Headlines: Dec. 12, 2022

· The Pulse
  • Edmonton Police Service Chief Dale McFee says he welcomes new provincial legislation that would introduce changes to police oversight. The Police Amendment Act, introduced Dec. 8, would create a new civilian body to oversee complaints and review police misconduct. The bill would also grant ministers the power to appoint one to three members to police commissions, including the Edmonton Police Commission, depending on the size of the oversight body. Currently, all members are appointed by city council. "It puts balance on a governance body that's responsibly for community, and community is not just local, community is provincial," McFee said. Edmonton Mayor Amarjeet Sohi said the province's commission appointments should be "proportional to the funding that the province provides to run the Edmonton Police Service."
  • The opening of the 170 Street pedestrian bridge has been delayed to summer 2023. According to a city project update, the bridge, which had been scheduled to open in late 2022, is delayed because of challenges the steel bridge truss structure fabrication and onsite assembly. "The majority of the remaining work is weather dependent and will be better completed in the spring to preserve quality and reduce safety risks," the city said.
  • St. Albert city council will debate a motion in January to withdraw from the Edmonton Metropolitan Transit Services Commission (EMTSC). Coun. Sheena Hughes said she introduced the motion because of increasing costs to the municipality. "This is not looking like it's likely to produce the results that were promised in 2020, and we need to reevaluate our presence in this commission, and if it should still continue," Hughes said. "Really, it shouldn't." The motion is the first step in a longer process that would permit St. Albert to withdraw from the EMTSC.
  • Jesse Lipscombe, an Edmonton actor and producer, was charged Nov. 7 with aggravated assault in connection with a May incident, Postmedia reports. Court records allege that Lipscombe "did unlawfully wound, maim, disfigure or endanger the life of Rameen Peyrow." Lipscombe called the accusation "baseless" in a message to Postmedia. "It is very hard and upsetting but I just have to trust the process. I'm looking forward to when the truth comes out, believe me," he wrote. Lipscombe's lawyer attended his first court appearance on Dec. 7 and the case was adjourned to a future date.
  • Boyle Street Education Centre, a charter school in downtown Edmonton, received a national award recognizing Indigenous excellence. The school, which was honoured in November with the Indspire Guiding the Journey: Indigenous Educator Award, has been supporting the education of Indigenous students for 26 years. "I never knew you could actually enjoy school, but this school made me want to come every day and be here and learn new things," said 16-year-old Ocianna Clarke, who has been a student at the school since September. "I feel like I actually belong here."
  • Alberta's current influenza season peak may be over, according to Health Minister Jason Copping. Provincial data shows weekly case increases have been slowing, but Copping said there could be additional spikes in the future. "It appears right now that we have peaked in terms of this current bout of flu," he said, adding that pressure on hospitals should reduce in the coming weeks.
  • Thousands of teddy bears hit the ice at the Edmonton Oil Kings game Dec. 10 during the annual Teddy Bear Toss charity event to support kids in need. Fans tossed a total of 13,111 bears after Noah Boyko scored the Oil Kings' first goal in the third period of their game against the Red Deer Rebels. "As soon as that puck went in you could tell everybody's been waiting for it," said Angel Benedict, the executive director of 630 CHED's Santas Anonymous.
  • Canadian Jasmine Baird took home gold at the FIS World Cup Big Air event at Commonwealth Stadium on Dec. 10. Baird pulled off an underflip 900 for her first jump, giving her a lead that couldn't be beat after her second jump. "I've never had the luxury of a victory lap before," the Ontario native said. Quebec snowboarder Nicolas Laframboise took home bronze in the men's event.