Town issues call for hockey schools

FORT FRANCES—With none currently offered here on any permanent basis, the Town of Fort Frances is putting out a call for expressions of interest in hockey schools.
In a report from Community Services manager George Bell approved by council at Monday night’s regular meeting, he noted the Lakehead U. Thunderwolves approached the town this summer about operating a hockey school here next year for Fort Frances and the surrounding district.
Bell said Lakehead U. is prepared to make a three-year commitment to the district, but voiced concerns about the introduction of other hockey schools and “flooding the market”—diluting the marketplace “to the point where none of the programs are economically feasible.”
Bell added Lakehead U. would like to come here if the number of programs were restricted to their own introductory and advanced programs, as well as the Northern Edges Hockey School for girls.
“In light of the municipality’s past experience with exclusive hockey school programs,” said Bell, the town should put out a call for expressions of interest for a hockey school program with the intent to possibly offer one a contract with an exclusivity clause.
(Such clauses are part of the Memorial Sports Centre’s canteen contract, beverage contract with Pepsi, and sporting goods contract with Skates & Blades).
“I think it’s a great idea,” said Coun. Todd Hamilton. “We don’t have one in town right now.”
Also at Monday night’s meeting, council:
•passed a resolution in support of the North Western Ontario Tourism Association, the Kenora District Camp Owners Association, and the Hotel Association of Canada in their fight against the cancellation of the GST Visitor Rebate Program;
•approved applications of adjustments of taxes for properties at 1108 King’s Highway, 1330 Woodward St., and 1213 First St. E.;
•referred a request from Pitch-In Ontario for patronage of the Pitch-In Ontario Program to the Operations and Facilities executive committee for its recommendation;
•referred a request from the Fort Frances Times for financial support of the 2007 Northwestern Ontario Vacation Guide to the Administration and Finance executive committee for its recommendation;
•agreed to buy 10 tickets for the Fort Frances Chamber of Commerce’s 11th-annual business award gala this Saturday (Oct. 28) at La Place Rendez-Vous (this is at a cost of $450);
•passed a bylaw to assign to Riverside Health Care Facilities, Inc. an agreement with Rainycrest Home for the Aged for the delivery of handi-transit service; and
•passed a bylaw to authorize entering into a five-year lease agreement with Melaire Ltd. at the Fort Frances Municipal Airport.
(Fort Frances Daily Bulletin)