December 2012 Archives

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Death row dog gets second chance, with strict conditions

Dog owner Dave Smith has been fighting to save his Shepherd-cross from a death sentence. There may be a way, but he'll have to give up his pet (Brady Strachan/CBC).

You may remember the story of Diesel the dog.

After numerous complaints about aggressive behavior, Diesel was impounded and scheduled to be put down.

His owner, Dave Smith fought the district, taking them to court.The case took two years to go through the court system, while Diesel stayed at the animal control pound.

In the end, the court ruled Diesel was a public safety threat and had to be destroyed.

But this week, the district offered to release Diesel -- on strict conditions.

One of those conditions is that Diesel get a new owner -- anyone but Dave Smith.

That's because the judge in the case accused Smith of "wanton indifference" and called him "profoundly irresponsible."

Paul Macklem is the chief administrative officer for the Central Okanagan Regional District.

He says Diesel's life is now squarely in Mr. Smiths' hands, and in the meantime, had this to say to critics:

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Dave Smith says he also wants Diesel released from the pound and the euthanization order, but he says won't accept the offer as it stands.

Smith says he's in discussions with his lawyer and plans to file a counter proposal.

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Idle No More movement gains momentum in B.C.

Hundreds of people and their children attended an Idle No More protest in Penticton on Friday. (Brady Strachan/CBC)

The Idle No More movement is gaining momentum in First Nations communities across Canada.

The movement began with four women in Saskatchewan, to raise awareness about the latest Omnibus budget: Bill C-45

The bill includes changes to the Indian Act that make it easier for aboriginal people to sell land to non-First Nations.

It also changes the Navigable Waters Act, which removes thousands of lakes and streams from federal protection.

Friday, a big rally took place in Ottawa with support rallies throughout the country.

Lisa Luscombe is one of the organizers of the Cranbrook rally.
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COLUMN: Waubgeshig Rice: A peoples' movement that is Idle No More

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Memorable stories of 2012: Bob the Barber's bionic chair

Barber Bob Egely shows off his new hydraulic chair in June, 2012. It allows him to manoeuvre around his customers. (Brady Strachan/CBC)

This week on Daybreak we've been looking back at some of the most memorial stories we've covered in 2012.

Today's item comes from the North Okanagan.

In 2010, Bob Egely had both legs amputated because of a medical condition and after 40 years in business he was forced to close his barber shop.

In June, reporter Brady Strachan went to Enderby to meet 'Bob the Barber,'  and check out his new high-tech chair that allowed him to get back in the saddle, clippers in hand.
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Kelowa family of five homeless after fire

Jasmine,13, Justin, 11, Isabel, 5, and Madeline, 18 months and mother Lorelei Mitchner lost their rental home to a fire just a week before Christmas. (Facebook)
The decorations were hung, the the tree was up and Lorelei Mitchner and her four children were getting ready to celebrate their first Christmas in their home in Rutland.

But that won't happen.

Tuesday morning they were sent running from their home, with their lives and not much else.

Daybreak host Chris Walker spoke with Lorelei Wednesday at the hotel which she, 13-year-old Jasmine, 11-year-old Justin, 5-year-old Isabel and 18-month-old Madeline are calling home -- at least for the next couple days.

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The Shortbread Finalists!


Ladies and gentlemen, we present for your munching pleasure, the finalists for Daybreak's great shortbread quest.

Here they are, in the order we baked them (click 'read more' for the WINNER!)

Traditional Scottish Shortbread
Laura Banta, Fauquier, BC

1 pound of butter
1 cup of icing sugar
4 cups of flour

  • Cream butter until soft
  • Add the sugar gradually, blending until very light and creamy
  • Add the flour gradually
  • Pat dough onto floured board, shape as desired and place on baking sheet
  • Bake in a 350 F oven (180 C) for about 10 minutes (might be less depending on the oven)

Read more »

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Wine selections for people feeling 'Pinched'

Great-tasting budget-friendly wine selections can often be found in the international aisle (Shiral Tobin/CBC)

Wine can make a great last minute gift during the holiday season. Our "Pinched" columnist, Shiral Tobin helps you uncork savings that could fool even fancy wine experts!

