Tuesday, June 30, 2009

The "World" Visits Nanaimo


The World Cruise Ship
At Anchor In Nanaimo

The globe trotting cruise ship 'The World' will be visiting Nanaimo until this evening when she will depart for exotic points unknown, as the owners/guests continue their trip around the world.

This vessel is unlike other ships to visit Nanaimo in that the people onboard the ship are also owners of their units.

The World is a floating residential community owned by its residents. The residents, currently from 40 different countries, live on board as the ship slowly circumnavigates the globe — staying in most ports from 2 to 5 days. Some residents live onboard full time while others visit their floating home periodically throughout the year.

The World has many facilities similar to those on board a regular cruise ship but are unique due to the residential nature of the vessel. Her amenities include a small grocery store and delicatessen, a boutique, complete athletic facilities that include a golf simulator, putting green, casino, full-sized tennis court, jogging track and fully equipped gym.

There are five restaurants that supplement the full kitchens in all apartments and the ever-changing variety of dining ashore as the ship travels. For on-board entertainment there is a movie theatre, library and music performances. In addition to shore excursions, classes have been offered on board in dance, navigation, language, cooking, arts and crafts, music, computers, and photography. In addition, The World provides high-speed Internet access in each residence.

If you have some time to spare, why not drop downtown and offer our guests some Nanaimo hospitality.


(And, yes, that is a BC Ferry in the background, which gives you an idea of the size of The World.)

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BC's Top Executives Compensation

BC's Top Executives
Compensation Disclosure

According to the BC government website:

In 2008, disclosure of executive compensation across British Columbia’s public sector was expanded to increase transparency and accountability. Employers are now required to move beyond simply reporting what was paid to a more detailed explanation on all the elements that make up the compensation package for the individual. Disclosures must include an explanation of the employer's compensation philosophy, the objectives of the compensation program and what it is designed to reward, and how the performance payments for the top five executives relate to the organization’s performance targets. These reporting requirements are modeled on those of the Canadian Securities Administrators’ requirements of publicly-traded companies.

The enhanced disclosure requirements apply to chief executive officers and the next four highest paid/ranking executives, where these positions hold an annual base salary of $125,000 or more. They must be proactively disclosed on the organization's website. This executive compensation disclosure is in addition to the more basic salary disclosures employers make under the Financial Information Act for employees earning $75,000 or more.

The Public Sector Employers Act permits the chief executive officer of the Public Sector Employers Council to prepare and publish reports with respect to that information. Accordingly, the following is a report of British Columbia's public sector executive compensation for the employers' most recent fiscal years.

To view the compensation disclosures for all areas of BC use this link.

School District 68, VIHA,

VIU and ICBC Top Wages

The superintendent of School District 68 receives a total compensation package of $181,690. For more information use this link.

The head of Vancouver Island Health Authority (VIHA) receives a total compensation package of $414,657 and the combined total for the top five exec's at VIHA is $1,562,195. For more information use this link.

The President and Vice-Chancellor of Vancouver Island University receives a total of $235,637 and the combined total of the top seven exec's is $1,313,431. For more information use this link.

The President & CEO of ICBC receives a total compensation package of $524,759 and the top five exec's received $2,228,851. For more information use this link.

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Older Forestry Workers Helped By Fund

TRUST OPENS $20M TRANSITION

OPPORTUNITY FOR WORKERS

VICTORIA – A program designed to financially assist older workers in transitioning out of the forest sector will be accepting applications July 1 to Aug. 31, 2009.

Through the Community Development Trust’s Transition Assistance program, forest workers aged 60 and older as of Dec. 31, 2009 who meet the program eligibility requirements may be able to access up to $35,000 to transition to retirement or other activities.

“So far, we have been able to assist more than 5,700 workers, their families and communities through the Community Development Trust programs,” said Bill Bennett, Minister of Community and Rural Development. “This continuation of the Transition Assistance program will assist those workers age 60 and older to access new opportunities, while opening positions within the industry for junior workers.”

The Transition Assistance program will be accepting applications from forest workers whose primary occupation for at least the past two years has been directly involved in the harvesting, hauling or primary manufacture of wood fibre in British Columbia as an employee of a major licensee, contractor, sub-contractor, a processor or as an independent owner/operator.

“As well as assisting retiring workers, the Community Development Trust provides immediate support to forest workers, families and communities through job creation and training programs,” said Pat Bell, Minister of Forests and Range. “We are also working on improved silviculture practices, diversifying export markets and building on our wood first commitment, so British Columbia’s forest sector and workers will be well-positioned for the long term.”

The $129-million Community Development Trust was established with federal funding in May 2008 to help forest families, communities and companies with the downturn in the industry. The three programs offered through the trust include the $85.5-million Transition Assistance program, $17.25-million Tuition Assistance program and $26.25-million Job Opportunities program. In Budget 2009/10, the Province committed an additional $30 million for Job Opportunities-like programs.

In 2008, the Province was able to assist 1,700 forest workers with $65 million in funding through the Transition Assistance program.

For information on the Community Development Trust, visit www.cd.gov.bc.ca/cdt/.


