The Pas Local News

Petition Started to Stop the Federal Government from Banning Hand Guns and Assault Rifles

Bob Uchtman the Director and Secretary Treasurer of The Pas Firearms Association posted a link to a petition on the associations Facebook group that urges the federal government not to ban hand guns and assault rifles in Canada.


One of the reasons that Uchtman opposes the ban is because assault rifles have to be capable of fully automatic fire and the ones that you can buy are semi automatic and they are no different than semi automatic rifles that are legally used for hunting, but the image that they look like military style rifles give the false impression that they are bad. Uchtman added that when it comes to violence guns are not the problem it’s a crime problem involving drugs and gangs and that the government should be focused on them instead of law abiding gun owners.


Though Uchtman is opposed to a ban on assault rifles and handguns he does not have a problem with taking these firearms from criminals. MP Niki Ashton spoke to Arctic Radio News on the matter and said that the legislation put forward by the federal government is directed at allowing municipalities and provinces to give them the power within their own jurisdictions to ban hand guns and assault rifles if they choose to do so in response to rising gun violence in cities like Toronto but small communities like The Pas do not have this issue.

The NDP does support allowing jurisdictions to make their own laws regarding firearms but Ashton is still a staunch defender of Northern People having access to firearms for hunting and sport shooting and she opposed the previous long gun registry calling it a quote  wasteful piece of legislation.


Conservative Party Leader Andrew Scheer is opposed to having a ban on Assault rifles and handguns and believes the focus should be on criminals rather then responsible gun owners.


The Green Party of Canada’s website says that they would introduce a ban on handguns and semi automatic rifles and eliminate their used with a buyback program.


Peoples Party of Canada’s website said that they would introduce a fair gun policy for Canada. This would include making the firearms safety course more widely available, classifying firearms based on function rather than appearance, and repel magazine size restrictions to name a few.


Town of The Pas and the RM of Kelsey Working Together on a New Development Plan

The Town of The Pas and The RM of Kelsey have come together through the newly formed Kelsey Planning District and they will start working on a New Development Plan that would map out the communities long term plans and policies to help future growth and change, ensuring that the area continues to grow with a goal of encouraging development like seasonal cottages, and to unite 4 existing plans into a single updated plan.


A special open house was held at the Roy H Johnston Arenas Multi Purpose room on Thursday to show residents how the plan will work and to give them an opportunity to say what they liked about the community and what changes should be made to The Pas and area in the next 20 years.


There is expected to be a public hearing on the project sometime in February and more information on the Kelsey Planning District can be found in the Community Development section of The Town of The Pas website,


"On The Trail of the Monarch Butterfly" a Traveling Exhibit at the Sam Waller Museum

The Sam Waller Museum has a new exhibit on display called “On the Trail of the Monarch Butterfly” The exhibit is produced by the Canadian Aviation and Space Museum in partnership with the embassy of Mexico and the exhibit chronicles a journey taken by a Mexican film maker and pilot that took off from Montreal and followed the migration of the Monarch Butterfly from Canada to the mountains of Central Mexico.


Some of the pictures show butterflies in different stages and the exhibit also shows you the difference between male and female monarch butterflies. The exhibit is expected to be on display at the museum from now until January 30th.


Amanda Lathlin Addresses Possible Cuts to the Northern Patient Transportation Program During Question Period

During Question Period in The Manitoba Legislature recently The Pas MLA Amanda Lathlin addressed the possibility of cuts to the Northern Patient transportation program.


Lathlin stated that Under the Northern Patient Transportation Program a physician fills out a travel warrant so that a patent can be covered when they need to see a doctor but according to the provincial governments own records the department of health is looking at eliminating travel warrants for anyone that travels inside the Northern Health Region for elective procedures which includes dental surgery for children. This would mean that a child who had to travel to Thompson for dental surgery wouldn’t be covered for an escort. She asked if the Minister would promise that he would not approve this cut.


Cameron Friesen the Minister of Health, Seniors, and Active Living responded by saying that the government places tremendous value in the Northern Patient Transportation program but that the costs steadily increase within the program by millions of dollars and there was some misuse with the program. He added that they want to make sure the program will last and continue to be strong to provide for Northern Manitobans. He accused Lathlin of quote trying to create fear in the minds and hearts of Northerners by pretending that when a child will go for an appointment that they won’t be accompanied by a parent.


