Mikmaq lobster fishers facing new pricing hurdle

first_imgAPTN National NewsThe battles between Mi’kmaq and non-Aboriginal fishers made national news in the 1990s.But it seems the two groups have turned a corner.In fact, a different fishery dispute has brought the two sides together, at least for now.APTN National News reporter Ossie Michelin has this story.last_img

Montreal honours murdered missing women

first_imgAPTN National NewsMontreal’s Sisters in Spirit march brought out hundreds of supporters Oct. 4.They marched peacefully for an hour and a half through the city’’ downtown core, chanting and signing traditional songs.Afterwards a candlelight vigil was held followed by speeches that spoke not only of remembrance, but also hope.last_img

Une organisatrice qui a contribué à lélection dObama espère secouer le vote

first_imgCara Currie Hall, de la Nation crie d’Enoch, en Alberta, espère amener les électeurs autochtones canadiens à voter. (Photo : Brandi Morin/APTN)Brandi MorinNouvelles nationales de l’APTNUne des fondatrices du mouvement « Rock the Indigenous Vote » aux États-Unis appelle les peuples autochtones du Canada à exercer leur droit de vote.Cara Currie Hall a déclaré qu’il est temps que les voix des peuples autochtones se fassent entendre haut et fort.« Je pense qu’ensemble, nous pouvons faire résonner le tonnerre dans tout le pays », affirme-t-elle. « Nous entendons le battement des tambours. Prêtez l’oreille, écoutez-les, parce que nous nous levons! »Mme Currie Hall, qui est née et a grandi à Maskwacis, en Alberta, sur le territoire de la Première Nation de Montana, est issue d’une longue lignée de personnes influentes sur le plan politique.Le père de sa mère était un chef tribal de sa communauté.Son père, Cecile Currie Senior, fut le chef de la Première Nation de Montana dans les années 1960, tout comme son père l’avait été avant lui.Mme Currie Hall relate que son père a été l’un des initiateurs de la Déclaration des Nations Unies sur les droits des peuples autochtones et qu’il a collaboré étroitement avec Wilton Littlechild, qui a contribué à la rédaction et à l’élaboration de la Déclaration.« Mon père a été l’un des premiers à travailler à la défense de vos droits issus des traités. Le vote fait aussi partie de la défense de vos droits issus des traités.« Le gouvernement essaie de nous opprimer et d’éliminer ces droits; nous devons le faire reculer comme dans les années 1960 avec le Livre blanc. »Depuis 16 ans, Cara Currie Hall vit au Dakota du Nord, dans la réserve indienne de Fort Berthold. Son mari est un chef tribal membre du conseil de bande de la réserve.En 2007, pendant la première campagne à la présidence de Barack Obama, Mme Currie Hall a aidé à amener les Amérindiens à voter en bloc pour lui. Elle affirme que ce geste a débouché sur la nomination d’une Amérindienne au sein du personnel dirigeant du bureau du président Obama et d’un avocat amérindien au titre d’ambassadeur des États-Unis.La fille de Cara Currie Hall, Faith, en veste rose, serre la main du président Barack Obama à l’occasion d’une visite présidentielle à la tribu sioux de Standing Rock en 2014. Photo fournie à titre gracieux par Cara Currie Hall.« Nous avons aux États-Unis un président qui a reconnu que nous pouvions lui apporter un vote massif, et les Amérindiens l’ont appuyé à 80 %. »Elle déclare que les électeurs autochtones sont une force avec laquelle il faut compter.« Quand nous avons gagné, Obama a respecté ses promesses. Nous avons eu un accès et un dialogue directs avec le président », rappelle-t-elle. « Maintenant, il organise un sommet annuel axé sur le dialogue avec des chefs tribaux, et la rencontre se fait de nation à nation. »Mme Currie Hall explique que « Rock the Indigenous Vote » est un mouvement populaire, par le peuple et pour le peuple, né d’un petit réseau de personnes qui ont fait passer le mot et qui ont atteint leur objectif.Elle est persuadée qu’il serait possible d’avoir un impact similaire au Canada aux prochaines élections.Cara Currie Hall avec sa fille Faith et des amies lors de la visite du président Barack Obama à la tribu sioux de Standing Rock en 2014. Photo fournie à titre gracieux par Cara Currie Hall.La semaine dernière, elle est revenue au Canada pour aider à convaincre les Autochtones d’aller voter.« Au Canada, nous ne sommes pas pris en compte dans les statistiques. Ensemble, les Premières Nations, les Métis et les Inuits représentent plusieurs millions de personnes; ça, c’est un vote en bloc. Au moins 50 candidats autochtones tentent de se faire élire », explique-t-elle.« Voici ce que nous pouvons faire. Premièrement, nous faisons passer le mot : il faut aller voter. Deuxièmement, nous allons vraiment voter. Puis, nous renversons les statistiques », dit-elle. « Ainsi, nous devenons le bloc qui n’a jamais été pris en compte dans les sondages et les statistiques. Nous élisons ensuite 50 députés. Nous pourrions amener 50 personnes à la Chambre des communes. C’est tout à fait faisable en 14 jours! »Mme Currie Hall a déclaré que l’une de ses principales motivations la poussant à « secouer le vote autochtone » est de faire entendre et de représenter la voix des Autochtones à l’échelle du pays.