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Brandon Sun (Newspaper) - June 25, 2002, Brandon, Manitoba A3 TUESDAY, JUNE 25, 2002 Local GOT A NEWS TIP? You can reach us at 571-7430 or toll-free 1-877-786-5786 E-mail '.opinionCtLlbrandonsun.comTemperatures finally heating up By Kyia Duncan Brandon Sun It doesn’t matter who you ask, Brandon residents want summer and they want it now. With spring three weeks behind and the last two weeks scattered with showers and thunderstorms, residents are hoping for some consistently warm weather. “I’m hoping for a nice, warm summer,” Stephanie Hayward said while waiting for a bus in downtown Brandon. “I don’t like it humid and sticky like this, but some warm weather would be really nice.” Jay Anderson, meteorologist with the Prairie Storm Prediction Centre in Winnipeg, says the Brandon area is experiencing May showers — a little late. Anderson says he can not predict exactly what Mother Nature holds for the entire summer, but expects a typical summer with an average number of sunny, warm days. “The rains we have now are more typical of late May, early June ... this is the first hot spell we’ll see this weekend and we’re already into July,” says Anderson. Thermometers should hit a sizzling 34 degrees Friday, but Anderson says Brandon will see another series of showers and thundershowers by next Monday. Rick Lee, of Tiger House Construction, spends about 12 hours a day outside and has experienced a little too much unfriendly weather already. “This year the weather extremes have been to the max,” says Lee, who has had to deal with wind, rain and excessive heat this spring. Brandon has received about 68 millimetres of rain in June, just a few millimetres short of the normal rain fall for June. But Lee says he would like to see less of the wet stuff. “We’ve been struggling, trying to get water and sewer systems in, but that has been difficult with all the rain making everything so muddy.” Hayward also wants to see more sun than cloud. “I play baseball and a lot of our games have been lost to all the rain lately,” says Hayward. “I have a few weddings to go to ... so I’m hoping it will stay nice and warm.” But Brandon resident Jason Schmidt is praising the effects of the recent rain. “I think the (rain) was good for the area. It made everything really green,” says Schmidt. “I like being outside, so I’d like to see a really hot summer.” Lee says he is also hoping the wind dies down — windy conditions have made eveiy part of construction difficult. “A real problem this spring has been not so much the rain, but the wind. The wind makes everything difficult when you’re trying to build a house,” says Lee. Anderson says windy conditions are normal, but combined with a number of low pressure systems in the past two weeks, it has created some severe weather. “We’ve had some severe weather already,” says Anderson, adding a small tornado touched down in Morris yesterday afternoon, but was too weak to cause any damage. “But it’s starting to turn into a fairly typical summer pattern right now.” Manitoba typically sees nine tornadoes a year, with only about one third of them severe. This year has already seen between six and eight tornadoes, but Anderson says the province is not in for too many more. Man sentenced to probation for assault on ex-girlfriend BY DEAN PRITCHARD Brandon Sun A Brandon man who assaulted his ex-girlfriend and tore apart her stuffed animals in a fit of rage has been sentenced in provincial court to two years supervised probation and ordered to donate $1,000 to a local women’s shelter. Noel Matthew Harding, 22, was convicted of assault and uttering threats at trial last week. Harding also pleaded guilty to two breaches of a court order and failing to comply with a peace officer and was sentenced to 160 hours community service work. According to police reports, the victim was visiting Harding’s home Nov. 29, 2001 to retrieve some stuffed animals when Harding slapped her on the face and pushed her on a bed. After repeatedly pushing the woman back on the bed Harding began ripping apart the stuffed animals, at one point saying “I am so mad I could kill you.” Last March, after an argument with the woman, Harding broke one of her parent’s car windows. The couple’s relationship was described as rocky and on-again off-again. They are now expecting a child. “Mr. Harding is clearly someone who has some anger management difficulties that require counselling,” said Crown attorney Garry Rainnie. Rainnie recommended Harding be sentenced to significant community service work hours “to drive home that his conduct will not be tolerated by the community.” Judge Krystyna Tarwid told Harding he must learn to control his anger. “If you are frustrated, walk around the block,” Tarwid said. “Believe me, once you become a parent things are only going to become more frustrating”Woman