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George Gordon First Nation members head to the polls PDF Print E-mail
Written by Manfred Joehnck   
Wednesday, 13 September 2017 08:22

Election poster. Courtesy of George Gordon First Nation.

Members of the George Gordon First Nation, about 110 kilometres north of Regina, are going to the polls today to elect a new chief and band councillor in controversial by-elections.

The council position became vacant last summer because of a resignation, but the chief position was vacated by courts. The Court of Appeal threw out the results because of 17 disputed ballots that could have changed the outcome.

The challenge was launched by band member, Solomon Cyr, who is running for the council position. He is up against Vera Ash, Byron Bitternose, Danny Cyr and Lyndon Oochoo.

Ousted Chief, Bryan McNabb Junior, is back in the race against John McNab and Shawn Longman. Bryan McNabb won the election in March of 2016, defeating John McNab by only eight votes. Shawn Longman came in third, 43 votes behind the leader.

Last October, a Court of Queen’s Bench threw out the entire election results missing ballots, 17 for chief and 14 for council. The Court of Appeal ruled in April the council results could stand, but it upheld the ruling to hold a new election for chief.

If the advance polls are any indication, there is a lot of interest in today’s election. Four-hundred and fifty votes were cast in the advance polls earlier this month.

There are about 250 mail-in ballots and another 325 votes that can be cast in today’s by-elections. Polls close at 8:00 p.m.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 13 September 2017 08:32
More northern Saskatchewan residents evacuated due to wildfires PDF Print E-mail
Written by Joel Willick   
Tuesday, 12 September 2017 12:30

Fire map. Photo courtesy of Government of Saskatchewan.

Another small northern Saskatchewan community has been evacuated due to wildfires.

An evacuation order was issued Monday night for the northern community of Tyrell Lake. The small recreational subdivision is along Highway 106, where the very large Granite Fire has been burning.

Late Monday night, the fire became a direct threat to both the community and road access as the highway was temporarily closed.

Officials say approximately 20 residents of the area fled to stay with friends and family while one couple has been housed in Creighton.

Dianna Valentine is the coordinator of emergency social service, she says this brings the current total of evacuees up to nearly 2,800.

"We are making sure their needs are met, we are ensuring there are daily activities and we are just waiting for when we get the call that they can return home," said Valentine.

She says evacuees have been moving in between Saskatoon and Prince Albert, which makes it difficult to gather official numbers. At last estimate, Valentine says there are 807 evacuees in Saskatoon and 1,990 in Prince Albert.

At last report, the fires are expected to be burning for a long time, and it will be up to Chief Peter Beatty of the Peter Ballantyne Cree Nation to make the final decision as to when everyone can return home.

"We are not making any recommendation at this time, but we are in communication with the community, and we are letting them know what we are seeing," said Deputy Fire Commissioner Ray Unrau. "When we are all on the same page in the form of next steps, we will be ready to take those actions."

Meanwhile, the Ministry of Highways says they will be conducting convoys along Highway 106 to bring people into Creighton when it is safe to do so.

However, officials say there could be significant wait times.


Last Updated on Tuesday, 12 September 2017 12:33
Limited traffic now allowed on some northern roads impacted by fires PDF Print E-mail
Written by mbcnews   
Tuesday, 12 September 2017 11:27

Junction of Highway 106 and 135 Sunday. Photo courtesy of Saskatchewan Department of Highways.

Sask. Highways has announced some limited travel arrangements for northern roads.

Highway 106, also known as the Hansen Lake Road, will be open during restricted hours between the junction of Highway 135 and Creighton.

Between 6:00 a.m. and 11:00 a.m., and again between 6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m., all vehicles travelling this road will be escorted through in a convoy.

Drivers are asked to be patient and expect delays. This arrangement could change without notice due to fire behavior.

Drivers should also keep in mind that there is no access off of Highway 106 to Tyrell Lake or Granite Lake, at this time.

Officials say Highway 135 from the junction of 106 to Pelican Narrows remains completely closed.

For further updates, please keep listening to MBC or check the Highway Hotline.


Last Updated on Tuesday, 12 September 2017 11:35
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