« C’est là toute notre histoire : nous n’avons jamais été soutenus. Ils (les dirigeants canadiens) ont tenté par tous les moyens de nous assimiler et d’en finir avec nous, comme le font la plupart des gouvernements du monde. C’est ce que fait le gouvernement canadien aujourd’hui. »Le gouvernement fédéral a adopté la Déclaration des Nations Unies sur les droits des peuples autochtones, mais il maintient que ce document ne représente que des aspirations et qu’il n’est pas juridiquement contraignant au Canada.« Tout d’abord, il s’agit de mettre en œuvre le consentement préalable, libre et éclairé », a souligné Mme Currie Hall. « Cela signifie qu’aucun plan d’aménagement ne va de l’avant sans avoir reçu le consentement préalable, libre et éclairé des Autochtones, car ce sont eux les propriétaires du minerai et du territoire. Cela signifie que rien ne se fait sans leur plein consentement. »Elle soutient aussi que les Autochtones doivent invoquer l’inclusion du Dieu Créateur et en appeler à Lui pour s’orienter dans le processus électoral.« Nous sommes un peuple spirituel, nous prions et nous reconnaissons l’existence d’un Créateur. Dieu est le Souverain suprême. Notre peuple a compris que “souverain”, dans ce contexte, signifie qu’il y a quelqu’un au-dessus de nous et que nous avons besoin de son aide. Les répercussions de nos actions d’aujourd’hui seront ressenties par les générations qui nous suivront. »Cette semaine, Cara Currie Hall discutera avec des Chefs de partout au Canada à l’occasion d’une réunion à Enoch, en Alberta, dans le cadre du Forum ouvert sur les Premières Nations et l’élection fédérale, organisé mercredi par l’Assemblée des Premières Nations (APN).De gauche à droite : Cara Currie Hall, le Grand Chef Tony Alexis de la Confédération du Traité 6, Nicole Robertson et Sharon Seright appuient le mouvement « Rock the Indigenous Vote » lors d’une danse ronde sous forme de mobilisation éclair, jeudi dernier à Edmonton. (Photo : Brandi Morin/APTN.)Le Chef régional de l’APN pour l’Alberta, Craig Mackinaw, a déclaré qu’il appuie le mouvement « Rock the Indigenous Vote » et qu’il prévoit voter le 19 octobre.« Le gouvernement ne nous a vraiment pas écoutés, et c’est un peu pour cela que je vais aller voter », a déclaré M. Mackinaw.Il se dit d’accord avec Mme Currie Hall sur le fait que le vote autochtone pourrait avoir une incidence à l’échelle fédérale.« Quand on regarde ce qui s’est passé en Alberta (à la dernière élection provinciale), quand les gens décident d’aller voter, cela fait vraiment une différence. »À ceux qui sont indécis quant à l’exercice de leur droit de vote, Mme Currie Hall a déclaré que les traités sont enchâssés dans la constitution canadienne et que le fait de voter ne compromet en rien la souveraineté d’une nation.« La citoyenneté nous a été donnée à la signature du traité. Nous avons donc la double citoyenneté. Nous sommes un peuple souverain, nous sommes des peuples signataires de traités, mais nous sommes aussi des citoyens canadiens. Il faut voir là une occasion de changer le gouvernement auprès de qui nous sommes engagés », fait-elle valoir.Cara Currie Hall travaille au sein d’une équipe répartie dans tout le Canada afin de faire circuler le message de « Rock the Indigenous Vote ».La semaine dernière, à Edmonton, une mobilisation éclair (flashmob) a donné lieu à une danse ronde; les médias sociaux et d’autres initiatives populaires sont en marche, mais le but ultime est d’amener les gens aux bureaux de scrutin.Cara Currie Hall à la Nation crie d’Enoch, en Alberta. (Photo : Brandi Morin/APTN.)« Usez de stratégie. Nos ancêtres étaient des guerriers, et nous devons nous aussi en être aujourd’hui. Nous ne voulons pas faire de compromis. C’est pour nous une formidable occasion de changer la façon dont le monde fonctionne pour nous », soutient Mme Currie Hall. « Nous ne nous soulevons pas dans la confrontation; nous reprenons ce qui nous appartient déjà. Nous reprenons notre place dans la société, notre propriété du territoire et le mode de fonctionnement de ce gouvernement. »last_img read more

Arrest of American actress in North Dakota brings new awareness to StandingRock

first_imgDennis Ward APTN National NewsThe arrest of an American actress who is protesting the Dakota Access Pipeline project is creating a new awareness for those opposing the project.Shailene Woodley, who plays Edward Snowden’s girlfriend in Oliver Stone’s movie “Snowden” recorded her arrest near Standing Rock, North Dakota Monday.It comes amid another legal defeat for the Sioux Tribe and a beefing up of law enforcement.See related stories: Standing Rock dward@aptn.calast_img

