Thursday, June 30, 2011

Some Canadian Basics

How Well Do You Know Canada?

Just from your knowledge of Canada, can you properly name the provinces and locate their capitals on the above blank map?? If you need your school age kids to help, don't be embarrassed.

Without peeking can you name all the provinces, territories and their capitals? Neither could I, so here they are, Province, Capital and Population (as of 2009 rounded):
  • Alberta - Edmonton  3,687,700
  • British Columbia - Victoria 4,455,200
  • Manitoba - Winnipeg 1,222,000
  • Newfoundland & Labrador - St. John's 508,900
  • New Brunswick - Fredericton 749,500
  • Northwest Territories - Yellowknife 43,400
  • Nova Scotia - Halifax 938,200
  • Nunavut - Iqaluit 32,200
  • Ontario - Toronto 13,069,200
  • Prince Edward Island - Charlottetown 141,000
  • Quebec - Quebec City 7,828,900
  • Saskatchewan -Regina 1,030,100
  • Yukon - Whitehorse 33,700
  • Total Population Of Canada in 2009 - 33,739,900


BC Ferries Canada Day Long Weekend Schedules


Things On The Net That Make Ya' Smile

Bike Helmet On A Budget??


Summer Vacation In Nanaimo

School's Out


BC Ferries Has Zero Tolerance Policy

Zero Tolerance For Drugs or Alcohol

BC Ferries is reminding customers that the consumption of drugs and alcohol on its ships and at its terminal is strictly prohibited. The corporation enforces a zero tolerance policy for motorists under the influence of drugs or alcohol.

BC Ferries takes reports of such misuse seriously and works with local police to bring the offense to the attention of the authorities. BC Ferries encourages customers witnessing the consumption of drugs or alcohol to report it to a BC Ferries employee.

BC Ferries wishes its customers a safe and fun Canada Day long weekend.


Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Canada Day Weather Promising

Sunny Skies For Canada Day

It looks like the weatherman might actually be smiling on Nanaimo for Canada Day (Friday) and even Saturday, but he does seem to still have an issue with those wanting to spend the long weekend camping, with the threat of showers on Sunday. I suppose a camping weekend without showers would seem incomplete anyway!

If you are staying in Nanaimo for the weekend, there's lots to do with the Canada celebrations on Friday and the first annual Toy Run on Saturday. More information about these events is further down on this website.


Nanaimo Toy Run July 2, 2011

Nanaimo Toy Run
July 2, 2011
The First Annual Nanaimo Toy Run will be held on July 2, 2011 supporting the children of Nanaimo and The Great Nanaimo Toy Drive. The event is open to all riders and supporters.
The ride starts at Cedar Community Hall and proceeds through Nanaimo's downtown and ends at Beban Park.

The will be fun and many events at Beban Park during the day including:
  • Bike Games
  • Live Bands
  • Beer Gardens
  • Show & Shine
  • Food Vendors
  • Merchandise Vendors
  • Lots of Prizes for Competitors
  • Children's Events
  • Much More

To view a complete schedule of events click HERE.


Nanaimo Bathtub Races 2011

 Bathtub Races In Nanaimo 2011

The Great International World Championship Bathtub Race is once again nearly upon us. The time when daring men and women challenge the unforgiving waters of our rugged west coast in a true test of both physical and mental endurance in a brutal contest that pits man and machine against the violent fury of a roaring Nor' Wester that whips the seas into a seething, foaming mass of man and machine bashing power!

This years Race which is the 43rd anniversary of the race that started in 1967, will get underway on July 24th at precisely 11:00 am sharp, when the otherwise tranquil inner harbour off of Maffeo Sutton Park will be turned into a seething cauldron of angry sea as this years competitors jockey for position, when the sound of the Howitzer cracks the morning calm marking the start of another exciting event.

