Lethbridge Herald, The (Newspaper) - December 5, 1974, Lethbridge, Alberta
Someone's always gouging 1's enchanted forest By AL SCARTH Herald Staff Writer Second of a Series LUNDBRECK A giant moon sails over the mountains west of here like a ghostly galleon. The mystical mountain atmosphere is in many ways reminiscent of that well known poem about the highwayman who rode a ribbon of moonlight. The wintry moonlight in this case does not lead the traveller to a roadside inn, as it does in the poem. Instead, he finds a modest ranch house nestled at the foot of the slopes. For Bill Michalsky, who lives in the house with his wife, son and daughter, the snow dipped slopes and mountains they skirt are an enchanted forest. He shares his enchanted forest with bears, cougars, wildcats, deer, elk, and moose: all manner of beasts. Born in the mountain slopes 54 years ago, he has travelled them from Arizona to Alaska, hunted their game, photograph- ed their wildness and collected their fossilized snails, clams and other animals buried millions of years ago. Now he broods over their future as the coal companies cut their way into his domain. The companies' access roads bring hunters in droves equippped with pick up trucks, snowmobiles and bright red clothing so they don't shoot at each other. They tear up and down even the aban- doned roads in their four wheel drive vehicles. The steep slopes wither away un- der' the beating. The only thing lacking on one crowded day in the Oldman River Recreation Area recently was a parking attendant. 'Coal always underlies the good grass country' What sort of enchanted forest is this? "Someone's always gouging somewhere. Pretty soon we'll have nothing left but a bunch of commercial says Mr. Michalsky, who doesn't hold back when it comes to his slopes. "They're always gouging the nicest country, where the animals like to winter. Somehow the coal always underlies that good grass country." 'He gives the politicians short shrift when it comes to the slopes. Even his brother in law, local MLA Charlie Drain, conies in for a blast. "He'll just give you the song and dance about how grreat development says Mr. Michalsky from behind the wheel of his bouncing truck. Mr. Michalsky too owns a four wheel drive and a snowmobile. But in the heyday of his outfitting and guiding operation he took hunters in on horseback for a minimum 10 day sojourn in the wilds. With those days gone under the treads of high powered vehicles, his 80 head cow calf operation isn't enough to keep him ahead of his debts, at least not this year.. A director of the Alberta Wilderness Association, he is not impressed by the BILL MICHALSKY WALTER KERBER photos LYNX TRACKS NEAR OLDMAN argument used by the government that ex- ploration for coal does not mean damaging development in the slopes. "The thing is, the exploration itself has done the damage, not the he says. "The watershed must be protected. You just can't keep gouging away at the country forever without it resulting in con- siderable damage. "So many people just haven't looked. They don't have a clue. They think the mountains can stand any amount of abuse." "The government should be ashamed of he adds bluntly. "You know what happens. One of these exploiter types, one of these big guys gets in with the government the little guy doesn't have a chance." He wears a sporty kerchief as he heads into his beloved wilderness. "This road he says, "I got suspicious when they built it with so much up grading on a short stretch. They said it was a fire control road. It weren't no fire road. A big coal company had an in and wanted a road and got it." Mr. Michalsky says he has probably seen as much of the slopes as any man alive. He was born in the Crowsnest Pass, one of nine children. His parents im- migrated there from Poland at the turn of the century. "People just don't understand, you he repeats sadly. "All they can think of is selling the resources for all those dollars. "The roads, you know, the run off comes, the frost goes out, and the land just washes away. "Where you change the land per- manently, it is a permanent loss to the country." He has a simple answer: If you must sell a resource, you charge enough for it to restore what you damaged to get it. Otherwise, keep out of the forest. Senior citizens centre proposal near A senior citizens centre, that may cast is to be proposed to Lethbridge city council and the provincial government for funding approval, Leonard Halmrast said Wednesday. Mr. Halmrast, president of Original Pensioners and Senior Citizens, 'said a meeting Wednesday of all senior citizens groups in the city was held to form a committee to prepare briefs that will go to the city and to Edmonton. Mr. Halmrast, Mrs. Dorothy Anderson and Clint Stata were chosen at the meeting to form the committee that will draw up the briefs. They will call on members of a steering committee for information. The steering committee, also form- ed at the meeting, is made up of representatives of Auxiliary Hospital and Disabled on the Move, the Original Pensioners, Meals on Wheels, Retired Teachers, Green Acres Foundation, CP Rail Pen- sioners, Golden Mile Senior Citizens, Pemmican Club, North Star Lodge, Magrath Chamber of Commerce, General Stewart Branch No. 4, Norbridge Lions Club, Royal Canadian Legion, Golden Age Club, YWCA, Information Lethbridge, Lethbridge Kiwanis, Lethbridge Lions, VON, and the department of culture, youth and recreation. Mr. Halmrast said facilities at the proposed centre would include an auditorium, kitchen, game rooms and meeting rooms. "The facilities used by senior citizens groups are inadequate. There is not enough he com- mented. He stressed the proposed centre would be for "all senior citizens no matter what part of the city they are from. Part of the proposal could include mini buses for transport. Mr. Halmrast said the brief to Ed- monton will probably be sent to the provincial cabinet, "because there is no department representing or responsible for senior citizens." "There is a department for