37Years Ago (1981): From all accounts – local realtors, bankers, businessmen, it seemed that what was once a steady trickle of urbanites to the South Cariboo, had turned into a swift stream. While the Cariboo had a great appeal – the outdoors, the fresh air and wide-open spaces, those coming to the area were coming into one where unemployment was reaching nine per cent, surpassing the provincial average of seven per cent. According to Mayor, Ross Marks, people moving into the area would create more demands for services in the community, creating more jobs.
26 Years Ago (1992): The importance of the agricultural ministry was not gaining enough recognition, according to Agriculture Minister, Bill Barlee. “In times of economic duress, agriculture is the only ministry which picks up the slack.” When the recession hit in ‘81, ‘82 and ‘83 there were 26,000 people engaged in the industry, including fisheries. A rising increase in agricultural jobs saved the provincial government nearly $104 million, which in return, would have been paid out in social benefits, he said.
20 Years Ago (1998): Friday marked the first of three “reduced activity” days in March that would see doctors’ offices and clinics closed to patients province-wide. Those days included March 6, 18 and 31 in order to keep the medical services budget on target. According to BCMA president Dr. Granger Avery, insufficient funding led doctors to work without pay for more than 15 days that year. “The government needs to inject approximately $300 million over the next two years to adequately meet the medical needs of British Columbians and avoid reduced activity days.”
11Years Ago (2008): School District #27 couldn’t decide what price it should charge for the 20 to 25 Cariboo Christian Academy students who rode district school buses. The following year, monthly bus fees for independent schools hiked from $14 to $40 per student. People were caught unaware and that large of an increase was burdensome, according to Trustee Will Van Osch. “If we don’t take independent riders our budget doesn’t change, if we do take independent riders our cost doesn’t change, so basically it’s a cost-neutral issue.”
4Years Ago (2015): Local cross country skiers were among the nearly 600 to compete at the 2015 Teck BC Cross Country Ski Championships in Kelowna. A dozen racers from the 100 Mile Nordics club attended the race, which attracted skiers from British Columbia, Alberta, Ontario and Washington. The competition featured a variety of races through marginal snow and icy conditions, challenging the athletes. A great time was had by all participants, according to coach Sandy Law.