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Merritt and District Chamber of Commerce looking to partner with the City of Merritt on proposed business park.
 
President Mike Heron says with the help of the city they hope to access federal FCCI funding to develop a business park on private lands near the Merritt airport.
 
"We've been in contact with a number of landlords through a local real estate agent, and there seems to be interest. And, based on feedback I am getting from a number of companies, we believe we have a strong case to do something to boost the Merritt economy."
 
Heron says the five-year plan starts with developing warehouses, in order take advantage of Merritt's ideal location as a distribution centre.
 
It also includes revitalizing the truck stop, constructing a greenhouse to produce fresh fruits and vegetables year-round, and creating a technology centre.
 
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Longest stage ever created for this weekend's Pacific Forest Rally.

Organizer Paul Westwick confirms the "Spius" Forest Special is a whopping 29km, but was needed to make up for necessary changes to the "Helmer" stage.

"The total length of the race is still fairly typical. With a culvert out at Helmer we had to shorten that course, so adding the longer stage makes up for that."

With the Merritt race happening two weeks later this year on account of the Fire Danger Rating, Westwick expects all three courses to challenge the 33-drivers participating.

The times, and locations of all three stages of this weekend's Canadian Rally Championship race can be found at www.pacificforestrally.com.

 

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Merritt RCMP reminding those using area mountain passes to drive with caution.
 
Cst Tracy Dunsmore says a number of accidents have occurred on both the Coquihalla and Okanagan Connector in recent days, with many the result of careless driving.
 
"When the road freezes, at any speed you are likely to lose control. That seems to be what we are seeing. People just not aware of the road surface, and braking and then losing control."
 
Dunsmore says roads will begin to be slick at four-degrees Celsius, and reminds that winter tires are required on both the Coquihalla highway and Okanagan Connector until March 31st.
 
For the latest update on road conditions for both highways, check www.drivebc.ca.
 
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Thieves continue to target cars, trailers and sheds in Merritt.
 
Merritt RCMP Cst Tracy Dunsmore says thieves continue to look for effortless ways to get fast cash, after a number of break-ins were reported again over the Thanksgiving long weekend.
 
"Things seem to be ramping up a bit. We have had lots of thefts from vehicles, and campers, and even break-in enters to sheds in recent weeks, including over the Thanksgiving weekend. So, people need to be aware. If you're going away for the weekend lock up your belongings, and its a good idea to have someone checking your home."
 
Dunsmore is asking people to be vigilant, and if they notice anything suspicious to call the Merritt RCMP detachment or Crimestoppers.
 
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RCMP looking for suspect after a home in Merritt was broken into over the long weekend.
 
Cst Tracy Dunsmore says a family on Parker Ave returned home Sunday night to a burglary in progress.
 
"They came home and they heard what sounded like somebody running out of the home. The father checked the backdoor and he could hear somebody running down the hillside towards Central Park."
 
Dunsmore says RCMP were called immediately, and the K9 unit was deployed.
 
"They were able to track some tracks across town to a known home, and we did locate several people known to police. But, we were unable to locate any of the stolen property, so there's been no charges or arrests."
 
Merritt RCMP continue to investigate.
 
Anyone with additional information is asked to contact Merritt RCMP or Crime Stoppers.
 
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