Lathlin also brought up the possible cuts to the northern patient Transportation Programs Coverage for Northern Manitobans who don’t live in fly in communities which means that the government will cut Northern Patient Transportation coverage for 75 percent of the communities covered by the Northern health Authority. When asked if the minister would not make this cut Friesen said that the Northern Patient Transportation program has been reviewed externally and officials spoke about the need to look at it again to unsure that its use was verifiable and it was being used by the right people at the right times for the right purposes.


Finally, Lathlin asked why the government was even thinking about cuts that they know will cost more and threaten the health of Northern Manitobans Friesen responded by saying that that assertion is false.


Women's Health Matters Share Your Story

There will be a special event held at the Beatrice Wilson Health Centre for women that are living with a heart disease or a stroke or if they are caring for someone with these conditions to give them an opportunity to share their stories. 


Recent evidence shows that there is a clear sex and gender inequality in our health care system and The Heart and Stroke Foundation wants to engage women to ensure that the work that they do is guided by the needs of woman living with such conditions to allow them to better advocate for their needs.


The event will be held on December 13th from 1 until 4 in the afternoon and you are asked to call 204-627-7461 or 204-627-6418 if you would like to participate.


Niki Ashton: "Our Region Deserves Better

Local Memeber of Parliament Niki Ashton rose in the House of Commons during question period yesterday to address the job situation not only in northern Manitoba, but Canada as a whole.


The NDP MP said that this past week was particularly bad, as it saw the announcement from Hudbay that they might end their Flin Flon mining operations in 2021, as well as the closure of the GM plant in Oshawa, Ontario.


She went on to say that the response from both the Provincial and Federal governments has been “totally inadequate”.


Ashton added that while communities like Thompson and Flin Flon have been working hard to diversify and find other job opportunities there can be no doubt that the loss of jobs is devastating.


She concluded by saying that these are tough times for the north, and that the region “deserves better, and that the governments have to be engaged”.


Only 15 Precent of Tourists Visiting Manitoba Are From Outside The Province

It turns out that only 15 percent of tourists that visit Manitoba are from outside of the province.


That’s according to the latest data from Statistics Canada, who says that Manitobans accounted for 85 percent of all tourists in the province, with visitors from other provinces coming in at 10 percent, American visitors at four percent and overseas visitors at just one percent.


Despite only accounting for one percent of all visitors, those from overseas accounted for 124 million dollars, or eight percent, of all tourism revenue.

The announcement of Manitoba being named to the Lonely Planet’s list of best travel destinations in the world for 2019 was met with excitement from many people, including the Premier, though some travel experts are saying they can’t take credit for anything other than providing funding for tourism and economic development agencies.   


Kelsey Planning District Open House

The Town of The Pas and The RM of Kelsey are working together on the new Kelsey planning district with the goal of shaping both communities for the next 20 years and they will be having an open house tonight on the new planning district from 6 until 9PM at the Roy H Johnston arenas multipurpose room.


Taylor Avenue House Fire Still Under investigation

The Pas Fire Department responded to a house fire on the 400 block of Taylor Avenue on Tuesday morning.  The call came in shortly after 7AM and upon arrival they were notified that five residents of the home exited the building and were sent to the hospital.


Due to the age and the construction of the building it took a long time for the fire crews to extinguish the blaze. The cause of the fire is under investigation.


Fire Prevention Officer Cody Langlois would like to thank residents of The Pas for avoiding the area and allowing the fire department to do their job while they were fighting the fire and he would like to remind people to make sure that their smoke alarms are properly installed in their homes and to routinely practice their fire escape plans and its also important to stay low to the ground when exiting a building that has lots of smoke. 


Moose Lake RCMP are Looking for a Suspect Who May be in the Flin Flon The Pas Area

At approximately 4:00 o’clock Tuesday morning Moose Lake RCMP received a report of a fire at the convenience store located on Runway Road in the community of Moose Lake.


Officers attended and determined the fire that caused extensive damage had been deliberately set. They also discovered a large sum of money had been stolen from the business prior to the fire starting.


RCMP have charged 28-year-old Bernell Ramsey Ettawacappow, of Moose Lake, with Arson, Break and Enter and Theft Over $5000 and have issued a warrant for his arrest. The accused is believed to have fled Moose Lake and may be in The Pas, Flin Flon, or Winnipeg.


Anyone with information is asked to contact the Moose Lake RCMP at 204-678-2399 or call Manitoba Crime Stoppers anonymously at 1-800-222-8477, submit a secure tip online at or text “TIPMAN” plus your message to CRIMES (274637).


