Hartley Bay, BC – Village of Heroes – slapped in the face

Cease & Desist just did a show last night in Hartley Bay, BC. Hartley BayHartley Bay is a First Nations community on the coast of British Columbia. The village is located at the mouth of Douglas Channel, about 630 kilometres north of Vancouver and 145 kilometres south of Prince Rupert. Hartley BayIt became most famous for it’s help in the rescue and care for all surviving passengers of the ill-fated ‘Queen of the North’ – part of the BC Ferries fleet of vessels. Queen of the NorthWhile travelling from Prince Rupert to Port Hardy, the Queen of the North sank after running aground on Gil Island in Wright Sound, 135 Kilometres south of Prince Rupert.Queen of the North Ferry Route
At approximately 12:25 am on Wednesday, March 22, 2006 the Queen of the North ran aground at Gill Island. The vessel sank approximately 1 hour afterward.
It’s about a 20 minute to 1/2 an hour excursion by boat from Hartley bay to Gill Island.
Hartley Bay BC Map

This from Wikipedia:
A large number of small fishing and recreational vessels from Hartley Bay were the first on the scene to answer the distress call, arriving in a fleet of small watercraft in the dead of night to pick up survivors. Joint Rescue Coordination Centre Victoria tasked Canadian Coast Guard vessels CCGS Sir Wilfrid Laurier, CCGC Point Henry, CCGS W.E. Ricker, CCGC Kitimat II and the CCGS Vector, along with 2 CH-149 Cormorant helicopters and 1 CC-115 Buffalo aircraft from the 442 Transport and Rescue Squadron at CFB Comox to the scene of the sinking.
Originally the evacuation of the ship was reported to be a smooth one; however, stories of chest high water and trapped crew members surfaced on March 24. According to the official BC Ferries press release, 99 of the 101 passengers and crew were safely evacuated with only a few minor injuries,[7] and many of them found refuge in nearby Hartley Bay.

Loss of life
Two people, Shirley Rosette and Gerald Foisy of 100 Mile House, apparently failed to reach the safety of the lifeboats and perished along with the ship.[8] While a passenger reportedly told police the missing couple were seen in Hartley Bay during the rescue effort, a thorough search of the small aboriginal community of 200 people by police turned up nothing. In addition the couple did not contact relatives after the sinking.
When the ferry was located by submersible, the two missing passengers were not found in the wreck.

Queen of the North Sinking

When I was made aware that we were to play for the very people that were the heroes in this terrible tragedy, I was humbled. I couldn’t wait to hear of their heroics. Instead, they were incredibly modest and even somewhat soft spoken of that evening.

I had heard that BC Ferries, in honour of the people of Hartley Bay, were going to name their most recent vessel after them. (The Queen of Hartley Bay perhaps? – seems everything has to be a ‘Queen’ on that fleet), and yet all of the ‘Super C Class’ ferries that BC ferry Corps launched failed to have any acknowledgment.

When we were taken to our sleeping quarters after arriving in Hartley Bay, we were shown the breadth of the BC ferry Corporation’s gratitude. A small metal children’s playground.
Hartley Bay 'New' Playground 1

Hartley Bay 'New' Playground 2

Okay – let’s say the hamlet of 200 people needed it. Maybe they did. But lets take a look at the one they already had for their village children:

Hartley Bay Original Playground 1

Hartley Bay Original Playground 2

It appears to be a slap in the face. Now let’s take into account that BC Ferries is now a ‘private’ company. They claim to be growing broke, and have raised fares over and over again since becoming ‘private’.

I will now quote Steven Hume’s article from the Vancouver Sun:
Stephen Hume:

BC Ferries a bloated, inefficient and recessionary drag on the province

A central argument for privatizing British Columbia’s ferry system was that a strict business model would prove far more efficient than continuing the system under provincial control.

Instead, the privatized model has yielded bloated management, lack of transparency, increasingly inefficient service and rapidly rising costs that now threaten perhaps $500 million in annual provincial tax revenue and place a recessionary drag on perhaps $50 billion in provincial economic productivity.