killed in rollover A 47-year-old Birdtail Sioux First Nation woman was killed in a single-vehicle rollover accident on the First Nation early Sunday evening. Ada Vivie, a passenger in a van, was declared dead at the scene. Police officers, firefighters and ambulance personnel extracted a 10-year-old boy who was trapped under the van. Two male passengers were taken to Birtle Hospital and later transported to Winnipeg with unspecified injuries. Police are continuing to investigate the cause of the rollover, said deputy Chief Jim Cockburn. The injured passengers were transported to Winnipeg which made it difficult for us to interview them,” Cockburn says. “One was due to be released this afternoon so our office wanted to get a statement as to what happened.” — Brandon Sun Quality time COHN CORNEAU/BRANDON SUN Jason Zhu (left) and his grandfather Lao Shang Lun while away a muggy afternoon together yesterday along 10th Street. The pair took a break from the family restaurant to spend some time together.Minnedosa native wins fellowship By Shelley Vivian Brandon Sun Talk about incentive to return to Manitoba. Minnedosa native Jared Wesley has returned to his home province after being named this year’s Duff Roblin Political Studies Fellow. Wesley, who left the province to complete his bachelor’s degree in Alberta, will begin his master’s program in political studies at the University of Manitoba this fall. “I think this year the fellowship is doing what they wanted it to do and that’s recruit ing students to come back to Manitoba to study,” Wesley says. “I think it was a good match for me because it allows me to come back home and study Manitoba politics after being in Alberta for a while.” The fellowship, worth $15,000 in the first year with renewal in the second year, given satisfactory performance, was established by the University of Manitoba in 1998 in recognition of the contributions of the former Manitoba premier. Wesley recently completed a combined honours degree in history and political sci ence at the University of Alberta, earnmg three major awards at graduation, and is looking forward to beginning studies at the University of Manitoba. “It’s a great honour ... knowing the people that have got it in the past and talking with them, it promises to be a really good experience.” Currently, Wesley is working as a policy analyst intern in federal-provincial relations with Manitoba’s Executive Council. He plans to pursue his PhD but hasn’t decided what career path he’ll follow once he’s completed his education. Light rains diminish flood threat WINNIPEG — More flooding in small towns near the Canada-U.S. border wasn’t expected after only light weekend rains, Manitoba government officials said Monday. While Minnesota and North Dakota vvcic pounded by heavy rains, only a few showers fell on areas that feed the swollen Roseau River, said Steve Topping of Manitoba Conservation. Only IO to 15 millimetres fell in Manitoba while up to 150 millimetres fell in parts of Minnesota. The Roseau is expected to crest late in the week, perhaps one-third of a metre above current levels, and that means the towns of Stuartburn and Gardenton should be safe, said Topping. Low-lying houses in the towns have been diked as a precaution after flash floods swept through many parts of southeastern Manitoba earlier this month. The heavy rains that fell in Minnesota, however, will keep the Red River at much higher than usual summer levels for as long as another month, say officials. Levels are falling now but a second crest is expected to reach Winnipeg on July 8. The Red is high enough in Winnipeg so that a heavy thunderstorm could cause basement flooding in some areas if the sewer system that flows into the river is overloaded. There is no heavy rain in the immediate forecast, however. — CP Group calls on province to keep pledge to cover palliative drug costs WINNIPEG — The Manitoba government must keep its promise to pay for drug costs for terminally ill people who die at home, says a group that advocates for the dying. “The problem is people who are dying are being encouraged to be cared for at home, but the system penalizes them by making them pay for their medication," said Margaret Clarke, executive director of Hospice and Palliative Care Manitoba. “It is now... a full 18 months after the announcement and families are still bearing the financial burden. This is unacceptable. It is time for you and your government to live up to your word," the group wrote in a May 21 letter to Health Minister Dave Chomiak, released yesterday. In September 2000, Chomiak committed to cover- “It was a commitment made, it will be a commitment kept and it will happen. I admit I would have liked to do it sooner” HEALTH MINISTER DAVE CHOMIAK ing the costs of drugs for people dying at home and drugs for people dying in the hospital, but the