Inexpensive party wine

2008 Castillo de Almansa, 'Reserva' Almansa DO, Spain, $12.24 SKU# 270363
2011 JeanJean, 'Ormarine' Picpoul de Pinet, France, $13.99, SKU: #124834

Last minute gifts
2011 Pewsey Vale, Riesling, Eden Valley, Australia, $23.99 (SKU #617126)
2010 Koyle, Reserva Syrah, Alto Colchagua, Chile, $16.99 (SKU# 748228)
2006 Ciacci Piccolomini, Brunello di Montalcino DOCG, Italy $75 (SKU: #675926)
Sparkling Wine:
nv Louis Bouillot, 'Rose Perle' Crémant de Bourgogne, France, $23.95 (SKU : #SKU: #494856)

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End of the World exhibition at Penticton Art Gallery

end of world.jpg
Penticton Art Gallery curator Paul Crawford (left) and Vernon musician Mikkal Waters (right) who preformed as part of the 6 week exhibition. (Gillianne Richards/CBC)
It's an event six weeks in the making.

Since the beginning of November the Penticton Art Gallery has invited a range of artists to go beyond a typical exhibition.

Each Friday the artists staged a musical extravaganza at the gallery, followed by weekend workshops on the art, culture and concerns of their communities.

Topics ranged from DJ'ing to community building; First Nations hip hop to sustainability and more.

It all comes to an end with a big party this Friday -- also a rather auspicious day for those concerned with the Mayan calendar.

Daybreak's Gillianne Richards was sent on a cultural reconnaissance mission to find out the story behind the happening.

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Winter driving advice from a veteran commercial trucker

A semi-trailer unit shrouded in blowing snow. (CBC)
If you're heading out onto the highways this holiday season, you might want to take some advice from a pro.

Edgar Murdoch began driving truck before many of us were born; He's held a commercial drivers license for 61 years.

He writes a column for Pro-Trucker Magazine and loves to share his stories and opinions about driving on our highways.

The CBC's Leah Shaw met with Edgar to discover what he's learned about driving on ice and snow.

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The Christmas Camel: the latest greatest holiday story

(Image courtesy of: Red Sun Camels
We've all heard of a Christmas Carol and T'was the Night Before Christamas.

But we at Daybreak, are introducing a new holiday story: The Christmas Camel!!

Peter Robin is an author raised in northern B.C. who now lives in Kelowna. He recently put together a collection of stories loosely based on his childhood in Fort St James.

Here he is reading one of his tales: A Christmas Camel (edited for radio)

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Teck Resources ordered to clean slag from Columbia River

A US federal court has ruled that Teck Resources must clean up contamination of the Columbia river.

Over a 65-year period Teck's smelter at Trail dumped at least 9 million tonnes of slag or smelter waste rock into the river, including metals such as lead, mercury, zinc and arsenic.

And while winning a court case is one thing, getting the clean-up underway is another matter.

But as Jim Pendowski, the toxic cleanup program manager with Washington State Department of Ecology, explains to Daybreak host Chris Walker, the government will push as hard as it can to get the clean up started.

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Disposible electronics clutter recycling station

Planet Earth Recycling owner Paul Marois stands in the middle of piles of old tube-televisions and electronics. (Adrian Nieoczym/CBC)

Out with the "old," and in with the new.

Lots of people will be getting electronics as gifts this holiday season, and often the new stuff will replace the old.

So if Santa brings you a new 50-inch flat screen TV, you'll have to figure out what to do that now-useless tube television.

To help, we sent Daybreak's Adrian Nieoczym over to Planet Earth Recycling Services in West Kelowna, where he met with owner Paul Marois.

He began by describing the stacks of stuff in his shop.

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Missing Women report too superficial, says professor

Commissioner Oppal's report slammed police for botching their investigations and has recommended a single regional police force be created for Greater Vancouver. (CBC)

Missing Women Inquiry commissioner Wally Oppal has concluded police failure and society bias allowed serial killer Robert Pickton to carry on murdering women for years.

Oppal's report, released Monday, is entitled "Forsaken." At about 1500 pages, it contains 63 recommendations, and says police investigations would have been different if the women hadn't been poor, aboriginal and drug-addicted prostitutes.

