Armchair Mayor

By: Mel Rothenburger

Mel Rothenburger is the former Editor of The Daily News in Kamloops, B.C. (retiring in 2012), and past mayor of Kamloops (1999-2005). He continued to write columns for The Daily News until it ceased publication Jan. 11, 2014, and did regular commentary for CBC Radio.

Frootloops council finds a solution to costs of annual Christmas skit

December 23, 2017 - 5:00am

KAMLOOPS — The Big Day is almost upon the sleepy village of Frootloops, and the council has come together to plan the annual Christmas concert, featuring a skit by its members. Mayor Ken Kringle, newly elected to the job, takes his chair and prepares to preside.

KRINGLE: I call this meeting to order. We have a fulsome agenda to get through, unless there’s anyone here who’s contrary minded. Main topic is the annual Christmas skit. We can only increase the budget this year by 2.5 per cent. Mr. Tannenbaum, how much will that get us?

The grizzly bear hunt was wrong, the ban is right

December 20, 2017 - 8:00am Updated: December 20, 2017 - 11:29am

KAMLOOPS — Well, there’s been quite the uproar from a vocal minority over the B.C. government’s decision to ban the hunting of grizzly bears.

Even though other hunting isn’t affected, you’d think those emotional environmentalist city slickers who have no understanding of the laws of nature had just wrenched away the rights of all hunters.

Marg Spina: always ready with a smile, always ready to help

December 18, 2017 - 5:14am Updated: December 18, 2017 - 11:12am

KAMLOOPS — One week short of a year ago, on Christmas eve, Kamloops City councilor Marg Spina broke the news on her Facebook page that she was taking an indefinite leave of absence to receive treatment for breast cancer.

“You can be sure I will put up the fight of my life,” she wrote.

And she did, though she ultimately lost that fight this past Friday.

Reflections on Ajax: there must be a better way

December 16, 2017 - 8:43am

KAMLOOPS - 

Word that a decision on Ajax was imminent came as a surprise Thursday afternoon. Most everybody had thought B.C. Environment Minister George Heyman and Mines Minister Michelle Mungall wouldn’t make an announcement until the new year.

There was, after all, a pile of stuff to read after six years of rancorous public debate, report after study after report, and starts and stutters in the review process.

But, they let it be known during the lunch hour Thursday that they’d announce their decision at 2 p.m., and they did.

Reflections on Ajax: there must be a better way

December 16, 2017 - 8:43am

KAMLOOPS - 

Word that a decision on Ajax was imminent came as a surprise Thursday afternoon. Most everybody had thought B.C. Environment Minister George Heyman and Mines Minister Michelle Mungall wouldn’t make an announcement until the new year.

There was, after all, a pile of stuff to read after six years of rancorous public debate, report after study after report, and starts and stutters in the review process.

But, they let it be known during the lunch hour Thursday that they’d announce their decision at 2 p.m., and they did.

Ajax is dead; let the healing begin

December 15, 2017 - 6:09am

KAMLOOPS — Thursday’s announcement that the Ajax project is dead might be the best news for the Kamloops region since the coming of the railroad.

But what to do now? After six long years of splitting the community in two, Ajax — which once seemed like a sure thing — is finished.

It’s like a huge weight being lifted off collective shoulders, yet there’s no question that a lot of people wanted to see it go ahead. The torn fabric of the community has to be mended.

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