Friends of Kootenay Lake has become a Society!

TMTVNEWS.COM, Nelson BC Canada – Friends of Kootenay Lake has become a Society! We are pleased to announce that after 3.5 years of service, the Friends of Kootenay Lake has become an official society.

Kootenay Lake, TMTV.net Photo
Kootenay Lake, TMTV.net Photo

Under the diligent facilitation of Claire de la Salle, the hard work of our active Steering Committee and the hundreds of dedicated members and volunteers, the Friends of Kootenay Lake has evolved into the Friends of Kootenay Lake Stewardship Society.

Since its inception in 2012 the Society has devoted its efforts to improve the health and stewardship of Kootenay Lake through monitoring, habitat restoration, capacity building and the empowerment of local communities and stakeholders. The Society has delivered many successful projects and events around our many lake communities, that have inspired folks to be true stewards of this vast and integral body of water.

The Friends of Kootenay Lake Stewardship Society would like to thank all our volunteers and members that have supported, shown interest and given their time to volunteer for our important projects and events. We would also like to thank our committed Steering Committee David Reid, Sangita Sudan, Heather Leschied, Martin Carver, Ryan Van der Marel, Greg Utzig and the Lake Advisory Board for their countless hours of guidance and direction. More over we could not have accomplished our efforts without the contributions of our many Partners; EcoSociety, Wildsight, Kootenay Lake Partnership, and our funders Columbia Basin Trust, Fish and Wildlife Compensation Program, BC Hydro, City of Nelson, Village of Kaslo, Columbia Power Corporation, Environment Canada Mountain Equipment Coop, Columbia Power, City of Nelson, Live in the Koots Team with Fair Realty, Real Estate Foundation of BC, Fortis BC, and Regional District of Central Kootenay.

Every lakeside community member has a role to play in protecting the lake’s immense value. If you care about Kootenay Lake and want to preserve its natural values for generations to come, you can check out our website and sign up for our eNews, for events and actions taking place over the next few months, or you can contact us with specific questions about our programs.

Thank you from the Friends of Kootenay Lake Stewardship Society,
For further information please contact:
Kat McGlynn – Program Manager
Email: info@friendsofkootenaylake.ca
Phone: (250)777-3542

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East Kootenay winter highways dangerous, residents say

TMTVNEWS.COM – A group of East Kootenay residents say the highways in their area are not being properly cleared by the company responsible for maintenance.

The Mainroad Group, the company contracted by the B.C. government to maintain Highways 3 and 93, has come under fire by a group called Taking Back East Kootenay Highways.

The group, which was founded a few years ago by Fraser Sinclair, an ex-employee of Mainroad, has a Facebook page with almost 2,000 members.

The Facebook page has become a place for the residents to share images and stories about the highway conditions they’ve experienced.

The group’s concerns caught the attention of Columbia River-Revelstoke NDP MLA Norm Macdonald, who presented a petition in the B.C. Legislature in May 2015 with almost 1,000 signatures of those worried about the highways.

According to a press release from Mainroad, challenging weather conditions do not always allow the company to have “bare and black conditions.”

“Nor is that a requirement of our contract, although we strive to return the highways to bare and black conditions as quickly as possible.”

Mainroad meeting expectations says province

Lorimer said that the number of injuries and fatalities in the area has gone down from 190 incidents in 2006 to just under 100 in 2014.

The contract with Mainroad will expire in September 2016, so the province currently has a tender out for a new contract, which Lorimer said will include some new expectations for winter maintenance.

MORE FROM CBC

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Wildsight launches net-zero energy building speaker series this Friday

TMTVNEWS.COM – This year, Wildsight Kimberley/Cranbrook is bringing net-zero energy building to the area with their net-zero speaker series.

 Experienced builders will share their knowledge about design, construction practices, and materials that make buildings that generate as much energy as they use a reality.
Experienced builders will share their knowledge about design, construction practices, and materials that make buildings that generate as much energy as they use a reality.

What if our homes and buildings produced as much energy as they consumed? What if the our buildings emitted no climate-changing CO2? Net-zero energy buildings and homes are here – and people across Canada and around the world are already building them. The net-zero speaker series will bring experienced net-zero builders to Kimberley and Cranbrook to share their knowledge about how we can make our buildings sustainable in the long term, while living more comfortably and in a healthier environment. Even in our cold climate, with good design and materials, net-zero is attainable.

