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Archive for: 1月, 2021

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The Stayner Cyclone atom rep squad brought home the Robert R. Graham trophy as a finalist in the Ontario Minor Hockey Association playdowns. The team, sponsored by Stayner Dairy Queen, wrapped up their season on March 26 with a 6-1 loss to Belmont to close out the OMHA championship series. Related: Stayner had come back in the series to win games three and four to draw even with Belmont, but couldn’t quite close out the series with a victory in the deciding game. To celebrate their success as a finalist, the players stopped off at the team’s sponsor to enjoy Blizzards; store owners Joe and Sherry Schaap also attended playoff games and provided treats. The team was grateful for all the community support it received, including from their sponsor.

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This afternoon, Royal Victoria Regional Health Centre (RVH), in consultation with the Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit, confirmed a contained gastrointestinal outbreak on the Geriatrics Inpatient unit. In order to reduce the risk of transmission, no new patients will be admitted to the unit and no patients from the unit will be transferred to other areas of the hospital. “At RVH, patient safety is our top priority and we have put immediate measures in place to reduce any further spread of gastroenteritis including isolating patients, enhancing cleaning of the unit and not admitting any new patients to the unit,” says Treva McCumber, vice president, Transitions, Diagnostics & chief nursing executive. “We will be monitoring the situation closely over the weekend and remind people that if they are not feeling well, to not visit a patient in the health centre.” As gastroenteritis is highly contagious, there will be some visitor restrictions to that unit including limiting the number of visitors and ensuring proper hand hygiene when entering and exiting the unit. Patients and family members have been notified of these restrictions. Visitation throughout the rest of the hospital remains unchanged, however, all visitors must use the hand sanitizer upon entering and exiting the building. Most people with gastroenteritis will experience one to three days of nausea, vomiting, cramps and diarrhea. Severe illness or hospitalization caused by gastroenteritis is uncommon, however the infection may be more severe in older individuals, young children or those with existing medical conditions. The single most important preventative measure that can be taken to reduce the spread of gastroenteritis is to frequently and thoroughly wash your hands.  

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MUSKOKA LAKES – F*** off. These were the words cruelly spray painted on a dog in Muskoka Lakes Township on Monday morning. Police are currently investigating a complaint of cruelty to animals after a pet owner reported their dog was spray painted with this vulgar language on April 11, in the area of Muskoka Road 141. One word was painted on each side of the light-coloured, short-haired dog. The dog’s owner told police the dog had wandered away from home and then was found with words painted on the sides of it. The dog did not appear to have been injured.  The family is reported to be in shock that anyone would do this to their pet. The investigation is currently ongoing. Police are asking anyone with information to contact the OPP at 705-645-2211 or call Crime Stoppers at 1-800- 222-8477. You can submit your information online at if you have any information on this crime or any other crime. Crime Stoppers does not subscribe to call display and you will remain anonymous. Being anonymous, you will not testify in court and your information may lead to a cash reward of up to $2,000.

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Barrie-Springwater-Oro-Medonte MP Alex Nuttall  recently presented members of The Barrie District Hunters & Anglers Conservation Club ( B.D.H.A.C.C.) Youth Group a Certificate of Congratulations from The Government of Canada for receiving  the Ministry of Natural Resources & Forestry  ( MNR&F ) and Ontario Fed. Of Anglers & Hunters ( OFAH ) Heritage Award for Conservation . Their hard work and dedication to conservation has done much to enhance and preserve the waters , forests and wildlife in Barrie and surrounding areas.

