Wolf Depner

City of Merritt Mayor Michael Goetz wants the provincial government to drop the vaccination mandate for health care workers in B.C. to help deal with staffing shortages. (Photo Courtesy City of Merritt)

Merritt mayor calls on B.C. to drop vaxx mandate for health-care workers ‘right now’

Michael Goetz first made the demand in a conference call with Interior Health

City of Merritt Mayor Michael Goetz wants the provincial government to drop the vaccination mandate for health care workers in B.C. to help deal with staffing shortages. (Photo Courtesy City of Merritt)
Official Opposition Leader Kevin Falcon of the B.C. Liberals said B.C. health care system is getting worse after the release of a study that shows British Columbians waited 79 minutes to a see walk-in-clinic doctor. (Wolf Depner/News Staff)

B.C. has the 2nd worst wait times for walk-in clinics across Canada: Survey

B.C. residents waited 79 minutes to see a walk-in physician in 2022

Official Opposition Leader Kevin Falcon of the B.C. Liberals said B.C. health care system is getting worse after the release of a study that shows British Columbians waited 79 minutes to a see walk-in-clinic doctor. (Wolf Depner/News Staff)
Minister of Housing Ravi Kahlon said the province will take its time to develop new legislation around housing to ensure clarity. (Wolf Depner/News Staff)

B.C.’s Liberals, Greens take aim at alluded spending by Eby government

Opposition critical of Throne Speech even before having read it

Minister of Housing Ravi Kahlon said the province will take its time to develop new legislation around housing to ensure clarity. (Wolf Depner/News Staff)
B.C.’s Lt. Governor Janet Austin at the B.C. Legislature ahead of the annual Throne Speech on Monday, Feb. 6, 2023. (Wolfgang Depner/Black Press Media)

B.C. government to make heavy use of spending surplus: Throne Speech

B.C. has a budget surplus of $5.7 billion

B.C.’s Lt. Governor Janet Austin at the B.C. Legislature ahead of the annual Throne Speech on Monday, Feb. 6, 2023. (Wolfgang Depner/Black Press Media)
B.C. has received only 18 per cent of federal support to deal with the effects of the 2021 atmospheric river that caused flooding and landslides across the province, including Merritt. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck

B.C. has received less than 20% of federal funds promised for 2021 flooding, landslides

More funding expected to arrive in March 2023, but pace appears slow so far

B.C. has received only 18 per cent of federal support to deal with the effects of the 2021 atmospheric river that caused flooding and landslides across the province, including Merritt. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
The province is putting $2 million toward paramedics training to help address labour shortages. (Black Press Media file photo)

B.C. delivers $2 million to bolster paramedics training, but gaps remain

Funding to help about 130 students across province, rural areas struggle more to attract staff

The province is putting $2 million toward paramedics training to help address labour shortages. (Black Press Media file photo)
B.C. Liberal Party Leader Kevin Falcon promises to put about $1.5 billion dollars toward a no-cost recovery-oriented approach toward helping individuals needing treatment and recovery from drug use. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito)

Falcon promises $1.5 billion ‘no-cost recovery-oriented’ approach toward addiction

B.C. Liberal leader said new plan would include recovery centres established across the province

B.C. Liberal Party Leader Kevin Falcon promises to put about $1.5 billion dollars toward a no-cost recovery-oriented approach toward helping individuals needing treatment and recovery from drug use. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito)
British Columbia Teachers’ Federation President Clint Johnston said and advertisement for uncertified teachers in Chilliwack is a sign of worse to come. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress file)

No easy fix for rise of uncertified teachers in BC schools: BCTF

President Clint Johnston calls for sped-up certification process, but larger issues also in play

British Columbia Teachers’ Federation President Clint Johnston said and advertisement for uncertified teachers in Chilliwack is a sign of worse to come. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress file)
Minister of Health Adrian Dix said 1,043 physicians have so far signed up for the new family physician pay model effective since Feb. 1
Minister of Health Adrian Dix, Minister of Health, and Dr. Joshua Greggain, president, Doctors of BC,

1,000 eligible doctors have signed up for B.C.’s new payment model, which starts today: Dix

1,043 physicians had signed up for the new model as of midnight before Feb. 1 rollout

Minister of Health Adrian Dix said 1,043 physicians have so far signed up for the new family physician pay model effective since Feb. 1
Minister of Health Adrian Dix, Minister of Health, and Dr. Joshua Greggain, president, Doctors of BC,
Premier David Eby (centre) was joined by Minister of Energy, Mines, and Low Carbon Innovation Josie Osborne, Minister of Jobs, Economic Development and Innovation Brenda Bailey, Minister of Indigenous Relations and Reconciliation Murray Rankin, Attorney General Nikki Sharma, Minister of Housing Ravi Kahlon and Minister of Environment and Climate Change George Heyman.

