If you have information on any crime, please call the Nanaimo RCMP at


and quote the file number


Gary O'Brien

Help find missing

Ravannah Ounsted

RCMP seek public assistance in locating 30-year old Ravannah Ounsted, who has not beenseen inthe pastfour days. She is believed to be in Nanaimo. Checks of emergency shelters and encampments have proved negative. Ounsted is 5 ft. 6 inches,170 pounds,and the picture of her is recent. If you have information on her whereabouts, please call the Nanaimo RCMP non-emergency line at 250-754-2345.


Anita James who had been reported missing has been located safe and sound

It's Hallowe’en and with that, the Nanaimo RCMP provide basic safety tips to keep it a fun filled accident free evening. See the full list of safety suggestions HERE


Helijet is going electric, hopefully by 2026

It has placed firm orders for electric vertical takeoff and landing (eVTOL) aircraft from BETA Technologies in Burlington, Vermont. Helijet plans to integrate the new aircraft into its existing network of daily flight services. It hopes it will provide quieter, lower-cost, air transportation for southwestern B.C. and the Pacific Northwest. The five-passenger plus pilot aircraft is in advanced flight tests to be certified by 2026. Helijet says the aircraft will be available for private and commercial service shortly thereafter. Six months ago Harbour-Air showcased its fully electric ePlane. MORE

Businesses large and small across the province have had enough of theft, vandalism and violent crime. A coalition of 30 British Columbia retailers, trade associations and other groups was announced Monday. The Nanaimo Area Public Safety Association is part of the group which seeks change from provincial and federal governments on social disorder, mental health and addictions, and criminal justice reform. Kevan Shaw of NAPSA said the coalition brings together community safety groups, chambers of commerce, business associations and major corporations such as London Drugs and Save-On-Foods. MORE

A paving compactor went over a seven-metre embankment Monday afternoon. The operator appeared uninjured but was taken to hospital for observation. It happened while paving a section of Albert Street, heading downhill and rolled. Nanaimo Fire Rescue Capt. Tom Krall said he was updated by a supervisor who stated that the operator went over the bank inside the machine, but walked out apparently uninjured. MORE

You’ll have to dig deeper into your pocked again after B.C. Hydro has applied for a 2.3-per-cent rate increase starting in April. The Energy Ministry says it's the sixth year in a row that BC Hydro has applied for an increase below the rate of inflation. Rates are 15.6 per cent below the cumulative inflation rate over the last seven years and 12.4 per cent lower than the 10-year rates plan established by the government in 2013. The B.C. Utilities Commission is expected to rule on the application by the end of February. MORE

Homeowners in some provinces may escape the carbon dioxide tax on heating fuel, but not in our province. Premier David Eby and Opposition Leader Kevin Falcon faced off on the topic in question period Monday. Falcon wanted all heating exempt from the tax but Eby reminded him it was the previous Liberal party that brought in the tax. He added the NDP will continue to levy the tax. The federal Liberals announced they were giving a three-year break to the provinces, along with rebates for switching from oil to heat pumps. The B.C. provincial government says between 25,000 and 39,000 B.C. homes rely on oil for heat. MORE

There’s a new course coming to British Columbia high schools. Premier David Eby plans to make Holocaust education mandatory for Grade 10 students by 2025. He said it’s been a frightening time for the Jewish community after terrorists attacks by Hamas militants in Israel. He added there has been a disturbing rise in anti semitism in B.C. MORE

Daycare workers at licensed child-care facilities in B.C. will get a raise of $2 an hour starting Jan. 1. The raise and previous wage boosts totalling $4 an hour since 2018, will increase the hourly wage for early childhood educators to $28 per hour. The ministry says early childhood educators who hold specialized certificates for infant, toddler and special needs education are also eligible for up to $3,000 extra per year. MORE


God is not welcome at Remembrance Day ceremonies

The Department of National Defence has gone woke and confirmed that chaplains can’t use the word “God” during official ceremonies. “Chaplains should not use the word God or other references to a higher power such as Heavenly Father, Department of National Defence spokesman Derek Abma told The Epoch Times.  MORE

Congrats to Sharon Welch, the newly-appointed executive director of the Nanaimo Community Hospice Society. NCHS offers skilled, compassionate support, education and advocacy for those living with advanced illness, dying, and bereavement, three of life's greatest challenges. NCHS believes that everyone struggling with these challenges - regardless of age, means or culture - deserves support.

Just a Minute – A recent report states that half of the operators in the food industry operating below the water mark, in danger of going under. There are fewer patrons and less dining out these days due in part to the high costs of meals. And you can’t blame the restaurant operators – food costs have sky rocketed, wages are up along with every other cost of living sector. And you can’t blame the customers when it’s somewhere over fifty bucks for two, without drinks. At those prices you may need a drink or two.

Quotable – If only vegetables smelled as good as bacon.


Cold snap breaks many low
temperature records in B.C.
Barely weeks ago we were sweating it out in record high temperatures and all of a sudden we’re looking at record lows. A 50-year cold weather record was beaten on Thursday in Port Hardy when it dropped down to -4.6 C, beating its record of -2.2 C set in 1971. In the Interior, Merritt reached -8.6 C on Wednesday, beating its record of -8.3 C that was set 104 years ago. MORE

Looking for a hot exclusive real estate deal? The three seized Hells Angels club houses are for sale, including the Nanaimo property. The East Vancouver house is valued at $1.52 million by BC Assessment. The third property is in Kelowna. The properties are part of $155-million in cash, cars, homes, and even luxury purses and drones seized over the past 17 years by the province after being linked to crime, even if the previous owner was never convicted. MORE

Many factors contribute to housing affordability. Rising development cost charges could impact federal funding for housing. Metro Vancouver’s board of directors has approved increases to help pay for billions of dollars in planned upgrades to regional water, liquid waste and park infrastructure. Those charges could double or even triple the charges to new home construction. Federal Housing Minister Sean Fraser has warned the board they could deter development by offsetting other measures that reduce the cost of building. MORE

Congrats to Bruce Williams for being named named Executive of the Year by the Chamber of Commerce Executives of Canada. Bruce is the CEO of the Greater Victoria Chamber of Commerce and was recognized as the top executive among the largest chambers in the country. “Bruce demonstrated that he is a masterful relationship builder and community champion,” stated the media release announcing the honour.The Victoria Chamber earned a prestigious Inclusive Growth Award for helping advance economic reconciliation and foster diversity, equity, inclusion and accessibility in the Canadian business landscape.MORE

Sport fishing is a little easier now that the Freshwater Fisheries Society is in the middle of its fall stocking program with catchable-sized trout. More than seven million fish from hatcheries are being put into lakes province-wide. Manager Tristan Robbins says most of the lakes around Nanaimo have been stocked this fall, and a few will be topped up over the next few weeks. 500 fish were added to Diver and Green Lake, and 1,000 were pumped into Long Lake and Westwood Lake. MORE

THINKING OUT LOUD - Why is it that there are pro-Palestine rallies world wide but no pro-Ukraine rallies?