“When we think about how much gas, wood, and electricity goes into running our homes, net-zero energy homes sound like fantasy,” said Wildsight’s Lars Sander-Green, “but the reality is that with good construction practices, sensible design, and solar energy, buildings that generate as much energy as they consume are definitely within reach. Our series speakers have the experience to prove it.”

The first session in the series is this Friday, January 8th with Murray Guy of Ecosmart in Saskatoon and Kimberley’s own Jori Adank, who recently built a solar home on the Selkirk Hill. We’ll start off with an afternoon session for professionals to dive deep and ask questions in a small group format followed by a inspiring public one-hour presentation in the evening.

There will be three more sessions in the series, starting with Arthur Lo of Insightful Healthy Homes of Vancouver on January 22nd, with Dave Spencer, founder of EchoHaven, a sustainable development in Calgary and builder of his own net-zero home in Calgary on February 19th, and with Shafraaz Kaba, an architect from Edmonton who designed and built his own modern net-zero home in Edmonton on March 4th.

The first professional session runs from 1PM-5PM in Lecture Theatre S114 at College of the Rockies in Cranbrook and the first public session starts at 7:30PM at Centre 64 in Kimberley. Admission to the public sessions is by donation, while tickets to the professional sessions will be $25 – but the first professional session is completely free! Anyone with an interest can attend the detailed professional sessions.

“Canadians are stepping up to build net-zero homes and buildings and we are very excited to have some of those builders coming to Kimberley and Cranbrook to share their knowledge,” said Sander-Green.

All the details and tickets for later sessions are available at wildsight.ca/netzero. Wildsight Kimberley/Cranbrook gratefully acknowledges the financial support of Columbia Basin Trust for this project.

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City of Nelson Art Rental program

The City of Nelson is embarking upon an Art Rental program that will see the City’s indoor public spaces reflecting the creative nature of Nelson. 

Feature Photo: HelloBC

1_nelson_arts

TMTVNEWS.COM (City of Nelson) The idea stemmed from a request from Mayor Deb Kozak to display local art in her office. From this seed, the idea of a program that would enliven City Hall, while supporting local artists, was put forward by the Cultural Development Committee (CDC) and gained the support of City Council.

“Over the years, Nelson has assembled a wonderful inventory of over 40 permanent pieces of public art, heritage markers and artistic infrastructure pieces throughout the City,” says CDC Chair Stephanie Fischer. “Four years ago, the CDC also initiated the popular rotating sculpture gallery on Baker Street, in partnership with Castlegar’s Sculpturewalk. I’m excited that through these initiatives we are able to support & promote the growth of public art in Nelson. This new program will further contribute to citizens and visitors experiencing art as part of their day-to-day lives.”

As such, the CDC is now announcing a call for Nelson and area artists to submit their work to this new Art Rental Program. Applicants are asked to provide electronic images of their pieces, along with the medium, dimensions, value and artist bio. Larger-sized paintings are recommended due to the nature of the space they will inhabit. Submissions will be adjudicated by the CDC’s Public Art Working Group. The deadline for submissions is January 15, 2016.

Currently, this program is limited to within City Hall. Based on the program’s success, it may be extended to include other City-owned property and outside spaces.

Please read the Program Guidelines below before submitting your application. Applications can be sent to Joy Barrett, Cultural Development Officer, at cultural@nelson.ca

Program Guidelines
Application Form

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Skiing at its best this year

Feature Photo: RED Mountain Resort – Ryann Flett
December 30, 2015

Ski resorts across Western Canada are buried in record breaking snowfalls, and it keeps coming.

TMTVNEWS.COM January 06, 2016 – Kelowna, BC – Skier visits and revenues are up dramatically at most ski resorts across Western Canada.  This is particularly great news for B.C.’s Lower Mainland ski areas and Mount Washington who took the brunt of last season’s warm weather, and are all reporting copious amounts of snow and record visitation.

Fernie Alpine Resort December 25, 2015
Fernie Alpine Resort
December 25, 2015

With early November snowfalls many ski areas opened weeks ahead of schedule.  Mt. Norquay was the first Canadian ski resort to welcome skiers and boarders this season, opening on November 5, 2015.  The first to open in B.C. was Big White Ski Resort with its earliest start since 1997 on November 13. Kicking Horse Mountain Resort recorded its first November opening ever for skiing and riding.  Helicopter and Snowcat ski areas are also enjoying excellent snow conditions and receiving strong early bookings for the 2016-17 season.