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PENETANGUISHENE – A stabbing incident at Waypoint Centre for Mental Health Care sent three staff members to hospital Tuesday. “This was an unprovoked blitz attack on our members,” said Pete Sheehan, president of Ontario Public Services Employee Union (OPSEU) Local 329. “These kind of attacks happen frequently in the facility.” A source employed by the Penetanguishene facility said a patient took two screwdrivers from the tool shop in the vocational services area. According to the source, who asked not to be named, patients are allowed free access to tools during the day, with a tool count taking place when the vocational unit closes. The patient “slipped in behind” staffers before the tool cabinet was secured and took two screwdrivers, the source said. Sheehan confirmed a female registered nurse was attacked with a screwdriver, suffering a stab wound in the back and additional facial injuries. A nurse manager who attempted to intervene received four puncture wounds and a broken nose, with two other staff members suffering injuries while attempting to restrain the patient. The unnamed source added the patient is a “dangerous person” with a history of attacks with weapons. The Atrium Building at Waypoint – which holds male patients who have committed violent crimes, but were found not criminally responsible or unfit to stand trial – remained in lockdown as of Wednesday afternoon. OPP spokesperson Acting Sgt. Lynda Cranney said three individuals were taken to hospital, with all of them later being released. She declined to confirm details of the attack, which is currently under investigation by Southern Georgian Bay OPP. Kristi Lalonde, communications manager at Waypoint, also refused to comment on the specifics of the incident, citing patient confidentiality. “We can confirm that a serious incident happened on Tuesday afternoon,” she said. “It is being taken very seriously and under full investigation, with the priority on the safety and well-being of our patients and staff.” Laurene Hilderley, Waypoint’s director of communications and fund development, said “mitigation strategies have already been implemented” to decrease the likelihood of a similar occurrence. “We are focused on supporting everyone involved,” she said. “We are committed to caring for the needs of staff and patients at this time.” Sheehan said the Ministry of Labour is currently investigating the incident and will issue a report within the next few days. The unnamed source estimated there are about six to 10 serious assaults a year at Waypoint requiring hospitalization. He said a recent incident involved an attack by one patient on another with a frying pan, which led to patients being denied access to the kitchen. The president of OPSEU, meanwhile, is blaming the Ontario government for the attack. Warren (Smokey) Thomas issued a statement Wednesday saying Waypoint “is a dangerous facility for staff and clients.” He said he has relayed his concerns to Health Minister Eric Hoskins and his predecessor, Deb Matthews. “They knew lives were in danger and they did nothing,” he said. “What are they going to do now? That’s my question.” Thomas said “someone is going to die” if things don’t change at Waypoint. Ontario Progressive Conservative Leader Patrick Brown said he was “deeply disturbed” to hear about the attack. The Simcoe North MPP said he toured Waypoint in November 2015 and learned about the safety and security concerns of staff. “I am calling on the Liberal government to prevent such a shocking incident from happening again,” he said, noting safety concerns have been raised repeatedly since the facility opened. A Toronto Star article last year indicated the Ministry of Labour had – including complaints and injuries – at Waypoint from May 2014 to October 2015. Craig MacBride, press secretary to Labour Minister Kevin Flynn, said the ministry is “aware of the incident” and is investigating. “We cannot tolerate tragic incidents such as these,” he said. “No one should feel unsafe at work and we must do everything we can to prevent people from being injured at work.” MacBride said the government has established the Workplace Violence Prevention in Health Care Leadership Table to better protect health-care professionals on the job.   “Based on their advice, Ontario will develop an implementation plan to reduce incidents of workplace violence in hospitals and the broader health-care sector,” he said. Sheehan said, “at a minimum,” the stabbing should bring about a new look at policies surrounding security at Waypoint. “I’m hoping that we can come up with new procedures that will enable staff and patients to be safe,” he said.

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Arup Mukherjee, Director of Development and Engineering, and Khurram Tunio, Manager of Capital projects on May 3 confirmed what most Bradford residents already know: that Bradford West Gwillimbury has 2 seasons, Winter and Construction. They were in Council to provide an update of the Town’s capital works, and the unprecedented $100 million in construction planned in each of 2016 and 2017. “This is a significant amount of growth,” Tunio told Council, as he outlined 12 key projects, that will result in full servicing for the Hwy. 400 Employment lands, and create jobs – although he added, “We are already creating jobs, in construction.” . The Green Valley and Middletown wastewater pumping stations have been completed. . Southwest Arterial Road (SWAR). Phase 1, installation of watermains and forcemains along Line 5, is almost completed. Phase 2, including property acquisition and relocation of utilities, will be completed in 2016-17, with construction in 2018-19, tying in to the completion of the Line 5-400 interchange. Budget: $31.6 million, including engineering, land, utilities and construction. . Line 5 Interchange. The contract for construction has been awarded to Dufferin, and work is already underway, to be completed in 2018. Current cost estimate is still $54 million – “the single largest investment in the Town,” Tunio said. . OPA 15/16 Servicing and Pumping station is underway, including installation of 10.2 km of forcemains, 3.8 kms of watermains, 4.2 km of sewers, 5.4 km of roads, and two pumping stations. Work is expected to be substantially complete by Spring 2018. Projected costs are now $49.02 million – approximately $2 million over budget. . Twinning of the Innisfil-Bradford watermain, expected to take place in 2017. Includes upgrades to the John Fennell Reservoir; total budget $26.738 million. . Line 8 Watermain. Contract was awarded to Trisan Construction this spring, to construct 8.9 km of watermain and reconstruct 2.4 km of rural roads (including the replacement of a large box culvert), east of Hwy. 400 to Sideroad 10, at a cost of $13.695 million. Completion is scheduled for 2017, but the work may be done earlier – and may involve road closures. . Bond Head Water Tower, at 4050 County Rd. 88. Construction in 2017. Budget: $6.744 million. . Southeast Arterial Road (SEAR). Construction in 2016, to be completed in 2017. Estimated cost is $14.43 million. . Simcoe Road reconstruction and servicing. Construction underway, for completion in 2017, at a cost of $14.596 million. . Reconstruction of Scanlon, Back, Buce and Rebecca Streets in Bradford. Design is “90% complete” and should be going to tender in May; construction beginning in 2016 will include replacement of aged ductile iron watermain. Budgeted at $2.5 million, costs are now estimated at $2.9 million. The Back St. reconstruction will tear up the section of road resurfaced just last year, at a cost of $20,000. . Reconstruction of Frederick St. from Church to Barrie, Joseph and Moore Sts., in 2016. Design is 60% complete, but should be ready for tender in May. Budgeted at $2.5 million, the cost is now estimated at $2.9 million, and will include new sidewalks. Other projects, underway or nearing completion – Newton Robinson Bridge Replacement, to be completed by fall 2016; Innisfil Water Treatment Plant Expansion being undertaken by the Town of Innisfil, for completion in Fall 2017; Tender and Reconstructon of the Town’s John St. Municipal Parking Lot in 2017; Line 6/Walker Ave Urbanization – substantially complete, with only top coat of asphalt and any deficiencies to be addressed this summer; Melbourne Drive – substantially complete, with only top coat of asphalt and any deficiencies to be addressed this summer. The Holland St. Reconstruction is currently on hold. There will be temporary road closures on various routes, this year and next – most notably, Simcoe Rd., and a section of the 8th Line this year. “It is inconvenient, but there area alternatives provided,” Tunio promised.