RCMP investigating double homicide on Kwanlin Dun First Nation in Whitehorse

first_imgShirley McLeanAPTN National NewsA Yukon mother who lost her daughter 10 years ago now joins her on the list of the murdered and missing Indigenous women as Whitehorse RCMP investigate a double homicide of two First Nation women.Police said Sarah MacIntosh, 53, a member of Kwanlin Dün First Nation, and Wendy Margaret Carlick, 51, from the Kaska Nation were found together in the same home.Elaine Shorty lives in McIntyre and has known MacIntosh since they were children.She said it’s devastating and tragic news.“Sarah had a heart of gold and a soft soul, she would never hurt anybody and it’s really shocking,” she said. “Especially Wendy, her daughter was murdered and that’s unsolved almost 10 years ago.”Sarah MacIntosh.A hiker found the body of 19-year-old Angel Carlick in a shallow grave in a rural subdivision outside of Whitehorse in November 2007 six months after she went missing from downtown Whitehorse and just days before her high school graduation.In an interview with APTN during the annual sisters in spirit march held every year on October 4th, Wendy Carlick wore white in honour of her daughter“Everyday I think of my daughter so I want to be dressed in white for Angel for the angel that she is,” she said.Angel Carlick’s death laid heavy on her mother. She would get yearly updates in April from the police.Tributes have sprung up around the city in memory of the slain women and the First Nation has a sacred fire burning in the community for members to gather and pray.Whitehorse RCMP isn’t releasing any more details as they continue to investigate this scene and another suspicious death.Greg Alvin Dawson, 45, also from the Kwanlin Dun First Nation was found in a Whitehorse home on April 6.According to police, foul play could not be ruled out in his death.Elaine Shorty says she’s fearful for her community“The reality is that our community is unsafe and why is it unsafe i don’t’ know it’s been really quiet it’s been very quiet at night, normally you would see people wandering the streets but it’s quiet,” she said. “I think people are really afraid. It’s devastating you don’t’ even see the street people out and who wants to live like that.”RCMP say the public is not at risksmclean@aptn.calast_img read more

Next set of hearing dates for mmiwg inquiry

first_imgAPTN NewsInformation is starting to trickle out about the next phase of the missing and murdered inquiry.Four hearings – two ‘expert’ and two ‘institutional’ – are scheduled for Quebec, Toronto and Saskatchewan in May and June.A fourth location has yet to be named, the inquiry said in a release Monday.Described as Parts II and III of the “truth-gathering process,” this is where commissioners will grill decision-makers, policy-setters and professionals in the world of politics, policing and child welfare.There was no response to APTN’s request for more information about who will be appearing.But commissioners have said they will subpoena top figures to help them understand the systems that contribute to ongoing violence against Indigenous women and girls.Their final report is due at the end of 2018 unless they get the two-year extension and budget boost they are seeking.A federal government spokesman said no decision has yet been made on an extension.Hearings into Part I and Part II for May and June:*First Expert Hearing – May 14-17, 2018 – Human Rights Framework, Quebec City*Second Expert Hearing – June 12-14, 2018 – Racism, Greater Toronto Area*First Institutional Hearing – May 28-June 1, 2018 – Government Services*Second Institutional Hearing – June 25-June 29, 2018 – Police policies and practices, Reginalast_img read more

Jody WilsonRaybould Our political panel weighs in on her bombshell testimony

first_imgNation to NationIt’s now a day after Jody Wilson-Raybould bombshell testimony at the federal justice committee Wednesday in Ottawa.It was the first time she was able to speak openly after weeks of a scandal that never went away.Wilson-Raybould testified Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and his staff applied sustained pressure to intervene in the bribery case of SNC-Lavalin.She refused, and believes that’s why she was shuffled from justice minister and attorney general to veteran’s affairs before she finally resigned from cabinet.Trudeau said he “completely disagreed” with Wilson-Raybould later Wednesday night.So we asked our political panel if they believed her?“My view in this is immaterial,” said Marc Miller, the parliamentary secretary to Crown-Indigenous Relations.Then Miller said he believed Trudeau.“I believe the prime minister acted as he should of and vigorous conversations should have happened between the prime minister and the attorney general.”He also said Wilson-Raybould said no laws were broken and she wasn’t directed.The Conservative Indigenous affairs critic said anyone who even read her testimony believed the former attorney general.“There is without question in my mind,” she indicated. “She was subjected to severe and ongoing pressure,” said Cathy McLeod.Wilson-Raybould also said the pressure included veiled threats from Trudeau, his senior staff, the top public servant and Finance Minister Bill Morneau’s office to halt a criminal prosecution of the Montreal engineering giant.She told the committee she was “hounded” to end the prosecution for months after the director of public prosecutions, Kathleen Roussel, had rejected the idea of negotiating a remediation agreement with SNC-Lavalin and long after she had unequivocally declared that she would not direct Roussel to reverse her decision.“For a period of approximately four months, between September and December of 2018, I experienced a consistent and sustained effort by many people within the government to seek to politically interfere in the exercise of prosecutorial discretion in my role as the attorney general of Canada,” she told the committee.Speaking at an event in St. Hubert, Que. Wednesday evening, Trudeau denied any wrongdoing.“I strongly maintain, as I have from the beginning, that I and my staff have always acted appropriately and professionally. I therefore completely disagree with the former attorney general’s characterization of events.”Pressed by reporters on details contained in Wilson-Raybould’s testimony, Trudeau said he had not yet had a chance to listen to it in its entirety.NDP MP Niki Ashton said on Nation to Nation that she was shocked by the testimony.“I admire her tremendously,” said Ashton. “Partisanship aside, this is a strong woman, a strong Indigenous woman, a trailblazer who yesterday spoke her truth.”N2N@aptn.ca– with APTN News files.last_img read more

