Friday, September 15, 2017

Sad Day At Nanaimo City Hall - SFN Flag Returned

Note: email subscribers may have to visit Nanaimo Info Blog to view this video,


Video credit Nanaimo News Now

During a somber gathering at Nanaimo City Hall acting Mayor Bill Yoachim addressed the circumstances which have led to the returning of the SFN flag which had flown over city hall.

Yoachim also read a resolution of the majority of council (2 dissenters) which extend an apology to city manager Tracy Samra. The resolution accepts the findings of the Golder report.

Hopefully this will bring some resolve to the tensions that have existed at city hall which have their beginnings with McKay and Brennan opposing the hiring of city manager Tracy Samra.

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Cyclist Critically Injured Nanaimo Parkway

A cyclist has been critically injured after colliding with a cube van on the Nanaimo Parkway. The collision occurred at approximately 6 am on Friday September 15, 2017 and has closed the southbound lanes while RCMP officers examine the scene.

Police, Fire and BC Paramedics attended. The cyclist was transported to local hospital by attending paramedics and was then airlifted to Victoria General hospital. There is currently no update on their condition. The driver of the cube van was not injured.

Southbound traffic on the Parkway between Northfield Road and the Jingle Pot intersection is closed and is expected to remain closed for some time. Motorists are asked to avoid this area while the lane closures are in effect.

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Nanaimo Water Parks To Close Sept. 17

Summer Water Fun Wraps Up 

As the cooler weather rolls in, Parks staff prepare for Fall. On the to do list is to tidy up and shut off the water to the water parks until next Summer. Due to construction of the Multi-Purpose Covered Court, Harewood Water Park has already been closed. The last day to play in the remaining water parks (Departure Bay Centennial, Deverill Square and Mansfield Park) will be Sunday, September 17.

We hope everyone enjoyed a wonderful summer and had the opportunity to visit one or more of the water parks. Please be sure to move indoors to enjoy a fall and winter of water fun at Beban Pool and the Nanaimo Aquatic Centre.

Aquatic fun continues throughout the fall and winter at Beban Pool and Nanaimo Aquatic Centre.

The Nanaimo Aquatic Centre is currently closed for maintenance and will re-open September 25. Until then, Beban Pool has extended hours to accommodate the community's public swimming needs.

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Small Business Takes Another Hit

Ottawa, September 14, 2017 – The Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB) is renewing calls for the federal government to reduce the overall payroll tax burden on small businesses, following today’s announcement of an increase in the 2018 Employment Insurance premium rate.
The 2018 EI rate for employees, set by the Canada Employment Insurance Commission (CEIC), is $1.66 per $100 of insurable earnings, a three-cent jump from 2017. Employers will pay $2.32 per $100 of insurable earnings, an increase of four cents from the previous year.
“This latest increase means that payroll budgets of every business will increase for six straight years when you take into account that the 2018 EI increase will be followed by five years of CPP premium hikes starting in 2019,” said Corinne Pohlmann, Senior Vice-President, National Affairs at CFIB. “These tax hikes — which come amid the spectre of the federal government’s proposed tax changes — will make it more difficult for small business owners to hire more workers, raise salaries and grow their businesses.”
In a recent CFIB survey of members, Employment Insurance was identified as a “serious” concern for 43 per cent of small businesses; total tax burden, including EI, CPP, and Workers’ Compensation costs, was the top concern.
To reduce the payroll tax burden on small business, CFIB will continue to push the federal government to adopt the following measures:
  • Create an EI tax credit that recognizes the investments that small and medium-sized businesses already make in hiring and training employees;
  • Put in place a permanent, lower EI rate for small businesses (e.g. gradually moving from a rate that is 1.4 times more than the employee rate to a 50/50 split over time); and
  • Implement an EI holiday for hiring youth, as was promised in the federal government’s election platform.

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Tara Dawn Brown Missing - Central Nanaimo


Tara Dawn BROWN 

The Nanaimo RCMP is asking for the public's assistance in locating 41 year old Tara Dawn BROWN who was last seen at approximately 7 pm on Wednesday September 13. Her disappearance is out of character as she requires daily medication and left her central Nanaimo home without it, her cell phone or purse which contained all her identification. BROWN does not have access to a vehicle and has some personal contacts and family on Vancouver Island.

BROWN is a white female, 5 ft. 5, heavy build with shoulder length brown hair, brown eyes and wears glasses. It is unknown what clothes she is wearing but BROWN often wears head coverings. The pictures provided are recent. If you have any information on the location of Tara Dawn BROWN please call Constable Mike Scott of the Nanaimo RCMP at 250-754-2345.

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Thursday, September 14, 2017

John Albert Buchanan Charged

Second degree murder charge sworn

A 46 year old Nanaimo man has been charged with one count of Second degree murder in the suspicious death of a Nanaimo man that was reported to the Nanaimo RCMP on Monday September 11.

John Albert BUCHANAN was arrested without incident at approximately 5:30 pm on Wednesday September 13 by officers with the Nanaimo Serious Crime Unit. Charges were sworn this morning and BUCHANAN has since been remanded into custody to await his next court appearance which is set for September 26.

