Voluntary Recall of Sandwiches sold in New Westminster, Surrey and Langley

OTTAWA, August 30, 2008 – The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) and King Bean Wholesalers are warning the public not to serve or consume certain King Bean Wholesalers sandwiches described below because these products may be contaminated with Listeria monocytogenes.

This recall is being initiated as these sandwiches contain a ready-to-eat deli meat product recalled by Maple Leaf Consumer Foods, Burlington, ON. There have been no reported illnesses associated with the consumption of these sandwiches.

The following King Bean Wholesalers sandwiches are affected by this alert:

Product

UPC

Best Before Dates up to and Incl.

Roast Beef Sandwich

6 26403 00103 3

01-Sep-08

Roast Beef Kaiser

6 26403 00878 0

01-Sep-08

Roast Beef and Sub

6 26403 00070 8

01-Sep-08

Roast Beef Sub 6 26403 00030 2 01-Sep-08

These sandwiches were sold in stores located in New Westminster, Surrey and Langley, British Columbia.

Food contaminated with Listeria monocytogenes may not look or smell spoiled. Consumption of food contaminated with this bacteria may cause listeriosis, a foodborne illness. Listeriosis can cause high fever, severe headache, neck stiffness and nausea. Pregnant women, the elderly and people with weakened immune systems are particularly at risk. Infected pregnant women may experience only a mild, flu-like illness, however, infections during pregnancy can lead to premature delivery, infection of the newborn, or even stillbirth.

King Bean Wholesalers, Surrey, BC, is voluntarily recalling the affected products from the marketplace. The CFIA is monitoring the effectiveness of the recall.

For more information, consumers and industry can call one of the CFIA at 1-800-442-2342 / TTY 1-800-465-7735 (8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Eastern time, Monday to Friday).

For information on Listeria monocytogenes, visit the Food Facts web page at http://www.inspection.gc.ca/english/fssa/concen/causee.shtml.

For information on receiving recalls by e-mail, or for other food safety facts, visit our web site at www.inspection.gc.ca

Taken from: http://www.inspection.gc.ca/english/corpaffr/recarapp/2008/20080830e.shtml

Blair Armitage sets sights on becoming New Westminster mayor

The president of a new civic party in New Westminster may pull off what second-term Mayor Wayne Wright accomplished two previous municipal elections ago: unseating an incumbent.
In 2002, Wright, who had never been on council, narrowly defeated then-mayor Helen Sparkes.
Blair Armitage has never run for any civic office in New Westminster and is not identified with provincial political parties. This fall, the 64-year-old cofounder and president of the civic party Voice New Westminster wants to win Wright’s seat at City Hall. However, he has to first secure the endorsement of his party during its nominating convention on September 22.

In a phone interview with the Straight, Armitage identified three issues he wants to focus on. For one, he noted that development costs in the city are too low compared to other jurisdictions. Armitage also wants to reduce the high taxes that city residents have to pay because the city doesn’t collect enough from developers. He likewise expressed concern about safety and security.
“I believe that changes are in order, and that you can sit back and do nothing or you take a stand and attempt to do something, and that’s where I fall into,” Armitage, former general manager of the Quilchena Golf and Country Club, said of his decision to enter civic life.
Armitage—along with a group that included former four-term city councillor Casey Cook and long-time NDP member Steve McClurg—helped found Voice New Westminster in 2007.
Cook, who failed to unseat Wright in the 2005 election, isn’t planning to seek the party’s nomination either for mayor or a slot on its council slate. Cook told the Straight he may consider running for school board.
For his part, McClurg told the Straight that he will vie for a nomination as candidate for council.

By Carlito Pablo
From the Georgia Straight

The Pattullo Bridge – What To Do?

We have agreement!

Everyone agrees that the Pattullo Bridge, first opened in 1937, needs a very serious upgrade or needs to be replaced. Everyone agrees that it is going to be expensive. Everyone agrees it is needed now, not in 10 or 15 years. But this is about where the agreement ends.

TransLink’s Board of Directors has given staff the go-ahead to begin preliminary work toward building a new Pattullo Bridge that will be financed by tolls. The Board’s decision follows receipt of a consultant’s report (The Delcan Report) that concluded it was preferable to build an entirely new bridge rather than invest more money in the existing structure as one half of a twinned span.

