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It's a relatively light agenda for the next City Council meeting set for tonight in Merritt, but if approvals are given, the City could end up with some new equipment and an expense of about $850,000.

On the agenda tonight for approval are a new street sweeper at just under $200,000, refuse-recycle carts at about $232,000, an automated refuse-recycle truck for about $274,000 and a combination dump truck-spreader & snow plow for $147,000.

Tonight's meeting gets underway in City Hall Council Chambers at the usual start time of 7 o'clock.

Nicholas Kang will kick off the meeting with a report to council on the Smart Step Youth Association, which raised just over $628 for the Nicola Valley & District Food Bank with a hot dog sale during the Mountainfest Street Mall last week.

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After a celebration of life for long time forester Tom Lacey yesterday, his legacy and his work will continue, according to Tenures Officer for the Cascades Forest District, Len Marsh.

Lacey was remembered by a packed house of family, friends, and colleagues yesterday at the Merritt Civic Centre.

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The B-C ranching industry will soon know the scope of a long running concern as the province's Cattlemen's Association is reviewing feedback to determine the impact of predators on the beef business.

General Manager Kevin Boone says members were asked to fill out surveys to express their opinions, especially on the dollar losses to operations.

The survey is part of a pilot program launched by the B-C Agriculture Council in August of 2009, which wraps up at the end of the year.

It's designed to reduce the economic impact of wild predators on the cattle and sheep industries and to let the public know about how important the ranching industry really is to the Province's economy.

(With files from CHNL)

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A traffic note to motorists in Merritt this morning.

Darrell Finnigan, the City's Superintendent Of Public Works, says the barricades and one way traffic set up for Mountainfest last week remain in effect for another week on Voght Street between Nicola and Coldwater Avenue.

Finnigan says most of the activities for the Great Canadian Bike Rally are downtown, with some at the Rodeo Grounds in Collettville.

He says roads downtown will be blocked off from Chapman Street to Charters Street on Quilchena Avenue and between Voght Street and Garcia Street on Granite Avenue, as well as on Garcia Street from Granite Avenue to Quilchena Avenue between Thursday and Sunday.

The one way on Voght Street will remain up until about 5 o'clock next Monday morning.

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B-C's Forests Minister wants us all to know that our province won't be at risk with the forest service sending 90 firefighters to Ontario to help out with their wildfire concerns.

Steven Thompson says that as always, should a wildfire emergency develop here, those crews will be brought home again immediately.

Minister Thompson notes that for now, British Columbia is having it's slowest wildfire season in ten years.

(With files from CHNL)

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