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Nanaimo Harbour Ferry Visits City Council

Pickle Boats Operator Seeks Help

Mr. Barry Hobbis of the Nanaimo Harbour Ferry also known as the Pickle Boats appeared at City Council looking for help with problems his business has encountered this year.

Apparently the changes being made at Maffeo Sutton Park have created a problem for the ferry boat operator and his customers wishing to go camping on Newcastle Island. The problem stems from the difficulty encountered in getting camping gear etc. from the parking lot area to the wharf where the ferry docks.

This is a particular issue with groups needing to transport a large amount of gear for their trip to Newcastle Island. Last year they were able to drive around the park and unload at the top of the wharf. Now they need to cart everything from the parking area on foot, which is obviously very inconvenient.

City staff is apparently trying to provide an interim solution which involves them supplying carts to aid in the movement of gear. A city staff member is present to assist, but only on Monday to Friday and not there on the weekends which are the busiest times.

In another issue the Pickle Boat operator had earlier lost their docking space in the inner harbour as a result of a change with the Nanaimo Port Authority. It was reported by members of council they believed the NPA had reversed their earlier decision and that the space previously used was once again available.

It is hoped the City and the NPA can come to a suitable solution to the problems this business is experiencing, as they are a most desireable addition to downtown Nanaimo and the waterfront area in general.

If you haven't taken a ride on their ferries, put it on your 'to do' list, and remember to take your out of town guests on a short one hour tour of the harbour.

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Monday, June 29, 2009

Nanaimo Canada Day Celebrations

Canada Day Celebrations 2009
In Nanaimo

Canada's birthday falls on Wednesday this year which is the official statutory holiday so many people will be able to participate in the numerous celebrations planned in Nanaimo.

There will be the official opening of the Spirit Square area of Maffeo Sutton Park on Wednesday as well as the many other family oriented activities planned for the park.

The events planned are from 11:00 am - 3:15 pm with the 'Parade of Flags' at 11:00 - 11:30 with the official ribbon cutting ceremony of Spirit Square at 11:30 am.

There will be a food fair and many interesting booths for all to enjoy. So pack up the family, and head on down early to get a good spot.

Don't forget the sunscreen!!




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Scenic Nanaimo

Shack Island Hammond Bay

A popular and scenic spot to take your summer visitors is shack island in Hammond Bay.

To view shack island take the Piper's Lagoon turn off from Hammond Bay Road onto Lagoon Road and rather than turning to go to the park, continue straight until you come to a small parking area.

From there you can get a great view of the lagoon itself, Pipers Lagoon Park and of course shack island complete with it's colorful and picture perfect buildings.

If you are a camera buff or a budding artist, you would be hard pressed to find a more pleasant subject for your art project.

What a great place for families to spend a long hot summer in Nanaimo!

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Great Summer Weather For Nanaimo

Another Week Of Sunshine

Today and the rest of the week promises to be sunny and dry according to the weather network forecast.

This is delightful for most of us, but could add to firefighters burdens if people don't exercise common sense. Of course that means NO open burning in Nanaimo and area anywhere. Remember there is also a complete burning ban in local parks and that includes smoking.

Fire warnings aside, don't forget your plants will need some extra water if things stay as warm and dry as promised, aside from that, just enjoy the perfect weather. Neither too hot nor too cold.

allvoices

Friday, June 26, 2009

Things To Do In Nanaimo June 26 - 28

Nanaimo Events and Activities

The Nanaimo Things To Do Directory has over 160 different contacts for every interest from Air Cadets to Windsurfing and everything in between. To visit this directory click the banner above or
Nanaimo Info LINK.


Fri. calendar of events use this Nanaimo Info LINK.

Sat. calendar of events use this
Nanaimo Info LINK.


Sun. calendar of events use this
Nanaimo Info LINK.


Port Theatre events calendar use Nanaimo Info LINK.


Nanaimo Movies Guide use this Nanaimo Info LINK.


Western Edge Theatre use this Nanaimo Info LINK.


Nanaimo Theatre Group use Nanaimo Info LINK.

Nanaimo Art Gallery use this Nanaimo Info LINK.


Nanaimo Arts Council info use this Nanaimo Info LINK.


Nanaimo Minor Baseball info use Nanaimo Info LINK.


Youth Soccer Club info use this Nanaimo Info LINK.


Nanaimo Pirates Baseball info use Nanaimo Info LINK.


Weekend weather forecast use this Nanaimo Info LINK.


Downtown Farmer's Market opens Friday,
more info.


Weekend Garage Sales use this Nanaimo Info LINK.

Neighbourhood Farmers Market Nanaimo Info LINK.


Nanaimo Timbermen Sr. A. Lacrosse Nanaimo Info LINK.

Nanaimo Timbermen Sr. B Lacrosse Nanaimo Info LINK.

Nanaimo Timbermen Jr. A Lacrosse Nanaimo Info LINK.



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Help Stop Arsonist In Nanaimo

Help Needed To

Apprehend Arsonist

Deliberately set wildfires on private and public lands continue to pose a risk to residents, property and public infrastructure in the Mount Benson area.

