Envoy To MPs: Cabinet Failed

Ukraine’s ambassador to Canada yesterday pleaded with MPs to overrule cabinet’s waiver of Russian sanctions. “This appeasement has already failed,” Ambassador Yuliia Kovaliv told the Commons foreign affairs committee: "Just Google the history."

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Will Explain$106M Waste

The Department of Public Works promises to disclose what if anything it did to verify the credibility of federal Covid suppliers. Hurried contracting and outright theft cost taxpayers more than $100 million, records show: "Processes can always be improved."

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Feds Couldn’t Spare Truckers

The labour department days before Freedom Convoy protests against vaccine mandates complained of “significant” labour shortages in a trucking industry that could not afford to lose drivers, according to records. A cabinet proposal that interprovincial truckers show proof of vaccination was dropped a week after the protest ended: "Science changes. Lots of things are changing."

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Gov’t Plans 2023 Quake Drill

The Public Health Agency plans a 2023 earthquake drill. An earlier pandemic drill was interrupted by Covid: "If there is a significant seismic event in either British Columbia or in the Ottawa-Montréal-Québec City corridor we would be looking for an all-of-society approach."

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Can’t Be A Michigan Refugee

A federal judge has quashed an order granting three U.S. citizens from Michigan “refugee status” in Canada. The case spent six years on appeal: "There is no such thing in people’s minds, mine included, as a refugee from the United States."

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Fed Archives At Serious Risk

Hundreds of thousands of records are at “serious risk” at Library and Archives Canada after managers stored material on obsolete tape cartridges, says an in-house report. “Some of the material is on media so old Library and Archives Canada does not have the hardware to open it,” wrote auditors.

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Public Vulgarity Is No Crime

Shouting an obscenity in public is not a crime, the Newfoundland and Labrador Court of Appeal has ruled. The decision came in the case of a St. John’s motorist who hollered a drive-by vulgarity at a TV reporter and was charged with disturbing the peace: "Business in a public place may be distracted for any number of reasons including someone shouting an obscenity."

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CBC Pay Hikes Another $12M

The CBC last year paid nearly $12 million in raises in addition to $15.4 million in bonuses while management complained it was under “immense pressure” due to the pandemic, records show. Access To Information records obtained by the Canadian Taxpayers Federation confirmed pay hikes and perks were paid even as cabinet qualified the CBC for a Covid bailout: "Taxpayers have every right to question why the CBC is taking so much."

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$19M For Fed Convoy Inquiry

A judicial inquiry into cabinet’s use of emergency powers against the Freedom Convoy will cost nearly $19 million, says the Privy Council Office. Eighteen lawyers are on staff at the Public Order Emergency Commission: "The Commission has requested up to $18.8 million in funding."

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Drug Impairment Up Again

Drug-impaired driving has increased for a fourth consecutive year since Parliament legalized marijuana, Statistics Canada said yesterday. Figures were drawn from police reports nationwide: "Do you have any statistics where you’ve asked people whether they will use marijuana or use it more often after it’s legalized?"

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Campus Vax Mandates OK

Universities may continue to enforce vaccine mandates even if they’re not required by local health authorities, a labour arbitrator has ruled. The decision came as 2.2 million college and university students prepare to return to campus: "Universities are by nature gathering places that have the potential to create a significant public health risk."

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Drug-Free Prisons Act Failed

The number of drug addicts in federal prison has increased since Parliament passed a Drug-Free Prisons Act, according to Correctional Service data. Critics had questioned the Act as ineffective: "It is doubtful there is a prison in the world that is drug-free."

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Critic Only One To Lose Seat

A Bloc Québécois public safety critic who criticized cabinet’s use of emergency powers against the Freedom Convoy will be the only MP in Québec to lose her riding under federal redistricting. MP Kristina Michaud had ridiculed claims that “someone in a hot tub in the middle of Wellington Street” posed a threat to national security: "Seriously, what will it take for the government to realize?"

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Strike Costlier Than Convoy

The Department of Public Works says the Freedom Convoy cost millions in a work slowdown on Parliament Hill but acknowledged an unrelated carpenters’ strike was more significant. Cabinet to date has not detailed economic losses it attributed to the truckers' protest: "That’s not good enough."

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Don’t Want Russian Fish War

Sanctions against Putin should not include ejecting Russia from a Halifax-based fisheries group, says a Department of Fisheries briefing note. Canada would “need to consider the implications” of sending our fish inspectors to confront Russian trawlers on the high seas, it said: "If it was kicked out its vessels would still be able to fish."

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