promise hasn’t been kept. Chomiak’s promise came at a hospice conference as part of a $2.75-million, provincewide palliative care program. The money was to go towards home care and community services, including hiring palliative care doctors and setting up a team to make home visits 24 hours a day. Patients who die at home still pay a deductible for drugs based on earned income but the drugs are free if they spend their dying days in a hospital. Chomiak said the program will be in place in the fall, adding that rising drug costs have delayed its implementation. “It was a commitment made, it will be a commitment kept and it will happen,” Chomiak said yesterday in the legislature. “I admit I would have liked to do it sooner.” — Canadian Press Hort-line fields some ‘weird’ suggestions In Brief Brandon University’s Hort-line is ringing up some challenging calls. Since the June IO kick-off, Jonathan Bush has been fielding about 20 calls a day on the horticultural hotline, now in its 26th year. He expects to get even busier. The line is available to those with questions ranging from insects to home remedies for diseased plants. Bush, a second-year Brandon University science student answering the line, says the Hort-line has received a number of calls concerning what home remedies are safe for plants. “There’s not too many questions, but a lot of suggestions for home remedies. A lot of weird ones have come up.” Bush says one caller wanted to use a mix of gasoline, fertilizer and water to control spider mites in trees. Another suggested sour milk mixed with cayenne pepper to prevent sap sucker birds from eating away at trees. Bush adds callers who want to identity problems with a sick plant should bring a sample of the plant to the university. Questions can also be e-mailed to patonw^ The Hort-line is open to questions until Aug. 23 from 8:30 a.rn to 4:30 p.m. — Brandon Sun Fire prevention program reeognized Students at Green Acres school have a burning desire to learn fire prevention. The Brandon school is the winner of the Learn Not To Bum School of the Year Award. The award, established by the Office of the Fire Commissioner, is open to all schools in Manitoba. The winner is selected according to cntena that include the percentage of students taking part in the Learn Not To Burn fire prevention program and samples of students’ work. The award, which comes with a $1,000 prize, will be presented to the school’s parent council this afternoon. Province limits access to intoxicants Health Minister Dave Chomiak has introduced legislation to limit availability of intoxicating substances like glue and gasoline. Proposed amendments to the Public Health Act also apply to adhesives and cleaning solvents. Police and public health inspectors would have the power to seize the substances if products would be abused or sold to someone who would abuse them. Officials would also have the power to search an individual, their car and any containers if they have reasonable grounds to believe they have intoxicating substances intended for abuse. Licences or permits that allow businesses to sell goods and services, as well as gasoline, may be suspended or cancelled if substances are being sold for abuse. (kips investigate weekend break-ins City police are investigating a pair of residential break-ins over the weekend. A home in the I IOO block of Sixth Street was entered through a window but nothing was stolen. Suspects broke in a home in the 600 block of 11th Street and stole three DVDs. Police keep eye out tor skateboarders City police are monitoring skateboarding “hot spots” after receiving several complaints from businesses. Skateboarders who persist in honing skills on private property could face fines under the Petty Trespass Act, says Sgt. Leon Flanmgan. “We’re getting a lot of complamts of skateboarders domg jumps and wearing away cement,” Flannigan says. “We’re getting enough complaints to make us concerned.” Flannigan says property owners are being asked to issue notices to skateboarders, bicyclists or rollerbladers if they don’t want them on their property. New legislation focus of workshop A workshop outlining the new Federal Youth Criminal Justice Act will be held July 16 at the Brandon Friendship Centre. The workshop will highlight differences between new legislation and the current Young Offenders Act, which it will replace. The new art comes into effect in April, 2003. The workshop, one of six across western Manitoba, is sponsored by the Community Legal Education Association. “The Youth Criminal Justice Art ... is bonging big changes to the way youth crime is dealt with m Canada,” says associanon executive director Mary Troszko. “These workshops ate open to anyone who wants to know what this law will mean to their kids and families.” The workshop will run from IO arn. to 3 p.m. Admission is free. — Brandon Sun ;