With Nathan Coleman.
With Nathan Coleman.
The S&P and Nasdaq slipped on Tuesday from record closing levels as investors digested a batch of corporate earnings results, while an expected policy announcement from the Federal Reserve on Wednesday helped to limit moves. 3M Co climbed 3.26% as one of the biggest boosts on the Dow after it benefited from lower costs and demand for disposable respirator masks, hand sanitizers and safety glasses amid a surge in coronavirus infections. Johnson & Johnson also provided a strong lift, up 2.71% as the drugmaker said it expected to report eagerly awaited COVID-19 vaccine data early next week.
The European Union has approved a plan that includes giving state aid to Tesla, BMW and others to support the production of electric vehicle batteries, helping the bloc to cut imports and compete with industry leader China. The European Commission's approval of the 2.9 billion euro ($3.5 billion) European Battery Innovation project, follows the launch in 2017 of the European Battery Alliance that aims to support the industry during the shift away from fossil fuels. Alongside Tesla and BMW, the 42 firms that have signed up and could receive state aid include Fiat Chrysler Automobiles, Arkema, Borealis, Solvay, Sunlight Systems and Enel X.
If Nick Legault could play disc golf everyday, he would. He gets his fix throwing his shiny discs at large five-gallon buckets, hanging off trees on the temporary nine-hole course at Langholm Park in St. Albert. A UDisc app showed the course, set up in June, was popular with players last summer. "We had over 500 recorded rounds," said Legault, who monitored usage via the app. "We know that not everyone's recording their rounds so that number's greater, so it worked out to be about three to four rounds per day," said Legault. He says the St. Albert Disc golf Facebook page now sits at over 100 members. In December Legault made a presentation to St. Albert councillors on the popularity of the sport and the need for a permanent location. Legault says the mature trees in Langholm Park and the size of the park make it an ideal spot. "After a successful summer of being able to measure how many people have used the course through the UDisc app, we wanted to present that report back to city council because their request was to help us understand the need, so we hope we demonstrated that," Legault said. The popularity of the sport is growing in surrounding communities too, with established courses in Beaumont, Spruce Grove, Wetaskiwin, Strathcona County, and several in Edmonton. 'Hole in one' The course in Edmonton's Rundle Park is busy 365 days a year. "It doesn't matter if it's warm, cold, rainy, sunny, just it's fresh air and friends, and trying to get a hole in one, " said Michael Elliot who was getting in a round with two friends last week. The rules are simple. Players throw discs at a target several hundred yards away. There are no fees, golf carts or wait times. Disc golf uses weighted discs. Some players carry more than 20 in their bags which can be worth as much as $500. Beginners, however, can find discs for as little as $12. "I actually had never heard about it before," said Kenny Cardinal, who's new to the sport. "The scene at Rundle Park is getting really big. I met these guys here this year and they're kind of showing me the ropes." The Hills at Charlesworth in southeast Edmonton is one city's newest courses. 'Don't have to pay for fees' Each hole has a concrete launching area, much like a tee box, with the rolling hills and trees providing an added challenge to golfers. With the pandemic, Eric Hanson was looking for something that wouldn't break AHS protocols. "This is different. It's just more casual; there's no tee times; there's no booking; I don't have to pay for fees," said Hanson who picked up his first set of discs last summer. "It allows us to be six feet apart and be with your friends outside safely, so that's good," he said. Morgan Chase is also a beginner. "I just started with two discs," he said. "They're like golf clubs, they do different things some turn, some dive so I've just been collecting discs and having fun out here." Others have taken their passion for the game one step further. Aaron Biblow moved into the neighbourhood two blocks away from The Hills last summer, saying the disc golf course was a huge selling point. "I figured that it was an outdoor sport I could get into and then just living nearby, I'll just run out on my break and throw a quick round and head home," Biblow said. Legault has also played at The Hills at Charlesworth course and says Langholm Park, if made permanent, would have a similar feel. "We're hoping we can get through the public engagement and park assessment over the winter and then hopefully get some baskets in for the summer so that people can come and try it out with a real target.
Yellowknife city council met on Monday to consider an expansion project that would see 102 new housing units built for seniors. The proposed AVENS pavilion is intended to fill gaps in affordable senior housing by providing a wider range of independent and supportive housing options. Seniors are the fastest growing segment of the population, according to the government of the Northwest Territories and increasingly, seniors are wanting to remain in the Northwest Territories, but find limited options available to them. AVENS CEO Darryl Dolynny told city council meeting the proposed expansion of its campus would diminish long waiting lists for seniors' housing and fill a gap in housing options. The city administration says it supports the project because it would allow seniors to live independently for as long as they'd like to, while remaining in the North. In October, Avens received $33.7 million from Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) to support the AVENS Pavilion project. In a press release, Ahmed Hussen, the Minister Minister of Families, Children and Social Development said that "today's announcement is one of the largest single investments in affordable housing in the Northwest Territories under the National Housing Strategy." Concerns about road access The senior administrative officer Sheila Bassi-Kellett said that the project was "much needed. I don't think anyone can argue with that." She added that there remained concerns from neighbours in the area about how the pavilion would be accessed by road. A few letters have been sent to the city detailing concerns about how traffic may become congested and pose safety risks. One of the proposed road access points would be the Matonabee alleyway, which is intended to be used by residents of the pavilion. However, Hermina Joldersma, who lives nearby, says the alleyway is far too narrow to maintain additional traffic, especially for service vehicles, like fire trucks. In a council meeting, she said that the street only has room for one vehicle at a time, which could create bottlenecks and unsafe driving situations. The alleyway feeds into Franklin Avenue, right where the speed limit increases from 30 km/h to 45 km/h. Joldersma added that in addition to it being a busy intersection, it's also difficult to see traffic and pedestrians. Bassi-Kellet said she's confident a viable solution can be found. She said "productive" discussions looking at different options about the road access by development officers, other departments with the city, and with AVENS. City council will decide whether or not to approve the project on Feb. 8. Mayor Rebecca Alty said that the proposal was still in draft form, so the first step is to gain council approval to use the building as a special care facility, then they would work through in greater detail issues that are outstanding, related to parking and road access, for example.
