In the news today, Mar. 5 - InfoNews

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In the news today, Mar. 5

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Liberal MP Jane Philpott take part in a cabinet shuffle at Rideau Hall in Ottawa on Monday, Jan. 14, 2019. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
March 05, 2019 - 1:15 AM

Eight stories in the news for Tuesday, Mar. 5

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PM MORE CONCILIATORY AFTER SECOND MINISTER RESIGNS OVER SNC-LAVALIN

Treasury Board president Jane Philpott resigned from cabinet Monday saying she's lost confidence in the way the government has dealt with criminal charges against Montreal engineering giant SNC Lavalin. It follows the resignation of former attorney general Jody Wilson-Raybould amid allegations the Prime Minister's Office improperly pressured her to stop a criminal prosecution of SNC-Lavalin. At a rally in Toronto last night Prime Minister Justin Trudeau didn't repeat his message that no undue pressure was exerted. Rather, he adopted a more conciliatory tone saying the affair has "generated an important discussion." He also thanked Philpott for her service and praised her various accomplishments.

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ENERGY PROJECT REBATES FOR SMALL BUSINESS COMING

Ottawa's plan to ease the carbon-price burden on small businesses will include rebate payments to cover some of the cost of making energy-efficiency upgrades. Environment Minister Catherine McKenna — who kicked off a month-long carbon-price tour in Ottawa yesterday — said the final details of the plan are being worked out with business associations. The federal carbon price of $20 per tonne of carbon dioxide will start being charged April 1 on fossil-fuel inputs in Ontario, Manitoba, Saskatchewan and New Brunswick — the four provinces without an equivalent provincial carbon price.

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SASKATCHEWAN PREMIER WANTS CARBON TAX DELAYED

Saskatchewan Premier Scott Moe is asking Ottawa to hold off on imposing a carbon tax next month until the province's Court of Appeal has ruled on its constitutionality. Saskatchewan is challenging the federal government's ability to levy such a charge. It argues Ottawa's plan is unconstitutional because it doesn't respect provincial sovereignty and will not be evenly applied across all jurisdictions. Ottawa, however, argues it can impose the tax on April 1 because climate change is a national issue.

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MORE MONEY NEEDED FOR WOMEN'S CAUSES: OXFAM CANADA

Oxfam Canada says the Trudeau government has enacted genuinely feminist policies, but it needs to back them up with more money if it wants to make a lasting difference. The charity has released its 2019 feminist scorecard ahead of International Women's Day on Friday. The scorecard assesses steps the government has taken over the past year to make meaningful progress toward gender equity. It says that overall it has made good progress in advancing its feminist agenda. However, the report stresses that more federal investments are needed for child care and to reduce gender-based violence.

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COERCED STERILIZATION A 'CRISIS': CHIEF

An Alberta First Nations leader says ongoing concerns about coerced sterilization of Indigenous women is nothing short of a "crisis" and he wants to see a public inquiry into the allegations. Athabasca Chipewyan First Nation Chief Allan Adam says the issue must also be part of reconciliation efforts, and he's crying out to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau for additional action. In December, the federal government proposed a federal-provincial-territorial working group to discuss the issue after the United Nations Committee Against Torture urged Canada to address it.

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B.C. GROUP GOES TO COURT OVER INMATE SEGREGATION

Prisoners advocates are asking a Federal Court to intervene in the case of a 32-year-old Dene man who they say has spent most of his adult life in segregation and is at risk of committing suicide. Court documents show that convicted dangerous offender Joey Toutsaint has spent more than 2,000 days in segregation at different federal institutions. Prisoners' Legal Services recently filed for an injunction requesting he be transferred from the maximum-security Saskatchewan Penitentiary in Prince Albert to the Regional Psychiatric Centre in Saskatoon, so he can receive one-on-one therapy and access to cultural practices.

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OBAMA WARNS ABOUT POLITICS DRIVEN BY PASSION NOT FACTS

Barack Obama says there is a danger in the United States and around the world with politics being driven by passions disconnected from facts. The former president spoke last night to a sold-out crowd at Winnipeg's Bell MTS Centre during the first Canadian stop of his "Conversation with President Barack Obama" tour. While never mentioning current U.S. President Donald Trump, Obama said he fears that if there's a major crisis, the response may not follow common sense or practicality. The 44th American president will speak in Calgary later today.

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BIRD NUMBERS NEAR NORMAL IN WATERTON COUNT

An annual bird count in Alberta's Waterton Lakes National Park is providing some optimism. Researchers say it will take years before they're able to determine the overall impact a devastating wildfire in 2017 had on species in the park. But the bird count in December found a total of 21 bird species. Waterton Lakes ecosystem scientist Kim Pearson says that's pretty much on par with averages seen in the past. The massive wildfire closed the park for weeks and drastically changed the area's landscape.

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ALSO IN THE NEWS:

— Hearing in Halifax on whether the QuadrigaCX CCAA stay order should be extended another 30 days.

— Former prime minister Brian Mulroney speaks at an Ottawa conference looking at transformative policies of Canadian prime ministers.

— Prime Minister Justin Trudeau participates in discussion at Prospectors & Developers Association of Canada Convention in Toronto.

— Justin Trudeau visits Canadian Tire in Regina to discuss Climate Action Incentive payments and addresses Liberal party fundraising event.

— A Conversation with former U.S. president Barack Obama at Calgary's Scotiabank Saddledome.

— Barack Obama gives keynote speech at Greater Vancouver Board of Trade event.

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News from © The Canadian Press, 2019
The Canadian Press

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