Most actively traded companies on the TSX

first_imgSome of the most active companies traded Friday on the Toronto Stock Exchange:Toronto Stock Exchange (15,454.23, down 0.69 of a point):Bombardier Inc. (TSX:BBD.B). Aerospace, rail equipment. Down 14 cents, or 5.91 per cent, to $2.23 on 9.6 million shares.Pembina Pipeline Corp. (TSX:PPL). Oil and gas. Down 71 cents, or 1.66 per cent, to $42.12 on 5.2 million shares.Cenovus Energy Inc. (TSX:CVE). Oil and gas. Up 24 cents, or 1.93 per cent, to $12.69 on 4.6 million shares.Polaris Materials Corp. (TSX:PLS). Building Materials. Up 84 cents, or 30.43 per cent, to $3.60 on 4.5 million shares.Air Canada (TSX:AC). Airline. Up $1.11, or 4.20 per cent, to $27.51 on 3.8 million shares.ECN Capital Corp. (TSX:ECN). Financial Services. Up 19 cents, or 5.04 per cent, to $3.96 on 3.7 million shares.Companies reporting major news:Restaurant Brands International Inc. (TSX:QSR). Fast food restaurants. Down 22 cents, or 0.27 per cent, to $79.97 on 227,813 shares. A group representing frustrated Tim Hortons franchisees says its board members have been accused by the company of helping leak confidential information. The Great White North Franchisee Association said its board members have been served with notices of default.last_img read more

TSX falls on energy loonie lower after Bank of Canada rate announcement

first_imgTORONTO – The Toronto stock index dipped into the red as plunging oil prices outweighed gains in financials on Wednesday, while the loonie fell nearly half a cent following the Bank of Canada’s latest decision to keep interest rates on hold.The S&P/TSX composite index was down 6.90 points to 15,908.70. Gains by several of Canada’s biggest lenders — including Bank of Montreal, Bank of Nova Scotia and Royal Bank of Canada — weren’t enough to compensate for a nose-diving energy sector, which was down more than two per cent at the closing of markets.The January crude contract tumbled US$1.66 to US$55.96 per barrel, a sharp decline that Allan Small, senior investment adviser at HollisWealth, partially attributed to “artificially” inflated prices based on OPEC and non-OPEC members’ manipulation of production levels.The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries cartel and a group of allied oil-producing nations agreed last week to extend crude output cuts until the end of next year, continuing a policy that led to a significant rise in the price of oil over the past year.“If they were producing at normal rates, the price of oil would probably be around US$35 to US$40,” Small said. “But obviously they’re cutting back and trying to keep the price of oil higher.”“Meanwhile, the United States is producing at record levels,” he added.South of the border, American markets — which had held steady for most of Wednesday following drops for markets around the world — finished the trading session mixed.In New York, the Dow Jones industrial average fell 39.73 points to 24,140.91. The S&P 500 index was down 0.30 of a point to 2,629.27 and the Nasdaq composite index was up 14.17 points to 6,776.38.In currency markets, the Canadian dollar closed at an average trading price of 78.39 cents US, down 0.47 of a U.S. cent after the Bank of Canada stuck with its trend-setting interest rate Wednesday — but it offered fresh, yet cautious, warnings to Canadians that increases are likely on the way.The central bank has now left the rate locked at one per cent for two straight policy announcements after the strengthening economy prompted it to raise it twice in the summer.“I’m very happy about that. The last thing I think we wanted to do as a nation for the economy is to get in front of the (U.S. Federal Reserve), for us to start raising rates further before the Fed does,” said Small. “Because then you’d see our loonie at 85 cents (US) …. and that wouldn’t do anyone any good.”“The Band of Canada did a wise thing not to raise rates. Let the U.S. raise rates in December. Let our dollar fall down to 75 cents. It’s a good thing for our economy. A weaker dollar makes a lot of sense,” he said.Elsewhere in commodities, the January natural gas contract was up one cent at US$2.92 per mmBTU, the February gold contract added US$1.20 to US$1,266.10 an ounce and the March copper contract was up two cents to US$2.96 a pound.last_img read more