Joe Biden could return to the path blazed by Barack Obama on Cuba, when two years of bilateral negotiations helped undo more than five decades of hostility.
Brandon Sun readers request specific questions be asked about COVID-19. QUESTION: Why are front-line workers like Brandon city police officers not being immunized when they are in direct contact with proven COVID-positive people each day? They have received no answers as to why they are not on the list, nor are they informed of people who are COVID-positive. What are their exposure rates versus that of emergency departments? DR. JOSS REIMER: We were very careful when we came up with the priority list for who get access in the very first groups, when we’re talking about such a small proportion of the total population. We looked at a number of different factors. We looked at, as you’re mentioning, likelihood of being exposed to the virus. But we also looked at things like you know the critical nature of that service for our health-care system. So that’s where you see things like the critical care units getting first priority because not only are they potentially exposed to the virus when caring for patients, but they also are an essential part of the most difficult work in the health-care system, where Manitobans need to be able to rely on that service being available. So there’s a lot of different factors that we have to consider concurrently. It’s not just a matter of whether or not people are exposed. We’re also looking to see how many of the individuals in each population group have been shown to be infected. So are there mechanisms that we can protect people, and how effective are they apart from vaccinations? We’re seeing more cases amongst folks who work in acute care, those who work in personal care homes and those who work in group homes. Those appear to be the areas of where front-line workers have been experiencing more infections than groups like police officers, for example. All of these factors came into our decision-making and will continue to inform as we move through further priority groups. There are so many essential workers in health care and outside of health care, who take care of Manitobans every day, and if I could give them to all adults, I would do that today. But we just have such a limited supply that we had to have these really difficult discussions around where are we going to get the most critical workers protected, for the reasons that I just mentioned. And at some point, we had to draw lines because we just simply have such a small amount of vaccine available. QUESTION: Over the past week, we’ve heard that mental health is important. What is being done to recognize the sacrifices of kids and rewarding them for their hard work during this time? With the emergence of the let kids play petition, for example, this past weekend, and overwhelming support from the public, will the province reconsider organized youth sports prior to the next set of restriction reviews? DR. BRENT ROUSSIN: Well, we never really take anything off the table. We’re continually looking at those orders. I can speak even from personal experience. Both of my children are involved in sports, and you really miss seeing them out there. So this affects all sorts of Manitobans. What we do know is this is what we had in the fall and we saw transmission occur in these events. We just can’t open everything up, there’s a lot of important things out there. A lot of impact on many different people’s mental health, economic impacts. But we just can’t be back to where we were in November. These are the tough choices that we make, but we have to do things in a cautious way. There’s no reason to think that if we open things up again to where we were in October that we would get a different result this time. At that level opening, we are on a trajectory to overrun our health-care system, to cause a lot of hospitalizations, a lot of deaths to Manitobans. So we need to be very cautious. QUESTION: Previously, Dr. Roussin hosted a telephone town hall so that Manitobans could seek clarification directly. Will Dr. Roussin host another town hall within the next week or two prior to the next restrictions review? ROUSSIN: Good question. I’m not sure. I think it would be something we’d consider. We had real good feedback, enjoyed speaking to Manitobans on those sessions. So I think it’ll be something that we’ll certainly look at. Do you have a question about something in your community? Send your questions to email@example.com with the subject line: Readers Ask. Michèle LeTourneau, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Brandon Sun
Des sculptures de glace dignes des expositions d’hiver les plus impressionnantes sont présentement exhibées devant l’entrée de la bibliothèque du Pôle culturel de Chambly, pour le plus grand plaisir des visiteurs. Suivant l’exposition des toiles d’Angélique Ricard, qu’il est aussi possible d’admirer, il s’agit de la deuxième exposition tenue au Pôle culturel depuis le début de la nouvelle année. De la magie entre les doigts La Ville de Chambly décrit l’œuvre du sculpteur de glace professionnel, Nicolas Godon, comme étant le « résultat d’un travail minutieux alliant la technique et la beauté de la nature », et elle n’a pas tort. Les quatre sculptures ont été façonnées par Nicolas Godon, des Entreprises Godon, basées à Mont-Tremblant, sous la thématique de l’hiver. Il s’est notamment servi de scies, mécanique et électrique, puis de couteaux pour sculpter dans 16 blocs de glace cristalline, de 300 lb chacun, afin de modeler les formes d’envergure qu’il a imaginées : des patins et des flocons tombants, un ours polaire et un pingouin taillés un peu à l’image des figurines en cristal de la marque Swarovski, mais en format géant. Le travail aurait pris une huitaine d’heures. « C’est un peu comme travailler le bois, mais en termes de finition, c’est un peu plus spécifique de la glace. » Une lignée de sculpteurs aguerris Diplômé en charpenterie et en menuiserie, Nicolas n’était pas particulièrement prédestiné à être sculpteur professionnel comme son père, Laurent Godon, un sculpteur de renommée internationale. C’est en travaillant avec lui pour l’aider au sein de l’entreprise familiale qu’il s’est découvert une véritable passion pour la sculpture sur glace, au point de s’y consacrer professionnellement. Parmi les événements notoires auxquels père et fils ont participé, on compte la Fête des neiges de Montréal, le Mondial des cidres de glace, Montréal en lumière et beaucoup d’autres. « Les Entreprises Godon, c’est une vocation qui se transmet de père en fils. C’est mon père qui m’a appris à sculpter. Je fais de la sculpture depuis quinze ans, mais cela fait cinq ans que j’ai pris les rênes de la compagnie », raconte Nicolas. « C’est par le bouche à oreille que nous avons obtenu ce contrat avec la Ville de Chambly. Nous faisons de la sculpture un peu partout au Québec. Ça marche assez bien, cette année, surtout parce qu’avec la pandémie, les options sont plus limitées en termes de format d’exposition. Une exposition à l’extérieur est de circonstance. » Quant à la présente exposition, elle témoigne d’un style bien particulier. « Depuis les trois dernières années, environ, je fais des animaux en sortant un peu de l’ordinaire, comme de l’origami. C’est un peu moins conventionnel et ça fait changement de la sculpture traditionnelle. J’ai toujours mon idée de base, mais c’est en sculptant que ça se dévoile dans ma tête. » Il sera possible d’admirer les œuvres aussi longtemps que la température les conservera.Chloé-Anne Touma, Initiative de journalisme local, Le Journal de Chambly
This channel is about going to the lesser known places in our travels and we hope to bring you along! The restaurant is called ADA St in Chicago.