To date this year, the Ministry of Forests and Range has responded to 14 person-caused wildfires around Mount Benson – a significant increase over the annual average of 5.4 wildfires in the same location. In 2007, crews responded to 11 human-caused fires during the whole year.

Deliberately set wildfires represent a significant percentage of the most costly fires in B.C., based on number of fires, hectares burned and overall expenditures. The Mount Benson fires also pose additional risks to the Nanaimo watershed and local water quality.

Members of the public can help by reporting any suspicious activity using the principle of “observe, record and report”:

  • If you observe suspicious behaviour related to the setting of wildfires;
  • Record details of your observations (i.e. physical descriptions of the people and vehicles involved); and
  • Report them immediately to the RCMP.

Crimes can be reported anonymously to Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS or through www.bccrimestoppers.com. Cash rewards of up to $2,000 are possible for tips resulting in arrests and charges.

Individuals charged with deliberately starting a wildfire could face up to 14 years in prison under Section 434 of the Criminal Code of Canada, or life imprisonment under Section 433.

Under the Wildfire Act, a contravention could include a maximum $1 million fine and up to three years in prison.


allvoices

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Nanaimo Burning Ban

Burning Ban Still In Effect

While the rain yesterday helped to lessen the risk of fires, the burning ban is still in force in Nanaimo.

Firefighters have had their hands full lately dealing with fires which could have been deliberately set and they don't need to waste resources and manpower going to fires which should have never been started in the first place.

That includes nuisance fires such as beach fires and the like. Fires which people with any common sense would never start in the first place.

As a reminder there currently is a ban on ALL open burning in Nanaimo and a complete ban in city parks which includes:
  • no smoking
  • no campfires
  • no barbecues

Propane barbecues are alright if they are in approved areas of the park.

To report a fire in Nanaimo call 911, to report a wildfire call 1-800-663-5555 or *5555 on most cellular networks.

allvoices

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Nanaimo Unemployment Rises

Nanaimo Jobs Still
Being Advertised

While more people are added to the unemployment line in Nanaimo, there are still jobs being advertised both online and in print.

If you are looking for a job a good place to start is the Nanaimo Jobs page at www.nanaimo-info.com where you will find links to many helpful sites with local and island job postings.

If you currently do have a job, you might find it a good investment to help your employer at every opportunity. Things like being available to fill shifts and putting in an 'extra' effort can go a long way in keeping your name on the 'preferred' employees list.

Things have certainly changed in a short period of time. Not long ago anyone with a heartbeat could get a job, and most employers were glad just to find a warm body.

Perhaps some good can come out of the present situation in that people may actually start to appreciate their jobs and quit taking everything for granted.

allvoices

Nanaimo Boston Pizza Closed


Jim Treliving Owner Boston Pizza

Employees Out $15,000

The local Boston Pizza was locked by bailiffs last week as the landlord took action for non payment of rent.

The move came as a surprise for the local employees who claim to be owed about $15,000 in back wages.

The local press reports that when they contacted franchisee Preetpal Shergill in Alberta he pleaded poverty claiming the business was losing him $30,000 per month and claiming a total lose of $1.6 million since buying the business.

He said when he had the money, the employees would be paid. I think that means, there isn't a snowballs chance they will ever be paid by him.

Boston Pizza spokesmen point out the liability for the unpaid wages rests with the owner and not Boston Pizza. While I am sure that is the correct legal response, I wonder if it is the correct moral response.

Did Boston Pizza and real owner Mr. Jim Treliving collect fees from this business before the staff received their wages? If so, I think they have a moral obligation to see the people get paid for the job they did. You know, the boys and girls making just enough to pay rent and get by, who are getting jerked around by the guys in $5000 suits driving flashy cars and living in penthouses.

The chairman and owner of Boston Pizza International is Mr. Jim Treliving who appears on the CBC's Dragons Den where he freely gives business advice to all who will listen.

I suggest the affected employees contact Mr. Treliving via the Dragon's Den and see if he will see his company does the right thing by these employees.

allvoices

Government To Send Kids To Camp


BC Government To Lift Freeze
Helping Kids Go To Camp


In a cost saving move the BC government had frozen funds available to help send kids on social assistance or with disabilities to summer camp.

The program is reported to have helped 1800 kids last year with a subsidy of $200 which would cost a total of $360,000 plus of course the administration cost, which probably would double that.


The measure of course met with horror from those affected and several stories appeared supporting the need to send these kids to camp.


In typical government fashion, they tried to cut some costs here, while of course spending it there (higher wages for themselves and staff) and enough people squawked, so they changed their minds.


I wonder if any of the working families who now find themselves on EI will be able to apply for help to send their kids to camp also?

allvoices

Canadian School System Outdated?

Why Don't Schools Run Like
The Rest Of The Working World?

There is much said in the press lately about the local school board considering all manner of options in order to operate within their budget. I offer the following for serious consideration, realizing it will meet with much resistance.

Here's an idea. Has anyone actually looked into the overall cost of running the school year like the rest of the working world?

I wonder what would happen if the school year were extended and only included two weeks of holidays for students?

