Port Clements’s Christmas turkey hand-out was so successful that 30 families who didn’t get a turkey are now demanding one, and Port is looking at a $880 bill for the extra birds.
The village decided to use part of its Gwaii Trust Christmas fund money to present each Port household with a turkey. However, mayor Dale Lore said Monday night (Jan. 12), it turns out there are 182 households in Port – not 152 as the hand-out organizers thought.
Mr. Lore said the village ordered the additional birds today. He will be asking the Gwaii Trust to cover the extra cost, and if that doesn’t happen, he said, the village will pay.
Overall, the turkey gift was much appreciated by Port residents and the village office has received several thank you letters, Mr. Lore said. Some kind families who felt they didn’t need one donated their turkey, so that some large households received two, he added.
When Christmas comes around this year, Port will be making sure the $10,000 from Gwaii Trust is divided more equitably between Port and Tlell, councillor Gerry Johnson said.
Tlell received about $850 more than its fair share, Mr. Lore said – just about the amount the village is short for the extra turkeys.
In other Port news:
Â• The village has not yet heard whether the Supreme Court of Canada will allow it to be an intervenor in the “TFL 39” case, which goes before the Supreme Court March 24 and 25.
Â• Mr. Johnson said the Ministry of Health Services decision to give a baby bonus to rural doctors is a “step in the right direction”. The village received a letter from Minister Colin Hansen outlining the new program, which will give doctors who do not deliver a high volume of babies a 50-percent bonus on the Medical Services Commission fee for each baby they deliver. Mayor Dale Lore said the extra money won’t mean more support staff at the hospital to help the doctors.
Â• The village will be writing back to Community Services Minister George Abbott, who says the province is working on a strategy to help smaller communities like Port attract and retain immigrants.
“We’re in a little different situation,” said councillor Jukka Efraimsson. “Never mind attracting immigrants, we need to retain the families who live here.”
Provincial policies like changes to the small business timber program and the elimination of cut control are making it more difficult for small towns to attract and retain any population at all, he said.
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