The record snow fall and early season openings mean big business for Western Canadian ski resorts.  “We’ve had a record setting December in both revenue and skier visits in the entire 67-year history of RED Mountain Resort,” said Don Thompson, President and General Manager of RED in Rossland B.C..  Skiers and boarders were flocking to Apex Mountain Resort near Penticton this December.  “Not only did we have the best revenues and skier visits but we beat the previous record by 51%,” said James Shalman, General Manager at Apex Mountain Resort. Whistler Blackcomb is also reporting record visitation this season. Dave Brownlie, President and Chief Executive Officer of Whistler Blackcomb commented: “Considerable momentum from both destination and regional markets combined with excellent winter conditions resulted in a busy Christmas holiday period and the highest year to date visitation in our history.”

The soft Canadian dollar is also having a positive impact on the ski and tourism industries. U.S. overnight tourist visits to Canada increased 8% over the first ten months of 2015 (compared to 2014).  Resorts of the Canadian Rockies, which owns Fernie, Kicking Horse, and Kimberley Ski Resorts, report that U.S. business to their resorts is up 200% over last year.  At Sun Peaks Resort in Kamloops, “increased visitation from the US has driven more than just Christmas numbers,” says Christopher Nicolson.  “A significant rise in Presidents’ week vacationers has boosted February bookings by 16%.” In Alberta, favourable exchange rates coupled with fantastic early season conditions has boosted early season visits for Mt. Norquay, Lake Louise Ski Resort and Sunshine Village.

It’s clear Canadian skiers are staying north and visitors, especially from the U.S., are jumping at the opportunity to take advantage of the huge savings and fantastic snow.

CWSAA.org

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Alcohol suspensions up 100%…more Kootenay Boundary roadway stats

2015 Kootenays and Boundary region roadway review and what to expect in 2016

RCMP concerned with increase in drinking and driving related charges as well as drug seizures and excessive speed
RCMP concerned with increase in drinking and driving related charges as well as drug seizures and excessive speed

TMTVNEWS.COM, Nelson BC Canada –  (RCMP) Another year has gone and a new year has arrived bringing snow and slippery roads.

The Nelson IRSU and WKTS who’s patrol area covers a vast roadway of the Kootenays and Boundary region, worked hard all year to make the roads safe for everyone. We lost four people on fatal collisions this year, a decrease of 60 % since 2014, however, four is still too many. Our condolences go to the families and friends.

In 2015 we saw a change in our motoring public which is a concern to us. Our impaired driving charges increased by 35 % and our 1, 3 and 7 day alcohol suspensions increased by 100 per cent. Our drug impaired increased by 10 per cent. This is an alarming increase. We cannot stress enough the devastation an impaired charge or a Immediate Roadside Prohibition can have on the driver, family or victims of a crash.

7 day alcohol suspensions increased by 100 per cent
7 day alcohol suspensions increased by 100 per cent

Our members will be increasing our enforcement in hopes of getting the message across. Do not drink alcohol or use illicit drugs and drive your car.

We saw a 25 % increase in Drug seizures and a 100 per cent increase in drug trafficking charges, all related to people traveling our roads with illegal drugs. Seatbelt and cell phone decreased. We know cell phone usage or distracted driving is still one of our main causes of crashes and be aware increased enforcement in 2016 will continue.

Our excessive speeds, 40 km over the posted speed limit increased dramatically by 50 %. We cannot stress enough to slow down and drive to the road conditions, not the posted speed limit.

Our patrols mandate is to make the Kootenay Boundary roads the safest in BC and we will continue to strive to do this through enforcement and education - RCMP
Our patrols mandate is to make the Kootenay Boundary roads the safest in BC and we will continue to strive to do this through enforcement and education – RCMP

We need the public as well to understand that their adverse actions on the roads can and will affect themselves and others.

We wish everyone a great 2016 and please stay safe, say RCMP.

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Looking for a career change? Choose a trades career

$18.9-million trades training facilities at the Selkirk College Silver King campus in Nelson, which is expected to break ground in 2016

TMTVNEWS.COM, (BCGOV) – Looking for a career change? British Columbia is working to make a career in a skilled trade an easy choice in 2016.