It would seem logical that with a more intense program, you could shorten the overall length of years to graduate with the equivalent of a grade 12 education. In fact I bet there are many students who are more than capable of learning the whole grade 12 equivalent in far fewer years. The whole program is not geared for above average students, I doubt if it is really geared for the average student's ability.

This whole notion of two months off in the summer goes back to the time when Canadians were earning their living on the farms, and all able bodies were needed at home during the summer. That is hardly the case now.

Yet like all things men do, tradition is strongly clung too and change is uncomfortable. After all who doesn't like the idea of having two months off in the summer and another week or two at Christmas and again in the spring? Not to mention those PD days during the season. Why would a teacher want to change that?

From a students perspective, I am sure many would just as soon not go to school and most I am sure are quite happy with the present 'days off' structure.

It would also make the need for child care in the summer a thing of the past.

I realize this suggestion will not be well received, but I believe truly does have merit on it's own.

allvoices

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Nanaimo Angler

Catches His Limit Most Days

This skilled angler was photographed near Maffeo Sutton Park the other day, and during the time watched he caught at least five fish.

Granted none of them were 20 lb. spring salmon, but collectively I am sure they provided all the nourishment he needed for the day. If you have ever stopped and watched one of these fellows at 'work' you soon admire the skill used to put dinner on the table.

If you look closely in this picture he has a balanced meal which includes one small fish and some salad to wash it down.

allvoices

Winter Ferry Sailings Cut

BC Ferries Chops
Two Winter Sailings To Nanaimo


Effective Oct. 14 BC Ferries customers will have to remember that two night sailings on the Departure Bay/Horsehoe Bay run will be cancelled.

The two sailings chopped are from Monday through Thursday, the effected sailings being the 7:00 pm from Departure Bay and the 9:00 pm sailing from Horsehoe Bay. It should be noted these sailings are still in effect on weekends and peak holiday seasons.

The reductions are all part of cost cutting measures which have included the cutting of 25 union and 35 management positions earlier this year.

For complete BC Ferries fares, schedules and reservation information use this Nanaimo Info LINK.

Note: Has any of the fifth estate ever determined whether these new super ferries are adding considerably to the overall operating costs of this service? Do they use more fuel per passenger than the old style ferries?

allvoices

City of Nanaimo Notice

QUARTERWAY BRIDGE UPGRADES AND BOWEN ROAD
IMPROVEMENTS (PRYDE TO BUTTERTUBS)

PRESENTATION OF DESIGN
AND
ENVIRONMENTAL
PUBLIC OPEN HOUSE

The public is invited to view the Quarterway Bridge upgrade and Bowen Road improvement designs and to provide feedback which may be included in the project environmental assessment.

Wednesday June 24, 2009
4:00 P.M. – 8:00 P.M.
LOCATION
Beban Park Auditorium
2300 Bowen Road, Nanaimo

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Monday, June 22, 2009

Departure Bay Nature Nanaimo Style

Doe and Fawns
On Departure Bay Road


This doe and her two fawns (one was in the trees) were spotted on Departure Bay Road near Newton Road.

As locals know deer sightings in this area are most common and the deer have little fear of automobiles, which for the most part slow down as they approach.

While it is nice to see a little touch of nature up close I am not sure the local gardeners are all that keen on the deer population. It seems they like prize roses just as much as weeds for lunch!

allvoices

New Project Targets Impaired Nanaimo Drivers

Get Drunk Drivers Off The Road

A pilot project has been launched in Nanaimo aimed at gaining public support to get drinking drivers off the road.

The project RID 911, which means Report Impaired Drivers - Call 911 is encouraging the motoring public to report suspected impaired drivers to local police.

This is a pilot project which includes the RCMP and the City of Nanaimo with the goal of educating and informing the public of the importance of assisting the RCMP to make our roads safer.

You will notice several signs such as the one above at various locations around the city, you will also notice it says to PULL OVER before making that 911 call!

allvoices

Signs Of Changing Times

No Times Colonist On Mondays

As of today, the Victoria Times Colonist will not be publishing a print edition of their newspaper. For many years this island newspaper was one of the few to publish seven days per week with their Sunday edition being their biggest.

They will be providing an online version on Mondays with the latest breaking news however there will not be a paper at your door this morning.

This is likely the beginning of the eventual shift in the newspaper business away from the 'paper' edition over to the electronic edition, which many predict will replace newspapers as we know them in about 15 years.


Tom Harris Sign Changes

Last week, workmen could be seen on ladders removing the large TOM HARRIS words from the huge rooftop sign at this local GM dealership. As reported earlier this dealership has been purchased by Wheaton and the two will be amalgamated into one dealership. Where they will be operating is still to be announced.

The Harris name has long since occupied this corner with a GM dealership going back to the days when it was operating as Jack Harris Chev Olds.

This is all part of the big GM restructure which is hoped to bring life into the dead auto giant. Part of that plan is the closing of over one third of their dealerships in Canada by 2010. Some GM dealers in Ontario are none too happy with the way GM is treating them and in fact are organizing a lawsuit to try and gain a better financial deal.

