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December 2011 Archives

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A Christmas Carol of the Airwaves

CBC has a long history of performing Charles Dickens' "A Christmas Carol" in churches, libraries, and community groups across the country. But this year at Daybreak, we decided to do something a little different. We invited some of northern B.C.'s familiar voices to join CBC hosts and personalities to take on different readings. Over the past week, we've broadcasting these readings during Daybreak North, and as we head off the air for the rest of 2011, we wanted to share these readings with you. Bear in mind that this performance was broken up into two parts over a week of broadcasts, so the transitions are a bit rough-- we wanted you to know who was reading which part. The hosts introducing the readings this week were Carolina DeRyk, Betsy Trumpener, Andrew Kurjata and Robert Doane. The vast majority of this performance was produced by Jenifer Norwell and Betsy Trumpener in Prince George and Carolina DeRyk and George Baker in Prince Rupert, with post-production from Wil Fundal and Robert Doane.

Enjoy!

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Daybreak North's Christmas Carol.mp3


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Local businessman sees future in video rental stores

While video rental companies like Rogers and Blockbuster are being squeezed out by online video, Sahel Nazari stills sees a future in the neighbourhood video rental store. He's just opened new locations in Prince George and Fort St. John, and he told us about his plans.


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Interviews:

Filipino community in Prince George awaits word from family, friends

The death toll in the Philippines is rising in the wake of a devastating storm.That has many Prince George residents on edge as they await word on friends and family. Lilly Levine visits her family in the Philippines frequently, but has been unable to reach them since the storm. She told us about the emotional devastation she and other Filipinos are facing.


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Victoria Towers landlords being taken to court by City of Vancouver

Earlier this week, we discovered that the landlords of the Victoria Towers apartment building in Prince George have a lengthy legal history behind them.

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Now, CBC investigative reporter has done some digging on complaints the landlords are facing in Vancouver. She dug up this tale of bed bugs and mold. She also found the City of Vancouver is taking the family to court on allegations of failing to maintain the building and ignoring a string of orders to make repairs

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Former Victoria Towers residents are still hoping to be refunded money they paid for November rent. No cause of the November 3 fire at Victoria Towers has been released. You can read the CBC news story from Vancouver here.



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Interviews:

Prince George named most dangerous city in Canada by Macleans

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Prince George Mayor Shari Green and Prince George RCMP Superintendent Eric Stubbs and a media conference regarding the city's designation as most dangerous in Canada (CBC/Andrew Kurjata)


Is it safe to walk these streets? It depends on who you ask. The new issue of Macleans magazine has placed Prince George in the position of number one most dangerous city in Canada.

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Interviews:

Does wind chill matter?

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We've been getting some blowback over our use of wind chill in our weather reports. So we went right to an expert: Claire Martin is an award-winning meteorologist with CBC. She and Betsy discussed what's more important: the actual temperature, or what it feels like when the wind blows.


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Canada's missing women attract UN attention

Canada could be coming under international scrutiny. On Tuesday December 13th, it was revealed that two women's advocacy groups are appealing to the United Nations to investigate Canada's missing and murdered Aboriginal women.

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Report finds gaps in transport and environment

Major gaps in Canada's environmental protection act, could be putting northern highways, railroads and waterways at risk. On Tuesday December 13th, the federal environment commissioner released his annual report. It found that federal organizations including Environment Canada is having a hard time enforcing existing regulations and punishing offenders.

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City of Prince George responds to bio solids blockade

The City of Prince George is considering legal action to get bio solids back in Salmon Valley. Last Friday, residents blockaded a rural road. Their goal was to stop treated sewage from being transported to a local farm where it would be used as fertilizer.

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Interviews:

Mr. Big Stings may not always work

Not guilty. That was the verdict in the trial of Jesse Norman Sweder late last week. He was accused of murder in the death of a man shot in Prince George in 2004. Included in the evidence against him: A taped confession made to an undercover cop posing as a Hell's Angel member.

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Interviews:

Ownership of Victoria Towers in Prince George investigated

The people made homeless by the Victoria Towers apartment fire last month are finally getting back on their feet. They've found new homes thanks to a joint effort between the province, the city of Prince George, and numerous community groups and volunteers. But conspicuously absent from those who helped these displaced residents out, the landlords of the building they once called home. Daybreak's Andrew Kurjata did some digging into who's behind the company that owns and manages the building, and came up with over 50 court cases and an arrest warrant.