Eby ‘optimistic’ about upcoming health care talks in Ottawa; feds keep cards close to vest

Provinces want Ottawa to raise Canada Health Transfer from 22 per cent to 35 per cent

Premier David Eby (centre) was joined by Minister of Energy, Mines, and Low Carbon Innovation Josie Osborne, Minister of Jobs, Economic Development and Innovation Brenda Bailey, Minister of Indigenous Relations and Reconciliation Murray Rankin, Attorney General Nikki Sharma, Minister of Housing Ravi Kahlon and Minister of Environment and Climate Change George Heyman.
Alberta’s former chief medical officer of health, Dr. Deena Hinshaw, has joined the office of Dr. Bonnie Henry as deputy provincial health officer. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson

Alberta’s former top doctor joins Dr. Bonnie Henry’s office in B.C.

Dr. Deena Hinshaw will serve 6 months as deputy provincial health officer after ousting from Alta.

Alberta’s former chief medical officer of health, Dr. Deena Hinshaw, has joined the office of Dr. Bonnie Henry as deputy provincial health officer. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson
The province and four First Nations located in the area subject to Treaty 8 announced Friday a consensus document spelling out various initiatives to address the effects of industrial development stemming from oil and gas exploration. The orange-bounded area show the area deemed important by Blueberry River First Nation. It and the provincial government Wednesday announced a historic agreement for a land-management approach. (Screencap)

4 B.C. First Nations reach land-management consensus with province

But final agreements could take years to negotiate and three Treaty 8 nations remain on the outside

The province and four First Nations located in the area subject to Treaty 8 announced Friday a consensus document spelling out various initiatives to address the effects of industrial development stemming from oil and gas exploration. The orange-bounded area show the area deemed important by Blueberry River First Nation. It and the provincial government Wednesday announced a historic agreement for a land-management approach. (Screencap)
Moms Stop the Harm advocates and supporters march from Centennial Square to the Ministry of Health building in Victoria on April 14, 2022, the sixth anniversary of B.C. declaring the opioid crisis a public health emergency. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito

Chief coroner prescribes ‘urgency’ as B.C. records 2,272 toxic drug deaths in 2022

Experts call for holistic action, call response so far a failure

Moms Stop the Harm advocates and supporters march from Centennial Square to the Ministry of Health building in Victoria on April 14, 2022, the sixth anniversary of B.C. declaring the opioid crisis a public health emergency. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
A file photo shows bags of illicit drugs seized by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration. The Vancouver police seized 73 kilograms of drugs from Lower Mainland gangs during Project Tint in July 2022. (U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration photo)

Possession of 2.5 grams of illicit drugs to be decriminalized in B.C.

Personal use of up to 2.5 grams certain illegal drugs to be decriminalized tomorrow

A file photo shows bags of illicit drugs seized by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration. The Vancouver police seized 73 kilograms of drugs from Lower Mainland gangs during Project Tint in July 2022. (U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration photo)
Mayor Lisa Helps speaks during a vigil in Victoria on January 31, 2017. Helps says she’s disappointed in the poor judgment exercised by a member of council who travelled outside of Canada during the COVID-19 pandemic. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito

Appointment of former Victoria mayor as housing adviser draws wide range of reactions

Lisa Helps will help develop housing for middle income families

Mayor Lisa Helps speaks during a vigil in Victoria on January 31, 2017. Helps says she’s disappointed in the poor judgment exercised by a member of council who travelled outside of Canada during the COVID-19 pandemic. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
The emergency room at Port Hardy Hospital will remain closed overnight for the foreseeable future, the province announced Friday. (Island Health Photo)

B.C. confirms extended overnight closures for 2 rural Vancouver Island emergency rooms

Additional investments announced without a time line when Alert Bay, Port Hardy ERs will reopen

The emergency room at Port Hardy Hospital will remain closed overnight for the foreseeable future, the province announced Friday. (Island Health Photo)
Vancouver will start charging a new hotel tax to help cover the costs of hosting the 2026 FIFA Men’s World Cup. (Ryan Adams/Wikimedia Commons)

7-year-long Vancouver hotel tax to start in February to help pay for 2026 FIFA World Cup

Provincial statement suggests tax would be in place until 2030, so four years after tournament

Vancouver will start charging a new hotel tax to help cover the costs of hosting the 2026 FIFA Men’s World Cup. (Ryan Adams/Wikimedia Commons)
A provincial government report finds different levels of internet cell service for urban and rural regions of BC with rural residents paying more for worse services. (Black Press Media file photo)

Rural British Columbians pay more for worse internet, cell phone service: report

Nearly 30 per cent of provincial highways also lack cell coverage

A provincial government report finds different levels of internet cell service for urban and rural regions of BC with rural residents paying more for worse services. (Black Press Media file photo)
Stewart Prest of Quest University gives the New Democratic governemnt under David Eby an ‘incomplete’ some 50 days into its mandate, but praises specific aspects. (Photo courtesy of Stewart Prest)

Eby’s 100-day action plan gets mixed grade ahead of B.C. budget

Stewart Prest gives NDP government an ‘incomplete’ so far but praises specific aspects

Stewart Prest of Quest University gives the New Democratic governemnt under David Eby an ‘incomplete’ some 50 days into its mandate, but praises specific aspects. (Photo courtesy of Stewart Prest)
Ten pilot projects across B.C. promise to improve access to period products

10 period projects get funding across B.C. for those in need of menstruation products

Government says the projects will help develop better ways of delivering period products

Ten pilot projects across B.C. promise to improve access to period products
Pop-up banner image