The Town of The Pas held its regularly scheduled council meeting on June 10. The community curfew by-law was discussed in public and then in-camera.
“The Town of The Pas has a curfew and we’re just reviewing that by-law to see if it’s applicable in today’s day and age,” said Town of The Pas Mayor Andre Murphy. “We’re not trying to create issues, but we are trying to support our youth. When someone is walking home from their friend’s place at midnight, that’s one thing, but when there’s a group of youths on the streets at 3 a.m., for no reason, we want to know why they are out there and make sure they are taken home safely. It’s very preliminary and it’s really about safety for both the community and our youth as well.
Joseph Fourre, a former resident of The Pas and chairman of the Singing Red Bear Foundation, which is a not-for-profit group that is aimed at bringing awareness to the dangers of recreational drug use, presented the organization’s mission to the council. The foundation has established the No Thanks, I’m Good campaign to raise awareness of recreational drug use and the increasing risk of fentanyl poisoning.

Published in Opasquia Times News
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Indigenous musician Norine Braun is no stranger to The Pas, for she has not only performed for the community before but also has familial ties to the area. Braun was musically inclined at an early age and became self-taught as the years went on.
“My mother said I sang before I talked,” said Braun. “I got my first guitar at age 10 and took only a year of lessons. I was a bit disappointed in my progress, so I just started to learn on my own at my own pace. I had an older brother who played guitar and he gave me some tips but basically, I am self-taught and play by ear.
“I wrote my first song at age 11. I first recorded demos as a songwriter and the early feedback was to record my songs as an artist with my first album released in 1996.

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The Pas Helping Hands 4-H Club repainted the Pride Bridge thanks to the Swan Valley’s Communities in Full Colour Initiative.  This was the initiative’s first donation and the club felt it was fitting to pain the bridge as part of Pride Month.

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The Rural Municipality of Dauphin will terminate its participation in the Dauphin Recreation Services (DRS) Agreement, effective Dec. 31.

According to Reeve Ernie Sirski, the City of Dauphin and its council has stated in the past that the RM has not contributed its fair share to DRS, while the RM has stated it has always been committed to recreation in and around the Parkland.

“The RM maintains and continues to develop recreation in our immediate vicinity - Keld Park, Sifton Beach, Stoney Point, where a new bathroom and shower facility has just been completed,” he said, adding the RM has provided a grant to the Dauphin Derailleurs Cycle Club for the past four years to support the maintenance of its trail system located in the RM.

“This is over and beyond the funding that has been provided to DRS since an agreement signed with the City of Dauphin in 2017,” Sirski said.

As per the current funding agreement, the RM has contributed $218,350.50 to DRS operations in 2022, $303,890.50 in 2023 and $313,309.76 in 2024.

In 2022, the RM also contributed $16,155, along with $29,942 in 2023 and has committed to $106,800 this year to capital repairs and replacements, as requested by DRS, Sirski said..

In total, the RM is contributing roughly 15 per cent of the budgeted net expenses this year, while the City will pay approximately 85 per cent.

“As you can see, we have contributed to the overall funding of DRS,” Sirski said, adding they have attempted to reach a new agreement with the City in a collaborative manner, not through ultimatums.

“The funding of the DRS has been an ongoing discussion since the agreement was signed in 2017. We are prepared to negotiate an agreement that benefits both of our municipalities if the city so chooses,” Sirski said.

However, the RM, he added, is not prepared to accept a per capita funding model.

Read more in this weeks edition of the Dauphin Herald.

Published in Dauphin Herald News
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It was a long battle, but Dauphin-Swan River-Neepawa MP Dan Mazier has helped to level the playing field in Canada’s telecommunications landscape.

After more than three years of extensive work, cross-party negotiations, and navigating the parliamentary process, the Senate officially passed Mazier’s private Member’s bill (C-288) that amends the Telecommunications Act to force internet companies to disclose transparent and accurate information on the speeds they sell Canadians.

“For too long, Canadians have been purchasing internet services at sky-high prices only to realize the quality and speed they expected to receive is nowhere near what they actually receive,” Mazier said.

“This is because the government has allowed internet companies to advertise speeds Canadians may never receive.”

Bill C-288 will force internet companies to disclose accurate speeds that reflect what a consumer is most likely to obtain instead of a maximum theoretical speed. Currently, internet companies use language such as “up to” when advertising their service quality, leading consumers to believe a service will be better than it actually is.

“A lack of accurate information when choosing an internet service can result in consumers overpaying, user complaints, and not purchasing the best-fit service. It also reduces overall service quality within the telecom industry,” Mazier said.