Some Canadian companies start new year with gains from US tax cuts

first_imgMONTREAL – Some Canadian companies that earn a high share of their revenues in the United States stand to save big from a large reduction in the corporate tax rate, say industry experts.New Flyer (TSX:NFI) and Boyd Group Income Fund (TSX:BYD.UN), which earn more than 80 per cent of their sales south of the border, will be among those that are most impacted, an AltaCorp Capital report said Tuesday.Analyst Chris Murray said that among engineering and construction firms, Stantec (TSX:STN) and WSP Global (TSX:WSP) will be “favourably impacted” from the tax changes and planned American infrastructure spending.“We would expect that the introduction of new tax rules could serve as a catalyst for accelerated acquisition activity as a number of sellers see a window in which to divest their business to take advantage of the changes, benefiting the growth via acquisition strategies,” he wrote in a report.Tax changes approved by the Republican-led Congress and signed by President Donald Trump before Christmas cut the corporate income tax rate to 21 per cent effective Monday, from 35 per cent.Molson Coors, headquartered in Denver and Montreal, declined to provide details about how the tax changes will affect the brewery ahead of its quarterly results Feb. 14. However, 70 per cent of the beverage company’s revenues come from south of the border, said spokesman Colin Wheeler.Brittany Weissman of Edward Jones expects Molson Coors will gain despite losing some of the cash tax benefit it has had from its multibillion-dollar acquisition of Miller Coors.“Directionally it should be a net net benefit … but how much it is too soon to say,” she said in an interview.Weissman also believes dairy processor Saputo Inc. (TSX:SAP) stands to gain because almost half of its business is located in the United States.However, she said Montreal-based clothing manufacturer Gildan (TSX:GIL) is already subject to a very low tax rate because it is domiciled in Barbados.Several Canadian firms, including Quebec-headquartered Valeant Pharmaceuticals International Inc. (TSX:VRX) and Canadian National Railway (TSX:CNR), said they are studying the tax changes.“We are assessing the impact of the bill and its potential impact to the company in both the near-term and long-term,” Valeant spokeswoman Lainie Keller wrote in an email.In a report before the tax changes were approved, RBC Capital Markets said large tax reductions could lead to a significant shift in winners and losers.“We think it could have a profound and positive impact on TSX performance, given its cyclical tilt,” Matthew Barasch wrote Sept. 26.However, he warned that clouding the outlook is the fact that most Canadian and U.S. companies operating south of the border actually pay a lower effective tax rate than statutory corporate tax rate.“While a comparison of statutory tax rates (inclusive of all state and local taxes) suggests that U.S. rates are far higher than most other countries, a comparison of effective tax rates suggests something different.”PricewaterhouseCoopers says the implications of the tax law on Canadian-owned businesses can be significant.“The various provisions may be beneficial or detrimental. Thus, it is important to give careful consideration to the specific implications for your operations so that value is preserved when possible,” it wrote to clients after the bill was passed.Barasch said some Canadian sectors such as oil and gas producers, telecommunications, grocers and Canadian retailers like Dollarama won’t be impacted, while some Canadian banks and insurance companies will get some earnings growth.Most real estate companies would not be directly impacted because of their REIT structures, but non REITs such as FirstService Corp. and Colliers International Group Inc. (TSX:CIGI), with large U.S. footprints stand to benefit materially.He said it’s difficult to quantify the impact for convenience store operator Alimentation Couche-Tard (TSX:ATD.B), even though it gets nearly 70 per cent of its revenues from the U.S.last_img read more

Most actively traded companies on the TSX

first_imgSome of the most active companies traded Thursday on the Toronto Stock Exchange:Toronto Stock Exchange (15,729.40, up 107.93 points)Baytex Energy Corp. (TSX:BTE). Oil and gas. Down 19 cents, or 3.31 per cent, to $5.55 on 12.2 million shares.Bombardier Inc. (TSX:BBD.B). Aerospace, rail equipment. Up 12 cents, or 3.00 per cent, to $4.12 on 11.8 million shares.Manulife Financial Corp. (TSX:MFC). Financial Services. Up 32 cents, or 1.35 per cent, to $24.09 on 5.3 million shares.Crescent Point Energy (TSX:CPG). Oil and gas. Down 20 cents, or 1.93 per cent, to $10.18 on 5.1 million shares. Its CEO says he will increase efforts to address concerns after shareholders rejected a dissident slate of four directors, but defeated a motion supporting the company’s approach to executive compensation. The company’s annual general meeting in Calgary was closed to the media, but loud applause echoed down the hall as the director voting results were announced.Cenovus Energy Inc. (TSX:CVE). Oil and gas. Up three cents, or 0.23 per cent, to $13.02 on 4.4 million shares.Athabasca Oil Corp. (TSX:ATH). Oil and gas. Up 11 cents, or 7.05 per cent, to $1.67 on 4.4 million shares.Companies reporting major news:Loblaw Companies Ltd. (TSX:L). Grocer. Up 12 cents, or 0.19 per cent, to $64.77 on 388,949 shares. The company’s subsidiary No Frills says a new clothing line celebrating savvy discount shoppers will launch its online store on Monday. The four-decade old chain says the Hauler brand is born from customers’ loyalty to their local No Frills shops and excitement around previous No-Frills branded swag.last_img read more