Thirty years ago, when Premier Bill Bennett’s Social Credit government ran the operation, BC Ferries serviced 23 routes with 3,800 employees and a management/administration unit of 120.

Today, it services two additional routes, but has added about 1,000 employees and has a management/administration unit of more than 600, including — based on 2011 reports — 12 vice-presidents.

This works out to one manager for every 7.6 employees. Even if you remove several hundred excluded ship’s officers from the equation, it still works out to about one manager for every 10 employees.

By comparison, Washington State Ferries, which operates under the state highways and transportation system and carries more passengers and vehicles (although with fewer vessels on generally shorter routes than in B.C.), runs efficiently with 43 managers — about one manager for every 40 workers.

BC Ferries spends about $12 on management and administrative overhead for every $1 spent on those costs by Washington State Ferries.

Compensation for just the chief executive officer and vice-presidents at BC Ferries in 2011 was $200,000 more than the spending by the Washington State Ferries system on management and administration.

In rationalizing bonuses and other perks for top BC Ferries executives, the ferry corporation’s board of directors announced last year that the incoming CEO’s annual compensation would be set at $500,730 for 2014, down markedly from the $915,000 paid in 2012.

Compare that reduced salary to the compensation Washington State Ferries pays its top executive — $152,000 a year with no bonuses because running the system efficiently, providing adequate service and achieving results is deemed the job description. BC Ferries pays its recently retired CEO a pension equal to twice the salary of the top Washington ferries executive.

At the Alaska Marine Highways System, which operates ferries serving far flung island and remote coastal communities in the Alaska Panhandle and the Aleutian archipelago — its southernmost terminal is in Bellingham, Wash. — the top executive earns earned $131,000 last year.

BC Ferries’ comptroller earns $189,000 a year, about $50,000 a year more than the comptroller-general of the entire B.C. government, who is responsible for an annual budget of about $45 billion. BC Ferries’ vice-president of information technology takes home double that paid the head of IT at the Health Ministry, which, as the Victoria Times Colonist noted in an editorial last year, has a budget 25 times bigger than the ferry corporation.

It’s easy, looking at these numbers, to see why so many Vancouver Sun readers perceive that the government appears to have lost sight of the mission — creating and sustaining infrastructure that’s installed to grow B.C.’s economic prosperity, not restrict it.

And remember, if government policy creates recessionary drag upon 20 per cent of the province’s economy, it’s not just a regional issue. It must inevitably hurt every household and business in British Columbia, including the Lower Mainland, for which ferry terminals at Tsawwassen and Horseshoe Bay are portals to a market equivalent to almost half the population of Metro Vancouver.

Among the most trenchant observations from readers is this one: If Transportation Minister Todd Stone were to order his government to apply BC Ferries’ pricing and cost-recovery strategy to the new Port Mann Bridge, it would respond to falling commuter use by jacking up the toll for cars from $3 to $6.50, shutting one lane, and closing the bridge entirely during the morning and evening commutes.

This proposition seems absurd, but it’s precisely the model being applied to the ferry system.


