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Applications for Nicola Valley & District Food Bank Christmas hampers continue to come in, but time is running out before the cut off date.

Linda Monkman of the Food Bank says last year there were just over 230 hampers issued, but that number is expected to be higher this year, with things getting tighter all the way around.

People in need of a hamper must apply on or before the final deadline of November 26.

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While City Council has endorsed using the services of the interim CAO, who was in Merritt this year after the departure of Jennifer Bridarolli, to work on Merritt's Official Community Plan, it isn't boding well with at least one City Councillor.

Harry Kroeker says he doesn't feel right about the process.

Council has approved the hiring of Joe Colenda, who will be paid 40-thousand dollars to do the work.

Kroeker feels it should have gone out to tender.

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A drug smuggling case with a tie to the Nicola Valley saw a BC man charged with importing 97 kilograms of cocaine to Kelowna from Argentina denied bail.

33-year-old Clifford Roger Montgomery of West Kelowna was charged along with three others.

Tariq Mohammed Aslam, 32, of Surrey is scheduled to arrive in Kelowna on Thursday, after he was extradited from California, while extradition proceedings against Victor Perez Rodriguez, a 43-year-old Mexican citizen, are still in the works in California.

Another man, 50-year-old Barry Michael Ready of West Kelowna, were arrested in BC last month.

The RCMP began investigating after Canadian border agents in Richmond discovered cocaine hidden inside the steel drums of the fruit grinder in September, which they allowed to continue on to its destination in Kelowna.

The grinder was then hauled to a ranch near Merritt, where the RCMP seized it on Oct. 2.

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Soon after an RCMP helicopter from Kamloops joined the search for a missing hunter south of Merritt, the man was found this morning.

Shortly before 7:30 am the man, hunting southwest of Merritt off the Coldwater Road was located in the bush near Padget Road.

The man's condition isn't immediately known, but an ambulance has been dispatched to the scene to give him a check over.

Merritt search and reescue and other emergency personel were involved in a search that continued through the night.

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An RCMP helicopter from Kamloops is expected to join the search for a missing hunter in the Merritt area this morning.

Reports indicate a search for a man, hunting southwest of Merritt off the Coldwater Road, was launched last night.

It's understood there's been a cell phone connection between the man and authorities.

The search continued through the night.

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