been finding much success in accessing more Social housing with over 100 units opened this summer alone.

And with the planned expansion of Mills Memorial Hospital, some 20 beds at the new hospital will be set aside for the psychiatric care of adult patients, that Terrace hospital plan is anticipated to be in operation by 2024.

While Terrace is finding some progress on their social housing and other housing needs, like Prince Rupert the demand for help still seems to be overtaking the supply.

The housing concerns in Prince Rupert came to a boiling point back in the fall of 2017, with a Tent City taking root at City Hall to bring home the call for action from local and provincial politicians.

Hopefully, some progress is being made for the North Coast as we head into fall, and more announcements and celebrations of housing openings in Prince Rupert will take place in the very near future.

That wold offer those in the most need in the community somewhere to stay warm, dry and safe in our challenging environment and times and more importantly some proof that someone is listening and ready to take action to deliver.

For some background on how you can lend a hand towards the homeless situation in the city see the Transition Society Facebook Page.

The Prince Rupert Salvation Army also offers assistance for those in need, learn more about their work here.

For more items of note related to housing on the North Coast see our archive page here.

To view the most recent blog posting of the day, click here.

The Superintendent prepares to welcome back students, teachers and staff at SD52

Superintendent Irene LaPierre
is welcoming all back to school
for the 2019-20 year
With one last weekend to enjoy, Tuesday will bring the start of a new school year for teachers, students, parents and staff at the schools of District 52 and this week, Superintendent Irene LaPierre has penned her Back to School welcome  message.

Among some of her themes for the correspondence, a year ahead that offers a chance to strengthen and build relationships,  appreciation for those who worked behind the scenes over the summer to prepare the schools for their September opening, as well as thanks to management, staff and educators as they look towards the first day of the new school year.

It is an exciting time of year again with school starting on Tuesday September 3, 2019! I’m looking forward to another year of learning along side the many wonderful educators and staff we have in our school district. 

I’m looking forward to working together with you to support the pursuit of learning that our students are seeking when they enter our schools. I’m looking forward to strengthening and building relationships with family and community which is vital to our students over all well-being and success. 

I want to extend my appreciation to everyone who has worked diligently behind the scenes to prepare our schools for the year – to the maintenance department for their care of our facilities and grounds; to the tech department for increasing access to technology and maintaining equipment; our finance department for accounting and payroll; and our secretaries who support all of the above and more. 

I’m thankful for the amazing management team and admin staff I work with who always makes sure students are in the centre of their decisions. I extend my gratitude to staff who continue to take courses to enrich educational opportunities for our students learning.

You can review the full letter from the SD52 website.

As we noted earlier this summer, the Back to School openings were outlined in a July message from the School District, which provides the times for students to report to school on September 3rd.

The official notes on the September 3rd opening can be reviewed here.

Updates on notes related to SD52 can come from the District's twitter feed, as well as that for the Superintendent.

Back to School week does come with some uncertainty towards the future however, with the British Columbia Public School Employers Association and the British Columbia Teachers Federation currently in the final days of mediation on issues surrounding a new contract.

So far, there has been little news coming out of those meetings with both sides for the most part keeping to a news blackout on their discussions.

Rob Fleming, the Minister of Education observed earlier this week that he anticipated a normal start to the school, despite the ongoing negotiations towards a contract settlement.

Also heading back to school on Tuesday will be the staff, teachers and students of the city's Independent School, with the back to school notes for Annunciation available from their website.

There have been some changes over the summer at the School District, you can catch up to some of developments from our archive page here.

To view the most recent blog posting of the day, click here.