Nunavut embraces 6/49
Iqaluit, Cambridge Bay and Rankin Inlet to receive terminals

by Cheryl Leschasin
Northern News Services

NNSL (Mar 03/97) - Residents of Iqaluit have been enjoying their new 6/49 lottery terminal, thanks to Sport North Nunavut.

Machines will also be installed in Cambridge Bay and Rankin Inlet.

Cambridge Bay and Rankin Inlet will also be able for the first time to purchase scratch tickets, a service that was previously unavailable. Iqaluit residents have had scratch tickets for years.

Fundraising has been a big issue for Sport North Nunavut since last year's Vision for Division conference, hosted by Municipal and Community Affairs.

Currently, the Sport North division in 1999 is unsettled. As Guy Dubbing, administrative officer for Sport North in Iqaluit said, "It's anybody's guess how it will unfold."

Coming up in May, Sport North will be holding its annual general meeting to make further recommendations on how to approach the division.

Fundraising, however, was one area Nunavut Sport North recognized as needing immediate attention.

Up until this week, all the NWT's 6/49 machines were located in the Western Arctic. The machines have been an excellent source of revenue for the association.

No machines were placed in the East because up until recently, telecommunications technology has not been reliable enough to offer the service.

The machines have been installed on a trial basis and the service will continue if all goes well.

The response in the East has been very positive. Residents have wanted 6/49 access for a long time.

Dubbing said that he was not sure of how the new Sport North and Sport Nunavut governments would be made up.

"There will definitely be a minister to function on both sides. There may or may not be an umbrella association over both," said Dubbing.

On a personal note, Dubbing said that he hopes some tie would remain between the two territories. "We have great eastern and western competitive spirit."

Later Dubbing added, "What I hope and what eventually happens may be two different things."

Dubbing anticipates that staffing for Sport Nunavut will increase, but is unsure whether the staff will be centralized in Iqaluit or diffused among the communities.

The Nunavut Implementation Commission, for example, has suggested that Sport Nunavut's head office be moved to Igloolik.

However, Sport Nunavut will remain a non-profit organization, not legislated by any body of government. Accordingly, the office may opt to remain in Iqaluit.