Two people have died and two others are injured after a crash on the QEW near Burlington this morning that closed the westbound lanes of the highway. At 5:53 a.m., Burlington OPP say, officers were called to a crash involving three vehicles on the QEW at Brant Street. Const. Kevin Westhead says two female occupants of one of the vehicles were pronounced dead on scene. They appeared to be the only ones in the vehicle, Westhead says, and investigators believe one was ejected. Two people were transported to the hospital, but their condition is unknown. Police have closed the Toronto-bound Brant Street ramp, as well as the westbound lanes, Westhead says. He estimates they will be closed for six to eight hours.
Organizers of a food bank for Black Edmontonians say there will be many families left behind if the service ends in March. Each week, dozens of families of African and Caribbean descent ranging from two to 10 members collect hampers packed with culturally relevant food. Despite demand, organizers had to cap the program at 90 families so staff and volunteers could keep up with collection, packing and distribution. The service was launched in May thanks to the collaboration of multiple Black-led Alberta organizations under the banner of African Diaspora COVID-19 Relief. But the funding and food from donors such as the Edmonton Community Foundation, Islamic Relief Canada, The Ghana Friendship Society and Loblaws, as well as personal donations, will soon run out. "It is a need that needs to be filled," said Emmanuel Onah, youth program manager at the Africa Centre, where the program is coordinated, clients pick up hampers and donations are being accepted. "It's a gaping hole in all of the resources that are currently available." The Liberia Friendship Society of Canada, the Jamaica Association of Northern Alberta and the Black Students Association University of Alberta are also among more than a dozen groups involved that will meet Sunday to determine next steps. Nii Koney, executive director of the Nile Valley Foundation, who rallied the coalition to action, said the program emerged from weekly meetings among Black organizations looking for ways to best respond to the pandemic. Initially they were surprised by all the middle-class community members who needed help. "People are bringing nice cars, they will come and park in the front, they will come with their wife and husband, they will sometimes come, the whole family," Koney said. "So now I know that if we didn't provide these services, it would be a great disservice to the community." Onah said a large part of the appeal comes from offering culturally relevant food tailor-made for each family whether it's injera, an Ethiopian fermented flatbread, or turtle beans, popular in the Caribbean. "The peace of mind you get when you're eating something that you're familiar with or you grew up with and is inline with your culture and your background — that all contributes to overall wellness. That all contributes to mental wellness, especially in the time where we're in a pandemic," said Onah. The initiative also supports local businesses largely by sourcing food from community stores on 118th Avenue and Stony Plain Road.
Le ministère des Transports du Québec (MTQ) a statué. Une aire d’attente de 300 véhicules ainsi qu’une zone de préchargement seront aménagées à l’approche de la traverse de Tadoussac afin d’atteindre l’objectif des traversées aux 20 minutes. L’instance gouvernementale avait plusieurs scénarios dans la mire, dont cinq ont été analysés plus en détail. « L’option retenue est celle qui répond au plus grand nombre de besoins exprimés par les intervenants du milieu que nous avons rencontrés comme la municipalité, les citoyens, les commerçants, la SÉPAQ et la Société des traversiers du Québec (STQ) », a indiqué Lysanne Girard, lors de la présentation publique virtuelle du projet aux Tadoussaciens le 20 janvier. Ce scénario prévoit deux voies de circulation en direction est (vers Baie-Comeau), deux voies de circulation, réduites à une voie près de l’intersection de la rue des Pionniers, en direction ouest (vers Québec), une zone de préchargement (près du quai d’embarquement) et une aire d’attente hors route (face à l’Hôtel Georges) du côté sud. À l’entrée de la zone de préchargement, le MTQ prévoit deux systèmes de transport intelligent permettant de contrôler le processus d’embarquement. Il permettra, selon le MTQ, de respecter un délai de 20 minutes comprenant l’embarquement, la traversée et le débarquement des véhicules en plus d’éliminer l’attente en zone urbaine. « De plus, les utilisateurs auront un accès permanent à la voie de secours (lit d’arrêt) par la voie locale en libérant la zone en bas de la côte. L’accès aux rues municipales et aux commerces en sera également bonifié grâce à l’élargissement des voies de circulation, entre autres », de préciser Mme Girard. Même si plusieurs citoyens et résidents de la Côte-Nord contestent la nécessité de ce projet dont les coûts sont estimés à plus de 50 M$ en raison de la possibilité de construire un pont sur le Saguenay, il n’était pas permis d’interroger les intervenantes du ministère sur le sujet lors de la rencontre publique. « Nous ne discuterons que du projet qui nous concerne, celui du pont sur le Saguenay en étant un autre bien distinct », a précisé la conseillère en communications Sarah Gaudreault. Quelques questionnements de citoyens sont survenus à la fin de la rencontre en ce qui concerne le bruit et la certitude d’effectuer les traversées aux 20 minutes. « Actuellement, il y a seulement une voie pour embarquer. Ce que la solution propose, avec la zone de préchargement, on devrait être en mesure d’embarquer avec les deux rampes, donc à deux voies. La STQ pourra venir précharger pour accélérer le processus, ce qu’elle n’est pas en mesure de faire pour le moment », a répondu Marie-Hélène Grenon, ingénieure au MTQ. Rappelons qu’en 2009, le MTQ et la Société des Traversiers du Québec (STQ) ont annoncé la construction de deux nouveaux navires d’une plus grande capacité (110 véhicules au lieu de 72) pour