Saturday, October 25th10.0°C

Local MPs under lockdown


Late this morning, Kelowna-Lake Country MP, Ron Cannan, sent out a tweet regarding this morning's incident on Parliament Hill.

Okanagan MPs are under lockdown this hour after Parliament Hill came under attack Wednesday morning.

Castanet reached out to Kelowna-Lake Country MP, Ron Cannan and Okanagan-Coquihalla MP, Dan Albas.

Both are part of a large contingent of MPs who remain somewhere inside the Parliament buildings.

They have been told to turn off their communication devices and not to make contact with anyone until the current situation is under control.

According to Cannan's office, the MP was in weekly caucus meetings when a gunman entered the Centre Block and began shooting.

Gunshots were apparently fired in the hallway outside the caucus room.

For security reasons, the exact location of those under lockdown is not being divulged.


School District remits $11.5M

The Central Okanagan School District (SD23) has repaid the Ministry of Education approximately $11.5M.

The payment was for wages not paid as a result of the recent teacher's strike.

According to SD23 Secretary/Treasurer, Larry Paul, the ministry recovered $6.2M from the district for September and another $5.3M for May and June.

Paul says, when everything is taken into account, it should work out to be a financial dead heat.

"Theoretically, it shouldn't (be a deficit) because it represents the money we didn't pay out for the work that didn't get done. Because those employees weren't at work and we weren't paying them, the government is able to recover those costs so it should be a wash," says Paul.

"There are going to be some other costs that we did incur during the strike and we did get some money in a strike savings account to apply those other costs against."

Those additional expenses included the cost of postage to mail out report cards to more than 20,000 students, additional expenses for field trips for the international education students and vehicle expenses for administrators who were looking after schools during the strike.

"At the end of the day it should be basically a net zero on the total cost of the strike to us."

The unused salaries were sent back to the province to enable the ministry to meet its promise of paying parents $40 per day for child care expenses during the strike.

According to the ministry those payments will be made to parents, who applied for the funding, by the end of October.

Paul says the government has stated unused portions of the money remitted back to the province will be sent back to the district.

He says the exact amount should be known in December.

Castanet's weekly weather

Tuesday and Sunday look to be the sunnier days of the week which is otherwise overcast and rainy.

Check the full forecast here:

Bill Everitt

EECO celebrates 20 years

The Central Okanagan has changed a lot since 1994, when the Environmental Education Centre for the Okanagan first opened its doors.

The public is invited to celebrate the 20th Anniversary of the Environmental Education Centre for the Okanagan, at an open house Sunday afternoon. 

It runs from 1 p.m. until 5 p.m. in the EECO, located at Springfield and Durnin Roads in Mission Creek Regional Park.

In the two decades since, the EECO as it is commonly known has seen thousands of people pass through the doors, learning about our natural environment from the dozens of exhibits that it has hosted.  

Many more have taken part in various regional park activities and programs inside the log structure such as nature camps, Science Saturday’s and story time.

There will be snacks and beverages as well as anniversary cupcakes. 

Visitors can see some photos of the construction of the EECO and historical photos of the Mission Creek Park area.  

Upstairs there’ll be a ‘hive’ of activity with the new ‘Un-Bee-lievable Bees’ exhibit.

For more information about this or other Regional Park programs please visit the Regional District website or contact the EECO at 250-469-6149.

Castanet's week in review

Castanet's week in review with Jen Zielinski.


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