What is left of the fleet will race, or limp, into Departure Bay approximately one and a quarter to one and a half hours later, when the winning contestants will try to convince race cramped legs, and brutally abused bodies to somehow find the resolve to race across the beach, ascend the stairs to ring the bell which officially marks the end of the race.

Stay tuned to this website for more details of all the exciting events surrounding bathtub week in Nanaimo which is one of the most popular, fun events which highlight the summers in the Bathtub Capital of the World.


Tuesday, June 28, 2011

New Website Launched

Visit Our New Website

There is another website in Nanaimo designed for the sole purpose of keeping a keen eye on how the elected and non elected officials of all levels of government are treating Nanaimo taxpayers.

This is not a politically correct, melba toast website, but a straight shooting, hard hitting fact reporting site, that is bound to make tax collectors and tax spenders more than just a little uneasy. There is nothing they like better than a sleeping electorate and a compliant council so they can pretty much tax and spend as they please.


Letter To Mayor and Council

City Staff Wages & New Office
Equals 85% of ALL Taxes Collected

The following is a letter I have sent to the Mayor and Council pointing out a few facts that our city manager or finance director are unlikely to make a big deal of. I doubt there will be anything more than the usual complete wall of silence from our elected officials, as that is their policy so that they will not reveal their knowledge, or lack there of, on matters of city business.

Greetings Mayor and Council:
I realize that having to attend public functions, and ride in parades, and kiss babies and shake peoples hands, would leave little time to scrutinize the business of the city. I also, realize that the business of running the city is entrusted to the fine team of professionals assembled over the years.
So, I submit a couple of facts, you may not have had brought to your attention by Mr. Clemens or Mr. Kenning:
The total taxes collected ‘for’ the city as per the 2010 financials = $80,406,980.00
The total Wages and Benefits paid city staff (does not included car allowances etc.) $52,373,548.00
Total earnings for the ‘top ten’ at city hall = $1,593,655.00. Of note is the fact that our very own city manager is in spot #39 out of 8181 public employees in the entire province. He must be extremely GOOD (except for that little VICC business) and we are certainly glad we snagged him when the position of city manager was open to competition. Imagine, we had #39 already hidden away at city hall. I forgot, that #39 is ranked for how much public funds they slurp up, not a level of competence.
Now for the Comparisons
City staff wages and benefits consume 65.13% of EVERY TAX DOLLAR COLLECTED in the year. No, pipes in the ground, no water pumps bought, and certainly not enough left over to properly fund water, sewer and roads according to staffs own report. So, what in hell is the actual means of measuring proper stewardship over the public purse anyway??
Our top ten earners at city hall account for almost 2% of the entire taxes collected for the entire year, that is based on their total earnings of $1,593,655.00.
The new staff office totals $16,000,000.00. we don’t know if that is a good price and God only knows why a $4 million upgrade wasn’t good enough. This represents 19.89% of the total taxes collected in one year.
Total used for wages and benefits = 65.13 % of all taxes collected, new office accounts for 19.89% of all taxes collected, for a grand combined total of 85.02% of all taxes collected in one year.
It certainly would make the average ‘thinking’ taxpayer wonder, just what in hell city councillors have been doing these past years??
Drinking CoolAid I suspect.


Nanaimo Police Officer Assaulted

 Stephen Kieran ROBB
Charged With Assault
A Nanaimo police officer will be off work for a few days nursing a sore jaw after being assaulted during a domestic disturbance early Saturday morning.

At approximately 3:30 AM on Saturday June 25th, officers attended to a home on Athena Place, to deal with an unruly 18 year old male who had assaulted his father. When officers arrived, the male approached and without provocation struck one of them in the face with a closed fist .The two officers were able to subdue the intoxicated male and placed him under arrest. During the arrest a small bag of marihuana was located in his pants pocket.

Stephen Kieran ROBB, 18, was formally charged with two counts of assault, Obstructing a Police Officer and Possession of a Controlled Substance(marihuana). He was lodged in cells over the weekend and is expected to appear before a Provincial court judge today.

