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Regional News

Chambers of commerce/businesses throw support behind Castlegar's WestJet bid

Four area chambers of commerce have offered regional airport representatives their endorsement in a bid to encourage WestJet to come to the Kootenays – meanwhile the Castlegar chamber is being flooded with letters of support from local businesses.

Just last week, WestJet invited members of the West Kootenay Regional Airport Advisory Committee (including Castlegar Mayor Lawrence Chernoff and Nelson Mayor John Dooley) to WestJet’s Calgary campus at the end of this month to offer a presentation detailing the merits of WestJet service in the region.

Nelson Council Debates Legalization of Pot

Mayor John Dooley made an impassioned and sometimes inflammatory refusal to support the legalization of marijuana at Monday’s council meeting, in a wide-ranging debate that touched on law, morality, science, and politics. This article contains a full transcript of the discussion.

Nelson City Council, normally quite an amiable group, descended into a tense stalemate Monday during a long discussion about the legalization and regulation of marijuana. The discussion included some acrimonious exchanges between Mayor John Dooley and Councillor Donna Macdonald.  

Council was debating a motion that, if passed, would have had the mayor sign a letter in support of legalization. Mayor Dooley said he would refuse to sign such a letter even if a majority of council were to vote for it. 

Broadband: creating opportunity in our local rural lifestyle communities

There is a discussion brewing in many of our communities right now about the opportunity to access broadband. If your community is in the Columbia Basin catchment area like my home town of Rossland the conversation is likely taking place for you as well.

The Columbia Basin Trusts subsidiary Columbia Basin Broadband Corporation is offering an amazing opportunity to our communities by supporting the introduction of broadband infrastructure. Technicalities aside (and to be addressed in future articles) the potential for this level of service can put our communities on the map.

Mount Sentinel grad Shawn Hook (Hlookoff) does his best to help rescue gutted music program at alma mater

Shawn Hook poses for photos with a few fans following a jam session Friday at Mount Sentinel High School gymnasium. — Bruce Fuhr photo

Shawn Hlookoff, AKA, Shawn Hook, has come a long way since his trombone days in Rick Lingard’s band class at Mount Sentinel or his time on the volleyball or basketball courts inside the school gymnasium playing for one of the Wildcats varsity teams.

Oh, and did we mention that Shawn Hook, let’s go with the stage name, owns a spot in the Guinness Book of World Records for balancing on a ball — Hook managed to stand on a exercise ball for 3 hours, 16 minutes for those people needing to pursue a goal in life.

Man suffers bear attack while lounging in hot tub

A Coquitlam man was taken to hospital after being attacked by a bear yesterday, according to police S/Sgt. Steve LeClair.
"On June 3 at 2:56 pm, Whistler RCMP were notified of a bear attack that occurred in the 4800 block of Casabella Crescent in Whistler," said LeClair. "A 55-year-old Coquitlam male was relaxing in a backyard hot tub with his back to the forest.
"He felt a heavy blow to the back of his head which propelled him forward in the hot tub. He turned around and found himself face-to-face with a black bear.

Large crowd of supporters force Forest Minister to make alternate plans Saturday in Kaslo

Edith Mauer, 98, was honoured for her long involvement in the Jumbo Wild! Campaign Saturday in Kaslo. — Photo courtesy Doug Pyper Photographics

The threat of more than 300 supporters of Jumbo Wild! was too much for Minister of Forest Lands and Natural Resource Operations Steve Thompson and his Deputy Minister to handle according to West Kootenay Coalition for Jumbo Wild organizers.

The two government officials were scheduled to be in the North Kootenay City for the BC Community Forest Association’s annual general meeting Saturday, May 26, in Kaslo.

However, large crowd of Jumbo Wild! supporters may have forced alternate plans after the pair were invited to speak on Saturday evening.

Community Group Puts Finishing Touches on Movie Theatre Proposal

May 31 is the deadline for proposals to Nelson City Council for the use of the Civic Theatre


As the May 31 deadline approaches for the submission of proposals for the use of the Civic Theatre, one group has made no secret of its plans. It’s been putting out surveys, holding public meetings, and talking to the media.

Sentence handed down for 'bear dude'

Allen Piche talks with his friend Fierce Heart; Photo, Mona Mattei

Allen Piche, known as the bear dude of Christina Lake, was fined $6000 today for feeding up to 24 black bears on his property over the past 15 years.

Judge Ronald Fabbro gave his decision in Grand Forks court Thursday, May 24 in Piche’s case which was delayed since December of last year. In his statement Fabbro told Piche that his actions were “foolish” and he considered bear feeding a flight of fancy. Fabbro’s decision was to fine Piche $3500 for the first count and $2500 for the second charge.

Smash-and-grab at local liquor store

A smash-and-grab theft at local liquor store Wednesday morning has RCMP asking the public to come forward with any information they may have, according to Cpl. Dan Pollock.

"Castlegar RCMP received a complaint of a break-and-enter to the Castlerock Liquor Store located at 1101 4 Street," he said. "Overnight, unknown culprits threw rocks through the business windows to gain entry to the business."

Pollock said it wasn't a particularly high-tech theft, as the thieves stole only two Texas Mickeys worth about $100 each, despite all the expensive merchandise within the store.