Biggest lure for Amazon to Virginia may be campus not cash

first_imgALEXANDRIA, Va. — As he assessed his state’s winning effort to lure 25,000 Amazon jobs to northern Virginia, Gov. Ralph Northam said the key may not have been the hundreds of millions of dollars that were promised if the company delivered on its job-creation promises — indeed, many states offered much richer incentive packages.Instead, he said what made Virginia’s bid distinct was “investments in our people,” particularly a $1 billion Virginia Tech University graduate campus to be built near the new Amazon headquarters that will churn out hundreds of qualified high-tech workers annually.“Virginia’s proposal to Amazon represents a new model of economic development for the 21st century,” Northam said in a celebratory press event Tuesday in an old warehouse that will be knocked down to create Amazon office space. “The vast majority of the commonwealth’s proposal is investments in our people that will align with Amazon’s long-term goals.”The linchpin of that investment is the “Innovation Campus” planned for the Potomac Yard neighbourhood of Alexandria, just a couple miles south of where Amazon will be.The campus will be part of Virginia Tech, and the first 100 master’s degree students will enrol next year in temporary space. When it’s finished, the campus will enrol 750 master’s degree candidates, train hundreds of doctoral students and will include on-campus housing, officials said.Stephanie Landrum, director of economic development in Alexandria, suggested that when Virginians look back on Tuesday’s announcement, the establishment of the Virginia Tech campus may be even more monumental than Amazon’s arrival. She said the campus will not only feed Amazon but other tech companies that have been drawn to the region, and are diversifying the region’s economy from its large reliance on the federal government and defence spending.Rep. Don Beyer, a Democrat who represents the area, said he expects the campus to eventually rival Ivy League schools and MIT in prestige for developing high-quality tech workers.“The reason Amazon is coming is that they see already the talent that is here in northern Virginia,” Beyer said.Virginia Tech said the plans for the Innovation Campus mesh perfectly with the university’s longstanding plans to increase its footprint in northern Virginia and meet demand for computer science and other high-tech degrees. Amazon’s other new headquarters will be built in a New York City neighbourhood that is near a new technology-oriented graduate school called Cornell Tech.“We need to be where our partners are,” said Virginia Tech President Tim Sands. “Here we have the opportunity to be within 2 miles of Amazon.”The plan calls for the state and Virginia Tech to each commit $250 million to the campus. The rest will be raised through philanthropic efforts and public-private partnerships, officials said.In neighbouring Arlington County, where Amazon will be physically located, officials echoed the sentiment that the incentives offered to Amazon mesh with existing plans for infrastructure and transportation improvements, and long-term plans to remake the Crystal City neighbourhood.Arlington’s incentive package — which includes hundreds of millions in transportation improvements, many of which were already included in long-range plans — is designed not so much to lure Amazon with cash but to ensure Amazon and the county have a mutually beneficial environment, said Arlington County Board Chair Katie Cristol.“This announcement not only aligns with our existing plans and serves Amazon’s needs but will also benefit our Arlington community,” Cristol said.Still, the incentive package was met by some with skepticism that the planned transportation improvements will be insufficient to alleviate traffic and that the incentives still amount to corporate welfare.“We’re going to be enriching some of the wealthiest people in the world at the expense of Virginians who work hard to make ends meet,” said Del. Lee Carter, a Democrat who represents Manassas and bills himself as a democratic socialist. “We’re going to crowd schools, clog roads, and we’re paying for the privilege.”Matthew Barakat, The Associated Presslast_img read more