Quotable – Some people are poor even though they have a lot of money.

There’s only one week left in Alternative Approval Process

The deadline is nearing to oppose borrowing up $48.5 million to build phase one of the controversial Nanaimo Operation Centre. The deadline is Friday, Nov. 3 at 4:30 p.m. to vote against the borrowing bylaw by filling out a response form which is available at City Hall and can be printed from the City website. Completed forms must be dropped off or mailed, they cannot be emailed or faxed. See DETAILS.

A single vehicle crash left about 1,400 homes without power in the Cinnabar Valley area Friday afternoon. A car with one occupant went off Extension Road near Richardson Road and hit a hydro pole. The driver suffered minor injuries and was taken to hospital. MORE


Sleeping outside in this weather isn’t just miserable, it’s dangerous. The Nanaimo System Planning Organization which is funded to develop a sheltering plan appeared before a council committe and councillors were not impressed by what they heard. Mayor Leonard Krog, who was not at the meeting, said he sensed frustration from the public and from council, calling it an apparent lack of preparation. “You know, winter rolls around every year,” said Krog. BC Housing provides funding for 63 shelter spaces in Nanaimo, including 30 spaces in extreme weather shelters. They say more may open later in the season as sites are confirmed. MORE

Skating on thin ice. Ottawa Senators’ player Shane Pinto has been suspended for 41 games by the National Hockey League for betting on sports. Yet there’s league-approved betting advertising on his team hockey helmet. See my Sept. 27 Just a Minute COMMENT

The car crash into a home and a gas meter on Thursday was a repeat of an incident in the north end about a decade ago. Area homes were evacuated, hydro was shut off, fire rescue was on hand, and Fortis had a problem locating the gas line shutoff. In the latest incident Fortis again had a problem finding the gas shut off, exactly like at the Waterbury Road address. The shut off was way down the street but staff had a problem locating it. You’d think they might have solved that problem after a decade.

Quotable – Keeping your opinion to yourself doesn’t make for very good commentaries.


A long-time mainstay for coffee and lunches is closing permanently. Nanaimo bakery on Bowen Road will shut down Nov. 24 The bakery with lunch service was operated by  non-profit Island Crisis Care Society. Director Corrie Corfield said it’s been a challenging time for anyone in the food business, and especially trying to basically take something that was existing and change course with it. The board decided they had no option but to close. MORE

Colin Joseph Harold Hewitt, 51, was sentenced to four and a half years in prison for dangerous driving causing death and impaired operation causing death in a crash that killed a woman two years ago. The fatal crash occurred May, 2021, at Cranberry Avenue and Trans-Canada Highway. 74-year-old Kathy Bagshaw died in the crash. Judge Karen Whonnock sentenced Hewitt to four and a half years on each charge, to be served concurrently. The judge said the speed limit at the site of the crash was 70 km/h, and the investigation found Hewitt was driving 114 km/h. MORE

Artificial intelligence was front at centre at the State of the Island Economic Summit in Nanaimo on Thursday. Experts gave their perspectives on evolving AI and its possible benefits – depending how humans apply it. Graham Truax, Island Innovation executive director; Sean Mark, Nanaimo-based epidemiologist and data scientist; and Lauren Evanow, a health, energy and AI-inspired solutions advisor, made presentations. MORE

Premier David Eby addressed a grab bag of topics at the Vancouver Island Economic Alliance convention Thursday – highways, ferries, the drug crisis, crime and more. Housing topped the list for many, especially the short-term rental shutdown. Eby said 250,000 people moved to British Columbia over the past two years, and 2023 is seeing record levels of migration. That’s good news, because there will be about one million job openings next ten years and we need people to come, Eby said. But we also need to respond to the pressures that that growth brings, he said, adding the government is all hands on deck on housing. MORE

Hate has no place in British Columbia, says Premier David Eby in condemning the rise in hate crimes related to the Israeli-Hamas war. Eby said his office has heard about vandalism of a rabbi’s home and two Jewish women being threatened after a rally. He said there have also been increased reports of incidents from Muslim organizations, including one where two women were attacked in Vancouver. He added there is no place for Islamophobia or anti-Palestinian hate as there is no place for anti-semitism or anti-Israeli hate. VIDEO COMMENTARY.

There’s nothing to perk up your morning like a bear wandering in your neighbourhoud. The Conservation Officer Service has responded to a number of bear sightings in Uplands neighbourhoods recently. It’s another reminder to keep your garbage cans secure and be alert when walking in the area. MORE

Victoria Road was closed and the immediate area evacuated after a car crashed into a house, hitting a gas meter Thursday afternoon. A man, woman and three children were in the car and there were no reported injuries. The driver appeared to have had a medical emergency and was taken to hospital. MORE

Keep those kettles perking. I just got a note from the Salvation Army's Christmas Kettle team and they need more volunteers. Call BrendaLea Dudley, the Kettle Co-ordinator at 250-740-1004 or Cell 250-716-6595 if you can pitch in a few hours here and there. Besides, you'll meet a lot of really nice and generous people while you're doing that.

Quotable – The biggest joke on mankind is that computers have begun asking humans to prove they are not a robot/


Another sign of the times as Rogers shut down its CityNews Ottawa radio station, laying off newsroom staff. Rogers said the decision is due to low audiences, declining revenue and restrictive regulatory policies for AM radio. It will maintain an online presence supported by two digital reporters, allowing audiences to get news, traffic and weather updates through the CityNews Ottawa website and its social media channels. MORE

Not the kind of repeat business anyone wants. Clint Mahlman of London Drugs told NanaimoNewsNOW repeat offenders are targeting the Port Place London Drugs and other stores with growing frequency. Employees often see the same person who has committed a violent act, theft, or vandalism, who may have been caught earlier in the day  back in the store later that day seemingly with no consequence. Mahlman rejected reports of one of Nanaimo’s two stores possibly closing but added it is “something we have to consider if things don’t change.” MORE

Nanaimo drug users seeking help now have access to treatment and recovery with 10 more publicly-funded treatment beds at Edgewood. Thirty more beds are located in three other Island locations. The province kicked in with $8 million for the no-charge treatment beds which are available by referral from a health-care professional. The length of treatment can range from 50 to 90 days. Following treatment, they are encouraged to enter a nine-to-12-month virtual after-care program for continued support. For information about access to treatment and referral eligibility, contact Island Health's mental-health and substance-use service line at 1-888-885-8824.

Nanaimo Regional directors settled on the Cadillac version for a pedestrian bridge between South Wellington and Cedar. The choice is an estimated $5.2-million truss bridge involving two spans, each about 100 meters long, connecting both sides via an island in the Nanaimo River.The new plan for the truss option was estimated to be $1.7 million more expensive than a suspension bridge link. MORE

Quotable – I threw out my back sleeping, and tweaked my neck sneezing so I’m probably just one strong fart away from complete paralysis.