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Wendy Brown straightens a painting on the wall of nicely furnished home in Barrie’s east end. Her shoes echo on the clean hardwood floor in the empty house, past three fully-furnished bedrooms, a fully-stocked kitchen and nicely-appointed living room to the finished basement where toys sit too tidily in a corner. Brown, and the other 30 members of the Grace United Syrian Refugee sponsorship group, decorated the bungalow with items donated freely from the community in a rush in early March when they took possession of the rental property. Now all it needs is the Syrian family to fill it. “The most frustrating part is not knowing anything,” Brown said, as she and group member, Deborah Hardwick, showed off the empty home on Wednesday. “We don’t know where they are in the processing, if they’re waiting on paperwork, or even where they are,” she said. Hardwick nodded her head, asking the question on all sponsorship groups’ lips, “Do they feel abandoned? Do they think we don’t care?” Such are the fears of many sponsorship groups across Ontario, plus the estimated 9,000 church members and private-member groups who fundraised, rented houses and apartments, collected furniture and furnishings in a rush last winter for families they’ve committed to sponsor in Canada. Former Toronto mayor John Sewell (1978-1980) has taken the unusual step of creating an organization (canada4refugees.org) to offer sponsoring groups an updated website to log their Syrian family’s status so Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) can begin their work on the squeaky wheel principle; push through these immigrants’ requests faster. Sewell says he has received requests from 150 sponsor groups in the last few days. He says there are 125 Anglican sponsoring groups in Toronto alone, and figures with each group having 15 to 20 members, the government has left them with rental homes sitting empty. “That goodwill we were trying to build on is waning. I’m saying to them (IRCC), don’t disappoint them,” Sewell said. After the initial 25,000 refugees landed on Canadian soil by the end of February, the temporary staff’s contracts were allowed to expire, leaving paperwork that is only now being addressed. Spadina – Fort York MP Adam Vaughan said initially, there was a “massive amount of temp people and lots of overtime” to meet Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s campaign promise of bringing in 25,000 Syrians by the end of the year, which was extended to Feb. 29. “We had to get the 25,000 in and let the dust settle a bit to make sure we have the resources to ensure we have enough momentum to move forward,” Vaughan said. He admits that since the refugees’ arrival has slipped to a trickle, there has been a growing angst amongst the sponsorship groups. “We’re working with John’s (Sewell’s) group, because when things slowed and then basically stopped, they experienced a certain amount of frustration,” he said. “We’d built up expectations and we had to deal with that.” More than a dozen new IRCC staff were hired May 9 to thread their way through the dusty paperwork trail left behind by the temporary workers, to rev up the immigration process again. “More than 40 additional dedicated staff are joining employees and partner organizations already working in visa offices in the Middle East to process these applications in May and June,” said Remi Lariviere, media relations spokesperson for IRCC. “Employees are located in different countries with the bulk of the processing occurring in Beirut. These efforts will also be supported by dozens of staff in Canada.“ More than 27,000 Syrian refugees have already landed in Canada, including 15,268 government-assisted, 9,416 privately-sponsored and 2,321 blended visa office-referred refugees, he said. Lariviere said Syrian refugees who are accepted for resettlement are expected to arrive in Canada within three to six months of their interview. As groups continue to pay rent on empty rental properties, one bright spot is that the Collingwood Syrian Sponsorship Committee received word that their group’s family is expected to arrive during the first week of June. Organizer Thom Vincent has been asked to give his two-cents worth at the the standing committee of immigration regarding the federal government’s initiative to resettle Syrian refugees on May 31. “I want to represent small-town Canada, the Barries and Collingwoods of this country,” Vincent said. “I’m going to be quite veracious, too. I’m going to say, you guys have screwed this up, so what are you going to do about it?” Cbrowne@postmedia.com Twitter.com/cherylbrowne1