Please share your thoughts…. Mick

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Mick Dalla-Vee

Early days 1976 - He moved to Western Canada, after leaving Bawating High School from Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario, with the band Shama. Shama toured Western Canada and was managed by Bruce Allen (Bryan Adams, Martina McBride) before disbanding. 1981 -From that point he became the lead guitarist of Trama, managed by Sam Feldman (Joni Mitchell, Diana Krall), 1984 - then on to playing bass for the band Paradox which evolved into his current band Cease & Desist. 1989 - Cease & Desist has been described as "one of Vancouver's most popular bands" by Tom Harrison the rock music critic of The Province. He also plays the part of John in a Beatles cover band, Revolver, that was put together for Expo 86 Songwriting Mick has written or co-written many songs on albums for artists as diverse as country music's Brent Howard and Canada's Singing Cowgirl: Marilyn Faye Parney, the heavy rock sounds of Blackstone (released on the Delinquent label in Canada), the soul/R&B sounds Belinda Metz and 'Emily Jordan' to the 'smooth jazz' sounds of internationally acclaimed Lori Paul. 2005 - He co-wrote ten of the eleven songs on Paul's album Vanity Press. 1998 - His first country song 'The Wrangler' reached the country top 30 charts right across Canada. It also achieved 'Heavy Rotation' on C.M.T., Canada's country music video channel. One of the songs from Mick's 'A Whistler Christmas' album entitled, 'All I Want is You at Christmastime' has been recorded and released by Canadian country star, Brent Howard Currently - He has also written music for movies, television, videos, video games and promotional spots. His writing styles run the gamut from 'Smooth Jazz' to 'Heavy Thrash'. (A Whistler Christmas and Dalla-Vee's original Christmas songs are often heard on Canadian radio during their Christmas music programming.) Producing Aside from producing himself in an array of projects such as 1994's A Whistler Christmas album, he runs his own studio 'Millennia Sound Design', producing and engineering for artists like: Randy Bachman, Twitch, Swaggerjack, Emily Jordan, Russell Marsland, Lori Paul and Suzanne Gitzi among others. 2007 - has provided theme music and soundscapes for two network television series and Simon Fraser University. 2005 - Randy Bachman's CD "Jazzthing" had some work done on it at "Millennia Sound Design". Vocals Dalla-Vee has contributed to projects as diverse as, 1991 - the multi platinum heavy rock of the "Mötley Crüe" album "A Decade of Decadence" to the 2001 - country/rockabilly sounds of Brent Howard and Southern Cherry to Colin Arthur Wiebe. 1989 - Canadian legends, Trooper and The Powder Blues Band have also used Mick's voice for recordings. 1991 - He has worked extensively as a studio session singer/musician, with his talent of many voices being used on a worldwide 'Karaoke' album package marketed over the dreaded U.S. infomercial. He has sung a number of commercial jingles for radio and television. Awards Having recorded with a host of other Canadian and international recording acts such as Randy Bachman (of the band The Guess Who and Bachman Turner Overdrive), Mick was awarded a 'Gold Record' for his work on the 'Trooper' album 'Last of the Gypsies' in 1991. In 1997, he received the Saskatchewan Album of the Year Award for his song writing/musician contributions to an album with proceeds going to people affected with multiple sclerosis. 2011 – Gold Award for Bachman & Turner DVD – Live at the Roseland Ballroom 2013 – Platinum Award for Bachman & Turner DVD – Live at the Roseland Ballroom Appeared in ‘The Campaign’ with Will Ferrell, Zack Galifianakis, Dylan McDermott, John Lithgow, Dan Aykroyd and directed my Jay Roach (shot in New Orleans) Current – Write music for the popular ‘Holmes’ TV series on HGTV Releases: “Bachman and Turner” in 2010 Producing the Toronto pop/soul band ‘Hello Beautiful’. Heads the ‘Music in Motion Workshop’ for the Down Syndrome Research Foundation, a pilot project designed to develop a musical camaraderie with children, youth and young adults with Down Syndrome and other developmental disabilities. Live [edit] He keeps an extremely steady schedule playing guitar, bass and keyboards with his main band, Cease and Desist, and “The Atlantic Crossing Show” featuring Mick as John Lennon and Elton John. Since 2001 - He is the bass player/vocalist with Canadian Rock Legend, Randy Bachman's band 2004 - Bachman’s recent foray in the jazz world with his new CD, ‘Jazz Thing’ features Dalla-Vee on the ‘upright bass’. Ongoing - He plays mandolin, banjo, acoustic guitars and harmonica in the Brent Howard and Southern Cherry band, Ongoing - and has toured as John Lennon in 'Revolver - The Worlds Best Beatles Show'. Ongoing - In addition, he also works as a solo artist appearing regularly at special events and casinos. Affiliations 2004 - A longtime member of the Canadian Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences, he has sat on the panel as a judge for Canada's Juno Awards (Canada's Version of The Grammy's). 1989 – 2001 He was on the board of directors of the Pacific Music Industry Association for 3 years, and is also chair of 2000 – 2005 The Carolyn Foundation Musician's Assistance Society; a non-profit organization he and colleagues set-up in the wake of his daughter Carolyn's sudden death in November 1999

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