Keep a wary eye

on aid to Palestine


We knew it was coming, winter hit the mid-Island overnight. Wind, rain and wet snow resulted in downed trees topple and power lines. That left about 4,000 customers without electricity early this morning. Ladysmith Primary and Secondary schools were closed for the day. MORE

HeliJet flight with 14 passengers and crew landed safely in Victoria Tuesday after it was struck by lightning. The flight was on a trip from the Mainland to Victoria when the strike occurred. Two of the helicopter's four tail rotor blades were shorn from the aircraft as it flew approximately 4,200 feet above the southern Gulf Islands. The helicopter landed safely in Victoria and all 12 passengers were medically cleared before departing. The two pilots were also checked over and are physically unharmed, according to the company. MORE

Good news this morning – The Bank of Canada kept its benchmark interest rate unchanged at 5 per cent today amid signs of cooling in the economy and easing in inflation. The hold was widely expected by economists and market watchers heading into the decision.

Gabriola Island RCMP are investigating after a man's body was recovered from the ocean near Dragon's Lane Sunday. Investigators say the man is not a Gabriola resident of the island. They said circumstances around the death are being investigated, but foul play is not suspected. MORE

For the best brew in British Columbia you’ll have to travel over The Hump to Port Alberni.Twin City Brewing Companywas named Brewery of the Year at the2023 BC Beer Awards on Sunday. Three other island brewers also made it to the podium. Small Gods Brewing in Sidney was named Innovator of the Year, while Swift Brewing and Hoyne Brewing, both in Victoria, were named Rookie of the Year and Best in Show. MORE

Quotable – The older I get, the more I understand why roosters just scream to start their day.

Inge von Stackelberg is 94 years old but that hasn't stopped her from trying something new. She has used her creativity for more than 25 years to raise money for causes close to her heart. She can’t get out to the craft sales to talk to people in person any more so she’s trying this new-fangled thing called social media. She says this is her final big fundraising effort and she wants to make it her the best ever. Her target is $10,000. “I love Loaves & Fishes – not only do they stop food waste but they move perfectly good food to the locations and people that need it most! You’ll get a tax receipt for any donation over $20." Here is the site where you can CONTRIBUTE.

Eby sitting pretty despite the mess


Here comes the snow. Environment Canada has issued a special weather statement for three Island highways, forecasting up to 10 centimetres at elevations above 250 metres with wet snow starting today through tonight. Port Alberni summit between Coombs and Port Alberni and Sutton Pass between Port Alberni and Kennedy Lake will likely get hit. Highway 28 between Gold River and Campbell River and Highway 19 between Port Hardy and Campbell River will also see snow. There is not expected to be any snow accumulation at sea levels or in any communities. MORE


And with winter is on its way that means colder nights. That became a topic at Governance and Priorities Committee meeting Monday. Chief Administrative Officer Dale Lindsay said there is not enough space for the hundreds of homeless people in Nanaimo to bed down overnight. But he cautioned it’s not the City’s responsibility, it has clearly and historically been a recognition that it’s provincial responsibility and BC Housing specifically has a responsibility for shelter and overnight spaces. MORE


City staff and developers are tinkering with the building permit process, hoping to develop something better. The co-chairs of the joint building permit advisory working group, Jeremy Holm, director of development approvals, and Darren Moss, of Tectonica Construction Management, gave an update at Monday’s council meeting. Among several changes made, the working group has updated a detailed guide to building permit applications and a building permit application checklist. MORE

Nominations are open for the City’s 2024 Culture Awards which recognize outstanding organizations, groups and individuals in arts and culture. This is your opportunity to recognize people and groups who have contributed significantly to making Nanaimo a culturally vibrant city. There are three categories : Excellence in Culture, Honour in Culture, and Emerging Cultural Leader (under 30 years of age) For full details, visit theCulture Awards page. The deadline to submit applications is midnight Jan. 28, 2024.

The second Chamber of Commerce Business after Business this month is on Thursday at Casino Nanaimo's Loft room. Learn how gambling revenue supports the local community. Reserve your spot, and hey, there are door prizes. REGISTER

The NDP has never won a federal election and formed government, so maybe new electoral rules could answer their quest. Our NDP MP Lisa Marie Barron is leading a series of community meetings to electoral reform in federal politics. The first was held yesterday in Ladysmith and tonight at 6:30 p.m. at Legion Branch 256 in Nanaimo. Lisa says the system is outdated as it lets a party with  less than 40 per cent support gain the power to shape our country. If the Liberal government isn’t willing to make that happen, then she and her New Democrat colleagues will push for it. MORE

QUOTABLE – The older I get, the more I understand why roosters just scream to start their day.

Minding your

own business


As the first buds of the season signal the harbinger of spring, the first snowfall signals the beginning of fall and winter. That time is now. Environment Canada has issued alerts for the first snowfall of the season today along the Coquihalla Highway and Rogers Pass. Up to 10 centimetres will accumulate along those mountain highways, while fewer than 5 cm is forecast along other sections of the Okanagan Connector and Trans-Canada Highway. Winter tires required, including the Island Highway.


One of my first assignments as a reporter for the Nanaimo Daily Free Press was the revitalization of downtown Nanaimo in 1983. Now, 40 years later, the story repeats itself. The city’s finance committee recommends beginning Commercial Street redesign in time for next summer. The first two phases of the project focus on removal of curbs on the street. Other features will see new benches, lighting, landscaping, spaces for patios or parking. The committee has earmarked $4 million of provincial funding to complete both phases. In all, there are three more projects bringing the total to $10 million. There will be new washrooms at Maffeo Sutton Park, a land purchase for a new South End Community Centre and washroom improvements at Westwood Lake ($1.180 million).  MORE

It's time to put the horse before the cart


Find another way. The East Wellington Road overpass will be closed for a couple of weeks starting on Monday for the $56-million midtown water supply upgrade. installed between Madsen Road and East Wellington Roadto the parkway overpass. Drivers will have to find alternate routes, while pedestrians and cyclists will be able to get through the construction zone. All businesses will remain open and accessible, to businesses on East Wellington Road from the Westwood Road direction. MORE


Port Alberni RCMP are looking for a suspect after a stabbing Friday afternoon. Frontline officers found a man suffering from serious injuries. He later died in hospital. Police said a suspect has been identified and they are seeking his arrest. They said it was an  isolated incident and the parties involved are known to each other. MORE

The Bank of Canada is widely expected to hold its key interest rate steady on Wednesday as the Canadian economy bends to higher interest rates and inflation resumes its downward trend.

