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Last updateTue, 21 May 2024 12am

Site selected for Rotary clock tower

    The design is being selected, and the site is picked.
    Next spring, Drumheller will have a new place to set their clocks to thanks to the Drumheller Rotary Club.
    The club had bandied about the idea of raising a clock tower for a few years, but put it to a motion last January. The Rotary Club has committed its funds from this year’s Radio Auction to erecting a clock tower in Drumheller.
    They have reached an agreement with the Town of Drumheller and will be placing the tower at the splash park beside Gordon Taylor Bridge.
    “I hope we will have it ready by the May long weekend,” said Jim Fisher of the Rotary Club. “It is the highest traffic area of Drumheller. It will be a great benefit to the thousands in the summer that use the fountain and water park.”
    The clock will also serve as a monument to the Rotary’s presence in the community.
    The clock tower will be 12 feet tall and is being constructed by It’s About Time of Langley, B.C.  The tower will have four clock faces, each with the Rotary symbol. The base is cast iron and the tower is powder coated for durability. The clock will have autonomous GPS movement meaning the clock is synchronized through GPS.
    “The town has just been great with us. They did the aerial shots and the photos from where the clock tower would be and what you would see,” said Fisher.
    The funds from the Radio Auction were earmarked for the clock.
    The price of the tower comes in at around $15,000. Fisher chuckles they received a “Rotary discount” as the company they ordered the clock from is owned by a Rotarian.


Pliva takes the Mo-challenge

“It’s driving me crazy!”
    That is the first reaction Tony Pliva has to the caterpillar growing on his upper lip.
    It is a common response for men in the early days of Movember.
    Pliva is taking on the facial hair experiment to raise awareness and funds for men’s health, and his team is behind him.
    Pliva is the coach of the Novice 6 Raptors, and he said if they supported him, he would register his name on the Movember website.
    “I was just going to do it to support the cause, and then I thought I might a well also help raise funds,” said Pliva.
    He said originally he was just going to casually raise funds and donate in the name of the team, but he was caught up and registered on the official site where supporters can make online donations.
    “I entered a few weeks late but if we can raise a few bucks it’s better than nothing,” he said.
    He signed up on the official Movember site on Wednesday, November 16, and within the day, he already raised $545.
    Movember began in Australia in 2003, and it has grown leaps and bounds. The concept is simple. Men start the month clean-shaven, and then let it all grow out for the month. By Movember 30, “Mo Bros” end up with some impressive facial hair.
    In 2010, almost 119,000 Canadians got on board and raised $22.3 million for men’s health.
    To donate to Pliva’s campaign go to ca.movember.com and search for Pliva’s name to view his mo-space. Donations can be made with credit cards or through Paypal.

Province ponders tougher drinking and driving laws

    The Alberta government wants to crack down on drinking and driving and is planning to introduce new legislation later this fall to strengthen enforcement.
    One of the ideas being floated is adding sanctions for drivers who have a Blood-Alcohol Concentration (BAC) of between 0.05 and the legal level of 0.08 BAC. Other ideas include the escalation of penalties for repeat offenses and additional administrative penalties for drivers who are charged criminally. Other provinces have made similar efforts. British Columbia has made similar changes to the law, and it is said fatalities involving drunk driving have been reduced by half.
    “It is for government to introduce legislation that reflects the values of the community that elected it,” said Premier Alison Redford in the Calgary Herald. “And I can tell you, I’m very confident that this is something Albertans care about and want to see the government act on.”
    Corporal Kevin Charles of the RCMP has worked in Manitoba, where there are penalties for drivers who have a 0.05 BAC. He said it is another tool for law enforcement.
    “Our opinion of it is ‘hey, great.’ Ideally if anyone has been drinking you shouldn’t see them on the roads at all,” said Charles. You shouldn’t be behind the wheel of a vehicle if you've anything to drink, it is just not worth it.”
    While society’s opinion of drinking and driving has changed throughout the years, and more and more people make responsible decisions, Charles says there are still a few out there who take the risk.
    “Most people get the message, but there are still those ones who believe ‘nothing is going to happen to me’ and they continue to drink and drive. Hopefully, if these laws come into place it will be some incentive and motivation for these people to make them think twice,” he said.
    There have been fears expressed by people that the new law will make a glass of wine with dinner, or a beer after work illegal.    
    “One glass of wine is not going to put your blood alcohol content over .05,” said Charles. “It is not saying you cannot go out to dinner and have a drink.  If you go out and have a few drinks, more than one or two with your friends, you need to be cognizant that your blood alcohol content could be up to that level and it could be illegal,” said Charles.
    “Let’s face it, if this new law only affects a certain percentage of the population and changes their mind, it shouldn’t be seen as a penalization. To me it is a way of preventing a death or a serious injury to someone.”
    Chris Pappas recently got out of the restaurant business in British Columbia and said the changes in that province had a chilling effect on diners.
    “I think it is a garbage law,” said Pappas. “That will destroy every business, and stop every person who would like to go out with his wife and have a drink, nevermind two.”
    Pappas recently sold his restaurant in Creston, B.C. after two years. He said when the law came in, he saw a 15 per cent drop in business.
    “Even a friend I had who used to come to have a drink, I never saw him anymore,” said Pappas. “I had one customer who had two Caesars at lunch time, she lost her car and was charged $3,500.”
    The Canadian Restaurant and Foodservices Association is concerned about the changes the possible new laws could have on the industry. According to its website, the survey of licensed B.C. members indicated 88 per cent experienced an average decline in liquor sales of 21 per cent after the new laws were put in place. They encourage their Alberta members to lobby their MLAs.
    Any change in the law will be to provincial statute such as the Traffic Safety Act. Currently, Alberta Sheriff Highway Patrol is able to enforce the act, which includes issuing licence suspensions in cases of suspected impaired driving. They are not able to lay criminal charges.
    “Typically a sheriff would touch base or get in contact with an RCMP member and make arrangements for them to do the Breathalyzer test,” said Dan Laville, communications director for the Solicitor General.
    He said the legislation may be introduced as soon as next week and indicates that it may give Alberta sheriffs more tools, but it is too soon to tell and many details need to be hammered out.
    “At this point we are working on the details of the legislation and how it will roll out. We will be looking at all that stuff and seeing how we move forward,” said Laville.
    Corporal Charles says the biggest change will come in people’s behaviour.
    “Look at the distracted driving law, we are a few months into it, people are not complaining, they understand now why it has been implemented, and their  behaviour has been changed. They are being safer, and I’d like to think they are getting the message,” said Charles.


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