The decision to finance the bridge through tolls raises questions about the province’s tolling policy. Victoria had designated the Pattullo as the untolled alternative to the tolled and twinned Port Mann Bridge that is to be built by 2013. If the Pattullo, Port Mann and Golden Ears bridges all end up tolled as is now planned, motorists seeking a free crossing might be forced as far south as the Alex Fraser Bridge. (But is this a legitimate concern?)

Enter the politicians.

From the NDP we have Delta North MLA, Guy Gentner, Surrey-Newton MLA, Harry Bains, NDP MLA and transportation opposition critic, Maurine Karagianis all lined up against the introduction of tolls to finance this project. Among a variety of concerns they believe that the introduction of tolls will force many drivers to the Alex Fraser causing even greater congestion.

Minister of Transportation, Kevin Falcon, always sensitive to his critics, pointed out that the $1-billion South Fraser perimeter road that recently received environmental approval will allow drivers to get from the Pattullo to the Alex Fraser in five minutes, drastically cutting down on congestion. He also said not all drivers will be flocking to the Alex Fraser because it is a free alternative. “A modest toll does not act as a big dissuasion for people to make a travel decision. At least that’s what all the traffic studies tell us.”

“When you do the traffic modelling, what you find – and the Port Mann is the best example – is that today when people are spending 4½ hours sitting on a bridge, wasting time, if they have the option of paying a few dollars to get across it a lot faster, people will do that.”

New Westminster City Councillor, Bill Harper is also against the toll. “They are tolling the new Golden Ears Bridge, they’re going to toll the (new) Port Mann and now the new Pattullo,” Harper said. “Most of the bridges going across the Fraser are going to be tolled.”

Harper said high gas prices are already negatively affecting drivers, and he wondered how fair it is to charge tolls for people who have to drive across the bridge when they have no choice.

“Health-care services have been regionalized, so you have people from Surrey coming to Royal Columbian Hospital and people from New Westminster and Burnaby going to Surrey,” Harper explained. “What choice do these people have but to go back and forth on a toll bridge?”

TransLink’s spokesperson, Ken Hardie said that on the subject of tolls TransLink has no other option. “It’s the only way we can pay for it,” Hardie said. “TransLink basically doesn’t have $800 million to build it in our budget. In fact, we are short lots of money.” Therefore the decision has been made and it is that the new Pattullo Bridge will have tolls!

Voice New Westminster Director, Neil Powell, captures the sentiments of a number of New Westminster residents. “All bridges in the lower mainland should be tolled. Look at the original tenets of the Livable Region Strategic Plan.”

1) Protect the green zone
2) Build complete communities
3) Achieve a compact metropolitan region; and
4) Increase transportation choices.

Powell suggests that a greater Vancouver region-wide toll system should be considered. The technology exists to have variable rate tolls at different times of the day across an entire system. Congestion pricing such as this could be an effective tool in getting the most out of the Lower Mainland’s bridge and highway system and it would generate funding for capital expenditures. For example, transit options that are realistic alternatives to driving a car.

So where do you put the new bridge?

The Delcan report suggests TransLink could build the new bridge 50 metres upstream or 50 metres downstream. Making that decision will involve looking at the costs and impacts of each option on the areas on both sides of the river.

Another school of thought advanced by Voice New Westminster Director Patrick O’Connor, would be to include the bridge with the construction of the “Stormont Connector”. The Stormont connector project would join the Pattullo Bridge to Highway 1. The project could be done as a massive cut and cover operation that would put the entire route, from the bridgehead to Highway 1 underground and then restore McBride Blvd to a local surface road with enhanced pedestrian connections between the two sides of McBride. This project has been in discussion for years.

What happened to all of the previous plans for Marine Way in Burnaby? According to the plans that have been on the books for many years, Marine Way traffic was supposed to be served by a Tree Island Bridge which has never been built. The Tree Island Bridge was supposed to route Alex Fraser Bridge traffic away from the Queensborough Bridge and directly onto Marine Way.

The Tree Island Bridge route would also have lined truck traffic up with the Byrne Road connector which would then direct the truck traffic along New Westminster’s northern boundary. This is where the Stormont connector project would have come in. The Tree Island Bridge route was supposed to connect with the Stormont Connector and then directly onto Highway 1.

A truck route like that might even have eliminated the need for a North Fraser Perimeter Road as a way to get from various points west along the Fraser to Highway 1. New West planners have even talked about a tunnel for trucks and rail that would start near New Westminster’s western border and then pop out at our Eastern border near Highway 1. Something like that would cost billions but would eliminate a lot of truck traffic in New Westminster, and lead to a lot less rail infrastructure along our waterfront.

