Seven stories in the news for Friday, May 18
CONFLICTING MESSAGES ON NAFTA
U.S. trade czar Robert Lighthizer says the NAFTA countries are "nowhere near close" to a deal. That statement comes after Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and other Canadian officials were in the U.S. on Thursday urging a quick deal. But Lighthizer rejects the notion that an agreement is nigh, citing big differences on intellectual property, agriculture, online purchases, energy, labour and other issues.
FEDERAL HELP APPROVED FOR FLOOD-STRICKEN B.C.
The first wave of 300 military personnel is being sent to British Columbia to help communities overwhelmed by flooding. Staff from Joint Task Force Pacific and personnel from the 3rd Canadian Division based in Edmonton were to get set up in Vernon before being deployed to areas affected by flooding including Grand Forks. Officials in the southern Interior city say thunderstorms are expected to bring a second round of high water.
ABOUT 10,000 HOMES/BUSINESSES IN NEW BRUNSWICK FLOOD ZONE
New Brunswick's environment minister says as many as 10,000 homes and businesses have been affected by recent flooding. But Andrew Harvey acknowledges precise figures have yet to come in on the extent of the damage. Provincial officials also say that as of yesterday, some 2,200 people had registered for disaster relief, which covers some uninsurable damages.
FUEL PRICES HEADED UP AS LONG WEEKEND STARTS
Drivers in many parts of Canada can expect to see rising gasoline prices as they prepare for road adventures on the Victoria Day long weekend. But fuel market analyst Dan McTeague of GasBuddy.com says price direction will vary across the nation over the next few days, with prices actually expected to fall from recent peaks in Alberta and Quebec.
B.C. TAKING ALBERTA TO COURT OVER FUEL LAW
Tensions over the Trans Mountain pipeline have increased with British Columbia saying it plans to file a lawsuit over a new Alberta law that could restrict fuel exports to the West Coast. B.C. Attorney General David Eby says his province was the legislation declared unconstitutional on the grounds that one province cannot punish another. The bill, which would allow limits on fuel exports to B.C., was passed in Alberta on Wednesday.
VIDEO COURT APPEARANCE TODAY FOR PAUL BERNARDO
Convicted killer and rapist Paul Bernardo is scheduled to make a court appearance in Napanee, Ont., today via video from the nearby maximum-security Millhaven prison. He is charged with one count of possession of a weapon. Court documents show he alleged offence occurred Feb. 9 at the prison in Bath, Ont.
HUMBOLDT BRONCOS HONOURED ON EVE OF MEMORIAL CUP
Humboldt Broncos played killed and injured in the tragic crash on April 6 were honoured last night at the opening ceremony of the Memorial Cup in Regina. The ceremony came just hours after it was announced that millions of dollars raised in a GoFundMe campaign will go directly to survivors and families of those killed. The Memorial Cup begins tonight with the host Regina Pats facing the Ontario Hockey League's Hamilton Bulldogs.
ALSO IN THE NEWS TODAY:
— Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is in Boston to wrap up a three-day U.S. visit.
— Statistics Canada will release retail trade figures for March and the consumer price index for April.
— Environment Minister Catherine McKenna launches the official Parks Canada season on the Rideau Canal.
— Canadian Tamil organizations release statements in Ottawa to mark Tamil Genocide Remembrance Day.
— Sentencing arguments are to be heard in Montreal for Quebec singer Luck Mervil on a sex-related charge involving a minor.
The Canadian Press