In this photo taken in June 2015 by Yellow Giant Gold Mine safety manager Brent Edmunds, mine water is shown being discharged from an underground site into the environment. (File photo)

Year in Review: April 2017

New flights and changes to airport authority board are highlights from April 2017 Prince Rupert news

Gitga’at to receive benefits

The Gitga’at First Nation of Hartley Bay signed an LNG (liquefied natural gas) agreement with the province of B.C. The nation will receive $1.5 million and $500,000 to set up a permanent space in Prince Rupert, where many of their band members live. The nation bought a building in Prince Rupert later in 2017 and opened its doors on Dec. 16. LNG agreements were also signed by Metlakatla, Lax Kw’alaams and Kitselas.

Car wash rock

The North Coast Regional District requested writing a resolution to the TransCanada Yellowhead Highway Association about a narrow and curved section of Highway 16 known as Car Wash Rock. Between Prince Rupert and Terrace, the overhanging cliff face creates a flow of water onto the windshields of passing cars, which turns to ice in the winter.

READ MORE: NCRD in brief: March 24 meeting

Scans misread at Mills Memorial Hospital

The Northern Health Authority announced more than 800 out of 8,400 patient scans reviewed found “different interpretation that is considered clinically significant.” The scans, which were taken between Oct. 2016 and Jan. 2017 by radiologist Dr. Claude Vezina, included CT, ultrasound and X-ray scans. The statement said the Northern Health Authority could not provide information about whether the misread scans could have resulted in adverse impacts on patients’ treatment or health.

READ MORE: Northwest B.C. scan review finds ‘clinically significant’ discrepancies

Banks Island Gold Mine faces 35 charges

The bankrupt mining company was given 17 additional charges for allegedly violating environmental laws, and polluting an island in the Hecate Strait. The company that ran the Yellow Gold Mine on Gitxaala Nation territory, outside of the village, is now being charged with a total of 35 counts under the federal Fisheries Act and the provincial Environmental Management Act and Water Act.

READ MORE: Bankrupt mining company now faces 35 charges for Banks Island mess

Fly between Prince Rupert and Ketchikan

Misty Fjords Air announced that starting in May, the seaplane company offers flights from Ketchikan to Prince Rupert on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. The 45-minute flight goes between downtown Ketchikan and Seal Cove with time to connect to flights going to Vancouver. From Ketchikan, passengers can connect to Seattle and Anchorage among other destinations through Delta Airlines and Alaska Airlines. Previously, the two communities could only access each other by ferry since flights were discontinued in 1999.

READ MORE: Flight service announced for Ketchikan

City takes the wheel

For the first time in 20 years, city employees have positions on the Airport Authority board. Three of the four new members appointed to the board, including the chair, are city employees. The change comes after an amendment to the volunteer-based society’s constitution that previously did not allow elected officials to be members.

READ MORE: City of Prince Rupert takes over control of airport authority, unilaterally changes constitution



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The building at 634 3rd Avenue West was recently bought on behalf of the Gitga’at First Nation. (File photo)

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