" The officer attended to local hospital where he was treated and later released. He will be seeing a specialist in the near future to further assess his jaw,” said Constable Gary O’Brien, media spokesperson for the Nanaimo RCMP.


Things On The Net That Make Ya' Smile

Wonder What VIHA Would Say About This?


E & N Rail Funding From Province

Premier Clark Announces Funding For E & N

Today Premier Christy Clark announced the province will fund the E & N Rail with the amount of $7.5 million which is contingent upon matching funds from the ICF partners.

Half a million of the funding is intended to be used to evaluate the condition of the rail line including the numerous trestles  and bridges on the line.

MP James Lunney was also present at the announcement but apparently he did not bring the federal government wallet with him.


Canada Day Events In Nanaimo 2011

Click Image To Enlarge


Participate In The Process of Democracy

Don’t Handle It Lightly

The dictionary definition:

1.     a: government by the people; especially: rule of the majority
2.     b. a government in which the supreme power is vested in the people and exercised by them directly or indirectly through a system of representation usually involving periodically held free elections

It is most disturbing to see how loosely we handle democracy, given the sacrifices being made globally to embrace it, with its promise of being freed from the rule of dictators. One of its greatest strengths and at the same time greatest weaknesses is that it is a government BY the people ruling by majority. It will however only fully function when the PEOPLE fully participate in the process, and when they do not it degrades into a counterfeit of itself where the unelected take rule by deception.

In Nanaimo for example, we are being governed by a city council upon which sit members who only have about 15% of the total eligible vote. In other words 85% of the total population did not offer them their support. They in turn, are basically directed by the city staff, none of whom are elected but are the ones who actually craft the direction this city will take over the next decades.
Arguably we are paying the price for our lack of involvement in the city in the form of ever increasing taxes to fund such things as a new $16 million office for city staff at a time when water, sewer and roads are being underfunded.

People living in a democracy get the government they deserve, but the good news is, that in a democracy that can be most positive when the general electorate takes the time to get informed, get involved and actively participate in the process.

If you doubt the fact that an active democracy can work, simply take a look at all the 'squeaky' wheels that get politicians attention all the time.


Isaac Hack, Rachel Krusto Arrested

Charged With Possession of Controlled Substance


Monday, June 27, 2011

Nanaimo City Council Meeting June 27, 2011

Nanaimo City Council Meeting
Monday, June 17, 2011 - 7:00 PM
Shaw Auditorium
Vancouver Island Convention Centre
Democracy Works When The Public Stays Involved
It Is Too Important To Leave To Politicians

If you can attend in person that is the best way to see your business being taken care of, second best is watching on Shaw Cable from the comfort of your easy chair, it is also available live online using this link, and last but not least is reading what the local press says went on.


Sunday, June 26, 2011

Things On The Net That Make Ya' Smile

Truckers Dream Retirement Vehicle?


Postal Workers Back To Work

Legislation Passes
Posties Should Be Working Tuesday

After debating for over two days, Bill-C6 finally passed the House of Commons which would see Postal workers back to work as early as Monday. It still must pass the Senate which will debate the bill today (Sunday). The legislation will actually see workers receive an increase which is less than what Canada Post had originally offered.

Whether union members want to blame the government or their own union for this loss is a matter for someone else to debate. In any case, it will be good to start getting junk mail again, as that is about all our household gets via snail mail anymore.


Saturday, June 25, 2011

Miner's Heritage Picnic

Click On Images To Enlarge
Southend Community Picnic Popular Event

The Nanaimo Southend Community Accociation put on their annual Miner's Heritage Picnic which is a very popular event among yound and old, with the emphasis on young. It looked liked all the young people in Nanaimo were at the Park on Saturday while I was there.

The Southend Association is the poster child for what community involvement is supposed to look like. The rest of Nanaimo could take a page from their book and their example of what community action looks like, when you don't just talk about what could be, but get actively involved..