améliorer le service offert aux usagers de la traverse. L’objectif était d’offrir des traversées aux 20 minutes. « Des interventions seront nécessaires afin d’améliorer la fluidité de la circulation sur la rue du Bateau-Passeur (route 138) et de permettre le passage des véhicules en 20 minutes (embarquement, traversée et débarquement) », a conclu l’intervenante du MTQ. Le projet de réaménagement des voies à la traverse de Tadoussac-Baie-Sainte-Catherine en est présentement à l’étape de la conception, soit à l’avant-projet préliminaire. Prochaines étapes \- Octroi du mandat de conception par un appel d’offres public; \- Évaluation environnementale; \- Plans d’acquisition ; \- Inventaire archéologique; \- Appel d’offres pour la réalisation des travaux; \- Construction; \- Environ 5 à 8 ans seront nécessaires pour compléter le projet.Johannie Gaudreault, Initiative de journalisme local, Journal Haute-Côte-Nord
TUNIS, Tunisia — Tunisians are marching on their heavily guarded parliament Tuesday as lawmakers vote on a new government, after a week of youth protests and riots over poverty and lack of jobs that left one young demonstrator dead and hundreds jailed. Prime Minister Hichem Mechichi announced a government reshuffle last week in the midst of the unrest. He promised Tuesday that the new team would concentrate on deep reforms to create jobs and improve living conditions in the North African country, which has been mired in economic crisis deepened by the coronavirus pandemic. But four of his 11 proposed new Cabinet members are facing investigations or suspicions of corruption, which threatens to further undermine Tunisians’ faith in a leadership accused of failing to live up to the promises of the country’s democratic revolution 10 years ago that unleashed the Arab Spring. Security was so tight in the streets around the parliament building Tuesday that several lawmakers were unable to access the grounds, according to independent parliamentary deputy Mabrouk Korchid. More than two dozen human rights and other groups called for a march Tuesday afternoon through central Tunis to the parliament building to demand the release of hundreds of people arrested in this month’s unrest and denounce repressive measures by police. A protester in his 20s died in a hospital Monday in the first apparent fatality amid the unrest, prompting a new outpouring of anger in his hometown of Sbeitla that the army was sent in to quell. His family said he was hit in the head by a tear gas canister during a protest, according to the state news agency. The Interior Ministry said an investigation has been opened. In the parliamentary debate, legislator Ali Hermassi denounced the failure of four successive governments to improve the economy, noting that unemployment has risen, as has inflation, while investment has fallen. He also deplored the handling of the recent protests. “The country needs political and social stability to emerge from the crisis,” he said. The head of one faction, Souhair Maghzaoui, told the prime minister: “If you intend to return to police repression, you are deluding yourself,” referring to heavy-handed tactics under the authoritarian regime thrown out by Tunisia’s 2010-2011 uprising. Meanwhile, President Kais Saied said the government reshuffle is unconstitutional, because the prime minister didn’t follow the procedures for informing the president first. “The Presidency of the Republic is not a mail box that signs decrees and organizes oath-taking ceremonies,” Saied told a security council meeting. He also questioned the wisdom of naming the four proposed ministers who are suspected of conflict of interest or embezzlement. I-Watch, the Tunisian arm of anti-corruption group Transparency International, sent a letter to lawmakers urging them not to approve the four proposed ministers. The president also criticized the reduction of the number of women in the new government from six to four. “Women are not cosmetic powder” but crucial players in the government, he argued. The confidence vote is scheduled at the end of the day, with lawmakers voting on the new members of the government one-by-one. Bouazza Ben Bouazza, The Associated Press
Les restaurateurs sont pris en étau entre le besoin de s’adapter au marché actuel, en offrant la livraison, et le désir de conserver leur indépendance et leurs profits. Acculés au mur depuis la pandémie, de plus en plus de restaurateurs s’associent aux services de livraison Uber Eats, DoorDash et SkipTheDishes. Pour certains qui rament à contre-courant et qui veulent garder leur indépendance, livrer avec Uber Eats est comme signer un pacte avec le diable. Ces services de livraison sont-ils la solution ou le coup de grâce pour les restaurateurs? L’avis de nos commerçants Pour Romain Lanly, copropriétaire de la crêperie Les Friands Disent, à Chambly, qui sollicite les services d’Uber Eats, le gain est plutôt de nature promotionnelle. « Uber prend 30 % sur toutes les commandes. Nous sommes gagnants dans le sens où ça nous aide à nous faire connaître, mais pas forcément financièrement. » Au restaurant italien Tre Colori, on préfère conserver son propre service de livraison. « On fait la livraison nous-mêmes depuis 1967 », nous apprend-on au comptoir de la prise de commandes, affirmant que c’est plus avantageux. Rappelons que la semaine passée, le gouvernement du Québec a demandé aux plateformes de livraison de repas de réduire les frais imposés aux restaurateurs et que le ministre de l’Agriculture, des Pêcheries et de l’Alimentation du Québec, André Lamontagne, a proposé un plafond à 20 %. Alors que les géants américains Uber Eats et Doordash ont refusé de se soumettre à leur volonté, leur concurrent canadien SkipTheDishes a abdiqué, plafonnant sa livraison à 20 % tous frais inclus. Notons que la livraison offerte par ces services est ce qui permet à plusieurs restaurants de demeurer ouverts et fonctionnels pendant le couvre-feu, tout en leur évitant les efforts de logistique qu’impliquerait le fait de se doter de leur propre service de livraison. Mais surtout, la mise en marché sur des services aussi populaires qu’Uber Eats offre une visibilité non négligeable, lorsque l’Association Restauration Québec (ARQ) reconnaît elle-même qu’une importante portion de la clientèle généralement organique n’est souvent pas au courant du maintien de l’ouverture des restaurants pendant le couvre-feu.Chloé-Anne Touma, Initiative de journalisme local, Le Journal de Chambly