Melissa Munn is a sociology professor from Okanagan College, who says Oppal's report is superficial, lacks strong language, generalizes too much and doesn't hold individual officers accountable.

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Memorable Story: Keeping Nsyilxcen alive

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The Bent family: Liz, Levi, Leroi, Chantae and cousin Vanessa Kruger. Leroi shows off his dancing stick and sister Chantae smiles for the camera (Adrian Nieoczym/CBC)
As we head towards the end of the year, Daybreak is highlighting some of our most memorable stories from the past year.

Associate producer, Adrian Nieoczym's most memorable story is from June. It was part of our First Voices series that highlighted efforts to revitalize aboriginal languages.

Adrian met up with the Bents, a First Nations family near Penticton, who speak Nsyilxcen, not just on special occassions, but everyday around the home.

He spoke with Daybreak host, Chris Walker, about why the story was so memorable:
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And here is the original story from last June:
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Memorable Story: A kid and a sandcastle

Sand art and play at île du Havre Aubert in Îles-de-la-Madeleine Benoit Rochon/Wikimedia Commons)
As we near the end of the year, Daybreak is taking a look back at some of our most memorable stories of 2012.

Host Chris Walker's favourite story is about a kid and a sandcastle. Back in July Chris met up with a boy named Jacob and his grandmother, Hilda, on the shores of Okanagan Lake.

Here is Chris and Alya Ramadan talking about why this was his most memorable story of the year.

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And here is Chris's original story from last July.

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High school choirs join Okanagan Symphony for Christmas

The Okanagan Symphony Orchestra is celebrating the festive season like never before.

Their upcoming Christmas Reflections concert features seasonal readings from authors like Dylan Thomas, Rudyard Kipling and O. Henry, Christmas sing-alongs and the premiere of the Okanagan Symphony Youth Choir.

The youth choir consists of students from six Okanagan Valley high schools, and they'll be performing in Penticton Dec. 21, Kelowna on Dec. 22 and in Vernon on Dec. 23,  2012 at 7 p.m.

Okanagan Symphony Orchestra Rosemary Thompson tells Daybreak guest host Alya Ramadan what more is in store.

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Sharrows best option for Kelowna's Bernard Ave.

Cycling advoates worry there's not enough room for cyclists to safely bike flanked by vehicles and parallel-parked cars (Adrian Nieoczym/CBC)
Cycling advocates in Kelowna are upset about the use of sharrows on the newly renovated section of Bernard Avenue.

A sharrow is a picture of a bicycle with two arrows above it, and it's meant to indicate that the roadway is to be shared by both cars and bikes.

To explain why the city went with sharrows as part of its downtown revitalization plan, Daybreak guest host spoke with Pat McCormick, an urban Design Planner with the City of Kelowna.

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Cyclists worry about Bernard Avenue 'sharrows'

Sharrows now line the right hand side of Bernard Avenue in Kelowna. (CBC)
At first glance, it looks like the symbol for a bike lane, but it's not.

The image of bicycle with two arrows above it is called a "sharrow," and when the City of Kelowna reopened a section of Bernard Avenue after a three month facelift, the road featured sharrows on both sides.

That is raising concerns among some cyclists.

Landon Bradshaw, the president of the Kelowna Area Cycling Coalition, spoke with Daybreak host, Chris Walker.

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Porcupine quills have medical use, say Harvard researchers

Porcupine quills have a unique way of piercing and staying embedded in the skin. Researchers at Harvard and MIT are looking at how that information can be used medically. (CBC)

They may be a pain when they become stuck in a dog's snout, but some day porcupine quills might be instrumental in saving your life.

Scientists from Harvard and MIT have learned some helpful things from the way porcupine quills pierce and stay in the skin, and that could revolutionize aspects of the medical profession.

Jeffrey Karp is one of the researchers behind the discovery, he joins host Chris Walker from a studio at Harvard University.

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Grand Slam of Curling takes to Kelowna ice

Norway competes at the 2011 Grand Slam of Curling in Sault Ste Marie, ON. (Anil Mungal/Capital One)

For the first time, Prospera Place in Kelowna opens its ice to curlers, and this will be no ordinary "rock show".