If you missed this years event, you missed an event packed day with something to please everyone, and something to keep the kids actively involved for hours on end. Once again, kudos to this community leader.


Nanaimo City Wages

Nanaimo City Managers 
Among The Highest Paid In The Province

There are a total of 167 employees at Nanaimo City who are earning in excess of $85,000 per year, with the top spot going to city manager Al Kenning at $214,544.00, which puts him in the top one half of one percent among 8181 municipal employees in the province! Among 8181 of his peers, our own Mr. Kenning comes in at number 39!

The following are the 'Top Ten Dogs' at city hall by salary rank. Remember there are still 157 more earning in excess of $85,000 with a great many exceeding the $100,000 mark.

  1. Al Kenning $214,544.00
  2. Andy Laidlaw $183,089.00
  3. Ted Swabey $184,791.00
  4. Doug Holmes $175,695.00
  5. Per Kristensen $144,229.00
  6. Tom Hickey $141,230.00
  7. Toby Seward $139,987.00
  8. Richard Harding $138,186.00
  9. Terry Hartley $137,195.00
  10. Andrew Tucker $134,709.00
  11. Total $1,593,655.00
These ten people account for approximately 2% of your tax bill. All of these top ten, rank in the top 5% for wages paid to public servants among the 8181 recorded in all of British Columbia.

The total paid for wages and salaries on the financial report for the year 2010 was $52,373,548.00 which represents a staggering 64% of every tax dollar collected from Nanaimo taxpayers. Mr. Kenning will tell you this is perfectly sustainable. Does he mean long term? Or just until he can retire?

This elite group of Nanaimo citizens also decided they needed a $16,000,000.00 new office instead of upgrading their existing one for $4,000,000.00. Are any of the taxpayers getting as upset as I am??


Mayor Declares Water May Not Be Safe ?

Water May Not Be Safe
Declares Daily News Story

In todays Nanaimo Daily News, staffer Derek Spalding warns Nanaimo residents that our drinking water may not be as safe as we think.

The article goes on to explain reasons for building a new $65 million water plant and while the story implies our water is not safe, does not tell readers they need to be boiling their water now or not using it at all. Although that would be the only logical conclusion you could draw from the aricle.

As of this time, I have asked the Mayor for a clarification and what his order is to the residents of Nanaimo regarding this alarming declaration that our drinking water may not be safe. In the meantime, it would seem only sensible, to not drink the raw water coming from your tap until this is clarified.

Update: As of Saturday morning the Mayor has not responded to my request for a clarification, calls to the city yard also  have yeilded no response, at 2:00 pm on a Friday afternoon, there was no one who could answer my questions. Presuming the water is unsafe, is still the only prudent course of action, based on this article.

Update: Follows is a copy of the email sent to me from the Mayor. It would seem, that in spite of the picture and the implication the headline is his thoughts on the matter, he claims he does not agree there is any problem with Nanaimo's water:

Nanaimo enjoys a good supply of very high quality drinking water which is safe for people of all ages to enjoy. This has always been my only position and I challenge you to provide me with any part of the Daily News story in which I am quoted otherwise.

Mayor John Ruttan


Friday, June 24, 2011

BC Ferries Extra Summer Sailings

Extra Sailings For Summer Season

Effective June 29, BC Ferries will be adding sailings for the summer sailing season. The Horseshoe Bay - Departure Bay route will be serviced by three ships and will provide up to 22 sailings each day, while the Tsawwassen - Duke Point route will be serviced with 16 daily sailings, seven days per week.

To view all sailing schedules and to make reservations view the Nanaimo Info page by clicking HERE.


Councilor Fred Pattje

Councilor Pattje
Uncertain About Water Treatment

At a recent city hall meeting, when council was debating the merits of asking the public if they wanted to borrow $22 million for a water treatment plant, the new councilor demonstrated his lack of understanding the issue.