The deceased male has been identified as 42 year old Richard Steven SITAR of Nanaimo. His family has been notified and a forensic autopsy is pending. As this matter is now before the courts no further information will be released to the public.

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Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Councillor Brennan Owes Taxpayers $1383.00 ?


Tamara Cunningham reports in the Nanaimo Bulletin that Councillor Diane Brennan has exceeded her annual expense budget by nearly $1400.00.

According to a report released by the city Councillor Brennan expended nearly $8,000.00 on legal fees bringing her year to date expenses to $12,883.00. This exceeds her annual budget of $11.500.00 by $1383.00 which arguably should be paid by the Councillor.

Fees related to ongoing battle with city manager?

Brennan and McKay were the only members of council to run up legal fees during the second quarter of this year which begs the question of why?

The running gun battle between Brennan and McKay and Samra could be the reason for Brennan's astounding legal bill. In the Bulletin article Brennan is shedding no light on the reason for the legal bill which leaves the door wide open for speculation.

It will be interesting to see if there is any mechanism to hold Brennan responsible for the nearly $1400.00 or will the taxpayer once again have to pick up the tab. It's easy to run up legal bills when you aren't picking up the tab!

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Tuesday, September 12, 2017

HOUSING IS A UP TO THE PROVINCE

Click image to read Nanaimo News Now report

An article on Nanaimo News Now reports the city hopes to have an affordable housing strategy in place by 2018 for the new council to act upon.

When did this become the responsibility of city hall, and isn't the cost of housing well beyond the control of city hall? It is not hard to see why the city's social planner thinks it is up to the city, it would be called job security on his part. But really, is it the city's responsibility to try and wrestle with such a complex issue? They seem to be challenged just getting the garbage picked up without spending millions and millions more that comes with each 'improvement'.

Affordable housing is a provincial responsibility
local MLA's need to be held accountable

It is recently reported in the Globe and Mail that the NDP are funding 1700 affordable rental units and funding an additional 2,000 units for homeless people. It is also noted that the promised $400 renters rebate was absent from the first NDP budget. Funding for the other 3700 units of affordable housing is available according to their budget.

Our members of the Leg. Mr. Krog and Mr. Routley are members of the ruling class and therefore it is reasonable to expect Nanaimo will receive it's share of the promised affordable housing. For once Nanaimo is represented by the party controlling the purse strings so Krog and Routley will have no excuses for not delivering to the faithful in Nanaimo.

Shouldn't need a city social planner
if our local MLAs do their job

Now that Nanaimo has such strong representation with members of the party committed to affordable housing, there should be little need for a city social planner. It should be expected that Nanaimo will see some of that affordable housing stock in place long before the city has completed their 'plan' on how to deal with affordable housing.

Perhaps it is time for another look at city hall staffing??

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Monday, September 11, 2017

Downtown Property Owners Whining Again??

Click image for Nanaimo Bulletin article

From the News Bulletin article:

"The list of recommendations includes adding two RCMP officers to patrol the downtown area plus two additional bylaw enforcement officers who are trained as peace officers who would also conduct foot patrols and deal strictly with public safety.

A team of mental health and addictions workers would also be created to work in the office and respond where needed with services downtown.

The recommendations also call for ambassadors to assist the local public and tourists.
"

That sucking sound is downtown emptying your wallet!!

Over the past two decades downtown Nanaimo has become one gigantic black hole with an insatiable appetite for taxpayer dollars. In spite of the millions spent on downtown 'revitalization' which included the $100 million conference centre (should have cost $42 million) downtown property and business owners are still looking for more and more from the weary taxpayer.

For years and years they received a quarter million dollar a year gift from the rest of Nanaimo to bolster their enterprises. They have special tax concessions to aid in rebuilding the tired downtown and still they want more and more in the way of increased security.

What other group of businesses (any mall in town) gets special treatment from taxpayers and the RCMP and city hall? It's time this group of merchants and property owners stepped up to the plate and passed the hat among themselves and dealt with security matters, which arguably they bring upon themselves.

One other thing mentioned was for the city to pay more attention to sidewalk cleaning etc. Isn't keeping the sidewalk in front of your business presentable something you would expect each business owner to take upon themselves?

As for issues being caused by people with addiction and mental problems, that should be the purview of Island Health who should be putting forward a credible plan to deal with this ever-growing segment of our society. This is not an issue city hall councillors or staff are properly equipped to deal with. They need to quit letting Island Health duck their responsibilities as this is clearly not a policing or city hall issue, it is a health issue, plain and simple.



