National Newswatch

Rachel Notley, Jim Carr to make case for Trans Mountain oil pipeline in B.C.

Nov 24 2017 — — Alberta Premier Rachel Notley and federal Natural Resources Minister Jim Carr will deliver a tag-team effort in Vancouver next week as the two governments take their defence of the controversial Trans Mountain oil pipeline expansion to the home of its most vociferous opponents. The NDP Premier and the Liberal minister will deliver separate keynote speeches […]

Federal deficit at $5.9-billion for first half of fiscal year

Nov 24 2017 — Bill Curry — The size of the federal deficit was $5.9-billion at the halfway point of the fiscal year, representing an improvement over the same period a year before. The results of Finance Canada’s monthly fiscal monitor report also suggest that the government is on pace to beat its 2017-18 deficit target of $19.9-billion. Friday’s report shows Ottawa […]

Gaps grow in background checks for Parliament Hill security staff

Nov 24 2017 — Daniel Leblanc — A majority of the security personnel on Parliament Hill, some of whom are armed, have not had thorough background checks and routinely have access to sensitive information despite a lack of official clearance, federal officials say. The situation applies to two groups of non-police officers employed by the Parliamentary Protective Service (PPS): protective officers who […]

McGuinty staffers used ‘nuclear’ option to wipe records, Crown argues in Ontario gas-plants trial

Nov 23 2017 — — Two senior staffers in former Ontario premier Dalton McGuinty’s office went to “extraordinary lengths” to “indiscriminantly” wipe the contents of government hard drives to ensure no records existed in connection with the cancellation of two gas-fired power plants, a criminal trial has heard. “It defies common sense and logic to suggest that this ‘nuclear’ approach […]

Horgan warns against overtaxing burgeoning cannabis industry

Nov 23 2017 — — B.C.’s Premier is warning cities they can’t gouge cannabis businesses with licensing fees if the province wants to squeeze out the sizable black market once the drug becomes legal next summer. John Horgan said Wednesday that all levels of government must be careful not to tax the drug too heavily if the legal supply is […]

Federal government looks to provinces for billions to support housing plan

Nov 23 2017 — — Prime Minister Justin Trudeau released a $40-billion national housing program on Wednesday, but the plan counts on the provinces to contribute billions and key elements won’t begin until after the next federal election. The 10-year program assumes the provinces will be willing to match federal spending plans in some areas, meaning further negotiations will be […]

Ottawa to offer direct subsidies to low-income tenants

Nov 22 2017 — Bill Curry — The federal government will announce direct rent support for low-income Canadians in addition to spending billions on traditional and new forms of social housing as part of the Wednesday release of its long-awaited national housing strategy. A new portable housing allowance will top up similar provincial and municipal programs that provide rent subsidies for people […]

Morneau didn’t seek clearance from ethics commissioner before introducing pension bill

Nov 21 2017 — Robert Fife and Steven Chase — Finance Minister Bill Morneau did not seek clearance from the federal ethics commissioner before he introduced pension-reform legislation that could benefit the firm founded by his father and in which he still owned one million shares. The minister’s office says he did not need to seek permission – and that an “ethical screen” was in […]

Wilfrid Laurier graduate student delivers a wake-up call

Nov 20 2017 — Margaret Wente — If you want to understand the intellectual corruption that is eating away at our universities, listen to an audio recording made by a graduate student named Lindsay Shepherd. She is a 22-year-old teaching assistant at Wilfrid Laurier University in Ontario. Every senior administrator and every governor at every campus in the country should listen to […]

Australian publisher drops book on Chinese influence; author warns Canada is also at risk

Nov 19 2017 — Nathan VanderKlippe — Alarmed by creeping Chinese influence on Australian political life, Clive Hamilton set out to investigate. Businesses and people connected to China had already become the biggest foreign financial contributors to the country’s political parties. But “it seemed to me there was much more going on” said Prof. Hamilton, a scholar at Charles Sturt University. He […]

Trudeau to offer formal apology for LGBTQ persecution on Nov. 28

Nov 19 2017 — John Ibbitson — Justin Trudeau will rise in the House of Commons on Nov. 28 to offer a historic apology to Canadians who were criminally prosecuted or dismissed from the military or public service because they were gay. The Prime Minister’s apology is expected to be the most comprehensive ever offered by any national government for past persecution […]