Money, money, money. Four projects to improve accessibility and over all quality of life in Nanaimo will share in $10.6 million from the Growing Communities Fund. Sharing the loot are Design Commercial Project ($3.985 million), new washrooms at Maffeo Sutton Park ($3 million), a land purchase for a new South End Community Centre ($2.5 million) and washroom improvements at Westwood Lake ($1.180 million). Coun. Janice Perrino says Maffeo Sutton Park is our premier park and the centre point of our city. So many families spend time down there, it’s important to have that washroom updated. MORE


The city’s got some provincial money and councillors are spending it. The finance committee recommends spending more than $10 million on downtown and park improvement projects, pending approval from the full council. Nanaimo got more than $16 million from the province – $5.1 million was previously allocated, with $3 million to the Harewood artificial turf field project and $2.1 million to the midtown water supply upgrade. Staff recommended $4 million for Commercial Street redesign, $3 million for new washrooms at Maffeo Sutton Park, $2.5 million to buy land for a south end community centre, and $1.2 million for Phase 2 of Westwood Lake Park improvements. MORE


British Columbians have one year to make up their minds for the next provincial election. New polling released Thursday by the Angus Reid Institute for Global TV puts the New Democrats solidly in first place, with 43 per cent support. BC United and the Conservatives are in a statistical tie at 22 and 21 per cent. The Greens got 12 per cent. Despite their strong position in the polls, the NDP faces ongoing pressure in the health-care system, the rising cost of living and sky-high housing prices, homelessness and mental illness. MORE

Construction is slated to begin in 2025 on a new long-term care facility with more than 300 beds. The three-storey facility on Lantzville Road in Nanaimo will house 306 long-term care beds, including a 20-bed hospice unit and a 26-bed specialized population unit. It will have a hair salon, activities and special events area, a 37-space child care facility and an adult day program to assist people to live independently in the community. The Province is contributing $171.5 million through Island Health. The Nanaimo Regional Hospital District is putting up $114-million.


Snuneymuxw First Nation opposition has put the brakes on the long-awaited Howard Johnson Hotel redevelopment. City council voted to delay the rezoning application for the proposal with 760 residential units in eight buildings, including two high rises, a conference centre and commercial space. The zoning amendment had been previously deferred when Snuneymuxw First Nation voiced strong opposition in spring. Mayor Leonard Krog said the last time it was discussed the Ministry of Indigenous Relations, asked council to defer consideration while “facilitators engaged by the province attempted to resolve Snuneymuxw opposition. MORE

Victoria police have arrested and charged a suspect in the February fire at Walmart in Nanaimo. Edwin Vikash Singh, 42, was arrested on Aug. 27 after a series of fires believed to be deliberately set in Victoria and Saanich. Victoria police worked with Nanaimo RCMP on the investigation. The Walmart fire resulted in a temporary closure of the store and millions in property damage and lost inventory. MORE

QUOTABLE – I never realized how intelligent I was until I started talking to myself.

Advocacy journalism has become the norm where reporters lecture rather than ask questions. Here's a classic example, see how the journalist gets taken to the wood shed. 



Rising enrolment figures have confirmed the need to reopen Rutherford Elementary School. Preparations are under way to reopen the school in 2025. The school board will establish a committee to assist with the planning, which includes determining catchment for Rutherford and other schools in its vicinity for Rutherford and other schools in its vicinity. Schools near Rutherford all saw enrolment increases as the catchment area grew by 46 students. MORE


Premier David Eby is frustrated with BC Ferries problems. In an interview with CHEK News he said he’s aware of concerns with the ferry operator, including cancelled sailings, boat problems and staff shortages. Ferry issues became a topic in the legislature on Wednesday when BC United Leader Kevin Falcon blasted Ferries for hiring new executives amid staff shortages.. MORE

The Vancouver Island Construction Association is also frustrated with the unreliability of B.C. ferries and is offering suggestions to help Vancouver Island businesses. President Rory Kulmala says it is affecting the ability to bring essential construction materials and workers. He says BC Ferries should consider adding extra sailings and overnight routes exclusively for delivering goods and materials. Having a reliable link to move the goods and materials that we need on the Island is critical to our economic vitality,” he said. MORE

Hackers are lurking on the internet trying to steal your information at every turn. Hackers attack home computers to steal identity, bank and credit card information, there is ever-present danger of cyberattack to hardware that controls everything from traffic lights to gas and water pipelines and the electrical grid. A Lantzville company, aDolus Technology, is using artificial intelligence to help Microsoft to remedy defects in computer hardware. MORE To learn more about the current state of cybersecurity worldwide, visit the Microsoft Digital Defence Report 2023 HERE

One-stop services for drug users are being installed at three Island hospitals this month. The care and connection kioks will be open 24 hours a day at NRGH, Campbell River’s North Island Hospital and Victoria General Hospital. They will offer harm reduction items including condoms, wound care supplies, naloxone kits, take-home drug testing strips, and syringes and safe disposal containers outside the emergency department. The kiosks will be staffed by full-time peer support or addiction and recovery workers. 304 people have died in Island Health this year from toxic substances. MORE

Rain drops are falling, but some prefer to call them an atmospheric river. Warnings are in effect for Vancouver Island, Greater Vancouver, the Sea to Sky Highway, the Sunshine Coast and Kitimat. West Vancouver Island will get between 180 to 200 mm. Widespread or severe impacts are not expected as part of this system. Environment Canada predicts the storm will continue into Wednesday evening. MORE


Media failure.  London Drugs is not planning to shut down any stores because the violent shoplifting. The company made the statement after earlier media reports which had not been confirmed before broadcasting what was posted on social media by a Vancouver city councillor..

Previous story – Violent shoplifting is such a serious problem across the province that London Drugs could be forced to close several stores. Despite spending millions on increased security, theft is still rampant and staff are facing risks while on the job. President and CEO Clint Mahlman says one employee was hit with a hatchet and employees are often threatened with knives, needles, machetes and other objects such as bear spray. “It’s in northern B.C., it’s on Vancouver Island, we see it universally everywhere,” Mahlman says. MORE

Nanaimo-Ladysmith schools got more students than expected this fall. SD68 Secretary-Treasurer Mark Walsh said 15,048 full-time students are enrolled, 96 more than projected prior to the start of the school year. He added growth is sufficient to support inflationary impacts, while not being too excessive that space, with a few exceptions, is at a critical point. He hopes that will continue for years to come, adding that would be good for the district. MORE

Not only is homelessness a major scourge in B.C. it is now spreading to an older demographic in the Lower Mainland. The 2023 Greater Vancouver Homeless Count revealed 22 per cent of the region’s homeless are 55 or older, more than double the 2005 total. MORE

Only in Nanaimo, you say? If you want to build a new home you won’t be allowed to install natural gas as your primary heating source, starting next year. The Greenie majority on council amended the building bylaw to the provincial zero-carbon step code starting July 1. The code will be applied province wide in 2030, but Nanaimo will make the move six years ahead of that schedule. Mayor Leonard Krog voiced his opposition, saying he doesn’t think it’s appropriate for the city to try to get ahead of the province’s timelines. MORE

Letter to the Editor – The majority on city council has made a highly regressive move in restricting building regulations to ban natural gas in new home construction, and that's not sitting well with one of our readers. See LETTERS.


City council has taken the first steps to clear the way for 30-unit, six-building residential complex on Metral Drive. The application passed first two reading at city council on Monday. Coun. Sheryl Armstrong was the only one opposed over increased traffic congestion on Metral Drive. Director of development approvals Jeremy Holm said the plan is to build the exits from the property onto Metral Drive, spaced apart to avoid backups. MORE

QUOTABLE – Liars know how to turn things around and make it seem like it’s all your fault.