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NORTH SIMCOE – Like so many people from across our country, Victoria Harbour natives Kelly and Tricia Berry were enticed to Fort McMurray by the promise of jobs in the oil industry. And like so many, they have returned home after the devastating wildfire that nearly destroyed the Alberta town. READ MORE: Kelly said he was in Fort McMurray when he got a call from his wife telling him there had been an evacuation order. “I quickly went back to the condo, packed up a few things and tried to get out of Dodge as fast as I could,” he said. The two have been active in pulling together aid for Fort McMurray, including working with the Midland-Penetanguishene District Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) during a May 12 donation drive at the Village Square Mall in Penetanguishene. Tricia said the whole experience has been extremely difficult for both her and her husband. “Fort Mac is now our home,” she said. “This experience has been pretty devastating for everybody.” Tricia said they know their condo is currently intact, but she is unsure about its condition. “We don’t know about any smoke or soot damage,” she said. “We won’t know that until we get back.” Tricia said she and Kelly are staying in north Simcoe because of the presence of friends and family. “This is where our support network is,” she said. “Except for the last five years, everybody we’ve ever known is here.” Kelly said the response to the fires from people in north Simcoe and across Canada shows how giving a nation this is. “I’ve never been more proud to be Canadian,” he said. “It blows my mind and it’s been so humbling.” And Kelly also gives credit to the resiliency of the Fort McMurray community. “They’re a tough bunch of people,” he said. “Everybody up there is anxious to get back and help out their neighbours.” And the plan for both is to return. Kelly estimated they will be able to go back in “about a month.” “We want to go back and help the rebuild effort,” Tricia said. “We want to make sure Fort McMurray comes back strong again.”

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It was a one-in-a-million shot. The curling team skipped by Ken Russwurm, competing in a mixed seniors daytime league competition at the Stayner Granite Curling Club on March 22, finished an end with all eight rocks in the house – and closest to the button. Related: “To get eight rocks to stay in play – that is a one-in-a-million,” noted Granite Club member Joe Belanger, who witnessed the feat. “It was very exciting.” The Ontario Curling Association will be awarding ‘eight-ender’ crests to the team of Nancy Jarrell, Mary Jane Macarthur, Ken Russwurm, Roy Schoenberger and Russwurm at a later date.

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Housing sales numbers climbed in March, according to Barrie & District Association of Realtors: City of Barrie Within the City of Barrie, detached residential properties posted an average selling price for the month of March 2016 of $424,655, an increase of 16% over March 2015. Residential Townhouse, Link and Semi-Detached homes in the City of Barrie posted an average selling price of $323,945 in March 2016, a 25% increase over March 2015. Condominium sales average for the City of Barrie for the month of March 2016 was $246,735, a 20% increase over March 2015. Essa Township In Essa Township, detached residential properties posted an average selling price of $432,702 in March 2016, an increase of 15% compared to March 2015. Town of Innisfil Detached residential properties in the Town of Innisfil posted an average selling price of $464,130 in March 2016, an increase of 20% over the month of March 2015. Oro-Medonte Township The average selling price for detached residential properties in Oro-Medonte in March 2016 was $450,033, an increase of 5% over March 2015. Springwater Township Detached residential homes in Springwater Township posted an average selling price in March 2016 of $566,390, a 2% increase over March 2015. The Barrie & District Association of REALTORS®  covers a geographical area that includes the City of Barrie and part or all of the surrounding townships, including Springwater, OroMedonte, Innisfil, Essa, Bradford-West Gwillimbury and Clearview. 

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