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School District 58 preparing for all scenarios with flooding expected again in the Nicola Valley.

Superintendent Stephen McNiven says they are prepared should the bridge over Guichon Creek along Hwy 8 floods again, landlocking students at Nicola Canford Elementary.

"That may mean calling parents to pickup students, bussing students to Merritt Secondary School where we would setup emergency services, and if we have to we are prepared to have students stay at Nicola Canford, with 72-hour kits there."

McNiven says there is also concern surrounding students living around Nicola Lake.

"We're seeing a lot of high-water issues there. And if those students are coming in on buses, we need to be prepared to reunite them with their families."

On Monday, classes were cancelled at Nicola Canford Elementary, following the closure of the Guichon Creek bridge over the weekend.

Thompson Nicola Regional District making sure residents along Nicola Lake are prepared as levels approach record heights.

Emergency Operations Centre spokesperson Debbie Sell says they have contacted all homeowners in Harmon Estates.

"We have sent staff down there to make sure the residents are aware of the rising water levels. We have also made sure they know where they can access sandbags, and where and how they will be evacuated if necessary."

As for those in Quilchena, along Mill Creek Rd, and in Lower Nicola that remain under evacuation orders and alerts, Sell says they don't have to wait.

"If somebody does feel they are in danger, they should look out for the best interest of their family. If they do decide to self evacuate, we want them to call us at the EOC (1-866-377-7188) so we are aware they have removed themselves."

With thunderstorms and embedded rain in the forecast starting tonight, Nicola Lake is expected to spill over in the days that follow, creating overbank flooding in Merritt and areas downstream along the Nicola River.

 

Harry Lali not ruling out another attempt at a political comeback.

Following his loss to Liberal incumbent Jackie Tegart in Fraser-Nicola Tuesday, the long-time member of the BC NDP says he's not ready to throw in the towel on his future in politics.

"I'm going to stay involved. The NDP, that's my party, I've helped build it up here, and have been involved it provincially. And, I'm not about to abandon the party anytime soon."

Lali received 38% of the vote Tuesday, finishing runner-up to Tegart (42%) for the second consecutive provincial election.

Before losing in 2013, he represented the Merritt area as MLA four of the previous five terms, and was Transportation minister from 1998 to 2001.

City of Merritt 3rd annual Business walk set for today.

Once again, Manager of economic development and tourism Will George says the city is looking to find out ways it can help local businesses proper.

"It will produce a report again that will show the business climate in the city to those looking at potentially setting up in Merritt. And if there is a need from businesses, that can then be addressed by city staff to ensure barriers preventing a business to succeed are eliminated."

The Business Walk is scheduled from 10am to 3pm.

For those that have not already filled out the survey, it can be downloaded from the City of Merritt website, www.merritt.ca.

Diabetes Canada donations bins being taken out of School District 58 schools.

The bins were placed at Nicola Canford Elementary, the Coquihalla Middle School, and the Kengard Learning Centre back in March.

After speaking with members of the Nicola Valley Health Care Auxiliary, superintendent Stephen McNiven says the decision has been made to take the bins out of schools as of next month, to not infringe on the auxiliary's fundraising efforts.

"We want to make sure we're supporting the local need. And believe that the review about placing them in schools was important, and the feedback we got from the auxiliary showed that we should remove them, to keep that focus local. We still have to speak with Diabetes Canada, but we'll work through that with them."

School District 58 was to receive $600 a year for each bin, to help fund the hot lunch program.

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