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For two weeks, B.C. Premier David Eby and his ministers have been adamant – their government severed ties with a Vancouver-based drug user group immediately upon learning it was involved in illicit drug trafficking last month. Yet several NDP MLAs, including Eby’s parliamentary secretary when he was Attorney General, were personally briefed on drug user groups’ […]

“This is reconciliation in action.” ­–Owen Torgerson A ground-breaking agreement will soon bind together Simpcw First Nation and four communities across its territory in a shared commitment to work together and build prosperity for everyone in the North Thompson-Robson Valley. “I see a lot of benefits to working together,” said Simpcw chief George Lampreau. “As […]

“Local governments are well placed to [determine] … what’s required for community safety.” ––David Eby When it comes to regulating drug use in public, most B.C.’s municipal councils fall into one of two camps.  They’re waiting to see if upcoming provincial legislation restricts public drug use to a level they can live with, or they’re […]

The Conservative Party of BC will enter the Fall legislative session with official party status, making it the first time since 1996 that four parties will be recognized in the legislature. “We’ve already made history!” Conservative Party Leader John Rustad declared after former BC United MLA Bruce Banman crossed the floor, doubling Rustad’s caucus to two […]

“If you severed your femoral artery, they wouldn’t put you on a bus with a tourniquet and send you to Prince George for vascular surgery.”  ––James Cordeiro Last week, Premier David Eby lobbed a lifeline to northern residents, committing his government’s support to a First Nations-led, local government-backed detox proposal for Terrace, in what would […]

BC promises ‘action’ as municipalities struggle to deliver housing

News Feature

Written By Northern Beat staff

Housing Minister Ravi Kahlon had scant details for local leaders at the annual Union of BC Municipalities conference about what exactly is coming in his housing legislation when the session resumes next month, but it sounds like push is coming to shove on some fronts as far as the province and local governments go.  Kahlon […]

Income, affordability draw newcomers to rural centres

News Feature

Written By Keith Norbury

“More and more people will work remotely … [living] in this giant house in the hinterland enjoying a full and proper lifestyle. That’s what’s coming.” ––Richard Kurland While the majority of British Columbia’s new immigrants are still landing in Metro Vancouver, more and more are settling in the northern and rural areas of the province.  […]

New immigrants learn to love BC’s north

News Feature

Written By Keith Norbury

“Kitimat is the most beautiful community I’ve lived in, hands down.” Walsham Tenshak The small coastal B.C. community of Kitimat might seem an unlikely place to find other expat Nigerians, but Walsham Tenshak discovered the opposite. “We have an entire community,” said Tenshak, who moved to Kitimat a year ago. “We had a picnic in the summer. […]

“This is not a long-term plan for growing food in British Columbia.” ––Jeremy Dunn B.C.’s cattle and dairy sectors are slamming the provincial government over new emergency water orders that have cut some of their farmers off from growing hay and corn for their livestock during a widespread feed shortage. Industry leaders, who stood publicly […]

Disrupting the Peace: Break-ins demoralize FSJ business owners

News Feature

Written By Spencer Hall, Special to Northern Beat

Spencer Hall is an investigative reporter with Disrupting the Peace is a series on crime in northeast B.C. This is an excerpt of part two. “The burden of running and operating a business right now is overwhelming.” –Kathleen Connolly Business owners frustrated with repeated break-ins say property crime has never been worse in Fort […]

“Some people did the right thing — they went to the closest place they could get to, where it was safe for them and their family.” ––Mike Bernier When Tumbler Ridge residents were abruptly ordered to evacuate due to wildfires earlier this month, the province urged the 2,400 residents to drive more than an hour […]

“Just think if we had taken it more seriously 20 or more years ago, how much farther along we’d be.” ––Bob Gray Canada must be “on a war footing” and spend “big, big money” to tackle the problem of wildfires in what is shaping up to be one of the hottest summers and worst fire […]