Skilled immigrant doesnt want welfare but Quebec system makes it attractive

first_imgMONTREAL — Hugo Hernan Ruiz, a 42-year-old systems engineer from Colombia, has a master’s degree in his field and ran the IT department of an oil company in his home country.His French is excellent considering he arrived in Quebec in 2016 with little knowledge of the language. But like many highly educated newcomers to the province, Ruiz has struggled to find work despite being selected as a skilled immigrant by provincial authorities.After failing to find a job, he decided to open his own consulting business to take advantage of his South American contacts. He applied for a provincial program that assists budding entrepreneurs with grants, marketing and training.But he was rejected because the program was for people who were on welfare or who had received Employment Insurance — and he fit neither category.It would become a common refrain, he said, as he tried unsuccessfully to navigate the Quebec bureaucracy.“I think there needs to be a reflection,” Ruiz said over coffee at a strip mall in the Montreal suburb of Laval, where he settled with his wife and two children. “What happens to immigrants who are trying to succeed and who don’t come here to live off the government?”As Quebec Premier Francois Legault moves to reduce immigration in order, he says, to ensure newcomers learn French and find work, Ruiz’s case highlights the obstacles and contradictions facing educated immigrants who are neither poor nor wealthy.Yann Hairaud, head of a Montreal-based immigrant employment centre, said he knows of cases where skilled workers find options closed to them because they aren’t on welfare.“Unfortunately yes,” he said in an interview. “These situations can happen. There is a certain incoherence in some of the rules that exist for newcomers.”Shortly after Ruiz arrived in Quebec, he enrolled in a French-language program to study what’s known as the internet of things — the network of objects that contain electronics and can interact with one another.“I thought that instead of taking French courses, I would take a French-language course in my field, so I would learn both,” he said.He graduated with a vocational certificate last August — but because the government didn’t fully pay for his training, more doors were closed to him. A paid public-sector internship caught his eye, but to get it he had to qualify for a provincial salary subsidy.He was rejected for the subsidy, he explained, because the government hadn’t paid for his training.“I brought all my savings with me (from Colombia) and I prepared financially in order to avoid asking for welfare,” Ruiz said. “I’m not criticizing the Employment Department or the government. But I think the country needs to reflect on whether the immigration system encourages immigrants to go on welfare.”Dominique Anglade, immigration critic for the provincial Liberals, has not heard of immigrants going on welfare to land jobs, but she acknowledged those on social assistance have a certain advantage.Anglade, a former economy minister, said in an interview that “a high percentage” of immigrants fail to complete the necessary training to have their skills recognized in Quebec, in part because of the high costs involved.“When you go on welfare, you do have some support that can help you actually accomplish finding a job and everything else,” she said. She blamed the discrepancy on government departments not working hand in hand.Immigration Department spokesperson Chantal Bouchard, said integration “is obviously a priority” but referred questions about the obstacles facing skilled immigrants to the Employment Department.Employment Department spokesman Vincent Breton did not respond directly to questions about whether people who are not receiving welfare are at a disadvantage when seeking work.“As you know, the Employment Department offers many measures and programs for those who want to integrate into the workforce,” Breton said in an email, adding that each file is analyzed on its individual merits.Hairaud, whose organization CITIM works with about 1,800 immigrants a year, said the Employment Department gives priority to certain groups, including those who are on welfare or unemployment insurance.Quebec seeks out skilled workers, he noted, but they are ineligible for government support programs if they are deemed too successful.“It’s contradictory, the right hand doesn’t know what the left is doing,” Hairaud said.Despite the difficulties, the employment landscape is improving for immigrants, partly due to Quebec’s strong economy. In August 2018, the unemployment rate for immigrants between the ages of 25 and 54 fell to 6.1 per cent after hovering above 10 per cent for much of the previous decade, the Institut du Quebec reported.Ruiz said he’s happy in Canada. His two young children are in school, and he wants to start a new life here. But he questions the value Canada places on the first generation of immigrants.“My experience looking for work has been bizarre,” he said. “What is the life for professionals who come here? Is the first generation of immigrants important to Canada?”Giuseppe Valiante, The Canadian Presslast_img read more

German factory orders up for 3rd straight month in October

first_imgBERLIN — German factory orders edged up 0.3 per cent in October as a large increase in demand from other countries in the eurozone outweighed a fall in domestic orders.The month-on-month rise reported Thursday by the Economy Ministry was the third consecutive increase in orders, an important indicator for Europe’s biggest economy. They were up 0.1 per cent in September and 2.3 per cent in August.In October, orders from fellow members of the 19-nation eurozone rose 7.3 per cent and those from other countries increased 0.3 per cent. However, orders from inside Germany dropped 3.2 per cent.Germany’s gross domestic product declined 0.2 per cent in the third quarter compared with the previous three-month period, due in part to bottlenecks in getting new cars certified under tougher emissions standards.The Associated Presslast_img read more

Witnesss apartment searched in Germany hacking case

first_imgBERLIN — German investigators say they have searched the apartment of a witness in their probe of an alleged hacking case that saw hundreds of politicians’ and celebrities’ private information posted online.The Federal Criminal Police Office said the search took place in Heilbronn in southwestern Germany on Sunday. It didn’t give further details in a Twitter post Monday. The office did say that isolated cases of compromised data were reported to police last year.German media reported last week that as many as 1,000 politicians and celebrities are believed to have been affected by the breach of data.Authorities are still investigating who was behind the theft and publication of the information, which included data on members of all parties in parliament except those from the far-right Alternative for Germany party.The Associated Presslast_img read more

Vivian Krause to speak at FSJ for LNG rally in April

first_imgIn addition to Krause, Yu said that Peace River North MLA Dan Davies has confirmed his participation in this year’s rally, while other MLA’s both from the BC Liberal Party and the NDP have also been invited, though no other names have yet confirmed. Yu explained that his organization’s official stance is that it will work with the governing New Democrats to get an LNG export industry developed in the province. He added that that he hopes Premier John Horgan will accept an invitation to the rally after his predecessor spoke in Centennial Park two years ago.According to Yu, the venue for next month’s LNG rally is not yet known, but that he hopes to find a suitable venue and sponsors over the next few days. FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. — After a pair of rallies in Fort St. John in the Spring of 2016, including one attended by then-Premier Christy Clark, local non-profit organization FSJ for LNG will once again be holding a rally in Fort St. John this Spring.FSJ for LNG founder Alan Yu said that after members of his organization were among several hundred supporters of Canada’s petroleum industry to rally in downtown Vancouver last weekend, he decided that his organization should once again hold a rally in support of B.C. developing a liquified natural gas industry. Yu said that though 2017 featured some disheartening news for LNG, including Petronas cancelling its proposed Pacific NorthWest LNG project, 2018 is shaping up to be much more optimistic as a global supply glut of LNG is forecast to turn into a shortage in just a few years.Yu said that this year, FSJ for LNG has confirmed that Vivian Krause is set to deliver a keynote address at this year’s rally, which is scheduled for Saturday, April 21st. Krause is a controversial Vancouver-based blogger and researcher who has received both praise and condemnation for her research into environmental charities in Canada, particularly their source of funding. In addition to hosting her Fair Questions blog, Krause also writes for The Financial Post.last_img read more