Accrediting professionals will require major changes


It's gonna blow. Environment Canada has issued rain and wind warnings for parts of Vancouver Island, but we may escape. A high stream flow advisory is in effect for local rivers. Nanaimo, Ladysmith, Duncan, Victoria areas were not included in the warning. Parts of the East Island are expected to see 60-80 mm of rain Tuesday to Wednesday, while the Inland Island could see 80-120 mm and the West Island could see 180-200 mm. Rain is expected to become heavy later today and continue through Wednesday. MORE

Loaves and Fishes needs help. There’s been a big increase in people needing food and that means more volunteers are needed to get the food out the door. Executive director Peter Sinclair says there’s unprecedented need and they’ve been able to access lots of food. The challenge is helping hands for when the food arrives and needs to be sorted quickly, usually within 24 to 48 hours. The food bank gets nearly 10,000 visits per month, about 30 to 40 per cent higher than usual. To volunteer and or support Loaves and Fishes, visit their website.

After years of road blocks and obstacles, the Sandstone development south of the city is inching forward. City council gave first and second reading to a rezoning bylaw for the project that will be phased in over more than two decades. The final development is anticipated to include 800 single-family homes, 500 townhouses, 900 condos or apartments, commercial industrial. MORE

Private property rights fall victim to the province’s crackdown on short term rentals like Airbnb to tackle the rental housing shortage. The government is creating a database of legal short-term rentals throughout the province that municipalities will be able to access. Principal residences are exempt. The province is creating a department to help municipalities enforce fines against those operating without a licence. Fines will increase to $3,000 per day for breaking the rules. MORE

Inflation slowed in September but the don’t expect any great relief at the grocery store as prices of some items could rise further. Statistics Canada says grocery prices continue to rise, but the pace of growth fell to 5.8 per cent in September, down from 6.9 per cent in August. MORE

We say goodbye to two more community newspapers this week as they publish their final editions, eliminating coverage for a large section of the province's northeast. Glacier Media is shutting down the Dawson Creek Mirror and the Alaska Highway News of Fort St. John. Glacier said the business model for the papers is no longer sustainable as advertising dollars have shifted online. The Alaska Highway News first appeared in 1943 and the Mirror arrived in 1930. MORE

QUOTABLE – I typed Amen on a Facebook post that said I would become a millionaire if I typed Amen. I'm sure the cheque is in the mail.


violent break and enter and extensive fire damage to a home on Gabriola Island last week resulted in a man facing multiple charges. Just after midnight on Oct. 7, after a man with a weapon broke into the property on North Road and forced two seniors leave. They were unharmed. Witnesses said the suspect was highly agitated and caused substantial damage to the property, including setting a fire inside the home. MORE

Elevators in hospitals and long-term care homes will be serviced as needed in the event of a strike or lockout. Work could come to a halt as soon as Tuesday. The Union, which represents around 900 elevator maintenance, service and construction workers across the province, issued a 72-hour strike notice on Saturday. Meanwhile, the employers have served a lockout notice that could come into effect on Tuesday. The two sides will meet again today to discuss essential services designations. MORE

From the feedback I've been getting there's a lot of confusion about the alternate approval process for the city to borrow up to $48.5 million for the first phase of the Nanaimo Operations Centre project. First, a lot of voters are not aware of the Operations Centre project and then don't understand the process. The way the AAP process works is that voters have an opportunity to vote AGAINST the project, but there's no need to vote to approve. If less than the majority votes against it the borrowing is approved. It's perfectly legal but it's a stacked deck, to say the least, as getting half of eligible voters to participate in a regular election the chances of stopping this project would be about slim and none. See the full information package on our CITY PAGE

Nanaimo Concert Band’s new musical director Marc Hayes is busy getting all the notes ready for the fall concert on Nov. 5. He was named the band’s musical director in early September. He’s been a leading band master on cruise ships, working in theatre and pantomime productions, and teaching. “Music is universal, no matter what you’re playing,” he says. “Any professional experience is always going to have a positive impact on any musical setting.” MORE

In case you missed it, the Nanaimo Rotary Book Sale is in full swing at Nanaimo North Town Centre (Rutherford Mall). Give yourself lots of time to browse the thousands of fiction and non-fiction books available.

The Middle East war is capturing a lot of attention even in our world and most people have very clear views on whom they support, including a demonstration in Nanaimo. The argument by many is that Jews have no claim to the land they call Israel. In reality, the Jewish people have maintained ties to their historic homeland for more than 3,700 years. Brian Peckford has a look at the history of Israel. HERE.

QUOTABLE – Note to chefs and bakers – sesame seeds and dentures don't mix. Have mercy!

Big government is

its own worst enemy


More than 30 volunteers took the plunge at Wild Play on Friday to raise money for the Nanaimo Brain Injury Society. The third annual Toss the Boss raised more than $53,800 supports and services for those suffering brain injuries and their families. Kix Citton, executive director of the Brain Injury Society said the need is greater than ever, especially in mental health, housing supports, making sure that people get the kind of support they need to not only survive but thrive in life after brain injury. MORE


The Parksville Beach Festival sand sculpting competition brought in a record $79,800 for 25 local organizations in the region. Cheryl Dill, president of the society, said it was a credit to the volunteers that put more than 2,700 hours into greeting all the visitors to showcase the fantastic artistry in the sand. MORE


Thirteen municipal police forces face legal action from women working for those units.  The female officers have taken the first steps of what may turn into a class action lawsuit. It claims gender-based discrimination and harassment, naming all 13 municipalities, the attorney general and public safety minister as defendants. It names Oak Bay, Esquimalt, Victoria, and aims shocking claims at Central Saanich Police Services. Among those supporting the officers is former Nanaimo RCMP officer Janet Merlo, who was behind a class action against the RCMP which resulted in more than $100 million being paid out to female officers. MORE


Sean Oliver Douglas Kendall of Port Alberni has been sentenced to three years in jail and a 10-year firearms ban on drug trafficking charges. The former vice president of the Nanaimo chapter of Hell’s Angeles turned himself in last December after arrest warrants issued for him and three others.


Samantha Dittmer of Port Alberni was found guilty Friday of shooting and killing her adult son. The 12-member jury found her guilty of manslaughter for killing her son, Jesse McPhee, at their Port Alberni home in 2021. During the five-week murder trial, Dittmer testified she was trying to give a shotgun back to her son, when he charged at her and the gun fired. MORE

QUOTABLE – Life is short so make sure you spend as much time as possible on the internet arguing with strangers about politics..

Statistics prove what

you want them to prove


Hell’s Angels’ long battle to recover their former club houses has come to the end of the road. The Supreme Court of Canada has rejected their appeal of B.C.’s forfeiture of three clubhouses in Nanaimo, Kelowna and East Vancouver. Attorney General Mike Farnworth, the public safety minister, said the court’s decision “confirms that the tools we use to combat organized crime are constitutional and put criminals on notice. MORE

Michelle Stilwell is being inducted into the Canadian Disability Hall of Fame at a ceremony today. The former Paralympian and MLA and cabinet minister will be honoured with wheelchair basketball player Chantal Benoit and former Prime Minister Stephen Harper (builder category) at the 30th Annual Canadian Disability Hall of Fame Induction Luncheon in Toronto.


