C O M M U N I T Y N E W S M E D I A
Black PressWednesday, October 7, 2015 Mail Agreement #40110541
INDEX COMMUNITY NEWSNews A2Arts A20Sports B1
Sooke woman discovers unique way to bring Christmas spirit to those less fortunate in our community
District of Sooke council looking for significant recognition for fall Sooke RCMP officer
Tour de Rock
Cops for Cancer Tour de Rock made a quick trip through Sooke last Wednesday to the delight of many. Students, left, at Saseenos Elementary School greeted the team as it rode by waving. The Tour de Rock came to an end Friday, the total raised for the Canadian Cancer Society hitting $1.13 million by the time the 21 riders finished their 1,100-kilometre Vancouver Island journey at Centennial Square in Victoria.
Octavian Lacatusu Sooke News Mirror
Kevin LairdSooke News Mirror
Sooke RCMP is adding to its complement of police officers.
District of Sooke council has formally requested a change in its RCMP contract with the Justice Ministry, which will see one officer added by next fall.
The local RCMP detachment currently has 15 members. Eleven of those officers are funded by district taxpayers, the remaining four, or rural officers, are paid by the province.
It costs $165,000 to fully fund an RCMP position. Sooke pays 70 per cent of that cost, or $114,200. The remaining 30 per cent is funded by the province.
The Sooke RCMP detachment serves an area from Sooke to Port Renfrew, extending as far as Port Renfrew (82 kilometres west of Sooke).
Sooke operates closer to minimum than other detachments on the Island, said RCMP Staff Sgt. Jeff McArthur, adding Sidney with a comparable population has 32 officers.
Over the last 18 months the Sooke detachment has been operating at full strength, or even above normal strength, due to staff movement.
COUNCIL BOOSTS RCMP BY 1
SEE RCMP PAGE 4
Octavian LacatusuSooke News Mirror
In the quiet woods of Otter Point, a special meeting was taking place nothing out of the ordinary but one which could have significant ramifications on the local environment.
It was the annual general meeting of the Juan de Fuca Land Trust Society, an organization dedicated to preserving specific parts of the local rainforest, notably the Muir Creek watershed, west of Sooke.
All these lands are so much in flux and at risk, said Margot Swinburson, one of the organizations founding members and current president, in regards to this years significant change of pace in terms of rural development and environmental impact.
She pointed out that one of her biggest concerns in the Otter Point area is that there arent any usable parks for the community.
If we dont apply pressure and have any active groups, then we wont have anything, she said. Were trying to stake that hold into creating space for us to be able to leave a legacy for our children.
While much of the Muir Creek expanse is owned by Timber West, the area also includes a public beach. The watershed extends up to 120 kilometres.
Land trust eyes Muir Creek area property
SEE TRUST PAGE 5
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2 I NEWS I SOOKENEWSMIRROR.COM WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 7, 2015
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2 I NEWS I SOOKENEWSMIRROR.COM WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 7, 2015
Sookes Most WantedThe following individuals are wanted by the Sooke RCMP as of Oct. 5, 2015. If you have any information on these individuals or their crimes, you are asked to call the RCMP at 250-642-5241 or anonymously through Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477 or online at victoriacrimestoppers.com.
Kimri DIALAge: 58Wanted: Drive while prohibited and fail to appear
Gabriel CHARLES Age: 23Wanted: Breach of undertaking
Frank TILLICH Age: 52Wanted: Theft under $5,000
A 29-year-old man faces numerous charges following his capture last week in Sooke.
Derek Ernest Fast evaded police in a high-speed chase between Sooke and Langford on Sept. 25, police say.
Fast attempted to hit officers with a stolen vehicle on Finlayson Arm Road near Falcon Heights Road in Langford, crashing a short distance away. One suspect was arrested at the crash site. Fast fled on foot.
Fast faces charges of assault with a weapon, possession of a firearm, possession of stolen property (over $5,000), dangerous operation of a motor vehicle, and theft of a motor vehicle.
He made his first court appearance last week.
Fire Dept. calls increase by 72%
Sooke Fire and
Rescue has seen a record amount of emergency calls this year.
As of Sept. 30, the fire department received 724 calls, which is a 72 per cent increase compared to the same time last year, when 519 calls were answered.
While no exact reason is known, Sooke Fire Chief Steven Sorensen said most calls have been structure fires, appliance fires, hazardous conditions and motor vehicle accidents.
Adding to the influx of calls, firefighters also responded to a significant number of fuel spills this year, along with smoke alarms, medical calls and burning complaints. Sorensen noted that the number of people calling in noticing smoke has also gone up by 95 per cent.
Its not all grim, however, as bush fires went down
significantly, thanks to the rain in September. As a result, the amount of bush fire cases dropped from 40 last year, down to 12 this year.
Were just getting busier all around, Sorensen said. Its not any one thing, a bit of everything.
Firefighters mark special week
In an average week, eight Canadians die as a result of fire, and highest percentage of people continue to die
in their own homes during a fire.
Pretty sobering statistics, as Sooke Fire Chief Steven Sorensen puts it, but it doesnt have to be this way, which is why for this years Fire Prevention Week, focus will be on smoke alarms and their potential role in saving lives.
A good lesson to be heard, considering smoke alarms still dont seem to be taken seriously, noted Sorensen.
When we respond to fires in Sooke, 70
per cent of the homes we go to, the smoke alarm is either missing or doesnt work, he said.
Sooke firefighters will visit all elementary schools making their fire safety presentation You Hear the Beep or You Sleep which explains how a smoke alarm works and why its important to have. The fire team will be visiting John Muir Elementary and Saseenos Elementary this Thursday and Friday at 9 a.m.
Man faces five charges after car chase
Theres more onlinewww.sookenewsmirror.com