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SaskEnergy says natural gas use up over weekend, winter

With one of the coldest weekends of the entire winter in Saskatchewan now behind us it only makes sense that SaskEnergy saw natural gas use soar over the last 72 hours.

“People were turning their furnaces up and they were turning them up sooner. You could just tell homes were getting a lot colder a lot quicker and were losing that heat more,” said SaskEnergy’s Dave Burdeniuk.

Gas prices jump again in Saskatchewan

The price of gas jumped about eight cents per litre in Regina Monday morning, rising from 119.4 to 127.9 cents per litre at Shell stations.

Jason Toews is from Regina and is also a co-founder of the gas price monitoring website He said supply and demand is not always the lone cause of spikes in the price at the pumps. He explained that wholesale prices are going up while the retail prices have stayed relatively the same, which means gas prices will eventually increase.

Grain producers say rail companies have too much control

Grain farmers across Western Canada have heard enough talk and now they want to see action to solve the rail back-log because the longer they wait, the more money they stand to lose.

Norm Hall with the Agriculture Producers Association of Saskatchewan says demurrage penalties over delayed shipments to seaports are skyrocketing for grain companies. Last year he said the record for total demurrage payments was $23 million.

“At the six month mark we were at $25 million already with possibilities of hitting $53 to $70 million,” Hall explained.

Saskatchewan MLAs return to legislature for spring session

The spring session of the legislature kicks off Monday and Saskatchewan politicians are ready to get down to work.

“Certainly the number one issue in the province today is the backlog in commodity transportation. There’s just no question about it,” Premier Brad Wall told reporters last week.

Wall says clogged rail lines will be a focus for the province this sitting. The plan is to keep putting pressure on the federal government to take action with rail lines and grain companies.

Telemiracle 38 set to kick off Saturday night

The final touches are being put on the production as Telemiracle 38 kicks off Saturday night in Regina at the Conexus Arts Centre.

A volunteer for 15 years, Clint Sckuratoff is now at the reigns acting as chair for the 2014 installment of the telethon fundraiser, which features regulars Bob McGrath and Beverly Mahood once again.

"Even if you want to go to sleep, there's too much energy in the building," Schuratoff said Friday during preparations. As chair, he spent the 2013 telethon shadowing the previous chair of Telemiracle.

UPDATE: Workers sign deal with Regina's Degelman Industries

Workers at Regina's Degelman Industries have voted to accept a new contract, according to the company.
Since Feb. 10, 150 workers at the agricultural manufacturer have been walking the picket line. They were locked out shortly after serving strike notice. Now the company and the union representing the workers, United Steelworkers local 5917, have signed off on a new deal. Workers voted on Saturday to accept the offer.
No details of the proposed contract were released. Production staff was expected to be back on the job on Monday.

$35 million investment to repave sections of highway in SK

The Saskatchewan government has announced four new highway improvement projects this year with money left over from Building Canada Fund.

Highways Minister Don McMorris says the province saved $16.5 million on two other projects that were previously approved under the federal program. The provincial government will also kick in another $18.5 million to make up the total estimated cost of $35.1 million.

“It’s great that we can see some of the savings we had on other projects and reinvest it into highways,” McMorris said.

Shareholders to vote on sale of Weyburn Inland Terminal

Shareholders in the Weyburn Inland Terminal (WIT) will decide Friday if the independent farmer-owned facility will be taken over by the Winnipeg-based grain company Parrish and Heimbecker.

Dale Mainil resigned from the terminal board of directors in protest over the sale and has been rallying opposition among shareholders ever since.

“Farmers can control and dictate the future of grain handling and that’s what’s happening and we don’t want to lose that,” he said. “There’s as much need now for an independent as there was 37 years ago.”

Young businesses bud in Saskatoon

Andrey Olinov is one of many people who are contributing to Saskatoon’s growth and young population.

Olinov moved to Saskatoon from Moscow five years ago to take his masters degree in applied math at the University of Saskatchewan.

“I couldn’t find a job here because it is really hard for immigrants to get a job without having experience here so I decided I would start my own company and I opened a business,” he said.

NSBA announces finalists for Business Builder Awards

The NSBA has announced the finalists for the Business Builder Awards.

The dinner is held on March 13 at Prairieland Park.

New Direction Award
Braid Flooring and Window Fashions
IRC Innovative Rehabilitation Consultants
Shearwater Marine Services Ltd.

Team Building Award
Adecco Employment Service
Parr Auto Body

Export Award
3twenty Modular
Dingwall Guitars
Three Farmers Products
VendAsta Technologies Inc.

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