Headlines

· The Pulse
By Mack Male and Madeleine Stout
Comments

  • A planned three-year full closure of Hawrelak Park will begin in spring 2023 for major utility and infrastructure upgrades. Coun. Michael Janz, however, wants to investigate options to accelerate or phase the rehabilitation project to reduce the disruption. "It's our jewel of the river valley and it is our Central Park," he said. Edmonton Heritage Festival executive director Jim Gibbon is also calling on the city to undertake the project in stages, but a City of Edmonton spokesperson told Postmedia that "there is not a phased scenario that can be implemented in a way that would allow major festivals to continue to operate at their normal scale and capacity."
  • Edmonton Public School Board trustees have approved a day off of school for National Indigenous Peoples Day in the 2022-2023 school year, moving a proposed professional development day to June 21, 2023 to accommodate the holiday. The board indicated it would investigate accommodating more religious and cultural holidays in the future. "I have no doubt that this board will bring that forward and we will advocate strongly because our community has told us that this is what matters," said chairwoman Trisha Estabrooks.
  • Meals on Wheels has seen a 98% increase in demand in the past year. The Edmonton charity now serves over 2,000 clients but has struggled to meet fundraising goals due to the pandemic.
  • A 77-year-old woman in a marked crosswalk was killed by the 38-year-old driver of an SUV near 102 Street and Jasper Avenue just before 5pm on Nov. 30. The Edmonton Police Service said in a news release that no charges have been laid as the investigation is still ongoing.
  • Susan Hughson has resigned as executive director of the Alberta Serious Incident Response Team (ASIRT) after complaining for months about an "unmanageable" workload and funding shortfalls following a 3% cut in the 2019-2020 fiscal year. She took over the role in July 2014; her last day will be Dec. 8. Hughson is planning to rejoin the Alberta Crown Prosecution Service as a prosecutor, with Justice Minister Kaycee Madu saying a "planned transition has been underway for some time."
  • Alberta has confirmed its first case of the Omicron variant, joining B.C., Quebec, and Ontario. Canada now has at least six confirmed cases of the variant and has banned travellers from 10 countries in an attempt to contain the spread.