Congratulations to the St. Thomas Aquinas High School Graduating Class of 2018!

To see advice from the valedictorians to younger students

click here >

sutphen   firetruckA promotional image of the new vehicle the city's purchasing for its fire service.Kenora Mayor Dave Canfield just can't wrap his head around it. No matter how much documentation was put before him, Kenora's mayor simply couldn't agree a $1.1 million fire truck was necessary.

"You weigh all the odds. What's the cost of a life? The fact is, there's never been a life saved by an aerial truck. The fact is, we should have an aerial truck. Spending $1.137 million dollars...No," he said, after the meeting.

The mayor went so far as to point to a vehicle, which he suggested might be available at a lower price, but it was too little too late.

However, the mayor was outvoted 4-1, during yesterday's special council meeting. After the recorded vote, fire chief Todd Skene offered his point of view.skene todd2

"We've done our research looking at everything used -- that has a warranty on it -- through to brand new. In this case, we're looking at the truck we've selected. I think it's a good choice. They're all expensive, no matter which way we go," he said.

The current truck has been used about 50 times since buying it five years ago, and that the ladder came in handy, when they fought fires at Kenora Forest Products and the Weyerhaeuser mill. The truck has been used three times so far in 2017. Skene noted that the truck has been in the shop for over 200 hours for repairs so far, and that a replacement truck may be coming.

While the financing for the purchase will allow the city to avoid a tax increase, Skene allows it could come back to haunt them, if they need to buy another new truck within seven years, because there will be no money left in the piggy bank to buy one.

The fire chief noted the existing aerial truck wasn't working properly. He added there were 19 buildings in the city four storeys or higher, including some mill buildings in the community.

Councillors noted they wanted to see the city to grow, with new condos being built, and fire protection was an important service for future investors. Councillors Sharon Smith, Mort Goss, Rory McMillan and Louis Roussin voted in favour of the purchase. Councillors Dan Reynard and Colin Wasacase were absent.

While the fire service had been looking at replacing a new tanker truck this year, as well as a new pumper truck in two years. However, those plans have now been shelved. The reserve fund of abot $500,000 has also been emptied.

At their September meeting, Skene said aerial fire trucks can run anywhere from $800,000 to $1.5-million. The current truck is a 1995 Nova Quintech model, that can produce 6,000 litres of water per minute. The 1995 model was bought by Kenora in 2012, but the city's already spent $80,000 on a vehicle that still isn't working. The typical lifespan for a fire truck in Ontario is roughly 25 years. roussin mcmillanCouncillors Louis Roussin and Rory McMillan take a moment to consider their options.

The new purchase is a refurbished 2017 Sutphen. While some models under consideration were from the U.S., and they would need customization, this model was meant for Canadian winters, and it wouldn't need any further modifications, the fire chief said.

Council also added another $500,000 to the day's bill, so they could buy a new transit bus, making the total for the meeting more than $1.6 million.

For more information:

New truck needed

City of Kenora - Minutes of special meeting Nov. 7


More Local News

Opportunities 'astronomical,' Adams

Sheldon Adams is a member of Treaty 3 youth council, and he was part of the youth summit in Kenora. "The opportunity we have as young people, especially First Nation people, is astronomical. I find…

Decision on cannabis will wait, Canfield

Kenora Mayor Dave Canfield says he's looking forward to meeting with provincial cabinet ministers next week in Ottawa. "It's going to be the new council that makes the decision on that," he said. "I…

Kenora fire 71 under control

The Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry have declared Kenora Fire 71 under control. The lightning caused fire has been burning since July 15. The fire spans 10,270 hectares and is…

Fire ban for Sioux Narrows

The Township of Sioux Narrows-Nestor Falls has prohibited any outdoor burning, in response to an extreme forest fire hazard in the area. All outdoor burning permits have been suspended until further…

Assin found safe

Police have safely located Latoya Assin. She was found in Kenora at approximately 5 p.m Tuesday August 14. The 17 year old had been missing since August 1. For more information: Police still…

Watershed meeting this afternoon

Water quality will be the focus of a meeting this afternoon in Kenora. It's the annual public meeting hosted by the International Rainy-­Lake of the Woods Watershed Board, of the International Joint…

Canfield talks MoneySense ranking

Kenora Mayor Dave Canfield is satisfied with MoneySense’s recent ranking of Kenora, which listed the city as being the 65th best place to live in Canada. However, Canfield added that it took a bit of…

ODSP now covers mercury poisoning

Residents suffering long-term effects from mercury poisoning are now eligible for Ontario Disability Support. The provincial government has changed its regulations so that anyone who has previously…

Assault on city bus

A Kenora teen is facing seven charges, including assault with a weapon and resisting arrest. The charges are in connection with an assault on a city bus early Saturday afternoon. Officers were…

Kenora pair charged in Winnipeg

Two Kenora residents were held in custody in Winnipeg over the weekend, in connection with drug charges. Harley McLeod, 29 and Kaitlynn Burke, 26 will answer the allegations, including possession of… is Kenora's only source for community news and information such as weather and classifieds.

Search the Biz Guide