youth. There is a department that handles health and welfare. But there is no senior citizens department. There is no one to go to he stated. He said the figure of isn't unreasonable as that is how much it would cost to build and furnish the centre, he said. "Medicine Hat senior citizens were granted a sum in the neighborhood of for a Mr. Halmrast said. The Medicine Hat centre, he ex- plained, is under construction and will include a day care centre and a greenhouse as well as facilities for the senior citizens. "The City of Medicine Hat had a trust fund for a number of years, put in and donated the land for the centre. There was a loan of taken out for the centre and the provincial government is pick- ing up Mr. Halmrast said. He said there are an estimated 000 senior citizens in Lethbridge and a centre is badly needed. Second Section The Lethbridge Herald Lethbridge, Alberta, Thursday, December 5, 1974 Pages 19-36 Ranch operations costs ran high Coin-serve budget strangles FOREST ERODED AT TRAIL JUNCTION By GEORGE STEPHENSON Herald Staff Writer The Lethbridge Com-serv project for the mentally retarded is facing an im- pending deficit on its first nine months of operation, The Herald learned Wednesday. Two Com-serv board members and its executive director confirmed informa- tion obtained by The Herald that the association will have to receive more government Work-study program proposed A two year work study business administration program proposed for introduction at the Lethbridge Community College in September, 1976, was accepted in principle by the LCC board of governors Wednesday. The proposed experimental program will now be forward- ed to the department of ad- vanced education for further review and approval. The work sturdy program would provide business ad- ministration students the op- portunity to receive credit for on the job training. It would also allow full time students to participate in individually planned ac- tivities that are related to classroom instruction. A report on the program presented to the governors suggests it would "enable students the opportunities for studying a much greater diversity of marketing and service oriented oc- cupational areas" at a frac- tion of the cost of classroom instruction. The students participating in the work study program would be responsible for their own learning and would be un- der a minimum amount of pressure from their college advisers, the report states. In all cases the students can either explore certain areas of interest or complete a more in depth practical experience of learning to develop certain business skills. According to the report, managers of the major retail outlets in the city "strongly support the concept of on the job training as an integral part of the business ad- ministration program." The LCC school of business designed the program in an ef- fort to serve a greater number of the potential Students in the Lethbridge community. The work study program allows students to study at a time most convenient to them, choose the learning modules most relevant to 'their immediate needs and complete their study during whatever period of time most suitable to their personal situation. Since the proposed program is much more flexible in its offerings to students, shift and part time workers will be able to complete a certain portion of their studies and still maintain their jobs. funds or shut down operations. Com-serv is an experimen- tal project to integrate the mentally retarded into society as contributing individuals. The Lethbridge project is the first in Canada. Doug Scotney, Corn-serv treasurer, said the association will be meeting with the government Dec. 13 to make a submission for money to make up the deficit. The deficit resulted from the operation of Sunrise Ranch, a facility in Coaldale for the mentally retarded. The costs of operating Sunrise Ranch rose well above funds granted by the govern- ment for its operation. Money subsequently had to be taken from the Com-serv ad- ministration grant to keep Sunrise rlanch afloat, Mr. Scotney said. The organization received from the government in July 10 support the ad- ministration costs of Com- serv until March, 1975. The organization took over operation of Sunrise Ranch Sept. 1. Until then, the ranch was supported by the Lethbridge Association for the Mentally Retarded. Sunrise Ranch was always a deficit operation, but the association could keep the ranch going because of fund raising drives. Com-serv is not a fund raising organization, he said. Mr. Scotney said for the ranch to become self- sufficient a change in the government's grant structure would have to take place. The government gives grants based on the number of clients served by the facility. But because the ranch is doing more total training than production-oriented work with clients, it is not bringing in as much money as some workshops. "It is like a school and is not supported by the output of its he said. "Our role is training not production." Coupled with the association's need for funds is the problem of a March deadline for a detailed study to be presented to the govern- ment on three areas of Com- serv service. The financial dilemma of Com-serv has been hampering progress of the study which will determine the amount of government funding needed after March, if any. Fred Cartwright, a Com- serv board member, said the study must investigate, in depth, some proposals made in the initial Com-serv brief. "If we don't get it done we won't continue, it's as simple as he added. "We have to do our homework." Coaldale man killed A'22 year old Dutch immigrant was killed about a.m. Wednesday when the car he was driving left the road southeast of Coaldale, went into the ditch, rolled and crushed him under the vehicle. Dead is Cornelius Van Harberden of Coaldale. No decision has been made on an inquest. Two passengers in the 1969 sedan escaped serious injury. Willard Leeuwenburgh, 16, and Marinus Slingerland, 16, both of Coaldale, were treated at Coaldale Hospital for minor