The best teams from Canada, as well as a Swiss rink, will compete in the second leg of the Grand Slam of Curling.

The opening draw Wednesday night will be enough to send fans hurrying hard for a ticket. Kevin Koe, the 2010 world champion, goes head to head with hometown favourite Jim Cotter.

Jock Tyre is the General Manager of the Kelowna Curling Club, and spoke with Daybreak host Chris Walker, in studio.

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Creston man celebrates end of world with bash

Maya calendar (Thierry Ehrmann/Flikr)
Dec 21st could be just another day... or, according to some, it could be the end of the world.

The Mayan calendar ends on that date and some New Age spiritualists believe it marks the end of the world.

Vern Gorham, a Creston musician, sees the whole thing as a opportunity for a party. He has the hall and entertainment booked, but he's got a bit of a problem.

He explains, to Daybreak host Chris Walker.

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Split focus skyrockets student stress

Student stress levels are higher than ever, report mental health centres at campuses across Canada. (Marcelo del Pozo/Reuters)
tudent stress levels are higher than ever, according to mental health service centres on campuses across the country.

Universities across the country are trying to do more to help students deal with stress, but the question remains: why are students' stress levels so high?

Sarah Hansen is the director of wellness at the University of Northern B.C., she tells Daybreak host Chris Walker part of it is that students are now forced to split their focus as they raise
families and work to pay for tuition.

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Crackdown on illegal docks on Okanagan Lake

Docks along Okanagan Lake in Summerland. The province is giving owners of illegal docks on Okanagan Lake a chance to bring the structures in line with the law (Jeremy Heibert/Flikr)
People who have docks on Okanagan Lake could soon get a sinking feeling.

The Ministry of Forest, Lands and Natural Resource Operations is in the middle of a pilot project to ensure every dock on the lake is legal.

Illegal docks can harm habitat and cut off public access to the waterfront, and the province will be pressing owners of illegal docks to get them up to code.

Patrick Tobin is the Regional Manager of Compliance and Enforcement for the Thompson Okanagan Region, and is running the pilot program which will eventually be extended to other lakes in the province.

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Public impressed with Bernard Avenue facelift

Parts of Bernard Avenue now features wider sidewalks, new modern lamp posts, and parallel parking. The rest of the city's main street will see the same changes, in phases, by the summer of 2014. (Adrian Nieoczym/CBC)
After more than three months, Kelowna's Bernard Avenue has finally reopened to traffic.

It's the end of the first phase of a $14-million project to revitalize the city's main street.

Between St. Paul and Richter Streets, Bernard Avenue now features wider sidewalks, new trees and giant light poles made of wood and steel.

But to accomplish all this, the city also reduced the street from four lanes to two and reduced the amount of parking.

Daybreak's Adrian Nieoczym went for a walk along Bernard to find out what the people and businesses there think about the changes so far.

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Ten Thousand Villages finds temporary home after fire

For most retail businesses, Christmas is a critical time.

And when disaster strikes during the holidays, that can be devastating to a business' bottom line.

At the end of November, fire tore through a strip mall just outside downtown Kelowna, destroying four businesses and closing several others -- including Ten Thousand Villages.

The store sells crafts, clothing and items made in developing countries, with much of the proceeds going back to the craftspeople.

The location at Harvey and Burtch is now closed -- but the store is open, they've set up a temporary shop at 1771 Harvey (Highway 97).

Daybreak's David French spoke with Ten Thousand Villages manager Cindy Henderson about the importance of keeping the store open during the holidays.

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Chinese workers at centre of Tumbler Ridge controversy

Two hundred Chinese nationals could come to B.C. as the mine is developed. (Teck Resources/Canadian Press)
A group of 200 workers from China are at the center of controversy in B.C.

They've been brought to Tumbler Ridge by HD Mining to work in a new underground coal mine.

But a number of unions say Canadians should be doing those jobs instead.

It's ended up in a court battle that has created uncertainty around a project worth more than a billion dollars.

CBC Reporter Greg Rasmussen has just returned from Tumbler Ridge, and brings back the story of the Chinese workers who hope to start a new life here, and the Canadians who say they were qualified to do the work, but were never hired.

