National Newswatch

Street drug use should be decriminalized to cut deaths: B.C. health officer

Apr 24 2019 — Dirk Meissner — VICTORIA — A push by British Columbia's health officer to decriminalize drug possession in the fight against overdoses isn't getting support from the province's solicitor general. Dr. Bonnie Henry called on the B.C. government Wednesday to make drug possession a health issue and not a crime. "The current criminal justice based approach framework in B.C. and in Canada […]

B.C. awaits Kenney’s ‘turn off taps,’ threat; Quebec rejects Alberta pipelines

Apr 17 2019 — Dirk Meissner — VICTORIA — Jason Kenney's Alberta election victory sent ripples of enthusiasm and concern across Canada Wednesday. Ontario Premier Doug Ford welcomed a rising Conservative wave, British Columbia grappled with the Kenny campaign promise of squeezing its oil supply and Quebec stood firm on its rejection of oil pipelines. Kenney's United Conservative Party captured 63 seats and more than […]

Deadly rabbit disease returns to Vancouver Island for 2nd year, government warns

Apr 10 2019 — Dirk Meissner — VICTORIA — A rare disease that kills feral rabbits has returned to parts of Vancouver Island, prompting British Columbia's chief veterinary officer to recommend owners vaccinate pet and domestic rabbits. Jane Pritchard said Wednesday tests confirmed four rabbits in the Parksville area, about 150 kilometres northeast of Victoria, died from a highly infectious virus. The tests confirm […]

B.C. fights ticket scalpers with consumer protection law, eliminates bots

Apr 9 2019 — Dirk Meissner — VICTORIA — British Columbia Solicitor General Mike Farnworth says he fondly recalls the day he waited in line at his local shopping mall for a dozen concert tickets to see Irish rock superstars U2 perform in Vancouver. That was the late 1980s, and since then ticket buying has become much more complex, expensive and unfair, Farnworth […]

B.C. herring fishery ends for another season, controversy over catch continues

Apr 4 2019 — Dirk Meissner — VICTORIA — Commercial fishing boats on the B.C. coast have returned to their home ports after a successful spring herring roe fishery in the Strait of Georgia off Vancouver Island, but opponents of the catch are already gearing up for next season. The threat of overfishing and the impact a herring population collapse could have on […]

B.C. introduces law to prevent money laundering, tax evasion in real estate

Apr 2 2019 — Dirk Meissner — VICTORIA — The British Columbia government introduced legislation Tuesday aimed at preventing tax evasion and money laundering by shining a spotlight on anonymous real estate owners hiding behind shell and numbered companies. Finance Minister Carole James said the proposed Landowner Transparency Act would create Canada's first public registry of property owners to compel corporations, trusts and partnerships to disclose the owners of the […]

Speaker issues update of dress code at B.C. legislature; sleeveless clothing OK

Apr 1 2019 — Dirk Meissner — VICTORIA — Women who work in British Columbia's legislature are now allowed to wear sleeveless dresses, shirts and blouses, after a preliminary review prompted alterations to the building's decades-old dress code. Speaker Darryl Plecas said Monday that a full review of the dress code is underway, but until the report is complete, business attire for women can […]

Dress code at B.C. legislature, women make short-sleeve fashion statement

Mar 28 2019 — Dirk Meissner — VICTORIA — A dress code protest at British Columbia's legislature that prompted some women to roll up their sleeves in solidarity on Thursday has resulted in the Speaker's office ordering a review of modern dress expectations at the building. Acting clerk Kate Ryan-Lloyd said Speaker Darryl Plecas directed her to review the legislature's dress code policy to determine […]

Federal crime reduction minister says it’s hard to get fix on money laundering

Mar 27 2019 — Dirk Meissner — VICTORIA — The amount of money laundered annually by organized criminals in Canada is difficult to estimate, but heightened efforts are underway to halt the flow of dirty money, Organized Crime Reduction Minister Bill Blair said Wednesday. The former Toronto police chief said the federal government pledged to create a multi-agency task force in its […]

B.C. legislature committee calls for no regulatory roadblocks to ride hailing

Mar 26 2019 — Dirk Meissner — VICTORIA — Premier John Horgan says ride-hailing will arrive in British Columbia this year following the release of an all-party committee report Tuesday that recommends few government restrictions on the services. "We committed to get this done," Horgan said at a news conference. "I am absolutely confident that ride-hailing will be here in 2019." The […]

B.C. to start measles ‘catch-up’ campaign, offering shots at schools, clinics

Mar 20 2019 — Dirk Meissner — VICTORIA — British Columbia is starting a measles immunization catch-up drive next month in a bid to vaccinate 95 per cent of the province's youth amid an outbreak of 19 confirmed measles cases. Health Minister Adrian Dix said Wednesday the voluntary April to June catch-up campaign comes ahead of next fall's mandatory immunization registration of […]

Ottawa, B.C. announce five-year salmon restoration fund to rebuild wild stocks

Mar 15 2019 — Dirk Meissner — VICTORIA — The federal and British Columbia governments are preparing to cast a net to find new ways of protecting wild salmon habitat and restoring stocks. Federal Fisheries Minister Jonathan Wilkinson and Premier John Horgan said Friday the two governments will provide $142.8 million towards a five-year wild salmon restoration program, with the federal government spending $100 million […]