It is doubtful whether this company can regain the confidence of the buying public as they have got to be the poster child for corporate incompetence. Now they are going to reduce their service centers by nearly 50% meaning you will have to wait longer for repairs and you can bet shop rates won't be going down any time soon.

On top of that you have to consider if GM is capable of surviving even with all of the government handouts they are receiving. After all, it is the same wizards that have driven GM into the ditch who are charged with getting it out. Who is going to sign on for a $25,000+ automobile on the off chance the manufacturer is still going to be around in a year or two? Not I.

Much is said about the fact GM was simply too big to let fail, and the cost to the economy would be too great. Interesting spin, but have you ever seen anything from our government, and that includes the Conservatives and the official opposition which supports the kind of taxpayer money we are throwing at this failed company?

In fact the GM bailout accounts for 20% of our $50 billion deficit, and no one, including Jack and Iggy seem to have anything to say about it at all. They are not challenging this bailout, neither are they calling for accountability on the part of Harper and his gang.

The good ole goose just continues to get plucked, and with nary the sound of hissing anywhere.

allvoices

Friday, June 19, 2009

Don't Forget Father's Day

Father's Day This Weekend

How do you let your father know he's special? Buy him a card? A tie he'll never wear?
More fishing gear, new golf balls, tools or garden equipment?

The list could go on and on, maybe you just say 'Thanks' and make him a 'special' supper complete with all the foods he loves and seldom gets to eat, is always a welcome gift.

If you don't live in the same city, don't forget to give him a call and wish him a Happy Father's Day in person.

So, don't forget dear old Dad this weekend and do a little something extra to let him know how great you think he is!

allvoices

Free Fishing Weekend

Free Family Fishing Weekend
June 19 - 21

Getting families together to enjoy a little fun in the great outdoors while promoting the ancient art of angling is the idea behind a plan that allows a weekend of fishing without the need to buy a freshwater fishing licence, Environment Minister Barry Penner said today.

“If you haven’t cast a line in one of British Columbia’s incredible lakes, rivers or creeks lately and you’d like to try it again, or if you’d like to introduce a youngster to the sport of fishing, this is a great opportunity to do it without worrying about buying a licence,” said Penner. “Fishing is a great way to relax, take your mind off your worries and enjoy some fresh air.”

The B.C. government offers the public free fishing in the province’s lakes and non-tidal streams on Father’s Day weekend each year. The non-profit Freshwater Fisheries Society of BC helps by keeping local lakes well stocked with trout and contributes funding. Other funding organizations include the Habitat Conservation Trust Foundation and the Pacific Salmon Foundation. The Family Fishing Society provides financial assistance, materials and guidance to 46 volunteer community groups who put on family fishing events every year. This year, B.C.’s annual Family Fishing Weekend takes place June 19-21.

“The B.C. government wants to increase the number of freshwater anglers, and Family Fishing Weekend is a great way to introduce newcomers to the sport. Not only is recreational fishing a great way to enjoy time with family and friends in our great outdoors, anglers contribute nearly $1.2 billion annually to the province’s rural economy,” said Penner.

“Each year, approximately two million people visit British Columbia’s beautiful recreation sites and trails, where they can choose from an array of first-rate activities, including fishing,” said Kevin Krueger, Minister of Tourism, Culture and the Arts. “Fishing is one of the primary reasons people camp at our recreation sites, and nearly 700 of these sites are adjacent to or near lakes that have been stocked to sustain and promote the sport.”

B.C. has some of the finest fishing opportunities in the world, and Family Fishing Weekend, now in its 10th year, has introduced many people to sport angling. Many communities throughout British Columbia will be holding free events where people can learn the rules of fishing and see what’s being done to preserve, enhance and create fish habitat. Prizes will be offered at all events.

“The Family Fishing Society was created to encourage all British Columbians, particularly kids and families, to get out and enjoy B.C.’s world-class sport angling opportunities,” said Owen Bird, executive director of the Family Fishing Society of BC. “The number of organized events during Family Fishing Weekend increases each year. The events would not occur without the efforts of many volunteers in each of the respective communities.”

Those interested in trying their luck fishing in tidal waters are reminded that there is no charge for a saltwater sport fishing licence for those under 16, and one-day licences are available for resident adults at a cost of only $5.51.

For more details and a list of communities where events are being held, visit this Nanaimo Info LINK .

For more information about BC Fishing Regulations and Licenses use this Nanaimo Info LINK.


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Things To Do In Nanaimo June 19 - 21

Nanaimo Events and Activities

The Nanaimo Things To Do Directory has over 160 different contacts for every interest from Air Cadets to Windsurfing and everything in between. To visit this directory click the banner above or
Nanaimo Info LINK.


Fri. calendar of events use this Nanaimo Info LINK.

Sat. calendar of events use this
Nanaimo Info LINK.


Sun. calendar of events use this
Nanaimo Info LINK.


Port Theatre events calendar use Nanaimo Info LINK.


Nanaimo Movies Guide use this Nanaimo Info LINK.


Western Edge Theatre use this Nanaimo Info LINK.


Nanaimo Theatre Group use Nanaimo Info LINK.