Saint Andrews passed the first reading of its short-term rental bylaw at a special council meeting on Monday. The bylaw was created, said Coun. Andrew Harrison, to develop a permit system to regulate short-term rentals in the town. Short-term rental residential units are full dwelling units (or parts of it) used as accommodation for travellers for no more than 30 days at a time, he said. "The purpose of this bylaw is to help limit negative impacts to long-term rentals and housing affordability, ensure the accommodations meet safety requirements and compliance, neighbour compatibility, support the tourism economy and support equity among all short-term rental accommodation providers," Harrison said. Town clerk Paul Nopper said AirBnBs have "very limited to no regulations at this point." Deputy Mayor Brad Henderson said it's to make sure that when people are visiting Saint Andrews, it's safe. The bylaw mostly covers permit requirements, inspections, responsibilities of the owner and operator, prohibitions and penalties. Saint Andrews resident Joanne Carney said she would like to see a compromise on the bylaw and aims to bring her concerns forward to council. Carney operates a short-term rental space within her home and has also purchased a property for her employees and for short-term rental space. She said if the bylaw is passed, it would make it so that certain zones require a primary resident on the property that houses the short-term rental space. She said she's not so sure that "penalizing" short-term rentals will make these spaces revert to long-term rental spaces or increase the vacancy rate. She said there needs to be a balance between long-term and short-term rentals "I know the councillors, they're open to changes and discussion. They'll definitely hear from people who are threatened to be shut down at the moment." In addition, she said limiting the short-term rental permits (if the primary resident lives there most of the time), doesn't make sense. In some cases, she said owning and operating short-term rentals, helps make living more affordable in Saint Andrews. The councillors discussed having a three-permit limit per individual for short-term rentals with a potential grandfather clause, or an increasing permit fee for individuals; instead of a 50-permit limit for the whole town. CAO Chris Spear said all existing short-term rentals would be included in this 50-permit total. Nopper said the 50-permit limit was based on the town's pre-existing short-term rental numbers and took into consideration council's aim to protect the long-term rentals by limiting the number of short-term rentals. "It limits that so that we don't have AirBnB Inc. coming in and buying up a bunch of short-term rentals," said Coun. Guy Groulx. Coun. Kurt Gumushel was against limiting the number of short-term rentals. Nopper said he would take the discussions and feedback and put it into the second draft of the document. There were also some discussions and clarifications at the meeting between the councillors concerning limiting of guests and permit qualifications. The full bylaw is posted on the town's website, so the public can view it before it goes onto further readings and a public hearing. Nopper said the bylaw could be passed by April 2021 but Mayor Doug Naish said it's subject to change. "It will be done right," said Naish. The Local Journalism Initiative is funded by the Government of Canada. L'initiative de journalisme local est financée par le gouvernement du Canada. Caitlin Dutt, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Telegraph-Journal
SAINT JOHN • Nearly one quarter of Anglophone South students were absent on the first day of the red phase in Zone 2, according to district superintendent Zoë Watson. Wednesday saw 23 per cent of students absent, up from 14 per cent on Tuesday, following Public Health returning the region to the red phase of COVID-19 recovery. Saint John father Mike Stephen said he plans to keep his son Kohen McKenna home for the rest of the week. McKenna is in Grade 9 at Simonds High School. "(Masks) definitely cut down transmission, but it's not a silver bullet. You can still get (COVID)," he said. "And I just think that we need to do more to try to shrink our bubbles, before something ends up bursting, and we end up in a lockdown like Quebec or Ontario." Up until this week, a switch to the red phase of recovery meant a switch to online learning from home for public school students. That's not the case any more, with the province recently announcing a change in protocol. Stephen called it a sharp change for parents. He said he doesn't understand why high schools can't be doing fully online learning or why students can't decide whether to learn from home or not, since many are already alternating days. Even if protocols are tight in schools, he said being together in schools gives kids the temptation to mingle without six feet of distance and without masks outside the school walls. "The best in-class protections in the world doesn't help when kids walk off the property. And at the end of the day, kids that age think that they're invincible." Kristina MacRae, a Nerepis mother who is immunocompromised, pulled all six of her kids out of school on Wednesday. "How are we supposed to be feeling safe to send our kids if [the provincial government] doesn't even know what they're doing?" she said. "They're just winging it is how I feel." In a letter released to families on Tuesday, Watson said that attending school helps facilitate learning, and students will be under strict health and safety protocols in a supervised environment. "Their social needs can be met, while physical distancing is maintained, masks are used, and proper hygiene is