Santa Claus Parade on the Verge of Cancelation

If The Pas Community Renewal Corporation doesn’t receive anymore float applications, this year’s Santa parade will have to be canceled. As of news time only 4 floats have been registered. If you wish to sign up for the parade please call 204-623-4269.


230 Manitoba Drivers Had Their License Suspended in November

Over 230 drivers here in Manitoba had their license suspended in the month of November.


That’s following the introduction of new penalties for distracted driving on November first.


According to Manitoba Public Insurance, distracted driving was a contributing factor in more than 15-thousand collisions, and is responsible for 30 deaths.


The commanding officer of the Manitoba RCMP says that the new rules, which include an immediate roadside license suspension and the possibility of a 672 dollar fine, send a very clear message that distracted driving will not be tolerated.


Churchill Celebrates the Return of Via Rail

Yesterday morning The Town of Churchill came out in full force to welcome the first passenger train to the community in 16 months. Churchill mayor Mike Spence said in a press release that the community faced huge challenges when the rail line went down but they pulled together.


Since there are no roads to Churchill the Hudson Bay rail line is the community’s connection to the rest of Canada and it’s vital for residents to visit loved ones and get affordable goods and services.


Spence added that they also look forward to welcoming tourists to their community once again.


Operation Red Nose The Pas Stats for November 30th and December 1st

The Pas Roadrunners Swim Club began Operation Red Nose on November 30th and December 1st offering rides in an effort to combat impaired driving this holiday season.  They had a total of 32 volunteers, 10 teams, 66 rides, 110 passengers, and over 1,200 Kilometres were driven.


Operation Red Nose will run again on December 7th, 8th, 14th, 15th, 21st, 22nd, and the 31st from 9PM until 3AM If you need a ride call 204-623-3300. More information can be found at Operation Red Nose The Pas Facebook Page.


The Pas Community Renewal Corporation Santa Parade Needs More Floats

The Pas Community Renewal Corporation’s annual Santa Parade will be held on December 14th. The theme for this year’s parade is Dr Seuss Christmas and its set to assemble at 5PM at the Gordon Lathlin Memorial Centre and the floats must be on site by 5:15 on the day of the parade.


The judging will begin at 5:30 and the parade will begin at 6:00 sharp and finish at the Roy H Johnston Arena with a free public skate to follow from 7:15 until 9:15.  The OCN Blizzard will be at the Public Skate to serve free hot chocolate and hot dogs to the first 250 people to attend the skate.


Not many floats have registered for the parade and more are needed. If you would like to register for the parade call 204-623-4269 or you can find a signup sheet on The TPCRC Facebook Page and they can be faxed to 204-623-2589.


The deadline to sign up is December 13th at 4:30 PM.  The TPRCR is not responsible for any damage, injury, or loss occurred during the parade.  


Manitoba Government Set to Launch a New Online Youth Worker Readiness Certificate Course

The Manitoba Government is set to launch a new online Youth Worker Readiness Certificate course, aimed at teaching youth the basics about workers and employers rights, as well as responsibilities for safety and health in the workplace. 


The interactive course is based on Saskatchewan’s successful youth readiness course, though it has been tailored for Manitoba.


Employers seeking to hire anyone under the age of 16 will be required to confirm that the prospective employee has completed the course, and will have to keep a copy of the certificate as an employment record. 


The announcement also says that 13 is the new minimum working age in Manitoba, that those under 16 will have restrictions such as a limit of no more than 20 working hours during a school week.


Young people can complete the online course at by going to and click on Young Workers Course


House Fire on Taylor Avenue

The Pas Fire Department and emergency crews responded to house fire on the 400 block of Taylor Avenue earlier this morning. People have been asked to avoid the area until further notice. We’ll bring you more details as they come in.


28th Annual Marigold Preschool Festival of Trees

The 28th Annual Marigold Preschool Festival of Trees was held on Saturday and this year’s event was very successful. The event is a fundraiser for the preschool that had a children’s carnival, a gingerbread display, and entertainment for everyone to enjoy. Many people in attendance said it was the best festival in many years.


Preschool director Lenora Kurr says even though they didn’t have as many people at the event this year those in attendance still had lots of fun enjoying the entertainment. Kurr would like to thank everyone that helped out at the event and those that made donations for the preschool.


Correction: and earlier version on this story refered to the festival as the festival of lights when in fact its call the festival of trees.


The City of Flin Flon is in the Process of Developing Plans For the Closure of Hudbay

Flin Flon mayor Cal Huntley says the proposed closure of Hudbays Flin Flon operations in 2021 still leaves a lot of questions to be answered.  But he says they have to start planning for the scenario presented in the news release. 