Telecommunication experts and advocacy organizations across Canada rallied behind Mazier’s bill from the beginning, helping garner support for the legislation from all political parties.

Read the full story in this weeks Dauphin Herald.

Published in Dauphin Herald News
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Tuesday, 18 June 2024 08:19

He ain’t heavy, he’s my brother

When a loved one gets sick, it takes the strength of friends, family and loved ones to help them get through this, and sadly that isn’t always enough. MacKenzie MacLeod received some devastating and heartbreaking news that her brother, Robert MacLeod, is in the fight of his life and needed her help.
“In late April 2024, my brother Robert who is 26 years old, was diagnosed with Acute Myeloid Leukemia (AML) with an FLT3 gene mutation, which is a very aggressive form of blood cancer that requires intensive long-term radiation, chemotherapy, and an allogeneic stem cell and bone marrow transplant, once a donor is identified,” said MacKenzie. “This cancer is very dangerous, and without a transplant, Robert has 29 percent survivability beyond five years.
“His wife, Ashley, is 35 weeks pregnant and they have a young daughter, MacKinley who is under the age of five. Robert has been admitted to the University of Alberta Hospital and is still fighting to achieve remission. This cancer is fast-acting and his prognosis is poor. The goal is to get his body into remission so that he may be healthy enough to be transferred to Winnipeg, where he can receive the exact kind of treatment needed for this particular blood cancer.
“My brother is larger than life, literally,” said MacKenzie. “He stands over six feet tall, has broad shoulders, is physically strong, mentally tough, and has been hard working to support his family. He possesses the vigour inherent in young adults with their entire lives ahead of them. Robert is an avid outdoorsman, hunting, trail quadding, boating and smoking meat.
“Robert had just begun his application to the RCMP days before his diagnosis. His dream was to be an RCMP officer, raise his children in Minitonas, and live a life full of love, adventure and memories. Today, while Robert accepts his fate and mentally prepares to go to war against this blood cancer, he shares how when he finally returns home to Minitonas, cancer-free, he looks forward to driving truck for Rick Bresky and keeping his life simple and close to home.
“Since cancer entered our lives at the end of April, my brother told me, he just wants to get better so he can be a good father to his children, a good husband to his wife, and he will never leave home again,” said MacKenzie “As cancer does its work and the medical team tirelessly works to save his life, Robert understands that this is an insidious illness and he has a long gruelling battle between him and recovery. We are terrified, sickened with the fear of losing him, his life cut short at 26 when our social laws of nature dictate, that he is to have a long happy life, not fighting for tomorrow in a hospital bed hundreds of miles from home.”
Not only has MacKenzie been an emotional support to her brother, but she is taking it a step further to raise funds and future support for any family from the area, who may have the unfortunate experiences her brother is currently going through.
“This diagnosis immediately halted our lives,” said MacKenzie. “We as a family, discussed how we could logistically position ourselves to protect and support Robert and his family while ensuring his best medical outcome. It was clear that money and safe-adequate-affordable housing close to HSC where he must receive multiple treatments of chemotherapy and radiation each day are our greatest barriers. Robert is unable to work due to his terminal illness and Ashley, on maternity leave, has been a dedicated mother and wife never leaving her husband’s side. As a young couple with a little girl and another on the way, they are struggling with a number of challenges that jeopardize their ability to fully focus on accessing lifesaving cancer care.
“I asked my brother when I returned home upon the news on compassionate leave from the Army where I was posted to CFB Gagetown, NB, ‘How do you need me to be here for you?’ He responded, that he needed me to care for Ashley, MacKinley, and the baby while he goes for treatment. He said they’re all going to really need me and that’s what he needed me to do. I told him that I wouldn’t ever leave him and promised I would always be there for them. I’ve got my brother.”
“In 2010, I ran 450 km solo in nine days from Dauphin to Winnipeg, to raise funds for Wounded Warriors and help educate Canadians on Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and how best to support their soldiers returning from combat who may be battling with invisible psychological injuries,” said MacKenzie. “My Wounded Warrior Run was a huge success, having raised over $30k in donations.
“I intend to adopt the same approach to help raise medical funds to secure long-term safe, secure housing for families from Swan River, Minitonas, Kenville, and Bowsman to empower other families who may be faced with similar hardships as my brother to facilitate their access to lifesaving care in Winnipeg. My vision is to name this house after my brother.
“The MacLeod House will ensure community members have access to lifesaving cancer care while keeping the family together, including their pets, so they can focus on fighting for tomorrow with dignity and respect,” said MacKenzie. “Politically, we know that safe, secure and affordable housing is a significant critical issue in Canada, however, within the scope of universal healthcare, this prevents individuals and their families from actually accessing universal lifesaving cancer care. This is a human rights issue far beyond my brother. I intend to rally tons of attention, energy, support and ultimately make this vision a reality in my brother’s honour.
“Currently, this is in the brainstorming stages, but I intend to create and conduct a bike-by-relay called, Cycle for Cancer Care. This relay will start from the front door of my brother’s house in Minitonas and will end at the front doors of the Health Science Centre (HSC) in Winnipeg, to raise funds to help support my vision to secure The MacLeod House.
“My small relay team is composed of veterans and soldiers who are volunteering their time and their bodies to Cycle for Cancer Care, which will be attached to a non-profit that I intend to create called, Robert MacLeod - #Fighting4Tomorrow,” said MacKenzie. “All funds donated will be evenly divided between my brother, Robert MacLeod, to help support his medical expenses and the other funds will be used to put a down payment on a four-bedroom, two-bathroom home with a fenced yard for children and pets to play located close to the HSC.
“I’m still connecting with organizations within town to attempt to partner the house so that it will be privately maintained long into the future and available to our people when they need it most. The goal is to ensure no other family from our communities ever has to struggle to keep their family together while they fight for tomorrow.”
Along with MacKenzie’s fundraising efforts, there have been some local initiatives to help out Robert and his family during these unfortunate circumstances. There are a variety of ways for people in the Valley to help out.
“The Minitonas Motor Hotel is hosting a meat draw as a medical fundraiser for Robert MacLeod on June 22 from 7 to 9 p.m.,” said MacKenzie. “Tickets are 3 for $5. Special thank you to Misty who is organizing and hosting this event to help raise funds that will go directly to Robert’s family to aid with expenses as he fights AML.
“There is a GoFundMe page organized by Paige Berlinguette entitled, “Help the MacLeod family fight leukemia” and the Swan River Credit Union is set to receive donations directly into Robert’s chequing account. Eventually, Cycle for Cancer Care Relay will be another mechanism for additional support.
“I’m asking for any local businesses and clubs to approach me directly should they wish to partner with The MacLeod House, as I will need that residence to be managed long-term,” said MacKenzie. “Additionally, my team is looking for additional volunteers to cycle from Minitonas to Winnipeg, with the trip broken into four days.
“Also, I’m looking for an RV for those days with or without a driver, so that my small team has shelter while we Cycle for Cancer. I respect that not everyone can cycle and I invite motorbike owners to approach me if they would also like to be included in the event as this is accessible to everyone and anyone who wishes to volunteer their time. Please continue to pray for Robert and his family. This is going to be a very long gruelling haul; we appreciate everyone and anyone who has and will continue to lend their support.”

