Part One: Trail Times, year in review

Trail Times reviews news and highlights from January to April 2016 for Greater Trail.

January

1 A smaller but enthusiastic crowd of 61 swimmers took the chilly plunge in the annual Polar Bear Swim. With an air temperature of -8C, the 4C water temperature proved downright balmy. Although the amount of bathers was lower than in previous years, there was still a crowd of well over 100 people standing on shore cheering them on.

2 Layla Mackenzie McTeer became the first baby born at the Kootenay Boundary Regional Hospital in 2016. She arrived at 8:25 a.m. weighing six pounds and 15 ounces. Proud parents are Melanie Spray and Joey McTeer.

5 The 2016 assessments for the Kootenay Columbia region show asssessments in the City of Trail dropped by seven per cent. A typical Trail home valued at $166,000 in 2015 is now valued at $155,000. Other regions such as Montrose, Fruitvale, and Warfield all showed a slight increase in assessments.

7 The Kootenay Boundary Regional Hospital Health Foundation announced it has surpassed its two-year goal of raising $400,000 for its Urology Campaign. The foundation collected almost $500,000 in nine months.

7 The City of Trail announces that by the end of the month it will begin enforcing a $500 fine to crack down on illegal dumping on private properties.

10 An exhibit depicting the lives of Italian-Canadians interned during the Second World War opens at the Trail Memorial Centre. The exhibit, on loan from the Columbus Centre in Toronto, is making its only western Canadian stop in Trail.

11 Warfield councillor Tom Milne tenders his resignation. Warfield puts out call to fill vacancy.

12 City of Trail announces it was denied its bid for a Canada 150 grant, which would have moved the skate park project forward. Council to revisit options.

16 Mike Walsh wins the byelection in Montrose to fill the councillor seat vacated by Mark Reid.

24 A 49-year-old Washington state man died at Red Mountain Resort. He had been reported missing by friends and was discovered by ski patrol in a “marked natural depression near the Motherlode Chair.”

25 Fruitvale’s Power Tech Electric is awarded the $450,000 contract to install the LED lights on the Victoria St. Bridge in time for Silver City Days in May.

February

1 Teck Metals was in Rossland provincial court facings fines on two separate chemical spills in 2013 and 2014. The company was expected to plead guilty to multiple counts however, the court case was set over until the end of the month.

Veteran Emile Gobat honoured

5 Al Plamondon and his son Matt headed for an all-expenses paid trip to the Super Bowl in San Francisco after the Fruitvale man won a nationwide contest. Plamondon entered his name at the Canadian Brewhouse in Edmonton and won the subsequent reverse draw.

8 The city has selected Stantec as architectural prime consultant for the upcoming Riverfront Centre that will house the new library and museum. The company will develop detailed plans for the new building.

12 The City of Trail has narrowed the list of names for the new pipe-pedestrian bridge down to seven and opened the voting to the public. The winner will be

15 Federal gas tax dollars were doled out locally with almost $275,000 shared between Rossland, Warfield , Fruitvale and Salmo. Most of the money will be allocated for Official Community Plans and asset management.

17 In its latest quarterly report, Teck announced that Teck Trail Operations set an annual production record for silver and zinc in 2015.

18 Beaver Valley Recreation is pitching in with the overhaul of the Montrose skate park, which will be renamed the Beaver Valley Skate Park. The group has applied for Columbia Basin Trust grants to help with the proposed $300,000 project.

29 Teck Trail Operations was fined $3.4 million relating to 13 accidental discharges that occurred between November 2013 and February 2015. The amount will be distributed between an environmental damage fund and habitat conservation.

March

2 Erosion concerns are rising in Oasis after a portion of Hanna Drive began sloughing. There was also concern for a few homes in Oasis, which eventually

prompted a meeting with residents and officials on how to deal with the problem. Commitments from several levels of government were made however, one family was advised to leave their home as a precaution.

7 Montrose will get better lighting along the highway but will remove one crosswalk it announced at its regular council meeting. The response for better lighting was answered by the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure. However, the ministry noted Montrose has too many crosswalks to sufficiently light them all, thus the removal of one.

10 Due to increasing abuse of the land, the Fort Shepherd region has been closed to motorized vehicles. The group was protects the land said abuse by off-road vehicles driving through streams and mud bogging has damaged the land’s sensitive ecosystem. Teck followed suit by closing the gate to its property, which prompted local enthusiasts to voice their concern.

14 The City of Trail announces the name of the new pipe-pedestrian bridge the Columbia River Skywalk. A list of 80 suggestions was whittled down to a top-6 then decided upon by council and an online vote.

15 The Charles Bailey Theatre in Trail continues its makeover with the unveiling of a new logo and continued direction on making it a hub of arts and entertainment in the community. The change, which began in 2013, has seen the facility attract soldout crowds to concerts as well as more use from the arts groups in the community.

23 Planned road closures in the Pend D’Oreille Valley have been put on hold by the Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resources. A local backlash and lack of public consultation prompted the ministry to suspend its plan until further notice.

30 The Regional District of Kootenay Boundary voted unanimously to close the reuse centres and its landfills in Trail, Greenwood and Grand Forks. Citing concerns from staff in dealing with the public as well as the proliferation of online outlets for reusable items, the district opted to close the sites.

April

2 A Trail man wanted by police in B.C. and Alberta was picked up in Calgary. Joel Hutchinson was wanted on un-endorsed warrants as well as charges related to the “Aysia Peters matter,” said police.

4 Trail airport manager Don Goulard announced he will be leaving his post tot ake a similar position in Nanaimo.

9 Arlene Parkinson wins a Warfield byelection for the vacated councillor position.

13 A spill at Teck’s Trail Operations was caused by a break in a line carrying runoff water from an old landfill to a treatment plant.

20 B.C. Education Minister Mike Bernier visited School District 20 and met with the school board during a tour of the province’s school districts.

26 A visit by an official of the B.C. Assessment Authority with Trail council failed to answer any questions why there was such a flux in local property values in this year’s assessment. Citing near assessment methods undertaken by the government, Ramaish Shah told council it led to fluctuations in home values.

27- The City of Trail announces it has purchased the former Trail Trophies and Engraving building and will demolish it to make way for the new Riverfront Centre.

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