The city has earmarked $1.8 million from the Nanaimo youth resilience strategy to help deter youths from getting involved in gun and gang violence. Planning started in 2022, when Public Safety Canada announced Nanaimo was among 22 municipalities in B.C. selected to develop a three-year gun and gang violence prevention strategy and fund youth violence diversion projects. MORE


A seven-year-old Nanaimo girl is the youngest-ever recipient of B.C. Emergency Health Services’ Vital Link Award, presented to members of the public who are involved in saving a life through successful CPR. When Lucia Dell saw her grandfather in serious trouble at Beban Pool on Sept. 8 she called for help. Her quick action alerted the lifeguard staff who helped save the life of her grandfather, Bernard Biro. Seven City lifeguard staff members – Maddy Tait, Kilian Allard, Mott Coupland, Mackenzie Murgatroyd, Ethan Johnson, Nina Carroll and Keiann Nowicki – were presented with letters of commendation. MORE


The school bell will toll again at Rutherford Elementary School in 2025. There’s still a lot of work to do but Secretary Treasurer Mark Walsh said the move makes a lot of financial and operational sense, but it’s imperative they do it right. The surrounding area has long wanted the school to reopen since it was shut down in 2018. Overcrowding at several schools made re-opening the building viable. MORE

The Middle East war is not some far off conflict for a Nanaimo woman who has family in Gaza. Sara Kishawi, a student at Vancouver Island University, says most of her family is in Gaza, on both her father’s and mother’s sides as well as uncles and cousins. Her grandparents are also there. Sara has lived in Canada since 2011. VIU’s Muslim community rallied in support of Palestinians trapped in the conflict. “We do not support hate. We do not support terrorism. All we can do is try to tell our story,” said Nader Hatabah, who also has family in Gaza. MORE


The Nanaimo landlord who evicted a dying woman from her home has been ordered to pay nearly $18,000. Investigators became aware of the situation through CHEK’s coverage in March. The Residential Tenancy Compliance and Enforcement unit ruled landlord Duart Rapton deliberately contravened the Tenancy Act when he cut off Sharon Kowalchuk’s heat and power, locked her out of the unit, and left her scrambling to find a home. Kowalchuk said she was given a two-week eviction notice because her medical treatment was causing disturbances on the property. MORE

The B.C. Ferries sailing schedule between Victoria and Vancouver is in shambles going into the weekend. Travellers were confronted with lengthy waits on Thursday and sailings filled up quickly after the Spirit of Vancouver Island was drydocked on Tuesday evening for repairs, expected to finish on Oct. 15. There are no extra vessels in the fleet so only two ships are running on that route. MORE

QUOTABLE – There are no problem people, only people with problems.



It’s time to start thinking about ringing those bells for the Salvation Army’s Christmas Kettle campaign. Kettles will begin on Nov. 17 with limited locations All locations will start Monday-to-Saturday on Dec.1. The shifts for this year are two hours starting and 11 am to 1 pm, 1 to 3 pm, 3 to 5 pm and starting Dec 11 from 5 to 7 pm. Kettle stands have the credit card tap machines which brought in almost $50,000 last Christmas. Check out the details HERE.

Nananimo comuters appear to be buying into the Hullo ferry service with more than 7,500 passengers on the Thanksgiving weekend. The November schedule is the same as October, with four round-trips and some late-night event sailings. Hullo is also paying a lot of attention to the holiday season in December.

The 76-kilometre stretch of road between Port Alberni and Bamfield is now chip sealed with $26 million from the province. More than 200 culverts have been replaced or installed and guard rails installed along some of the more dangerous portions of the road, including the spot where a bus carrying a number of University of Victoria students on their way to the Bamfield Marine Sciences Centre careered off the road in 2019. Two students died in the crash. MORE

Many people dream of the great escape and here it is. A private island on fresh water Cowichan Lake is for sale for a million and a half bucks. It’s got exposed wood beams and a cathedral ceiling, is fully furnished and can accommodate up to 10 people. That includes a modern, West Coast-style home and a boat dock on 2.25 acres, according to Colliers International. The house has exposed wood beams and a cathedral ceiling, is fully furnished and can accommodate up to 10 people. It even has cell service. MORE

QUOTABLE – A fine is a tax for doing wrong, A tax is a fine for doing well.


There's not much in the news these days, but there's some relief for drivers, some not so good. Gasoline prices in Nanaimo have dropped significantly in the past few days, but nothing like the Lower Mainland. Prices listed this morning on Gasbuddy.com show Nanaimo pumps between $192.9 and 1.969. In the Lower Mainland they have dropped as low as $1.659 in Langley.

Talk about pie – it’s the strange vegetable time of the year and huge pumpkins are drawing a lot of attention. A 2,212 pound behemoth from Richmond B.C. topped a California competition last week, taking first place at one of the world's biggest pumpkin weighing competitions in Sacramento. Dave Chan took home nearly $27,000 Canadian. In a British Columbia competition over the Thanksgiving weekend, a Campbell River entry topped all others at 1,152 pounds. Her giant gourd turned quite a few heads on B.C. Ferries as grower Kerri Perras hauled it to Langley. MORE


The Regional District of Nanaimo parks and trails select committee is pushing for a $5-million truss bridge over the Nanaimo River instead of a less expensive suspension bridge. A feasibility study was conducted in 2014 and updated in 2022. RDN staff suggested a suspension bridge for $4 million but the committee recommends a $5.2-million steel truss bridge. City director and committee chair Erin Hemmens voted against the recommendation, saying cost escalations are very likely on this project. MORE

The Gabriola ferry will not be affected by BC Ferries’ scaling down electrification of its Island Class fleet. The ferry corporation is now aiming to electrify four Island Class vessels serving routes between Nanaimo and Gabriola Island and Campbell River and Quadra Island. The BC Ferries board has authorized the reduced scope for electrification an is buying four more new Island Class vessels to add to the fleet by 2028, with an eye to fully electrifying them at some point in the future.