He said he was under the impression, that if we did not build the new treatment plant, then VIHA would come in and build it, and then bill us. He was quickly corrected by city manager Mr. Kenning who said, that it meant VIHA would not sign off on the city's water permit, not that they would build one, and bill us for it.

From this exchange it was clear, that the popular councilor has not been doing his homework as regards this $63 million project.


New $16,000,000.00 Staff Office

Mayor Ruttan Says: 
'May have done it differently'

In a recent Nanaimo News Bulletin article Mayor Ruttan is responding to questions about the decision to spend $16 Million on a new office for city staff.

In the article he is quoted as saying: "If we had the luxury of time we may have done it a different way, but we didn't think we did, so we acted".

Does this mean that for some reason he felt rushed to make this decision and was not able to give it due consideration? Is he aware of the date of some certain disaster which could strike the city, imperiling city staff, if we don't act now?

In the interest of securing the immediate safety of the city staff, assuming that is the concern, they should immediately be removed from harms way, and the existing building be brought up to standards. This would mean you are not leaving staff in harms way for another year or so while they await their shiny new office. It would also mean we only spend $4 million instead of $16 million.

The Mayors logic is difficult to agree with.


Thursday, June 23, 2011

Nanaimo Welfare Cheques And Postal Strike

Nanaimo Office Hands Out 2,564 Cheques
Most Recipients Are Direct Deposit

An article in the Times Colonist reports that the Ministry of Social Development will be handing out some 2,564 cheques which usually would have gone through the post office. It would seem the promise to deliver welfare cheques did not happen.

The article went on to say, that in the province the vast majority of welfare clients get their funds via direct deposit, saying that on average 80% receive their money that way. If that average holds true for Nanaimo and 2.564 people represents 20% of the total then 12,820 people in Nanaimo would be relying on welfare to keep body and soul together.


Nanaimo News Notes June 23

Nanaimo Bars To Boston: to satisfy the provincial wager with Boston the Premier was obliged to send the Mayor of Boston some of our world famous Nanaimo Bars.

Smoking Ban Considered: Nanaimo Parks and Rec is once again considering an all out smoking ban in city parks and beaches. It's a great sounding idea, but does that mean we have to hire another army of bylaw officers to enforce it?

Cob Building Demonstration: this Saturday at the Miner's Heritage Picnic there will be a cob construction demonstration showing how to take rocks, clay, sand, water and straw to create sturdy, long lasting structures. An example of cob construction can be seen outside the Thirsty Camel on Victoria Cresent, downtown.

Fire Near Harmac: Nanaimo fire crews assisted by Harmac's fire crew spent about 8 hours putting out what is described as a suspicious fire near the mill. This is the second fire in the area within the past two weeks. The RCMP are now handling the case.

Documentary Film: the Nanaimo Arts Council will be launching a new documentary film at the Port Theatre on June 27 at 7:00 pm. The focus of the film is on the arts and access in Nanaimo.

Fairview Students Support CDC: the Nanaimo Child Development Centre was the benefactor of the efforts of Fairview students who presented the centre with a check to $1,205.30 which were the proceeds from a wide variety of fundraising efforts on the part of the school. Kudos!


Nanaimo Weather Outlook

We Need To Hire A New Weatherman

As the above image from the Weather Channel clearly shows, Nanaimo has to seriously consider hiring a new weatherman.

Obviously he/she is not aware that it is now officially summer and why they keep insisting on providing daytime highs we would usually expect in Oct. or Nov. is a true mystery.

The current weather does mean you don't have to fuss so much about your container grown plants, and hanging baskets as they certainly are not going to dry out too fast right now. However, it also means they are not likely to be growing too fast either.


Killer Whales Off Neck Point Nanaimo

Orcas Off Neck Point Nanaimo

Local photo artist, Sheryl Falls captured these images yesterday while strolling along the water at Neck Point. She was not certain as to the total number, as photographing rather than counting was her primary objective.