Nanaimo Art Gallery use this Nanaimo Info LINK.


Nanaimo Arts Council info use this Nanaimo Info LINK.


Nanaimo Minor Baseball info use Nanaimo Info LINK.


Youth Soccer Club info use this Nanaimo Info LINK.


Nanaimo Pirates Baseball info use Nanaimo Info LINK.


Weekend weather forecast use this Nanaimo Info LINK.


Downtown Farmer's Market opens Friday,
more info.


Weekend Garage Sales use this Nanaimo Info LINK.

Neighbourhood Farmers Market Nanaimo Info LINK.


Nanaimo Timbermen Sr. A. Lacrosse Nanaimo Info LINK.

Nanaimo Timbermen Sr. B Lacrosse Nanaimo Info LINK.

Nanaimo Timbermen Jr. A Lacrosse Nanaimo Info LINK.

Nanaimo Kennel Club Dog Show Nanaimo Info LINK.

Nanaimo Miner's Heritage Picnic Nanaimo Info LINK.

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Thursday, June 18, 2009

12 Year Old Hides As Thief Robs Home

Police Response To Robbery
Needs Explaining


Presuming all of the facts are correct as reported in the local daily newspaper, the local RCMP need to do some explaining.

According to the newspaper account, a 12 year old girl was home alone being too sick to attend school. Her mother was at work (I presume) during the break in.

The girl heard noises and was concerned and did call her mother, but the noises stopped and she presumed all was well.

She then heard more noises as the thief broke in through the basement and the girl then locked herself into the bathroom and called her mother again, this time saying there was definitely someone in the house. She then called 911 and was told to stay where she was until help arrived.

At one point the thief tried the bathroom door but gave up and proceeded to load up two bags of loot before leaving the scene. He was confronted on the street by the MOTHER who was able to grab one of the bags from the crook.

It is not clear as to when the police actually showed up, but it is reported they were unable to track the thief using a police tracking dog.

Of course, the $64,000 question is why was it the mother who confronted the crook and not the police??

The Mayor (whom I believe is actually the chief constable) should see that the RCMP provide a full and complete explanation as to how this event actually went down.

Update

The suspect caught on camera leaving the area after a brazen daytime break and enter in Nanaimo in which a 12 year old girl was home at the time,has been identified by police.

The suspect is well known to local RCMP officers however his name cannot be released until such time charges are formally laid against him.The suspect faces charges of Break and Enter,Possession of Stolen Property and Theft in connection with the offence.

"Were going to be hitting the streets hard over the next little while in hopes of getting him off the street and behind bars. If the members are unsuccessful, a warrant will be issued for his arrest and at that time his name will be released" said Constable Gary O'Brien Media spokesperson for the Nanaimo RCMP.

Anyone with information on the male shown in pictures released yesterday to the media are asked to call the Nanaimo RCMP at 250-754-2345 or call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS(8477).

Note: The above update appears on the RCMP information site with reference to a picture of the suspect being released to the media. Neither of the local media's online publications have the picture of the suspect.

I wonder why the RCMP did not include the picture on their own website?


allvoices

Nanaimo Vancouver Island & Canadian House Prices May 2009

Nanaimo House Prices Off By 6%
May 09 to May 08


Based on average MLS sales summaries for Nanaimo and other Canadian cities for May 2009.

National Average
May 09 - $319,757
May 08 - $318,391

Victoria BC
May 09 - $482,119
May 08 - $514,100

Vancouver BC
May 09 - $583,674
May 08 - $624,639

Calgary
May 09 - $382,632
May 08 - $418,881

Regina
May 09 - $263,424
May 08 - $235,458

Toronto
May 09 - $395,609
May 08 - $398,148

Ottawa
May 09 - $312,927
May 08 - $296,580

Nanaimo

May 09
- $341,462
May 08 - $363,401
Units Sold
May 09 - 124
May 08 - 141

Remember these are 'average' house sales prices and do not necessarily reflect what the actual market value is of your property. For an accurate evaluation of your property you need to contact a real estate agent who is knowledgeable or a professional appraiser.

Averages are however helpful in identifying trends and clearly, real estate is not selling for what is was a year ago, which was over valued most likely. It is good news for first time home buyers, lower prices combined with record low mortgage rates in some cases make buying more attractive than continuing to rent.

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Nanaimo Goes To The Dogs

Nanaimo Kennel Club Celebrates
85th Anniversary 50th Dog Show

This weekend will see some 1800 canines converge on Nanaimo for the NKC's 50th annual dog show which is also the club's 85th anniversary.


The show dates are June 19, 20 & 21 at Brannen Lake Campsites.

For full show details visit the clubs website using this Nanaimo Info LINK.

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Home Depot Hits Hard Times?

Not Enough Profit In Building Supplies??

After spending several hundred dollars on lumber and such I made a separate trip to pick up a variety of fasteners, you know, different size nails, screws, joist hangers and the like.

The fastener total sale with tax was just over $50, and I was a bit surprised when the teller asked "would you like a bag for that for 5 cents?". Five cents for a bag for a $50 purchase . . . . . . . give me a break!