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Tuesday, 18 June 2024 08:09

Getting a Facelift

The Swan River Valley Agricultural Society’s grandstands are getting an overdue facelift. Workers began the process of repainting the Swan River landmark last week. 

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Sunday, 16 June 2024 14:15

New owners at RFP

Roblin Forest Products, one of Manitoba’s oldest forest products companies founded in 1958, has started the week off under new ownership.

RFP has been acquired by Bell Lumber and Pole, a company with an extensive history in the industry that goes back over a hundred years and several generations.

Read the rest of the story in this week’s Review.

Published in Roblin Review News
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Tuesday, 11 June 2024 15:57

OCN youth travel to first soccer invitational

Youth with the Opaskwayak Soccer Association travelled to Swan River on June 1, to play in the Swan Valley Youth Soccer League’s Invitational. It’s been a big year for the youth in OCN in terms of their soccer program. Last week OCN Chief and Council contributed $30,000 to Opaskwayak Soccer Association, which has over 184 participants.
“This is our second year of organized soccer,” said OCN Soccer Association President Frank Young. “It’s open to everyone who wants to travel to play soccer. For years, we only played soccer against each other. We wanted the kids to experience how far sports can take them and thanks to the donations from the chief and council, it greatly helped our program.

Published in Opasquia Times Sports
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Tuesday, 11 June 2024 15:55

Afatsawo wins bronze at Nationals

One Margaret Barbour Collegiate Institute (MBCI) student travelled out of province to compete in this year’s National Skills Competition. Namirembe Afatsawo placed at the provincial level this year, which earned her a spot to compete nationally.
“The National Skills Competition took place from May 30 and 31,” said Afatsawo. “I travelled to Quebec City for the competition, thanks to The Pas Legion, Monette Farms, The Pas Legion Ladies Auxiliary and The Pas Rotary Club as supporters.”

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