The B-C government is increasing incentives for nurses and other health professionals working in the northern region. Health Minister Adrian Dix says they include child care for nurses working 12-hour shifts as well as support for travel and housing. But he did not provide timelines for some programs, including funding for housing in multiple northern communities such as Fort St. John, Dawson Creek, Hazelton, Kitimat and Prince Rupert. The province is also providing more funding for a virtual 24-7 support program that started in April 2020 for doctors and other health professionals in rural communities
B-C is reporting 661 new cases of COVID-19 and seven new deaths linked to the pandemic today. The latest deaths — including three in Interior Health and two each in Vancouver Coastal and Island Health — bring the total in the province to one-thousand-873. There are currently five-thousand-791 active cases of COVID-19 in B-C. That includes 288 people who have been hospitalized with 137 of those patients in intensive care.
Tesla has sidestepped car dealership laws by setting up shop on Native American land for the first time. The move in New Mexico could be a model for Tesla’s efforts to sell in other states that require car companies to sell through dealerships. The tribe has welcomed Tesla’s store that opened last week, calling it an environmentally conscious employer. Car dealers say consumers should buy electric vehicles from companies that follow state laws.
A popular passenger ferry that travels between Victoria and Seattle will be sailing into the B-C city’s harbour for the first time in 18 months as it gets back to business this week. F-R-S Clipper is the company that operates the Victoria Clipper vessel, and its C-E-O says operations were expected to be halted until spring of next year due to staffing issues. He says federal unemployment benefits in the United States ran out on September 3rd for many people and if the company couldn’t recall its staff, it risked losing key personnel. Starting Friday, Clipper will operate a four-day schedule over weekends, with added sailings around the Thanksgiving and Christmas holiday seasons.
Higher gasoline and housing prices — compared with last year’s pandemic-related lows — fuelled a leap in the national inflation rate to 4.1 per cent in August, up from 3.7 per cent in July. Statistics Canada says the hike is the largest year-over-year jump in inflation since March 2003, but if gasoline prices had been excluded, the August rate would have been 3.2 per cent. The cost of living in B-C also climbed last month to 3.5 per cent, up four-tenths of a point from July, while inflation in Victoria was 3.2 per cent, an increase of half a point since July and Vancouver’s rate nudged up 2 basis points to 3.3 per cent in August.