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News Briefs: Friday, June 29, 2012
Two dead in Hay River

Two people have been found dead in Hay River. The RCMP detachment responded to a call in the early morning hours Thursday. Upon arriving on scene, they found two people deceased. A third person is currently in police custody. Hay River RCMP is investigating with the assistance of "G" Division Major Crime Unit and "G" Division Forensic Identification Services.

- Kristen Campbell

Fire ban lifted

The cool wet weather of late was enough to lift the fire ban at both Reid Lake and Prelude Lake territorial parks. In Yellowknife, a fire ban in place since June 20 was lifted yesterday at 2:15 p.m., but caution is still required.

"Any rain we've received in the region has been extremely localized," said Judy McLinton, manager of public affairs and communications at the Department of Environment and Natural Resources. "People are asked to be careful, make sure that the campfire is completely out."

- Danielle Sachs

Ongoing labour dispute

Contract talks between the NWT Power Corporation and the Union of Northern Workers have broken down and the parties are resorting to mediation.

Union negotiators walked away from the table earlier this week, unsatisfied with the little progress made toward obtaining a new contract since theirs expired in December 2011. Some of the issues raised by UNW are wage increases, hours of work for plant superintendents and parental leave allowance. Neither power corp. spokesperson Bob Kelly nor UNW president Todd Parsons could be reached for comment prior to press deadline.

- Myles Dolphin

Diesel spill cleanup

A diesel spill that took place behind three city-owned properties in April has been contained for a while, but the area remains barricaded as a large hole still remains.

The lots on 50 Street, purchased for $975,000, were acquired by the city in January. They include the InstaLoan, Corner Mart and a neighboring parking lot. More than 90 per cent of the diesel in the InstaLoan tank - or 1,000 out of 1,100 litres - leaked out on April 14, according to Mayor Gord Van Tighem. He said city officials are monitoring the site. The various maintenance measures need to be added up before a final tally of costs can be made public, Van Tighem said.

- Myles Dolphin

News Briefs: Thursday, June 28, 2012

Grand chief elected

The 65 voting delegates at the Dehcho First Nations' annual assembly have elected a new grand chief.

Herb Norwegian was elected on June 26, the first day of the assembly. Norwegian last served as grand chief in 2008.

There were three candidates for the position, Norwegian, incumbent Samuel Gargan and Jerry Antoine. During the first ballot none of the candidates received more than half of the available votes.

A second ballot was held for Norwegian and Antoine, who had received the highest number of votes. The exact vote numbers for each candidate were not released.

Geothermal project gets draft permits

Borealis GeoPower has received two draft permits from the Mackenzie Valley Land and Water Board that will allow it to develop and operate a geothermal power plant in Fort Liard.

The company has received a draft land use permit that covers the drilling of the production and injection wells, the development and operation of the plant, and a water licence that covers the water use and disposal of waste related to generating geothermal power.

Drilling of the wells is expected to begin this winter and the plant will begin operations in late 2013 or early 2014, according to a press release from the company. The plant has been designed to supply the community with all of its electricity needs with the option to utilize waste heat from the plant in the future.

Artist offers workshops

A Whitehorse artist is encouraging people to come and paint with her.

Nicole Bauberger is creating an exhibition called 100 dresses for the OSC Gallery as part of the Open Sky Festival. Since June 22, Bauberger has been creating 10 small paintings a day using a technique that involves mixing heated beeswax and coloured pigments.

Bauberger is welcoming people to come and paint with her from 3 to 5 p.m. daily. Bauberger will be at the papal site on June 28, the Visitor Information Centre on June 29 and July 2, and at the festival from June 29 to July 1.

Participants will have the option to have their painting included in the exhibition at the gallery that will run from July until August.

Canada Day celebrated

A full slate of events has been planned for Canada Day in Fort Providence.

The events include a fishing derby, a community parade and barbecue, children's activities and canoe races. At 6 p.m., there will be adult and youth traditional events and a mixed slo-pitch tournament.

Extra trips for Ivvavik

Parks Canada has announced extra tourist trips to Ivvavik National Park due to the of response by Inuvik residents to the original excursions earlier this month.

"There was a lot of interest and the first two trips booked up really quickly," said Adriana Bacheschi, visitor experience manager for Parks Canada based in Inuvik.

One additional group was scheduled to leave on June 27 and will return July 1.

Another trip has been scheduled for July 12, to return to Inuvik on July 16. If these trips also book up, there is a possibility of a fifth trip to the park in August.

Festival seeks volunteers

The Great Northern Arts Festival is holding an open meeting for anyone interested in volunteering at this year's event.

The meeting will be held Wednesday, July 4 at 7 p.m. in the Midnight Sun Complex, near the concession.

"We'll get together and talk about volunteer opportunities and the different jobs," said Sasha Webb, executive director for the annual festival. "We really rely on our volunteers. They run the show and they are always awesome."

Painted tiles available for pickup

Any current or past students of Samuel Hearne Secondary School (SHSS) are welcome to go to the high school to collect their painted ceiling tile June 28 or 29, said vice-principal Lorne Guy.

"Any student who wishes to collect their painted art ceiling tile can come up to June 29," he said.

Over several years, Art 2030 students were given ceiling tiles to paint, which were displayed in hallways on the second floor of the school.

With SHSS scheduled to be torn down this summer, Guy said the school has been receiving calls from several students asking the fate of their tiles.

Tiles not retrieved by the deadline will be collected at the end of the school year and brought to the new school, though there is not yet an exact plan as to how and where they will be displayed, he said.

Public meeting postponed

A public meeting to discuss short-, medium- and long-term energy options in Inuvik has been postponed.

The meeting, to be hosted by the Town of Inuvik, was tentatively scheduled for June 28 but has been pushed back to give officials more time to gather information, said Mayor Denny Rodgers.

"We need more time to look into the various options and get together information for people," he said.

As of press time, no new date had been set.