The Orcas, or Killer Whales as they are known, are always a welcome delight to anyone strolling our lovely waterfront, they are however, not so welcome if you are a fish or a seal.

Either of the above images can be enlarged for better viewing by simply clicking on them. More of Sheryl's photos can be seen HERE.


Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Nanaimo News Notes June 22

Schools Vandalized: NDSS and Dover Bay school have been vandalized in two year end events. What some might think of as harmless grad pranks are considered criminal acts by police and could result in charges. One such case of vandalism involved pouring industrial strength glue over fifteen outside door locks at NDSS. This 'prank' has cost the taxpayers considerably, as replacing or repairing the damage is expensive.

Dairy Queen renos: the DQ on Nicol Street has been undergoing renovations over the past two months and it is nearly finished. It has been transformed into a Dairy Queen Grill & Chill like the one located at Country Club. This is the first major reno to this location since 1990 and the store has been open in this location since 1966.

Some Teachers Oppose: the move to full day kindergarten in provincial schools. Many teachers prefer the part time days they currently enjoy and have no wish to work full time. However, they will have to if they wish to keep their jobs.

Single Car Accident: on the highway and Duke Point cutoff has sent the lone occupant to hospital after apparently losing control of his vehicle and hitting two cement barriers before coming to a stop. Police believe a medical condition was the underlying cause. The victim was air lifted to hospital and the road was closed for about two hours which meant traffic was rerouted through Cedar.

HST Vote: it is obvious that a much as the Liberals are saying they will abide by the wishes of the people who will have their say about the HST, they clearly are pulling out all the stops trying to convince the public that keeping the 'new and improved' HST is the only way to keep the province from disaster.

City Survey: city council members are considering conducting a satisfaction survey with residents to determine if service levels are satisfactory. This would refer to the delivery of things such as water, sewer, roads etc. They wisely will not be asking what we think about the new annex.

Farmer's Market: the Bowen Road Farmer's Market will be open from 4:30 - 6:00 today at the Beban Park centre on Bowen Rd. This is primarily a food oriented market.


Miner's Heritage Day Picnic June 25

19th Annual Miner's Heritage
Day Picnic This Saturday

The South End Community Assoication is once again hosting the popular family fun event this coming Saturday with something for everyone.

The day kicks off with a pancake breakfast in Deverill Square at 8:00 am. There will be pony rides, the popular pet parade and even a petting zoo for the kids.

You can participate in the Heritage Walk at 11:00 am and enjoy the tea and strawberry shortcake at the Laurie Ramsay Memorial Strawberry Social at 2:00 pm.

Live music courtesy of Trinitude, a barber shop quartet and fiddlers from the Nanaimo Conservatory of Music.

There is a whole host of things to do including story-telling, face painting, an art tent, a climbing wall, a merry-go-round, a bouncy castle, train rides, soccer games, clowns, magicians and maybe even an appearance from Elvis.

Art Bin Painting  At The Picnic

There will be 10 new bins which are ready and primed just waiting for your artist touch!

You can paint a whole bin yourself, or turn it into a fun project by bringing along a friend to help.

If you have an art bin which could use a little touch up be sure to bring it along for a sprucing up.

The bins that are painted at the picnic will soon be put to work on the streets of the south end when they help brighten up the area, and put litter in it's place.

The Art Bin Salon will be open from 10:00 am - 3:00 pm.


Duncan Arrest Causes Local Concern

'High Risk Takedown' At Warmland House

It is being reported in the Cowichan Valley Citizen that last Friday morning at about 6:30 am the North Cowichan/Duncan RCMP executed what is described as a high-risk takedown when it was reported that two men with guns were at the Warmland House shelter trying to sell guns.

It is not clear from the report if one of the men was an actual resident at the Warmland shelter, or simply thought it was a good place to sell guns. According to an unnamed source the two men were is possession of a number of long guns and hand guns which they were attempting to sell at the shelter.