encouraged," the letter states. In the event a parent chooses not to send a child to school, the parent is responsible for the child's education, according to a government directive document issued Wednesday. Teachers are not required to support learning in those cases, the document states, but support to the families would be encouraged. For those attending school, under the red phase of recovery, school personnel will be screened every day. Students and personnel can't enter the building if they have one COVID symptom or more, according to the document. If there is a positive case at a school, then the school is closed for three days, including weekends, and personnel are offered COVID-19 tests. All students, from kindergarten to Grade 12, are required to wear masks while on buses and while at school. However, there are a few exceptions to mask wearing: Kindergarten to Grade 8 students can take off their masks when working silently or eating, and Grade 9 to 12 students can take their mask off when eating. School personnel can take off their masks when eating or when in a closed office or classroom by themselves. All after-school clubs and sports have been cancelled. The Local Journalism Initiative is funded by the Government of Canada. L'initiative de journalisme local est financée par le gouvernement du Canada. Caitlin Dutt, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Telegraph-Journal
Manque de stationnement et congestion routière, deux problématiques bien connues des citoyens de Tadoussac en saison touristique. Afin de remédier à la situation, la municipalité veut aménager un stationnement écoresponsable au bout de la rue des Jésuites, projet de 1 106 424 $ qui a été présenté aux citoyens le 19 janvier. L’équipe municipale travaille activement sur le projet depuis plus de deux ans afin qu’il n’en coûte rien pour les contribuables tadoussaciens. La municipalité a d’ailleurs obtenu une subvention du ministère de l’Environnement, via le programme Climat municipalités – phase 2, d’un montant de 577 140 $. D’autres aides financières ont été demandées, mais les réponses ne sont pas confirmées pour le moment. Si toutes les subventions sont accordées, la municipalité ne devrait dépenser que 247 659 $ pour la réalisation du stationnement. « Le plan A prévoit le remboursement du montant de 247 659 $ sur 20 ans, à raison de 15 889 $ par année. En ajoutant les frais d’acquisition du terrain (13 816 $) et les coûts d’opération et d’entretien (25 000 $), le total des dépenses annuelles se chiffre à 54 705 $. Cette somme serait remboursée grâce aux revenus du stationnement, évalués à 88 000 $ si on se fie à celui de la cale sèche. Un profit de 33 295 $ serait enregistré », a expliqué la directrice Marie-Claude Guérin, lors de la consultation. Quant au plan B, la contribution municipale s’élève à 529 284 $ et est remboursée sur 20 ans, soit 33 932 $ annuellement. En ajoutant les autres dépenses mentionnées dans le plan A, un montant de 72 748 $ devrait être remis chaque année. Comme les revenus sont estimés à 88 000 $, un profit de 15 252 $ demeure tout de même. « Le plan B est moins confortable, mais il permet d’éviter de taxer les citoyens pour le remboursement de l’emprunt relié au stationnement. Pour le moment, ce sont des prévisions en ce qui concerne les revenus, mais on en gère deux stationnements. Celui de la cale sèche est de dimension comparable et il nous rapporte 88 000 $ », a déclaré le maire Charles Breton. De plus, la municipalité s’engage à mettre en place une politique des déplacements, inclut dans les coûts du projet, afin de garantir l’utilisation du nouveau stationnement. « Ça veut dire que des emplacements seront réservés aux citoyens devant l’épicerie, par exemple, grâce à un système de vignette ou que les stationnements seront interdits dans certaines rues », précise M. Breton. Objectifs Le premier objectif, et le plus important, selon le maire, est la qualité de vie des citoyens de Tadoussac. « Dans les sondages que nous avons faits, les problématiques du manque de stationnement et de la congestion routière reviennent incessamment, a rappelé Charles Breton. Les gens ne se sentent plus chez eux lors de la saison touristique. » Le projet permettra aussi de limiter les émissions de gaz à effet de serre « évitables ». « On dit évitables parce que les touristes qui font trois fois le tour du village pour trouver un stationnement pourront éviter de le faire en se dirigeant immédiatement dans le nouveau stationnement, précise l’élu. Par le fait même, l’expérience des visiteurs n’en sera qu’améliorer, un autre objectif du projet. » Aménagement En termes d’aménagement, le stationnement pourra accueillir 85 voitures et 3 autocars ou 50 voitures et 11 autocars à la fois, selon le choix effectué par le conseil municipal. Il sera muni d’un pavillon sanitaire comprenant deux salles de bain ainsi que d’un sentier le reliant au parc de nos Ancêtres. Une ressource humaine y sera affectée pour les deux premières années (2021-2022) ainsi qu’un chargé de projet. Le respect de l’environnement est très important pour la municipalité. « Des matériaux naturels seront utilisés le plus possible. Il sera notamment en gravier au lieu d’en asphalte. L’éclairage ne sera pas éblouissant et des aménagements verts y seront installés », a fait valoir Charles Breton. À la séance municipale de décembre, les élus de Tadoussac ont adopté le projet de règlement entourant le projet. Une séance extraordinaire est prévue dans les prochains jours afin d’adopter de façon finale le règlement. Par la suite, il sera envoyé au ministère des Affaires municipales et de l’Habitation (MAMH). « Les travaux devraient débuter au début juin, selon la période dégel. On espère que le tout sera terminé au début juillet afin qu’on soit prêt à commencer la saison touristique avec le nouveau service pour éviter les problématiques vécues l’an dernier », de conclure Mme Guérin, précisant qu’une documentation sera envoyée aux citoyens qui ne pouvaient assister à la consultation publique virtuelle.Johannie Gaudreault, Initiative de journalisme local, Journal Haute-Côte-Nord