Really? Canadians stuck in Israel amid the fighting Sunday found the Canadian Embassy closed due to the Thanksgiving weekend. Global Affairs Canada said Sunday afternoon that it was aware of one man reportedly killed and another man from British Columbia missing amid the fighting. One Canadian said they've been trying to reach the Canadian Embassy in Tel Aviv since news of the attack broke, but they've been bounced to hotlines and unable to get direct information. And Air Canada’s cancellation of all flights has created further challenges for Canadians wishing to return home. MORE

Governor General

living the good life

at the public trough


Health and Human Services will be a victim of cost cutting measures at Vancouver Island University. Health and Human services is poised to see the greatest budgetary reductions over three years with a projected $1.95 million cut. That raises eyebrows when we note that B.C. has a major shortage of health care workers.MORE

Nursing students are looking for change. They have to pay for training instead of getting paid for real-world work experience. The students, who are enrolled in a joint program at Camosun College and the University of Victoria, are renewing a long-standing request at a time when the profession has significant recruitment challenges – and some of their program administrators think the time for change could be now. The university’s associate dean in the faculty of human and social development says stakeholders, such as licensing bodies, need to come to the table to talk. MORE

The 2023 Tour de Rock has surpassed its fundraising goal by raising $1,027,559.46. The 19 riders cycled 1,200 kilometres over 14 days from Port Alice down the Island visiting 29 communities along the way. The annual ride raises money for childhood cancer research. MORE

Thrifty Foods has issued a recall for Sunrise Grade A Fresh Turkey (5- 8 kg) with a Best Before of Oct. 11. Thrifty e-mailed customers and posted a recall notice to its website. Customers have been offered a full refund. Sobeys, the company that owns Thrifty Foods, says the recall was issued out of an abundance of caution because the product “does not meet our quality standards.” MORE

B.C. construction companies that hire trade apprentices who self-identify as members of an "equity deserving group"will get double a new government incentive, pushing it to $10,000 for the first year of employment. The $10 million Apprenticeship Services program, offered by the B.C. Construction Association, providescash incentives to small and medium-sized construction employers who hire and register first-year apprentices in upto39RedSealtrades. Western Investor

QUOTABLE – We think exactly the same – I am right and you are wrong.


Vancouver Island University has launched aggressive cost cutting changes through 2026 following a $20.2 million deficit. That comes after after enrolment failed to recover after the pandemic. It includes a 10-per-cent reduction for academic units and another 10 per cent for non-academic areas by 2026, $28.6 million in savings. MORE


Drug users will be ushered away from designated areas under new legislation introduced by the provincial government. Police would move users from newly-established zones and send them to treatment or other health-care services. The bill would ban drug use at parks, beaches and sports fields, as well as within six metres of building entrances and bus stops, and a 15 metres around playgrounds, spray parks, wading pools and skate parks. MORE

If you misplaced a musical instrument and a gym bag last weekend, Nanaimo RCMP have it. An unattended case and a gym bag were reported in a downtown parking garage. “The case contained a stringed instrument, possibly a lute or a mandolin,” said R/Const. Gary O’Brien. If this is yours,  call the RCMP non-emergency line at 250-754-2345, file No. 2023-34511. MORE

COVID-19 is not going away, cases are on the rise with the BC Centre for Disease Control reporting hospitalizations have increased in the past two weeks. Deaths are trending up, with 24 fatalities in the last week of September, compared to nine in the second week of August. New infections rose from 133 cases to 877 cases, increasing notably among people over age 60. There were 422 people in hospital with COVID-19 on Thursday, compared to 267 on Sept. 21. MORE


The Regional District had downgraded water restrictions from stage four, to stage three. Recent rain has increased stream flows and curbed outdoor water demand. Limited lawn watering and outdoor and vehicle washing are allowed but residents are asked to voluntarily conserve water wherever possible under stage three. MORE

BC Ferries has shuffled the deck by realigning the executive leadership team and portfolios without adding additional staff. President and CEO Nicolas Jimenez said the company is now better positioned to address the short and longer term challenges. There will be three New Operating Divisions – Engineering, Marine Operations and Customer Experience. Also a new Strategy and Planning Division – including environmental, sustainability and climate change policy and a new People and Safety Division as well as a stand-alone Public Affairs and Marketing Division – including Community Relations, Indigenous Relations, Consumer and Corporate Marketing. MORE

QUOTABLE – One fake friend can do more harm than ten enemies.

Creating clear choices between left and right


The Thanksgiving weekend is one of the busier travel times and that has Hullo passenger ferry adding extra sailings. It will add 1 and 5 p.m. sailings from Nanaimo on Friday and Monday. From Vancouver there will be 3 and 7 p.m. sailings added on both days in addition to the regular schedule. If you want to get there in a hurry, go to HULLO

Focus on the Harbour City – The Best of Summer Harbour City Photography Club presentation is now available on YouTube. Check out the local scenes as well as other selected images from around the world. MORE

It’s a dream come true for 15-year-old Ava Hornby as she packs for a visit to Disneyland with her family. The teen who has diabetes was selected by the Help Fill a Dream foundation to visit the “Happiest Place on Earth” where she will enjoy the Halloween decorations and Star Wars and Guardians of the Galaxy exhibits and rides. Ava is looking forward with great anticipation to discover new worlds and meeting the characters and stopping by the Star Wars workshop to build her own Jedi weapon. MORE

There was a silver lining in all those clouds in September. They delivered much-needed precipitation to quench some of the drought, breaking weather records, including some heat records in August. It turns out the mid-Island was one of the wettest places in the province last month. We got 63 mm of rain compared to the normal of about 36 mm, said meteorologist Bobby Sekhon. MORE


Here’s a puzzler. How do you tackle a fire in an electric vehicle charging station? Certainly not with water. Local firefighters got first-hand experience when a charger caught fire yesterday at Petro-Canada on Terminal Avenue at Princess Royal. It was no snap, the steel outer casing had to be cut and the lock pried open. After that, a fire extinguisher did the trick. Just so you know, common extinguishers are pressurized with carbon dioxide (CO2) or nitrogen. MORE


You don’t say – The 200-metre bulk carrier MV Climate Justice which loaded up with coal in Vancouver is now headed to Asia where the coal will be burned in steel plants. The carrier hauls a lot of coal in a single load; between 30,000 and 40,000 tonnes. That size load will produce between 60,000 and 80,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide, about as much as the per-capita annual emissions of 5,000 Canadians. FULL STORY


Despite the gloom and doom about the sky falling, Canadian oil production will reach an all-time high within the next two years with the start-up of the Trans Mountain pipeline. A report by Deloitte Canada says the extra capacity created by the pipeline expansion is expected to boost Canadian production by about 375,000 barrels a day over the next two years, nearly nine per cent more than the 4.18 million barrels per day this June, boosting capacity to 890,000 from 300,000 barrels per day. FULL STORY.

Quotation – They truth shall set your free, except on social media.

The art of the insult when losing the debate


The Cassidy Farm Market, a landmark beside the Island Highway south of the city for decades, was destroyed in a fire this morning. Cranberry Volunteer Fire Department responded to the market and deli along the highway across from Nanaimo Airport. The building was destroyed beyond repair. The highway was closed for a couple of hours during the blaze. There were no injuries. MORE

Local drivers are hopeful that a massive gas price drop in Metro Vancouver flows down to local gas stations where prices were hovering at $2.069 this morning. Gas price analyst Dan McTeague predicts Vancouver prices will drop to 184.9 cents per litre today, a twenty-one cent drop. McTeague anticipates gas prices to start to go back up a few cents on Thursday due to a weakened Canadian dollar. He believes the market is so volatile that ten to twenty-cent spikes and drops are becoming the new normal. MORE


BC Ferries will soon face penalties for cancelled sailings because of a lack of crew. Details of what the penalties will look like are still being worked out. Meanwhile the government is subsidizing B.C. Ferries to the tune of half a billion dollars to keep fares steady. Fares will increase an average of 3.2 per cent per year over for the next four years avoiding increases close to 9.2 per cent. MORE


As the Thanksgiving weekend approaches a little advance planning would be a good idea if you’re sailing B.C. Ferries. The Coastal Renaissance is still out of service and that will result in fewer sailings than normal. A lot of travellers are expected to hoof it, especially students travelling home. There may be wait times for foot passengers. About 380,000 passengers and 175,000 vehicles are expected to sail over the long weekend. Find travel updates on Current Conditions and at @BCFerries X account.