injuries and released. Mice in from cold, trap shortage strikes Build a better mouse trap and the world will beat a path to your door. But Lethbridge doesn't need a better trap today, it needs some traps. The cold weather has started the migration of mice to warmer climes, mainly buildings, and city residents have emptied the stores of mouse traps in Lethbridge. A survey of hardware outlets in the city turned up only one business which has traps in stock All other stores have sold their last trap and some have been sold out for up to two months. A clerk in Hoyt's North Lethbridge store said one fellow bought three dozen traps Tuesday night. "He must be going she said. A clerk in the downtown Hoyt's said he didn't have any traps left and "I don't think there is one left in town He said he can't even get traps from Calgary suppliers. Macleods Family Shopping Centre, Revelstoke and Bird Building Supplies all reported empty mouse trap shelves. The Bird Building Supplies representative wondered if mouse trap manufacturers had quit making them. He said he just can't get any traps in to sell. Southern Alberta Co-op Store was the only business surveyed with any traps left. This store had three dozen traps left at 25 cents each. While Southern Alberta Co-op Store is the distributor of a fancy mouse trap which throws mice into a metal container should the rodent venture into its jaws, the store had been unable to obtain any for sale. An official of the provincial pest control office in Ed- monton told The Herald no more than the usual number of calls are being received about mouse infestations. The normal recommendation of traps or poison baits is the standard reply. Since traps are in short supply in Lethbridge, residents can use the insecticide Warfarin which is available through hardware outlets and from professional exterminators. Pamphlets are available from the pest control office on the proper use of traps and baits to control mice. Walt Pierson, district agriculturist in Lethbridge, said information is available from his office should householders experience mice problems. LCC nursing entrance rule tighter By JIM GRANT Herald Staff Writer In an effort to graduate as "high a calibre of nurses as the Lethbridge Community College board of governors approved an increase of the minimum grade average of students entering the college nursing program. Students entering the nursing program after Jan. 1 will be required to have a 60 per cent average instead of a 55 per cent average in four grade 12 subjects. Governor John Walker had charged the college with discriminating against the brighter students by accepting nursing students on a "first come first serve basis." To be able to produce graduate nurses that are of the calibre of those produced by some of the major hospital programs, the college must become more selective when admitting students to the program, he suggested. The college is having problems with nursing students that have been ad- mitted with an average of 55 per cent or lower in the four Grade 12 subjects, Dr. Walker pointed, out, referring to statistics included in a study of the progress of students registered in the nursing program. The study shows that 80 per cent of the students who entered the college program during the past four years with a high school average of between 60 and 64 per cent graduated. Only 58 per cent of those entering with a 55 to 59 per cent average graduted and 23 per cent of the students entering with between a 50 and 54 per cent average graduated from the nurs- ing program. Sixty-seven per cent of the students entering the program with a Grade 12 average of 65 per cent or better graduated as registered nurses while only 24 per cent of those granted admis- sion under adult privileges graduated. Withdrawal from the program for academic reasons only involved 17 of the 217 students who entered the college nursing program during the past four years. The others withdrew for personal or what was classified in the study as "unknown" reasons. When presenting his study to the board, Dean of Instruction K. V. Robin recommended that the college continue to enrol students with a 55 per cent Grade 12 average to maintain its open policy of accepting students at a lower entrance average. The college has been accepting students with a lower average with the expectation that the drop-out rate would be higher "but in the knowledge that all is not lost when total training to the community is considered. "I would like to think that this college would give some incentive to the student whose academic record in high school was not brilliant but who still has a desire to Dr. Robin suggested when making his recommen- dation to the board. Dr. Walker argued that the nursing program should not be included in the same open-door policy that applies to other courses because it is one of only two programs with a maximum limit on enrolment. The college only accepted 80 of the 200 students who applied to enter the nursing program this year. The Fort Macleod doctor felt the dropout rate in the nursing program would be decreased substantially if the college became more selective .when admitting students. College president C. D. Stewart felt the college board should consider es- tablishing the first semester of the nursing program as a screening semester. Courses in the screening semester could be general knowledge courses that could also lead to studies in the se- cond year of some other program at the college, should the students decide they do not have the ability or interest to become a registered nurse, he said. Under the screening semester system, students wouldn't be con- sidered as nursing students until they graduated from the first semester. The board was also informed Wednesday that the provincial govern- ment has formed a task force to review the dropout rates in college nursing programs. The governors agreed to admit another 30 students to the college nurs- ing program in January to increase the number of nursing students studying at LCC to 110.