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Merritt taxpayers will have their say in which way an airport subdivision and servicing requirements loan authorization bylaw goes.

City Financial Services Manager Marlie Worrin says council has elected to use the alternative approval process to obtain elector approval to borrow 850-thousand dollars for the project.

The deadline for a referendum is August 2.  555 people are eligible to sign the form at City Hall.  Total cost of the airport project is 1.15-million dollars. The project costs would be offset by the revenues generated by lease of the lands and expanded tax base.

A similar process will be undertaken for borrowing 800-thousand dollars on the DeWolf Way upgrade prject.  The deadline for that is August 15.  Total cost of that project is 1.2-million.  400-thousand dollars has already been set asside for that work.

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The general public will get the inside scoop on the co-gen project proposed at the Tolko Mill site in Merritt during the first in a series of open houses tonight.

Fred Scott of Western BioEnergy says the operation would use standard boiler and steam turbine technology that's been around since the 1880's.

Scott says it will be a reliable power source, generating 33-megawatts of power to enter the B-C Hydro grid.

Residents can pose questions on the 140-million dollar project between six and nine tonight at the Merritt Civic Centre. The main presentation is at seven.

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A fire in the woods in Lower Nicola had residents on alert for a couple hours yesterday.

Thick smoke was reported from an area of "Baldy Mountain" and crews were called out from the Lower Nicola Fire Department near midday.

A subsequent call to Forestry saw the water bomber called into action as the fire spread through about one and a half hectares of forest before crews brought the blaze under control.

A cause of the fire has not been reported and nobody is reported injured.

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Huldra Silver Inc has entered into a Purchase and Service Agreement with Canadian Royal Mining Corporation of Chilliwack to acquire a 200 ton per day modular silver, lead, zinc process plant for it's Merritt operations.

The mill is expected to be delivered to the Company's milling property at the former Craigmont Mine site in the third quarter of this year and will take approximately three months to commission and assemble.

Ryan Sharp, President of Huldra Silver, says it'll turn the ore into concentrate for at least the next five years.

Sharp says the facility is primarily a processing mill for their Treasure Mountain property near Tulameen with the product transported by truck to the Craigmont mine site where it'll be turned into concentrate.

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It's been a long battle to establish Merritt as the home of the Canadian Country Music Hall of Fame, but the pieces are all falling nicely into place.

Ron Sanders, President of the Merritt Walk Of Stars Society says the opening date is now set for the evening of Wednesday, July 6.

Contact Carol Madryga if you would like to be a part of the team at 378-5895.

Sanders will represent Merritt at the upcoming Canadian Country Music Association awards in Hamilton and also represent the Walk of Stars and Merritt at the Calgary Stampede this year.

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