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Kelowna man gives back to atone for what he took

People who rely on the food bank often use it as a temporary measure, to make ends meet while paying off other bills.

Our next story is about a man who once relied on the food bank, and who now one of their big donors.

Joel Kutschera is the president of local Kelowna company, Vital Waters. He donates money, and lots of water, to the Kelowna food bank.

Daybreak host Chris Walker sat down with Joel to talk about his work with the food bank, and as you'll hear, the conversation took an unexpected turn.
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Chef invents carrot bacon at CBC Food Bank Day

Delta Grand Okanagan chef Stuart Klassen and Daybreak kitchen helper Gillianne Richards dive into two hampers from the Kelowna Food Bank to cooks up some creative creations. (Gillianne Richards/CBC)

For our special CBC Food Bank show, we challenged Delta Grand Okanagan chef Stuart Klassen to make a world class meal, Iron Chef-style from the food found in a Kelowna Food Bank hamper.

With no real meat to work with, Chef Klassen invented carrot bacon as part of the first course, whipped up something scrumptious from a box of Kraft Dinner for the main and made a lovely dessert to finish the meal.

He did it in less than 2 hours, and host Chris Walker got to taste, and judge, the results. And at the end of the segment Vernon's own Andrew Allen performs one of his most popular songs.

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There's still time to donate to food banks in your community.

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RCMP officer Geoff Mantler changes assault plea to guilty

An assault trial in Kelowna ended abruptly Wednesday afternoon when Cst.Geoff Mantler pleaded guilty just minutes before he was expected to take the stand.

The RCMP officer originally pleaded not guilty, but now admits he kicked Buddy Tavares in the face during an arrest in 2010.

The central issue of the trial was whether the kick was justified under the circumstances or constituted an assault.

Hundreds of thousands of people saw the kick after it was captured on video and posted online.

Daybreak's Brady Strachan has been covering the trial and told host Chris Walker about the public's, and Buddy Tavares', reaction to the guilty plea.

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Supporters and critics pleased with Kelowna council

Kelowna City Council: (Standing L-R) Councillor Robert Hobson, Councillor Gail Given, Mayor Walter Gray, Councillor Colin Basran, Councillor Andre Blanleil (Seated L-R) Councillor Luke Stack, Councillor Mohini Singh, Councillor Maxine DeHart, Councillor Gerry Zimmermann (Contributed by: City of Kelowna)

One year ago, December 6, 2011, Kelowna's new mayor and city council were sworn into office.

Mayor Walter Gray was only sort of new, having reclaimed the office after six years on the sidelines, but five of the eight councillors were first-timers on council.

And there were big hopes for this crew.

They had defeated a group of incumbents in a hard-fought and sometimes bitter election.

So to mark their first anniversary Daybreak decided to take a look at how they are doing.

CBC's Adrian Nieoczym has been paying close attention to Kelowna city hall and shares his observations.
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You can WIN at CBC Daybreak Food Bank Day!


CBC Foodbank day is this Friday, and while Daybreak may not be host to all the stars that will be in Vancouver (pictured above), we have some special incentive prizes for people who donate to foodbanks in our area!

Please note: winners of an incentive prize will not receive a tax receipt for their donation

1) Book lover's prize (giveaway between 6:30 and 7:00 a.m. PT)

Otter Books in Nelson has hand-selected a collection of books that's designed to appeal to just about every reader. There's sure to be something for everyone!

"The Peace Book" by Todd Parr
"The Hobbit" by J.R.R. Tolkien
"Sneakiest Uses for everyday things" - Cy Tymony
"The Hundred-Foot Journey" - Richard C. Morais
"The Perfect Order of Things" - David Gilmor
"Into That Darkness" - Steven Price
"Hoot" - Carl Hiaasen
"The White Tiger" - Aravind Adiga

Donation Value: $140

This prize can be shipped within B.C.

Donation prize offered as described, no exceptions or substitutions. 

2) A Culinary Adventure for six in your own home (giveaway between 7:00 and 8:00 a.m PT)

Executive Chef Roger Planiden of Culinary Adventure will bring dinner, along with his culinary expertise to you and five friends at a location of your choice. The cooking class includes learning four different dishes and complimentary wines, provided by local Summerland winery Okanagan Crush Pad. The class includes equipment and cooking tools, dishes and utensils.