I thought that the home improvement business at Home Depot must really be suffering ever since the new Rona store opened in the south end, for them to have to help their bottom line by charging 5 cents for a bag which likely costs one half of one cent.

Then I thought maybe profit is not the motive, maybe they are also a part of the 'quit using plastic bags and save the planet movement'. If that's the case and they are trying to encourage their customers to bring their enviro-friendly reusable bag so you don't need to pay 5 cents for a bag, they may be dealing with the wrong crowd.

A hot, sweaty, busy guy who makes a buck pounding nails is just as likely to be ticked off by the seemingly petty charge for a bag for their $50 purchase. This policy will likely bite them unless they present the five cent charge in a more palatable way.

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Wednesday, June 17, 2009

All Open Burning Is Banned In Nanaimo

This Includes Beach Campfires

Fire officials are getting weary of wasting time and resources responding to illegal fires on city beaches.

There currently is a ban on all open burning in Nanaimo and there is a total ban in city parks which includes smoking, campfires and barbeques.

Beach campfires are usually started by young people in out of the way places, meaning firefighters have to attend these fires which ties up manpower and resources which could be needed someplace else.

Rather than trying to educate the offenders, in future firefighters will have the RCMP attend illegal fires and issue $100 tickets for the offense.

Things are tinder dry and people need to exercise some common sense and behave responsibly.

Editor's Comment: In the case of habitual offenders, why not have a water bomber attend the scene, once or twice. I bet they get the message then! :^)

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ICBC Recovers $26,000


Lying Learner Learns A Lesson?

The case of a young Surrey woman serves as a timely reminder to new drivers about the perils of ignoring the requirements of British Columbia's Graduated Licensing Program.

A BC Provincial Court judge in Surrey ordered Michelle Larocque to reimburse ICBC more than $26,000 for lying about the circumstances of a crash that destroyed her father's vehicle. She was also fined $1,000, after pleading guilty to providing a false statement to ICBC under the Insurance (Motor Vehicle) Act.

Larocque was 19 years-old and had a Learner licence in August 2005 when she got behind the wheel of the leased 2002 Lincoln, alone. Under the Graduated Licensing Program, a Learner is required — whenever driving — to be accompanied by an adult aged 25 or older who has a valid Class 5 driver's licence.

The investigation determined Larocque crashed into another vehicle and later lied to ICBC about the mishap, claiming that she was not alone in the car. The other driver and three independent witnesses to the crash all told ICBC she was alone in the vehicle.

"Normally, ICBC would bring a separate court action against the driver to recover payments made on the insurance claim, " said Steven Tripp, Manager of ICBC's Special Investigations Unit. "But Provincial Court Judge Gulbransen ordered Ms. Larocque to pay restitution in the amount of $26,131. The message here, clearly, is that lying to avoid a hike in premiums or a fine just isn't worth it."

ICBC goes after fraudsters; we recommend criminal charges where appropriate, and take them to court to recover any dollars paid out for false claims.

The public can help combat fraud and help keep their auto insurance premiums low and stable. Anyone with information regarding a suspicious, exaggerated or fraudulent claim is encouraged to call ICBC's fraud tips line at 604-661-6844 or 1-800-661-6844, toll free from anywhere in the province. Callers can remain anonymous.


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Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Nanaimo Water Restriction Reminder

Water Usage Regulations
June 1 - Sept. 30 2009

Effective June 1/09 there is no watering between the hours of 10:00 am and 4:00 pm.

Watering restrictions apply to all homes, apartments, strata units, mobile homes etc.

Even number homes may water on the even numbered days of the month while odd number homes water on odd numbered days of the month.

Please note that parking lot and driveway washing is not permitted, and car washing is restricted to the same days and times allowed for watering.

These restrictions are intended to provide adequate water to all residents throughout the summer months. It is also a means of insuring an adequate supply of water in reserve in the event it is needed for emergency fire fighting.


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Miner's Heritage Picnic

SECA Celebrates 20th Anniversary

Lots of fun for the whole family at this great south end event this coming Saturday.

Some highlights of the day include:

    • A free pancake breakfast from 8:30 to 10:00 AM
    • Free rides and entertainment for the kids from 10:00 AM to 2:00 PM
    • Gala ceremony at 10:30 AM to admire the new park and celebrate SECA’s 20th Anniversary.
    • Cake for breakfast…yay!
    • the Historic Heritage Walk at 11:00 AM
    • the now-famous Strawberry Social tea for seniors at 2:00 PM
Lots of your favourite activities are returning, including the uber-popular Kid’s Art tent, the pet parade, the silent auction, and entertainment by Trinitude, the Nanaimo Fiddle Orchestra, and lots of other great acts!

For a complete schedule of events, use this Nanaimo Info LINK.

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Nanaimo Missing Person

The Nanaimo RCMP are seeking the public’s assistance in locating Daniel GUIOMAR age 35, reported missing by his spouse and not seen since June 9th at 12:00 am.

GUIOMAR was last seen at the Nicol St Pawn shop and was believed to be wearing a white Tshirt, long maroon shorts and brown work boots. He is described as being 5 ft 10inches with a stocky build and has shoulder length brown curly hair. He has brown eyes and dark complexion. Friends and family have not heard from him and his departure is considered to be out of character.

