Terrace Standard

Looking back

BELOW FIND THE TERRACE STANDARD’S annual year in review of significant news events of the past year. This issue contains events from the first six months of 2012. The next issue contains events from the last six months of 2012. Community and sports events are handled the same way.

January

The beginning of 2012 saw record snowfalls with 41.6 cm of snow falling Jan. 1 to ring in the new year.

A series of extreme weather events came next, with more intense snow falls, flooding near Furlong Bay on Hwy37 Jan. 4 which slowed motorists down, and a rock slide 12 km west of Terrace on Jan. 5 that closed the road completely while cleanup crews worked to re-open it.

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Twenty-one-year-old Devin Charles Azak-Davis goes missing in Gitaus, the Kitselas First Nation subdivision located 20 km east of Terrace, Jan. 1. Police discover a different body near his place of disappearance Jan. 5, that of Troy Robert Mason. No links between the two twenty-year-olds are made. Azak-Davis’ body is discovered Jan. 10.

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The city of Terrace appoints a task force Jan. 3 to review the fate of the old Co-op property and make recommendations on its usage by the beginning of 2013.

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Enbridge announces the results of an Ipsos Reid survey it commissioned, released Jan. 5, which shows nearly half of British Columbians surveyed are likely to support the company’s proposed Northern Gateway Pipeline Project.

Results show 48 per cent of those who took  the online survey are in support, with the highest support coming form northern B.C. residents at 55 per cent.

The survey results are criticized by freelance public relations consultant Andrew Frank from Vancouver who works part time for environmental group Forest Ethics.

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Northwest Community College announces a deficit of between $1.6 to $2 million.  This is the precursor to  potential layoff notices being passed to staff.

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Enbridge’s proposed Northern Gateway Pipeline Joint Review Panel hearings begin in Kitimaat Village Jan. 10 – 11. The first round of  federal-review body hearings then land at the Terrace Sportsplex Jan. 12, where the Kitselas First Nation, Kitsumkalum First Nation, and Terrace’s chapter of the Metis Nation of British Columbia each present information relating to the planned project.

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Cheques are mailed to local businesses to which the Shames Mountain Ski Corporation, owner the Shames Mountain Ski Facility, owes money.  Payments amounting to $200,000 are made at 75 cents to the dollar to about 80 local creditors Money for repayments comes from a public-buy-in campaign launched in 2011.

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Gitxan Hereditary chiefs reject a benefits deal signed with Enbridge for its Northern Gateway Pipeline Project after meeting Jan. 17  in a 28 – 8 vote.

The Nisga’a add a voice of opposition to the project through a statement Jan. 19.

 

February

LISIMS/NASS Valley RCMP recommend charges against two brothers who they say operated a “sophisticated crime operation” after executing a search warrant on a residence in the 300 block of Front Street in Laxgalts’ap (Greenville). Police seize nearly $3,000 in cash, two firearms and 24 grams of “rock” cocaine, reported police. Also seized were seven unopened 18-pack cases of beer, three cases of vodka and a flat of coolers, said police.

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The Federation of Post Secondary Educators of BC, a union representing academic workers at Northwest Community College, calls on the provincial Labour Relations Board for a cease and desist order to stop the college from issuing layoff notices to its staff.

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On Feb. 13, Terrace's city council votes to oppose Enbridge's northern gateway pipeline project in a 5 - 2 vote. This move shifted the neutral stance arrived at in a former council decision.

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Gitwangak resident Arthur Loring, well-known in his community and for standing up for Gitxsan treaty rights, dies when a tree strikes him while he is falling trees 60km up the Copper Forest Service Road east of Terrace.

Loring, a chief in the Gitxsan Eagle clan carrying the name of Gu Tsagan, among others, gained recognition in the late 1980s and early 1990s when they pursued claims to more than 22,000 square miles of land in the Hazelton area.

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Terrace’s Public Library gets more money from the city and Regional District of Kitimat Stikine after threatening to shut its doors should it not receive enough for staff wage increases.  A two-week closing period is warded off by $13,640 more granted during a city budget meeting Feb. 29.

March

A three-day teachers strike starts March 5 following months of teachers refusing to perform supervisory and administrative tasks. Teachers are ordered back to all duties March 15 under Bill 22, which halts any job action for six more months while a mediator attempts to resolve the dispute between B.C. teachers and the province.

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Municipal Election spending results are released showing Terrace’s mayor Dave Pernarowski tops campaign spending for November 2011’s mayoral race. The value of Pernarowski’s campaign is $7,033.58,  almost five-times more than his leading election contender Bruce Martindale who spent $1,454.37.

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The Kitsumkalum First Nation is the last First Nations group to sign up for economic benefits resulting from the construction of BC Hydro’s Northwest Transmission Line. At the same time, Kitsumkalum signs a contract for right-of-way clearing and access road construction work from kilometre eight to 62 of the line.

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on March 20, Lisims/Nass Valley officers were called to investigate suspicious activities at a rural acreage at 1718 Nisga’a Hwy at Nass Camp.

Officers speak to two men, who live in two different cabins on the property. Darrell Frederick Grace, 40, flees on foot into a forested area nearby. A police dog service team from Terrace tracks the suspect through thick forest and heavy snow for more than three hours. Officers set up a perimeter around Nass Camp and the Nisga’a Hwy and advise area residents and motorists of the happenings. Grace is not found.

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Skeena Bulkley Valley MP Nathan Cullen might not be the leader of the federal NDP party — but his third-place ranking on March 24’s NDP leadership race means he was one of the top contenders. Cullen was eliminated from the race after the third ballot, Thomas Mulcair becomes the party’s leader and Brian Topp finishes second.

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NORTHWEST COMMUNITY withdraws a mass notice of potential layoffs issued in January following two days of informal hearings conducted by the provincial Labour Relations Board. Instead, individual instructors and other affected employees – ones who have already been told they will either lose their jobs altogether or face reduced hours – will get those notices in a different fashion.

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March 26, city council has turned down a Terrace and District Chamber of Commerce request to freeze tax mill rates at 2011 levels and to form a committee to look at how property taxes are calculated in the first place. This request came from chamber efforts to keep property taxes low for business but would have shifted some of the burden onto the shoulders of residential taxpayers.

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BC Hydro has pushed the price tag of its Northwest Transmission Line to $561 million — past what was regarded as an upper-end cost just over a year ago. The new figure is listed in the   provincial crown corporation’s service plan for the years 2012 to 2015 and was posted to its website in  February. It’s more than the range of prices provided in late 2010 – from $364 million to $525 million – and substantially more than the $404 million that was being commonly used in press releases and other government pronouncements for several years. The reason? More details and higher costs, says BC Hydro official Greg Reimer.

 

 

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