Donation Value: $600

This prize is valid in the Okanagan Valley from Oliver to Kelowna. Date of the cooking class must be on a mutually convenient date and time to all parties. Based on availability so please book in advance. Not available on holidays, or on weekends through July and August. Gratuity is not included but taxes inclusive.

Donation prize offered as described, no exceptions or substitutions.   

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Real vs. fake debate: the Christmas tree edition

Christmas trees are loaded on to a truck in New Hampshire. (Associated Press)

'Tis the season for celebrating the holidays and for many that means a Christmas tree. 

But getting one that lasts can cost big bucks. So is it more frugal to go fake?

Shiral Tobin doesn't want anyone pinched out of the holiday spirit and is here to help you decide, in this edition of her weekly column, Pinched.

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Outgoing BCFGA president alleges racism

The president of the B.C.Fruit Growers' Association has resigned.

Kirpal Boparai had less than a month left in his term, but his tenure was dogged by controversy.

In October, the Okanagan Tree Fruit Cooperative revoked his membership, and its members passed a motion trying, unsuccessfully, to get him to resign.

Boparai says he stepped down because he made the changes he wanted to make, but in the following audio package, he tells Daybreak he felt there was an undercurrent of racism.

As well, hear from vice president Jeet Dukhia about allegations of racism. He now takes over as president of the BCFGA until the elections next month.

Daybreak host Chris Walker also spoke with Fred Steele, who is running to become the next president of the B.C. Fruit Growers Association and Amarjit Lali, a younger Indo Canadian grower who is running for the position of Regional Director in the upcoming B.C. Fruit Growers' Association election.
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Towering downtown Kelowna development delayed again

Conceptual drawings of the two Monaco towers proposed for Doyle and St. Paul streets in downtown Kelowna (Contributed by: City of Kelowna)

A decision on a downtown Kelowna development, which could become an icon in the city skyline, has been put off, again.

The proposed Monaco towers would be two high rises: a hotel and a residential building -- 22 and 30 storeys tall, respectively.

This is the second time city council has put off making a decision on the development.

The first time, they sent Premier Pacific Properties back to the drawing board because the buildings were just too big, too tall, and too close together.

The company came back with a revised plan -- but it still violates Kelowna's official community plan.

To understand more, Daybreak host Chris Walker reached Kelowna city councillor Luke Stack.

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Furry teaching assistant becomes students' best friend

UBC Okanagan education professor Ty Binfet and his dog Frances. (Jackie Sharkey/CBC)

A teaching assistant at UBC Okanagan is quickly becoming known for being a student's best friend -- as long as you take the time to scratch her belly.

Frances the dog can often be seen strolling through campus at the side of her faithful companion, education professor Ty Binfet.

She may look like a mutt, but she's a certified therapy dog who trains future educators to be better teachers.

It's quite the journey for a stray from the streets of L.A. Frances and Ty joined host Chris Walker in studio Tuesday morning.
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Hot books for the hard to buy for

(Images courtesy of
If you're starting to fret about Christmas shopping, Daybreak is here to help... or rather,  Barbara Jo May is here to help.

Barbara Jo is the adult collection librarian for the Okanagan Regional Library, and she says you can't go wrong giving a book as a holiday gift, because there are so many genres to choose from.

She's been pouring over this year's hot titles and checking out some of the more unusual books, and shares her top picks with Daybreak host Chris Walker.
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Ministry of Health investigates at Summerland Seniors Village

Summerland Seniors Village is operated by Retirement Concepts (Contributed by Retirement Concepts)
Summerland Seniors Village is under watchful eye this week as a Ministry of Health investigator arrived on site Monday morning, and the Interior Health decided to send a clinical consultant to the seniors facility Saturday.

Summerland Seniors Village is where 91-year-old Alfredo Bonaldi was living up until a sudden illness left him near death.

Staff was completely unaware he lay in his bed for days with severe renal failure, staph infection, blood poisoning and possibly salmonella.

Karen Bloemink, the Regional Director of Residential Services for Interior Health, explains they   decided to send a clinical consultant to Summerland Seniors Village after several complaints about how residents and patients were being treated.

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