Another report quotes police as saying they suspected the guns were ones which were reported stolen earlier and that the potential sale was drug related.

Apparently Warmland House Manager Anne-Balding was not available for comment, nor would a staff member comment on the incident.

This incident adds more concern to local groups opposed to the low barrier, wet housing projects planned for the Nanaimo hospital area who are still opposed to the high density project planned for the hospital area.


Tuesday, June 21, 2011

E & N Station Reconstruction To Resume

Train Station Work Should Restart Soon

Apparently the Island Corridor Foundation has finalized a mortgage agreement which means that the reconstruction project should be back on track soon.

Anyone by the station recently would have been aware that the site was no longer an active construction site. With this mortgage finalized, it should mean the project is once more back on the rails.


Nanaimo City Council Meeting

Finance/Policy Committee Meeting

At yesterdays FPCOW which saw even the public portion take 2 hours, followed by another in camera meeting, (which incidentally is a catered event) much of the discussion centered around the $62,000,000.00 water treatment plant.

It seems that after spending several million dollars on the process now, city council was uncertain if it is absolutely necessary to proceed with, given the high quality of Nanaimo's drinking water. Currently council had agreed to ask the public if they want to borrow $22,000,000 to fund the plant, in a referendum to be included at the time of the civic election.

Many councilors still seem unclear as to whether VIHA would really be in a position to force Nanaimo taxpayers to comply with their order to build this new $62 million plant.

During the discussions Councillor Bestwick asked if the plant could be funded from reserves, instead of borrowing, and Mr. Kenning said that the new city annex had used up all available reserves.

Councilor Johnstone also said she was uncomfortable with the idea of a referendum, as she felt the taxpayers would not support borrowing the $22,000,000. She did not explain what she meant by the comment, but it raises questions.

If you think this city council needs to challenge VIHA's authority to impose such an onerous burden on Nanaimo taxpayers where our water is perfectly safe now, you should let your counilor know your feelings.


Graffiti Criminal Arrested

Robert James Mitchell Arrested

Police tagged local graffiti criminal, Robert James Mitchell after he was witnessed defacing private property in the Terminal Park mall.

He was observed by officers defacing a recycling bin at about 3:30 pm last Friday. He will remain in custody until June 30.

This fellow was also out on a recognizance of bail for two previous tagging episodes and is well known to local police.

Comment: It would be nice to see the judge in this case, require Mitchell to spend about 200 hours cleaning up these ugly examples of criminal activity that are scarring our city, instead of spending thousands of tax dollars cleaning up after these hoodlums.


Monday, June 20, 2011

Nanaimo Property Taxes Due July 4, 2011

Taxes Still Due Regardless of Postal Strike

"The cheque is in the mail"  won't work as an excuse for not paying your Nanaimo Property taxes on time. They are due by 4:30pm on July 4, 2011 or they are deemed as not being paid on time.

There are many alternate methods of payment shown on the back of your property tax notice. For more information visit the city of Nanaimo website or phone 250-754-4251.


Downtown Nanaimo's Street Party

Father's Day Street Party Downtown

Commercial Street was closed to car traffic from Bastion Street to Terminal Ave. on Sunday, transforming the street into a pedestrian friendly destination. The idea of doing this on a permanent basis has been discussed from time to time during the 40 years I have lived here. Many think it a good idea to transform downtown Nanaimo, but it seems the vehicular traffic proponents always win the day.

This was the first downtown street party organized by the DNBIA since Commercial Street was recognized as the 'Best Street In Canada' recently, and they were inviting all of Nanaimo to come and see why.

The event featured free admission to the Museum, face painting for the kids, a bouncy castle, live music, outdoor barbecue and a power lifting demonstration to boot. Merchants on the street had merchandise outside on the street and a steady stream of strollers/shoppers meandered down the street.