In case you haven’t noticed, medical masks are back in health care settings as of yesterday. That covers hospitals, long-term care, seniors centres, and mental health facilities. Health care workers, volunteers, contractors and visitors in patient care areas are covered under the order. Visitors are screened for respiratory illness at the entrances. MORE

QUOTABLE – Canada was founded by geniuses ­– too bad it’s being run by idiots.


The City received four expressions of interest by the September 3 deadline to develop the former Jean Burns site on Commercial Street and will now be reviewed by council in November. The City wants a mixed-use, five-storey commercial and residential development. There is considerable contamination with several hotspots which a developer will have to address. The project qualifies for a 10-year property tax exemption through the long-time downtown revitalization plan. MORE


A shortage of Ozempic is creating challenges for diabetics. Nanaimo’s Wayne Borman is having a struggle to get the medication as an ongoing shortage sparks Pharmacare coverage issues. Ozempic is hard to get after its popularity exploded on social media for its weight loss side effect. It is available in two dosages, but one is half of the size of the other and Pharmacare will cover only half the costs of the smaller unit. Pharmacare will temporarily release Trulicity, a drug similar to Ozempic, during the shortage. MORE

The House is now in session. The landscape in the Legislature will look a little different with four parties, including the Conservative party which gained official party status, and a nearly $400,000 annual budget. The spotlight will be on housing with Housing Minister Ravi Kahlon promising new legislation to address permitting and zoning challenges, strengthen enforcement of short-term rentals and deliver more small-scale, multi-unit housing. The government has committed to new rules allowing secondary and basement suites in every community in the province. MORE


Starting Nov. 1 social media outlets have to register (and license) with the Canadian Radio-Television Commission. This applies to news outlet feeds and streaming services like Netflix. It includes radio stations that live-stream online and podcast services. Video game and audiobook services are exempt. But guess what, Nanaimonet escapes because we’re under $10 million in annual revenue. MORE

QUOTABLE – Wisdom comes with age, but sometimes age comes alone.


Good news for those who may want to throw their boss over a cliff. Well, off the WildPlay bungy jump at the Nanaimo Brain Injury Society’s Toss the Boss fund raiser Oct. 13. More than 30 teams have already signed up to take the 150-foot plunge and have been raising funds for brain injury survivors. MORE

BC Ferries offers free travel between Nanaimo and the Lower Mainland on Oct. 4 and 5 for police officers and Emergency First Responders and their vehicles to attend the regimental funeral for Const. Rick O’Brien in Langley on Wednesday. That includes both Departure Bay and Duke Point sailings. To qualify, uniform or official badge identification must be presented to the ticket agent at check-in.

Chief Coroner Lisa Lapointe wants more safer drug smoking sites to battle the drug crisis. Lapointe said 65 per cent of overdose deaths in 2023 came after smoking drugs, compared to 15 per cent involving injection. Of the 47 overdose prevention sites in B.C., only 19 provide the option to smoke drugs and Lapointe says that needs to change.  MORE


The cost of living is rising at every turn, and Canadian homeowners facing mortgage renewals are no exception. Those who locked in low rates years ago can expect to see an average payment increase of between 14 and 25 per cent next year, according to the Bank of Canada. In 2025 and 2026, payments could rise between 20 per cent to 25 per cent. Those with full variable rates are already seeing their payments rise an average of 49 per cent as of this year. MORE


The City of Merritt is fighting back over the sporadic emergency room closures at the Nicola Valley Hospital. Mayor Michael Goetz  says Merritt withhold  tax money from the provincial government following the latest emergency department closure. He says the city will withhold the portion of taxes equal to the number of days the emergency department has been closed. The ER at the hospital has been closed 14 times this year, three this month. MORE


Calls about bears to the BC Conservation Officer Service have doubled this summer. Officials said it’s a good sign that the bear population is doing well, but these interactions are leading to a large number of bears being killed. More than 150 black bears have been killed by BCCOS so far in 2023. In August, they got more than 6,000 black bear-related calls from across the province. MORE

Another one is gone. Former NFL player and professional wrestler Russ Francis died at age 70 in a small plane crash on Sunday. I got to know Russ and Bill Francis during their wrestling days when they regularly performed in Winnipeg. I refereed many of their matches. They formed a great tag team. Greg Oliver of Slam Wrestling has an in-depth story on Russ’ life. MORE

Starting Nov. 1 social media outlets have to register (and license) with the Canadian Radio and Telecommunications Commission – CRTC. This applies to news outlet feeds and streaming services like Netflix. It includes radio stations that live-stream online and podcast services. Video game and audiobook services are exempt. Nanaimonet escapes because we sneaked in under the $10-million annual revenue base level. MORE

Quotable – Don't worry about the world coming to an end today, It's already tomorrow in Australia

You are paying so others can drive electric cars

Departure Bay parking lot is full

1:30 p.m. Saturday – pay parking at Departure Bay terminal is at full capacity. Foot passenger should consider a taxi, transit, or being dropped off at the terminal. For the most up-to-date sailing and departure information, customers can follow @BCFerries X Account, check Current Conditions or visit bcferries.com.


Get ready for crowded ferries over the Thanksgiving weekend. There will be fewer sailings as a result of the Coastal Renaissance being out of service. Foot passenger traffic is anticipated to be especially high due to students travelling home. Foot passenger wait times may occur and customers travelling on the major routes are urged to make reservations. BC Ferries expects to haul about 380,000 passengers and 175,000 vehicles over the long weekend. Check travel updates on Current Conditions and at @BCFerries X account.


The internet can be a dangerous place and people are caught in frauds despite constant warnings. West Shore RCMP say officers have received multiple complaints of fraud on Facebook Marketplace. The fraud involves a seller requesting an e-transfer deposit to hold the item. When you go to pick it up it is never there or you get a fake address and you lose your deposit. Police advise anyone buying items from Marketplace to pay for the item in cash and in person, and meet the seller in a public place.


Many British Columbians are tuning out when it comes to flu shots. An Abacus Data study found that vaccine fatigue reduces people’s willingness to get immunized against respiratory viruses. Twenty-nine per cent said they probably or definitely won’t get the flu shot, and 42 per cent say they will. It’s a similar response to Covid shots with 35 per cent not planning to get shot but 55 per cent said they probably will. MORE

QUOTABLE – Keep in mind that the left wing and the right wing come from the same bird.


What's with

all those immigrants?