News in Brief: Jan. 25, 2017

Council meeting cancelled, CityWest expands to Houston, Job export concerns Cullen

  • Jan. 25, 2017 2:00 p.m.

Council meeting cancelled

The City of Prince Rupert has cancelled its regularly scheduled council meeting set for Jan. 23.Citing a lack of agenda items, the need to finalize details of a public hearing concerning the temporary banning of marijuana operations and other items, the city posted a notice to its website this week notifying residents interested in attending the meeting.

Items scheduled for the Jan. 23 meeting have been moved to the Feb. 6 regular council meeting, along with the public hearing for the marijuana bylaw consideration, which has also been re-scheduled to Feb. 6.

The next Committee of the Whole meeting will occur on Feb. 20, before the regular council meeting resumes.

CityWest expands to Houston

A party at the Houston Community Hall last week marked the entrance of CityWest into Houston for the services of cable TV, phone and Internet.

The company invested more than $750,000 in the expansion and plans to expand further in the town by next year.

“We’re proud to be able to offer residents and businesses of Houston a superior customer experience,” said Donovan Dias, CityWest vice-president of sales and project management. “As a company that was built in the north, we’re proud to serve the north.

“We’re looking forward to showcasing our new services at the event and introducing customers to some of our amazing and passionate employees. Most of all, we look forward to forging some long-lasting relationships,” he said.

Skeena-Bulkley Valley MP Nathan Cullen was a fan of the expansion, saying it gives more people in Houston a choice.

“It’s good to see CityWest growing again. Look out Telus and Bell and all those other rip-off artists – we’ve got a local fighter in the ring, and doing very well.”

Job export concerns Cullen

Skeena-Bulkley Valley MP Nathan Cullen advised the federal government to take no heed in the Emerson Report, calling for the end of cabotage and the privatization of ports and airports in his telephone scrum last week.

“This looks like another export of Canadian jobs. After the Brexit vote and the election of [U.S. President Donald] Trump and all of the rest, it would behoove the prime minister to pay closer attention to the concern people have about trade deals that cause people to lose jobs rather than gain them,” Cullen said.

“[The report] is right to be dismissed, because Canadian ports have served Canadians well. These are absolutely critical parts of our national infrastructure. The idea that we would start to ‘offshore’ the jobs and open up ports for purchase by offshore companies, other countries in fact, is strategically stupid.”

Cullen added that a change in direction now for Canadian ports could spell disaster for working Canadians.

“One could easily imagine a scenario in which a country was able to do damage to us by simply restricting access to one of our own ports because they own it. There’s no immediate benefit. We’ve seen investment pouring into Canadian ports over the last 10, 15 years, certainly in the northwest,” he said. “The loss of protection for Canadian jobs under the European trade deal is worrisome to me and to the communities in which those workers live.”