Youth Advisory Council is seeking new members from 1218 years old

first_imgYAC meets the 1st & 3rd Tuesday of each month at City Hall from 4:30-5:30 pm. The next meeting is Tuesday, February 5, 2019.For more information email communitydevelopment@fortstjohn.ca FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. – The Youth Advisory Council (YAC) is seeking youth between 12-18 years that want to do something in the community geared towards youth.When you join YAC you will; Organize Activities Gain Volunteer ExperienceEnhance Public SpeakingGain Leadership OpportunitiesRyan Harvey, Communications Coordinator shared, “The Youth Advisory Council (YAC) of Fort St. John was developed in 2010 as a potential solution toward anti-social behaviour in our community, to get a better sense of what Fort St. John’s youth would like to see in Fort St. John, and to act as a liaison between the youth of the community and City Council.”last_img read more

BJP to reveal Modi govts works toward fulfilling 2014 promises

first_imgNew Delhi: The BJP is set to come out with details of the Modi government’s works toward fulfilling the promises it had made in its manifesto in 2014, with party sources asserting that over 520 of a total of 549 assurances given were either met or work on them is successfully going on. The decision assumes significance as ahead of the coming general election opposition parties have accused the BJP of failing to fulfil the promises it had made before the last Lok Sabha polls. A team of BJP leaders has been entrusted with the task of collating details of the work the Prime Minister Narendra Modi-led government had done in fulfilling these promises, like on generating employment, proving people social security and enhancing internal security. A party leader privy to the development said the BJP had under different agenda items made nearly 549 promises before the last general election. “As many as 520 of them have either been fulfilled or work on them has been going on as their completion require a certain time period,” he said. Another party leader said there are several other “successful” initiatives of the government, such as Ujjwala and Mudra, which were not part of the BJP’s manifesto but have benefited a large number of people. The government provided free LPG connection to the poor households under the Ujjwala scheme while loans are provided for self-employment under Mudra. BJP vice-president Vinay Sahasrabuddhe said the Modi government stands out for working on a long-term agenda and overcoming the “attraction of quick-fixes by turning its back on populism”. He cited implementation of the GST as an example of the government’s long-term vision and asserted that the BJP has become the only party which has brought into electoral fray the politics of performance and development. “Is an opposition party like the Congress telling people that this is what it had done for them when it was in power so that they should vote for it?” he asked, slamming the BJP’s rivals for their negative agenda. The Modi government has vastly expanded social security umbrella and given dignity, especially to the poor while its track record on internal and external security fronts are also unmatched, Sahasrabuddhe said.last_img read more

Mbappeless PSG lose fail to clinch French crown

first_imgNantes (France): Paris Saint-Germain failed to the seal the Ligue 1 title for the third match running after a second-string line-up without dropped Kylian Mbappe took the champions to their second defeat in a matter of days, 3-2 at Nantes. A Diego Carlos brace and Majeed Waris’ tap-in inflicted a third league loss on Thomas Tuchel’s side, who were hammered 5-1 at second-placed Lille on Sunday and drew with Strasbourg the previous week, despite Dani Alves’ stunning opener and substitute Metehan Guclu pulling one back late on. However PSG, who were also missing a host of other first-team players through injuries and suspension, remain 17 points clear with six games left. The runaway leaders will win their sixth title in seven years on Sunday if Lille fail to win at Toulouse and they then beat struggling Monaco. Tuchel refused to reveal if he left Mbappe out of the squad for blasting his teammates for “lacking personality” after the Lille loss, saying that there would be “no explanation” of his decision. “It’s very easy to analyse, it was a very bad performance, we deserved to lose,” said Tuchel. “We controlled the game at Lille but today there was no performance for 90 minutes. “You can lose and you can make mistakes, and we will always defend the players if we feel that they’ve played with a great attitude and hunger. But today it is not possible.” Depleted PSG had to thank Gianluigi Buffon 12 minutes in when he managed to push away Kalifa Coulibaly’s header from point-blank range, and seven minutes later Alves appeared to have calmed Parisian nerves with his wonder strike. There looked to be little on when the Brazilian collected Leandro Paredes’ simple pass, but he quickly lashed an unstoppable dipping drive past Maxime Dupe to score his first Ligue 1 goal this season. However just three minutes after the opener Diego Carlos was allowed too much space to nod home Valentin Ronger inswinging corner. PSG continued to struggle despite the odd flash from Moussa Diaby, and the hosts grabbed a deserved second just before the break. Coulibaly was at the heart of it, brushing Thilo Kehrer off the ball on the left flank, before cutting back to Samuel Moutoussamy, whose miss-hit shoot evaded the dozing PSG defence and found Waris for the simplest of tap-ins.last_img read more