While two-thirds of Canadians believe the new U.S. president's cancellation of a key permit for the Keystone XL pipeline expansion is bad for Alberta, most outside that province and Saskatchewan believe it's time to accept the decision and move on, a new poll suggests. Alberta Premier Jason Kenney has called President Joe Biden's decision to effectively kill the $8 billion US project an insult from the United States to its biggest trading partner and wants Ottawa to slap sanctions against the U.S. However, according to a poll released Tuesday by the Angus Reid Institute, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau must balance support for Alberta's economy against national public sentiment that is deeply divided along regional lines. The institute says its latest polling data found that 65 per cent of Canadians say Biden's decision is a "bad thing" for Alberta. At the same time, the majority of respondents in B.C., Ontario, Quebec and Atlantic Canada feel it is time to accept the decision and focus instead on other issues affecting the Canada-U.S. relationship. "Despite majorities in each province recognizing the negative consequences the cancellation has for Alberta, and to a lesser extent, Canada as whole, the will to push back and try to reverse this decision is more milquetoast," said the institute's report. The poll found that three out of five Canadians are inclined to accept the pipeline's cancellation. In Quebec, 74 per cent of respondents are of that view. However, on the Prairies, a strong majority — 72 per cent in Alberta, and 67 per cent in Saskatchewan — would like to see the Biden White House undo the cancellation. People in Manitoba are split on the issue. Institute president Shachi Kurl says people in the rest of Canada feel there are other, more pressing issues. "And it's important to note this is not the issue that Canadians want to put first and foremost in terms of how they frame the next four years of Canada-U.S. relations," she said. The polling data also suggests that the Keystone XL issue is viewed through a different lens depending on where in the country respondents are from. Among Albertans, the poll found that 73 per cent see it more as an issue of jobs and the economy, while 27 per cent believe it should be seen as an issue related to climate change and the environment. In Quebec, 63 per cent view the issue more through the lens of the environment and climate change, versus 37 per cent that see it as a jobs and economy issue, the poll suggests. Political party allegiances also seemed to affect how respondents view the issue. "Given the strong support the federal Conservatives have in Alberta and Saskatchewan, it is unsurprising that four in five past Conservative voters would apply pressure to reauthorize Keystone XL. Roughly the same proportion of Liberal, NDP and Bloc Québécois supporters say the opposite," the report said. The view that the cancellation of Keystone XL will hurt Alberta's economy is highest among past Conservative Party of Canada voters, at 87 per cent, a concentration of whom are from Alberta, the poll suggests. By contrast, among past NDP voters, 52 per cent are of that view. The 1,897-kilometre pipeline, first proposed in 2005, would have carried 830,000 barrels of oilsands crude from Hardisty, Alta., to Nebraska, where it would then connect with the original Keystone that runs to U.S. Gulf Coast refineries. Emergency Keystone XL debate in Commons The House of Commons held an emergency debate Monday night regarding the scuttling of the pipeline project. Seamus O'Regan, Canada's natural resources minister, argued that while the loss of Keystone XL is a disappointment, the new U.S. administration represents an opportunity to work together with a government aligned with Canada's priorities on clean energy. Conservative Leader Erin O'Toole accused the government of not doing enough to advocate for the project that was creating thousands of good-paying jobs. "Canada has been dealt a serious blow…. These are Canadians, thousands of them, being totally forgotten and left behind by this government," he said. The Angus Reid Institute conducted its online survey from Jan. 20 to 24 among a representative randomized sample of 1,559 Canadian adults who are members of Angus Reid Forum. The institute says that for comparison purposes only, a probability sample of this size would carry a margin of error of plus or minus 2.5 percentage points, 19 times out of 20. The margin of error is larger for subsamples by province in the methodology statement.
The Federation of Sovereign Indigenous Nations would like to see Canada's next governor general come from a First Nation. On Jan. 21, former Governor General Julie Payette stepped down from her position after a workplace review found she presided over a toxic work environment. As the search for a new Queen's representative continues, the FSIN executive is asking the country to appoint the country's first ever First Nations governor general. "When the newcomers came to these lands all those years ago, the first relationship the Queen's subjects formed was with First Nations," wrote FSIN Chief Bobby Cameron in a press release. "As the representative of the Crown, it is important that we use this opportunity to honour the history of that relationship." If this happens, it would be the first time a First Nations person held the title. Since many First Nations across the country signed treaties with the Crown, the Queen has held a special status with some Indigenous people. "We want to reinvigorate the role of the Governor General and the Crown relationship with our Inherent and Treaty Rights holders," said Cameron. "This is a priority for the FSIN." The FSIN isn't the only group asking for a First Nations governor general. Last week, the Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs also asked for the honour, stating that it would help advance reconciliation. Currently, Supreme Court Chief Justice Richard Wagner is fulfilling duties as the governor general until a replacement for Payette can be found.