He says they’ve already started working on diversity and different things like that to help try and mitigate so he doesn’t see a huge change in strategy right now other than planning for some additional initiatives around the community as a whole.  Hs says they’ve planted some seeds with the government around the Mining Reserve Fund and some potential projects that could help with the sustainability of the community and so they’re looking at everything right now as well as looking at how do they can do things better from a city perspective given that theoretically in three years the way it’s being proposed there could be a significant decrease in funding.


Huntley adds they have to decide how they are going to deal with that issue.  He says over the next several weeks they’ll start to formulate how they need to change the strategy that they presently have in place and what that will lead to.




Opaskwayak Cree Nation Members Vote in Favour of Proposed Changes to Their Election Code

Members of Opaskwayk Cree Nation have voted in favour of the proposed changes to their election code.


A referendum was held on November 28th and out of the 602 members that voted 364 people voted yes while 238 people voted no to the changes.


One of the biggest of these changes is that OCN Chief and Council will hold office for a two year term instead of a three year term. This change will take effect in the next general election.


A full document on these changes can be found at the OCN Elections Office.


MP Niki Ashton Joins Call for Progressive International

MP Niki Ashton attended the inaugural Sanders Institute Gathering in Burlington Vermont last week.


The event was organized by co-founders Jane Sanders and David Driscoll and Ashton was joined by American Senator Bernie Sanders, Greek economist Yanis Varoufakis and others in launching progressive international, a global movement to end inequality, exploitation, discrimination, and environmental degradation.


Ashton stated that we are at the crossroads in Canada and globally and we can stand with the one percent, their destructive pipelines, and corporate greed or we can stand with the people already leading the fight.


Jane Sanders said that she was thrilled to have Ashton present at the gathering.


Local Postal Worker Makes a Statement on Back to Work Legislation

Mark Armitage the secretary treasurer of CUP-W local 838 The Pas spoke to Arctic Radio News and made a statement about Canadian Postal workers being forced back to work through federal legislation. Armitage says the law clearly violates our right to free and collective bargaining under the charter and rights and freedoms.


Going back to work under the old collective agreement means that between now and the holidays at least 315 disabling injuries will happen to postal workers, rural and suburban mail carriers will work roughly 250,000 hours without pay, urban postal workers will work thousands of hours of forced overtime, and the rural suburban mail carriers will be treated unequally.


Tomorrow postal workers and supporters will be having a rally here in The Pas to protest their right to strike. The rally will begin at 161 Fischer Avenue at 11AM and they will march to the provincial building on Third Street.


Manitoba Enters Into an Agreement for Suppression of Wildfires

The Government of manitoba entered into an agreement with Babcock Canada Inc. to provide services for the suppression of wildfires, including the use of water bombers.


Infrastructure minister Ron Schuler says the government is committed to protecting Manitobans from wildfires and the aircraft will always serve Manitoba first.


Local MP Niki Ashton stated on social media that the privatization of these wildfire suppression services will put Northern Manitobans affected by wildfire at risk.


But, Schular claims that this new agreement will ensure faster response times, enhanced safety, and superior aircraft maintenance.


Just Watch ME Contest Video Contest for Rural Small Business Owners with Disabilities

The Just Watch Me video contest will be open for submissions on December 3rd which is United Nations International Day of Persons with Disabilities.


The contest is open to Rural Manitoba or rural Saskatchewan residents that have their own businesses and live with a disability or health condition.


The contest involves having these business owners submit a short one to two minute video about their business and its success.


It’s an initiative aimed at celebrating the small business success of rural Canadians with disabilities and to encourage others to embrace entrepreneurship.


The contest closes on January 22nd of next year and the winner will be announced in February.


Visit to find out more


Photo Courtest of


Manitoba Public Insurance Warning Drivers to Adjust Driving Behavior with the Arrival of Winter Weather

Even though it is not officially winter there is a lot of snow in the region and Manitoba Public Insurance says that bad winter weather can result in more than 1000 collisions over a 24 hour period.


They would like to remind drivers to check the road and weather conditions before heading out on the highway and you can check the conditions of Manitoba highways by calling 511.


You are also encouraged to be careful when driving on overpasses or bridges as the surfaces on these structures can freeze easily,


Leave more space between you and other vehicles,  take your time driving and don’t rush, ensure that your windshields are clear and to have your washer fluid topped off so that you have perfect visibility while driving; allow yourself more time to stop since traction is often reduced on slippery roads, and to get your winter tires put on if you haven’t done so already.



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