Anyone with information on Daniel GUIOMAR is asked to contact Cst. Henning of the Nanaimo RCMP at 250-754-2345 or call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222–TIPS.

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Nanaimo Marine Fuel Dock

Petro Canada
Marine Fuel Dock Nanaimo

Hours of operation
Sept. 16 - May 10 - 8:00 am - 5:00 pm,
May11 - Sept. 15 - 7:00 am - 7:00 pm, 

 The fuel dock sells mid grade gas and diesel, propane exchange bottles, ice, small convenience items, tide tables and bait. You can call 250-754-7828 for more information.

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Nanaimo Block Watch Information Session

The Nanaimo RCMP are hosting a general information session for anyone interested in establishing or hearing about a Block Watch in their community. The meeting will be held at Brechin Elementary School, located at 510 Millstone Ave on June 17th from 7:00 pm to 8:30 pm.Any parents who cannot find a sitter, daycare will be provided by qualified babysitters.

Cst Gary O’Brien of the Nanaimo RCMP, coordinator of the Block Watch program will be on hand to give a short presentation on the program and will be available afterwards to answer your questions. Several auxiliary police officers will also be on hand to assist you and answer questions.

“Statistically after setting up a Block Watch in your neighborhood ,crime will reduce by 50 percent.As well, you will get to know your neighbors and have some fun in the process. In the past six months there have been eight block watches set up throughout Nanaimo. All participants in the program have since expressed a sense of wellness and security in their respective communities and their only regret is not starting one earlier,said Constable Gary O’Brien Media spokesperson for the Nanaimo RCMP.

For more information on this program or information session, please contact Cst Gary O'Brien of the Nanaimo RCMP at 250-755-3257.


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Monday, June 15, 2009

Convention Center Losses Mount

Expected To Lose $700,000
Lack Of Hotel & Economy Blamed

It is reported in the local daily that the operating losses for the VICC are expected to be nearly 50% higher than previously anticipated. It was expecting to lose $500,000.

The VICC manager is reported as saying the worsening economy and the lack of a downtown hotel have both contributed to the rising lose.

Taxpayers need to press their council for some serious accounting on the operating of this facility which barely received enough voter support to be built in the first place. For example, if you remove revenue which comes from the city (taxpayer) for holding council meetings in the flashy Shaw auditorium and other events which could have been accommodated elsewhere, what is the operating loss?

Another interesting statistic would be the total amount of tax revenue the 'old' downtown generated for the city on this property, compared with what is being generated now?

The economy and lack of a hotel may be valid reasons for not attracting more conventions, however the fact is, conventions seem to be a dying business and they are in fact a very competitive one. I for one am absolutely convinced that Nanaimo can offer a great facility in a great city, however, Vancouver and Victoria and Penticton and Whistler are not exactly unknown destination locations either.

Opponents of the convention centre will tell you that many studies indicated that conventions are not the best business model to hitch your wagon to. Perhaps time is showing some wisdom to that line of thinking.

The local daily had to use a Freedom of Information request to find out from the city how many businesses were downtown before and after the convention centre. The fact the city did not want to reveal that information would indicate they may wish to 'put a good face on' the actual status of the convention centre.

If this facility is reported to lose $700,000, it would not be unreasonable to assume the real losses are likely closer to $1,000,000 and you have to wonder if there really is any benefit to the average taxpayer of running a convention centre. I doubt if downtown business has really improved all that much. Yes, there are more cafes and a few other additions to the business community, but are these businesses really making their owners money?

If you ask a business owner how things are going, most will respond positively, even if they are nearly broke, that is just the nature of business. You never say how bad things are until you have a going out of business sale. Most business people are just like the farmer who was asked "what would you do if you won a million dollars?", to which he replied "I'd keep on farming until it was all gone!".

Another interesting statistic would be to demonstrate how much the convention centre has actually cost taxpayers, and what it is going to keep costing taxpayers from here on out. Since it took a Freedom of Information request to simply find out how many businesses are downtown (the statistic of course reveals nothing of type or quality of business) it would probably take an act of Parliament to find out the true cost of this centre.

I have asked all members of council and the Mayor whether or not the builder of the downtown hotel was required to supply a certain number of 'rentable' units, no one replied to my first request. One councillor refered my request to city staff who answered, but didn't answer at the same time. There is little doubt council and staff are not too keen on looking at the VICC and surrounding issues with anything but rose coloured glasses.

I asked the VICC manager Denise Tacon, how many additional rooms would be needed to attract larger conventions, she was unable to answer the question.

Indeed the VICC has given downtown Nanaimo a facelift, but whether it had to be in the form of a convention centre is still open for discussion. Whether is had to cost the taxpayer $72,000,000 (and rising)is debatable. The taxpayer deserves to know just how much money they are pouring into this centre and how long it will continue before we decide to do something else with this state of the art facility.

It is these unexpected losses the taxpayer is continually funding that makes you wonder if we really can AFFORD to be buying $3,000,000 parks!

Your comments are invited.

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