The skilled trades provide good careers that are rewarding and pay well. Former apprenticeship students from public training institutions in B.C. earned a median hourly wage of $28 in 2014 compared to the provincial median wage of $22.

A wide range of trades training programs from aircraft maintenance to metal fabrication to heavy-duty equipment mechanics are available in B.C. and, as the 2024 Labour Market Outlook shows, many trades are among the top 100 occupations projected to be in high demand over the next decade.

Government is investing in trades training as part of B.C.’s Skills for Jobs Blueprint, which is aligning investments in education and training with high-demand occupations, including the trades.

Investments include:

  • The $30-million Centre for Trades Education and Innovation at Camosun College in Victoria, opening in early 2016.
  • The $33-million Okanagan College Trades Renewal Project in Kelowna, with completion expected in 2016.
  • The $18.9-million trades training facilities at the Selkirk College Silver King campus in Nelson, which is expected to break ground in 2016.
  • The $1.8-million Nicola Valley Institute of Technology trades training facility in Merritt, opened by Premier Christy Clark in October 2015.

Students in B.C. expect the latest technology and best equipment when they are learning a trade. That is why government has provided $17 million over the last two years to 14 public institutions toward purchasing new trades training equipment.

B.C.’s Blueprint has also targeted $13 million over the last two years to reduce wait lists in high-demand trades critical to a diverse, strong and growing provincial economy by creating 2,917 additional trades seats.

And, in fall 2015, government added 50 new open textbooks focused on skills training and technical areas, including trades, which students can access at no charge. More than 120 textbooks are available through the provincial Open Textbook Project.

The B.C. Access Grant for Labour Market Priorities allows students to fund their trades training, and includes a component for students wishing to relocate to attend an eligible public institution. Students may receive up to $16,400 in non-repayable funding to study in-demand foundation trades programs. Since announcing the grant in September 2014, approximately $5.3 million has been distributed to more than 1,200 students.

Students also have access to an online trades training seat finder that instantly allows them to see where trades training spaces are available: https://www.tradestrainingbc.ca/

B.C. students are ready to benefit from the opportunities the trades can provide. For example:

Why It Matters:

  • There will be almost one million job openings in British Columbia over the next decade, and most of these openings will require post-secondary training.
  • Approximately 42% of job openings will require college education or apprenticeship training.
  • 36% will require university and/or significant work experience.
  • 18% will require high school and/or occupation-specific training.

Quotes:

Andrew Wilkinson, Minister of Advanced Education – 

“Our government is investing in trades training so that students can continue to receive the best instruction, equipment and facilities. We invest in skilled-trades training to ensure that students graduate with the job-ready skills they need for a well-paying career.”

Shirley Bond, Minister of Jobs, Tourism and Skills Training and Minister Responsible for Labour –

“We launched B.C.’s Skills for Jobs Blueprint to re-engineer our education and training systems so British Columbians have the skills and training they need to take advantage of the job openings in our province’s diverse, strong and growing economy. B.C.’s post-secondary system has been instrumental in helping us achieving our Blueprint goals.”

Learn More:

Provincewide highlights of the 2014 Apprenticeship Student Outcomes Survey can be viewed in the “BC Student Outcomes: The 2014 Highlights” reportt:http://outcomes.bcstats.gov.bc.ca/Publications/AboutPublications.aspx?WT.cg_n=HootSuite

2024 Labour Market Outlook:https://www.workbc.ca/WorkBC/media/WorkBC/Documents/Docs/BC-LM-Outlook-2014-2024_C.pdf

To find out more about B.C.’s Skills for Jobs Blueprint: https://www.workbc.ca/Job-Seekers/Skills-and-Training/B-C-%E2%80%99s-Skills-for-Jobs-Blueprint.aspx?WT.cg_n=HootSuite

B.C. Access Grant for Labour Market Priorities: https://studentaidbc.ca/explore/grants-scholarships/bc-access-grant-labour-market-priorities?WT.cg_n=HootSuite

Open Textbook Project: http://bccampus.ca/open-textbook-project/?WT.cg_n=HootSuite

Trades Discovery: https://www.tradestrainingbc.ca/Trades/Trades-Exploration/Trades-Discovery?WT.cg_n=HootSuite

For trades and apprenticeship resources, including the Apprentice Job Match, success stories and other links for job seekers, students, apprentices and employers, visit:https://www.workbc.ca/Job-Seekers/Trades-and-Apprenticeship.aspx

For information about apprenticeship programs in B.C., visit the Industry Training Authority website: http://www.itabc.ca/

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Community arts festival funding available

TMTVNEWS.COM, (BC GOV) – Community-based arts and cultural organizations in British Columbia can apply now for project assistance funding from the BC Arts Council to help produce local arts festivals.