TransLink CEO, Tom Prendergast said the next stages for replacing the Pattullo Bridge will involve making some fundamental decisions, including where the new bridge will go, which road network improvements will be needed and whether a new rail crossing will be integrated into the new structure. As well, he said TransLink will want to ensure that the new bridge will integrate effectively with the road network, so we will want to consider how the North and South Fraser Perimeter Roads will be developed.

TransLink’s spokesperson, Ken Hardie said the transportation authority is aware of the current bottlenecks in New Westminster and how a new and wider bridge will impact the city. He said TransLink would look at how to mitigate the situation once a final decision is made on where to locate the bridge.

Next steps

It is imperative that everyone who has an interest in the future of New Westminster review a detailed copy of the Delcan Report. An executive summary is available on line. Follow the links below.

The traffic modeling studies need to be reviewed. The impact studies (economic, social and environmental) need to be reviewed. A solid position on the future of this City must be articulated. Once this is done we must get out in front of getting this project moving. 10 years is not a long time but it is an eternity when you consider what we are experiencing today with the traffic.

Delcan Report

Blair Armitage

Aldergrove Pool Process vs. Kiwanis Pool “Process”

After all of the bleating from Cote, Harper, Williams and the group pushing for the pool plans that will be built in Moody Park, now the foolishness of that decision becomes even more clear.

A friend of mine, who is in the pool business with a major player in the Lower Mainland, sent me the reports of a process engaged in by the Township of Langley. The process was engaged by the Township to determine the best course of action to replace/enhance aging recreation and aquatic facilities in Aldergrove.

The process was engaged in at the same time the Moody Park process was done, so the prices structure the two communities faced for building their facilities were roughly the same.

The consultation process engaged in for the Aldergrove facilities was transparent, respectful and empowering to those who participated.

Compare that to the shabby, often secret and mickey mouse process undertaken in New Westminster. The Moody Park community, simply, was never clear on the process, the criteria used in the decision, in what could best be described as a “make up the rules as you go process”.

We make the Langley Township report available for your viewing, because the report itself can say it much better than I can.

Read the report, draw your own conclusions.

In the Township report, look at the clarity in defining the discussion, and the options available to help the decision making.

Now review the whole process in New Westminster, from the discussion of spending money to extend the life of the old poll, the decision to deconstruct the old pool, the lack of process and lack of any meaningful attempt to build concensus on how to move forward, to the decision to hire a management company which had never built an outdoor pool.

It is clear to me, that once again, the squandering of scarce public money in New Westminster is out of control.

In the decision making process for the Moody Park Pool , Voice New Westminster tried to do the right thing, and asked the politicians to review their decision.

It made little difference. The politically motivated incompetents ruled the day.

Once again, lack of leadership, coupled with special interest politics has done serious harm to this city.

Read the reports, I think you’ll agree.

C.C.


Where has Wayne Wright been on this issue?

In a piece of expert photography done exclusively for Voice New Westminster, we are able to graphically show visitors to this site the deterioration that has occurred to a portion of the Skytrain bridge situated above Front St. in New Westminster. With the chunks of fallen concrete that have been recovered by people in the area, and corroborated by our pictures, it is very clear that there is a significant safety issue for workers in the area, as well as for vehicles and pedestrians traveling through the area.

Voice New Westminster also feels that the public must have assurance and confidence regarding the safety of passenger movement on the bridge. We call on TransLink to send in an independent team of structural engineers to inspect the bridge.

Mayor Wayne Wright’s response to the situation, frankly, puzzles Voice New Westminster. His tying in of the Pattullo Bridge and North Fraser Perimeter Road to the Skytrain Bridge situation is consistent with his erratic voting record on regional transportation issues.

The Skytrain Bridge issue is very different from the other two, a fact that the Mayor should know full well, given that he was a director of the Greater Vancouver Transit Authority (GVTA) and Skytrain for most of his 5 1/2 years on council. The Mayor was on the board of the body responsible for Skytrain and it’s maintenance.

His attempt to shift the blame is consistent also with the lack of knowledge on transportation issues that he has displayed. New Westminster‘s transportation needs have been poorly served by this Mayor’s pandering to special interests in order to enhance his own political position.

Check out the Voice website for some up-close pictures of the damage.


C.C.