The only thing which could have improved the event, is if the sun had made an appearance, fortunately the rain held off for the organizers of what could prove to be a regular event as downtown Nanaimo works at re-establishing itself as the 'commercial centre' for Nanaimo.


Finance/Policy Committee of the TODAY

FPCOW Meeting Monday June 20, 2011
City Hall Board Room 4:30 pm

If you can attend this meeting, then it is a good way to see how your council and staff take care of your business. Several 'weighty' items are on the agenda which should be watched closely.

To view the agenda for this FPCOW meeting click HERE.


Sets Unofficial Canadian Record

Rhonda Heaslip Lifts 360 LBS.

During the street party held on Sunday on Commercial St. Canadian weight lifting champ, Rhonda Heaslip broke her own record (albeit unofficially) by hoisting the incredible weight of 360 pounds!

Rhonda has set a personal goal for herself to raise $15,000 to help the emergency department at the Nanaimo Regional General Hospital and was receiving donations from the crowd who were amazed at her feats of strength.

Not to be outdone, Nanaimo Mayor Ruttan demonstrated his own ability to perform a 360, albeit his example was to go around in a circle.


Saturday, June 18, 2011

Things On The Net That Make Ya' Smile

Customer Complaints Went Waaayyyy Down
With This New Sign


Nanaimo Jobless Rate Quite Alarming

Jobless Rate In Nanaimo Unexplained

The following comparisons come from a Stats Canada table published for the month of April 2011 which shows comparative jobless rates in 46 Canadian cities.

Nanaimo and Duncan have the dubious distinction of sitting in 44th and 43rd place respectively. Miramichi N.B had 20.3%, Cape Breton NS had 16.7%, Nanaimo B.C. had 16% and Duncan B.C. had 15.3%.

Our numbers are more than twice the national and twice the provincial rate for jobless numbers, and no one has any idea why.

I asked our local MLA, Mr. Krog and he was not able to shed any light on the issue as to what might be happening. I also asked our MP Ms. Crowder and when her assistant contacted me she said I was the first person to bring this alarming trend to her office`s attention. She did inquire of Stats Canada and other agencies, and while the information she provided explained some comparative numbers, basically she said, they really did not know what was behind this alarming trend.

Situations like this do not simply happen overnight, and city hall and city council needs to seriously consider what this trend means for the community`s future ability to continue to support the ever upward spiral of tax increases, which for the average Nanaimo taxpayer is simply not sustainable.


Linley Valley Concerns

Want Green Space Preserved
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Friday, June 17, 2011

Mount Washington Open Father's Day Weekend

Mt. Washington Opens This Weekend

For the second consecutive year, Mount Washington Alpine Resort will open the mountain to skiers and boarders in June.

The resort will open for riding from 11am to 4pm on June 18 and 19 and tickets will be $25 per person. The mountain will determine what lifts will be spinning closer to the event dates.

What started out as wishful thinking for hardcore snow sliders last year has now turned into a bit of a tradition, thanks to back-to-back plentiful snow seasons.

If we can match the picture perfect weather we had during our ski weekend last June, this year should be amazing with all of the snow we have on the mountain.


Father's Day Weekend FREE Fishing

Family Fishing Weekend June 17 - 19, 2011
Fish For Free In BC's Salt or Freshwater
(Some restrictions Apply)

This Father's Day weekend, residents of Canada are invited to Fish for FREE in most of B.C.'s thousands of lakes and non-tidal streams, courtesy of the provincial government.

To be sure where you can fish for free this weekend, either in freshwater or saltwater be sure to check the go fishing website by clicking here.


Port Theatre Nanaimo June 17, 18, 19, 2011

Nanaimo Chamber Orchestra presents
Music for a Midsummer's Eve at Brechin Church
Friday June 17 - 7:30 pm
Vibe Studio presents:
4 Great Dance Shows
Saturday June 18 - various Times
Parksville Ballet presents:
Various Shows Sunday June 19