NEW YORK — Canadian author Souvankham Thammavongsa's “How to Pronounce Knife" is among this year's fiction finalists for the U.S.-based National Book Critics Circle prizes. The critics circle announced five nominees in each of six competitive categories Sunday, and seven finalists for an award for best first book. This year's nominees are the first under new leadership at the NBCC after many of its board members departed in 2020 amid a dispute over how to respond to the summer's Black Lives Matters protests. Among those stepping down was NBCC president Laurie Hertzel, senior books editor for the Minneapolis Star Tribune. She was replaced by David Varno, Publishers Weekly's fiction reviews editor. In the NBCC's fiction award category, Martin Amis was nominated for his autobiographical novel “Inside Story” and Randall Kenan, who died in 2020, for the story collection “If I Had Two Wings.” The other finalists were Maggie O’Farrell's “Hamnet,” Thammavongsa's “How to Pronounce Knife,” which won the 2020 Scotiabank Giller Prize, and Bryan Washington's “Memorial.” The Feminist Press, whose founder Florence Howe died last year, will receive a lifetime achievement award and has a nominee for criticism: Cristina Rivera Garza's, “Grieving: Dispatches from a Wounded Country.” New Republic critic Jo Livingston received a citation for Excellence in Reviewing. Winners will be announced March 25. Isabel Wilkerson's “Caste,” her widely read exploration of American racism; was a nonfiction finalist. The others were Walter Johnson's “The Broken Heart of America: St, Louis and the Violent History of the United States,” James Shapiro's “Shakespeare in a Divided America,” Sarah Smarsh's “She Come By It Natural: Dolly Parton and the Women Who Lived Her Songs” and Tom Zoellner's “Island on Fire: The Revolt That Ended Slavery in the British Empire.” Biography nominees included “The Dead are Arising: The Life of Malcolm X," co-written by Tamara Payne and her father, the late journalist Les Payne, and winner last fall of the National Book Award. The other finalists were Amy Stanley's “Stranger in the Shogun’s City: A Japanese Woman and Her World,” Zachary D. Carter's “The Price of Peace: Money, Democracy, and the Life of John Maynard Keynes," Heather Clark's “Red Comet: The Short Life and Blazing Art of Sylvia Plath” and Maggie Doherty's “The Equivalents: A Story of Art, Female Friendship, and Liberation in the 1960s.” In poetry, the nominees were Victoria Chang's “Obit,” Francine J. Harris' “Here Is The Sweet Hand,” Amaud Jamaul Johnson's “Imperial Liquor,” Chris Nealon's “The Shore” and Danez Smith's “Homie.” The autobiography finalists were Cathy Park Hong's “Minor Feelings: An Asian American Reckoning,” Shayla Lawson's “This Is Major: Notes on Diana Ross, Dark Girls, and Being Dope,” Riva Lehrer's “Golem Girl,” Wayétu Moore's “The Dragons, The Giant, The Women” and Alia Volz's “Home Baked: My Mom, Marijuana, and the Stoning of San Francisco.” Beside's Garza's “Grieving,” criticism nominees were Vivian Gornick's “Unfinished Business: Notes of a Chronic Re-Reader,” Nicole Fleetwood's “Marking Time." Namwali Serpell's “Stranger Faces” and Wendy A. Woloson's “Crap: A History of Cheap Stuff in America.” Three of last year's most talked about first novels, Raven Leilani's “Lustre,” Megha Majumdar's “A Burning” and Douglas Stuart's “Shuggie Bain," are nominees for the John Leonard Prize for best first book, fiction or nonfiction. The other finalists are Kerri Arsenault's “Mill Town,” Karla Cornejo Villavicencio's “The Undocumented Americans,” Brandon Taylor's “Real Life” and “C Pam Zhang's ”How Much of These Hills Is Gold." The Leonard award is named for the late literary critic, who helped found the NBCC in 1974. Hillel Italie, The Associated Press
POLITIQUE. À l’issue d’une rencontre avec des acteurs des milieux économiques, la députée de Shefford, Andréanne Larouche et son collègue d’Abitibi-Témiscamingue, Sébastien Lemire, par ailleurs vice-président du Comité permanent de l’industrie, des sciences et de la technologie, proposent un fonds propre aux régions. «Je voulais ouvrir un espace de dialogue avec des dirigeants d’organismes économiques, d’entreprises et de municipalités pour échanger sur nos propositions pour la relance», a expliqué Andréanne Larouche au sujet de sa tournée de consultations économiques. Elle a reçu de nombreux témoignages d’entrepreneurs en difficulté selon les bureaux de circonscription des deux élus. «La pénurie de main-d’œuvre est aussi un enjeu qui freine le développement économique de nos régions et qui comporte de nombreuses ramifications. Je pense à la complexité et aux délais en matière d’immigration en lien avec les travailleurs étrangers et aux problématiques de logements qui limitent grandement les possibilités d’attraction de travailleurs», analyse le député d’Abitibi-Témiscamingue, Sébastien Lemire. Sa collègue de Shefford et lui saluent les contributions des centres d’aide aux entreprises (CAE), mais ils préconisent qu’on leur donne «plus de moyens afin qu’ils assurent un soutien de proximité aux entrepreneurs.» En effet, plus de 200 000 PME, soit 20 % des emplois du secteur privé, envisagent sérieusement de mettre la clé sous la porte selon la dernière mise à jour de l’analyse de la fédération canadienne de l’entreprise indépendante. Un fonds de développement par et pour les régions Sébastien Lemire estime que les questions du développement territorial nécessitent des « solutions flexibles adaptées aux régions » et non des approches globales développées à Ottawa. En parlant d’Internet, le bloquiste annonce que le comité de l’industrie a dans ses cartons un rapport sur cet «enjeu fondamental» pour lequel sa circonscription, Abitibi-Témiscamingue, a pris 20 ans de retard. «Il faut s’assurer de démocratiser son accès pour tous, même dans les zones moins densément peuplées… il faut sortir de la logique de rentabilité », dit-il en conférence de presse dans un plaidoyer énergique sur l’accès au développement régional. Les deux élus soutiennent «la mise en place d’un fonds de développement par et pour les régions», qui devra être déployé en fonction des besoins spécifiques de celles-ci. Ils déplorent «des improvisations d’Ottawa» même s’ils reconnaissent que les programmes s’ajustent progressivement. Ils prônent «les enjeux identifiés par les régions», comme les incubateurs d’entreprises ou l’innovation territoriale plutôt que «des programmes mur à mur mal adaptés» conçus à partir des mégalopoles uniformes. En cette veille de rentrée parlementaire et en prélude au budget fédéral, Andréanne Larouche envisage de poursuivre ses consultations «afin que les programmes soient les mieux adaptés aux besoins des entrepreneurs.»Godlove Kamwa, Initiative de journalisme local, Le Canada Français