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Jazz Festival Parade - Sept. 16



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Confidential Shredding Day - Sept. 16

Proceeds support your local Crime Stoppers 

Back by popular demand is a day of confidential shredding in support of the Nanaimo and District Crime Stoppers (CS) program. The event is set for Saturday September 16, 2017, 10 am to 4 pm at the Brooks Landing Save On Foods, located at 2000 Island Highway, Nanaimo. Google map link.
For a minimum donation of $20, your documents will be professionally and confidentially shredded by Best Shredding, a Vancouver Island based shredding and document storage company. As you wait and watch as your documents get shredded, help yourself by donation only , to a perfectly grilled hotdog or burger, graciously provided by Save On Foods.
 “Crime Stoppers is a registered non-profit organization which does not receive any form of government funding. Fund raising events such as these are essential to run a successful program. Shredding documents also significantly reduces your chances of becoming a victim of identity theft. This type of crime can destroy you financially, wipe out your good credit and could take you years to recoup your financial and personal losses, “said Constable Gary O’Brien, Crime Stoppers co-ordinator for the Nanaimo and District Crime Stoppers program.  
The Nanaimo and District Crime Stoppers hope to see you on Saturday the 16, rain or shine. If you have any questions about this event, please contact Constable Gary O’Brien, Crime Stoppers Co-ordinator for the Nanaimo RCMP at 250-755-3257.

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FEDS TARGET SMALL BUSINESS

PROPOSED FEDERAL TAX LEGISLATION 
“AN ATTACK ON SMALL BUSINESS”

If your business is incorporated, you could be facing a larger tax bill and big compliance costs from the government’s new proposals to change the way corporations are taxed according to the Nanaimo Chamber of Commerce.
Kim Smythe, Chamber CEO points out “This legislation will affect every business employing family members because the government wants to apply a much higher tax rate on income they consider ‘unreasonable’. If you invest profits from your business for the future – such as your retirement, the federal government is proposing to tax that income at an effective rate of 70%. And if you wanted to pass your business along to your children on retirement, tough new rules will make it difficult for young people to get the capital gains exemption and they could end up double-taxed. All of these measures translate to an attack on small businesses and the middle class.”
Small and medium-sized businesses (SMEs) are the engine of the Canadian economy – estimates range from 85 to 90% of all businesses in Canada are SMEs and in Nanaimo that number is over 90%.
“In 10 years at the Canadian Chamber, I’ve never seen an issue that has generated greater concern among our members. To make matters worse, allotting only 75 days for comment in the midst of the summer holidays is not a consultation, it’s a stealth attack on small businesses. The vast majority of the Canadian Chamber’s more than 200,000 members across Canada are small and medium size enterprises.” stated Perrin Beatty, President and CEO of the Canadian Chamber of Commerce.
“The government’s proposals, while intended to target the wealthy, will hurt middle-class business owners from every sector of the economy. These are shop owners, farmers, doctors, financial planners, homebuilders, realtors, tech startups and trades—the entrepreneurial families who are the backbone of the economy and responsible for the majority of the job creation in Canada,” said Dan Kelly, President of the Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB) and member of the Coalition.
The Greater Nanaimo Chamber of Commerce held a roundtable with MP Sheila Malcolmson and local business leaders and will be collecting letters of concern and individual case statements to forward to mid-Island MP’s to ensure the voice of our local business community is heard loud and clear. Businesses should check the resources made available at www.nanaimochamber.bc.ca. Deadline for input to the government is October 2.

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Wednesday, September 06, 2017

CONFLICTING HEADLINES ??

Interest Rate Hike -
economy's powerful performance
The Bank of Canada hiked interest rates again, citing the economy's powerful performance pointing to broader, more self sustaining growth.

Meantime, on the same day the following headline would seem to indicate that 50% of Canadians aren't really seeing the benefit of the economy's powerful performance.

Click images for complete Huffpost articles.

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STRAY BULLET STRIKES LANTZVILLE GOLFER

Golfer struck by errant bullet

A 60 year old Ladysmith male out for a round of golf at a Lantzville golf course is recovering after being struck in the lower leg by an errant bullet fired from an unknown area. The male is expected to make a full recovery.

At approximately 4:30 pm on Thursday August 31, 2017 the victim was just finishing up his round of golf when he felt a sudden sharp pain in his lower calf. A group of golfers came to his assistance and applied basic first aid then transported him off the course. The male victim drove himself home and later attended to the hospital in Ladysmith where x-rays confirmed a bullet was lodged in his calf. The bullet was removed and the wound dressed.

Investigators conducted neighbourhood inquiries and learned from nearby residents gunshots were heard throughout the afternoon on the day of the shooting. 

There is nothing to indicate the male was targeted and it may have resulted from an individual or others target practising in the adjacent rural area. Having said that, it is not only unlawful but extremely dangerous to discharge a firearm within 100 metres of any building. Additionally the basic rule of firearm safety is always know your background and beyond," said Constable Gary O'Brien of the Nanaimo RCMP. 


If anyone has information on this incident, please contact the Nanaimo RCMP at 250-754-2345.

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Thursday, August 31, 2017

MORDEN MINE MONUMENT



On a recent sunny Saturday afternoon members of the Friends of the Morden Mine society gathered at Morden Colliery Historic Provincial Park for the official unveiling of a monument dedicated to the memory of those who worked in the old coal mines of Vancouver Island.

 Approximately one-thousand miners lost their lives in these mines and countless others succumbed to workplace injuries and mining-related diseases.  Morden is the appropriate location for such a memorial because it contains the last remaining sizable structures of the old Vancouver Island coal mining industry and because it is a provincial historic park, the only such park dedicated to our mining heritage.  

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