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Wyoming farmer says fracking wrecked his water

It's news that is going down like a glass of contaminated water. The Environmental Protection Agency in the U-S just released a first-of a kind draft study. It links fracking chemicals to ground water contamination, in Wyoming. The study was launched, three years ago, because of concerns raised by local residents about the smell and taste of their water.

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B.C. gets Independent Investigations Office

Richard Rosenthal has his work cut out for him, in the months ahead. He's just been announced as the chief civilian director of BC's first Independent Investigations Office.

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Prince George doctor leaves after changes to geriatric care

Love and bureaucracy are driving Dr. Douglas Drummond out of the north.

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Enbridge:

Gitxsan shut down treaty office

The Northern Gateway Pipeline project has created a rift in the Gitxsan community in Northern BC. Three negotiators from the Gitxsan Treaty office were fired over a deal they struck with Enbridge.

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CSI techniques used in Whistler sled dog killing

People across the province were riveted, last winter, by the investigation into the deaths of hundreds of sled dogs in Whistler.

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Enbridge, Interviews:

Gitxsan fire negotiating team

News of First Nations support over the proposed Northern Gateway project is exposing deeper division within the Gitxsan community.  

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Prosperty Mine will have 90 day delay

It's a bump in the mineshaft for a proposed Cariboo mine. Last Friday, a provincial court judge granted the injunction to stop Taseko Mines' exploration work on the band's traditional territory.

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Daybreak North gives a lesson on city council

As councils prepare to gather across the north, its time for a little "City Council" 101. Newly elected mayors and council are gearing up to govern for the next three years

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Interviews:

Gitxan support for pipeline not across the board

Many are opposed. But not everybody.

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CBC's Food Bank Day

Solving the poverty conundrum. We've been talking about the need that exists for food banks across the north. But the need doesn't exist in a vacuum.

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It is a 'side of the road' buffet of riches. Have you ever wondered what happens to moose and deer that get hit on northern highways? Well, at least some of it ends up at the Salvation Army food bank.

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Prince George councillor says there's no easy to fix to make sure renters are safe

Close to 100 Prince George residents were displaced by an apartment fire earlier this month. No cause has been determined, but some have expressed concerns about how the building was maintained. CBC contacted the Residential Tenancy Branch about the building, and in an email they replied:

"· The Residential Tenancy Act requires landlords maintain a rental property in a state that is suitable for occupancy - and meets all health, safety and building standards required by law. · However, the province has no jurisdiction to force property owners to fix-up their buildings - that responsibility lies with local government.
· Municipalities establish standards of maintenance that are enforced through the local government's own by-law enforcement procedures.
· We can't comment on who applied to RTB, but we can tell you that a dispute was heard and RTB ordered repairs to be made to the building and provided monetary compensation to the tenant applicant.
· There was no further application, so we don't know if the landlord complied with the repairs. Again, enforcement of safety codes is the responsibility of local by-law enforcement officers."

Earlier this week, Daybreak spoke with Tom Durning of the Tenant Resource and Advisory Centre. That organization strongly encourages municipalities to have a Standards of Maintenance Bylaw to help make sure landlords keep their buildings in good repair. From their site:

"Municipal Standards of Maintenance (SoM) Bylaws allow local government to force landlords to keep their rental buildings in good repair. Although not all municipalities have SoM bylaws, TRAC strongly encourages all municipalities to not only pass these bylaws but strictly enforce them."

Prince George, however, has no such bylaw. Murry Krause is a city councillor who's been looking into this issue. He says while there is a need to provide  renters, especially those with low-incomes, with safe and secure rental units, there's no silver bullet to fix the problem. He joined Betsy Trumpener in studio:


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Daybreak Shuffle, Interviews:

Jeremy Stewart goes from grunge to galleries

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Prince George musician Jeremy Stewart started out with a love of Nirvana, and has since moved into scoring art gallery openings. He spoke with Daybreak North's Andrew Kurjata about his music, ideas, and whether it's more difficult to play with a computer or a live band.

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Terrace library meets funding crunch

The Terrace library might be operating for fewer days in an effort to save money. Carolina DeRyk spoke with Patti Chapman, chair of the Terrace Library, and Dave Pernarowski, mayor of Terrace, about the issue.


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