Awards under this program are intended to assist with the fees paid to professional artists and technicians engaged for the event. Eligible projects may include presentation of original work, existing repertoire or exhibitions, or exploration of diverse work. Festivals may feature a combination of local and touring artists. Awards will provide up to a maximum of $7,500. Priority will be given to festivals that engage B.C. and Canadian artists.

Application deadline is Saturday, Jan. 30, 2016. (As Jan. 30, 2016, falls on a weekend, applications must be postmarked no later than Monday, Feb. 1, 2016.)

For more information and eligibility criteria, visit: www.bcartscouncil.ca

The BC Arts Council is the Government of British Columbia’s lead agency for arts funding and development. All BC Arts Council grants are awarded through a peer assessment process that relies on the knowledge and expertise of the province’s talented arts and culture community.

In 2015-16, the Province is investing about $60 million in British Columbia’s artists, arts organizations and cultural institutions. This includes $24 million to the BC Arts Council — the highest level of funding in the council’s history.

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Home owner grant threshold increases in 2016

TMTVNEWS.COM, (BC GOV) British Columbians who own homes valued up to $1.2 million may be eligible to receive a full home owner grant this year, while a partial grant may be available if the home is valued above this threshold.

The home owner grant provides modest property tax relief to those who need it most. Last year, this program returned nearly $800 million to B.C. residents. For 2016, more than 91% of homes are below the threshold.

BC Assessment estimates the values of all homes based on their market value on July 1 each year. For homes valued below the threshold, the basic grant can reduce residential property taxes on an owner’s principal residence by up to $570.

An additional grant up to $275 is available for homeowners who are aged 65 or over, who qualify under the persons with disabilities category, or who are eligible to receive certain war-veteran allowances. The northern and rural home owner benefit provides an additional $200 in property tax relief to households outside the Greater Vancouver, Fraser Valley and Capital Regional Districts.

Low-income homeowners who would have received the additional home owner grant except for the high value of their home can apply for a low-income grant supplement.

Homeowners who face difficulty keeping up with rising property assessments in B.C. may also be eligible to defer all or a portion of their property taxes. The property tax deferment program provides low-interest loans that allow eligible homeowners to defer payment of annual property taxes until their home is sold or becomes part of an estate. This program is available to owners who are 55 or older, surviving spouses of any age, and persons with disabilities. Families who are financially supporting children may also qualify.

Quick Facts:

  • For 2016, the threshold increases to $1.2 million, up 9.1% from $1.1 million in 2015.
  • Homes valued above the threshold may still be eligible for a partial grant. For properties assessed above the threshold, the grant is reduced by $5 for every $1,000 of assessed value in excess of the threshold.
  • The grant is not provided automatically. Homeowners must apply every year. Applications are included with annual property tax notices.
  • The grant is available to Canadian citizens and to landed immigrants who normally reside in B.C.
  • The Province reimburses municipalities for the full cost of the home owner grant to ensure municipal revenues are not affected.
  • The home owner grant program began in 1957.

Learn More:

For more information about the home owner grant, visit:www.gov.bc.ca/homeownergrant

For more information about property tax deferment programs, visit:www.gov.bc.ca/propertytaxdeferment

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Man who died after falling through ice on Kettle River identified

TMTVNEWS.COM, GRAND FORKS — The BC Coroners Service has confirmed the identity of a man who died after falling through ice on the Kettle River on Dec. 30, 2015.

He was Thomas Charles Grubisic, aged 54, of Grand Forks.

Mr. Grubisic was seen in the river, holding onto the ice on the afternoon of Dec. 30. He disappeared before rescuers could reach him. Tracks in the snow indicated he was trying to walk across the ice covered river in an area just south of Highway 3 in Grand Forks BC.

The next day Search and Rescue personnel and the RCMP Dive Team located and recovered Mr. Grubisic, deceased, from the river.

The BC Coroners Service and Grand Forks RCMP continue to investigate this death.

PREVIOUS STORY – Body recovered from Kettle River

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