Gov’t Fines Publisher $3,000

Commissioner of Elections Yves Côté has fined a publisher $3,000 for a book. Investigators claimed the publication was barred by the Elections Act as unregulated campaign activity: "I simply won't pay. I just won't."

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A Sunday Poem: “Enigma”

Poet Shai Ben-Shalom, an Israeli-born biologist, examines current events in the Blacklock’s tradition each and every Sunday: “If everyone in Heaven unites with their high school crush, it may not be Heaven for their legal spouse…”

Book Review — Murder In Authie

In the village of Authie, France, population 1500, it’s still possible to score a $56 hotel room with a nearby McDonald’s rated “catastrophique” on TripAdvisor. There is also a Rue des Canadiens “where the bodies of two murdered soldiers were placed on the street so that a tank could repeatedly run over them,” explains Canadian Battlefields Of The Second World War. In Authie in 1944 “wildly excited Hitler Youth began murdering Canadians while the battle still raged and continued killing prisoners systematically after the fighting ceased.” Murder victims numbered 37.

Authors Terry Copp and Matt Baker lead readers on an intriguing tour of the Normandy countryside that witnessed gallantry and atrocity 77 years ago. Take a drive down Highway D170, “one of the prettiest roads you will explore in Normandy,” they write. “This is one of the roads the Regina Rifles used in their advance inland on D-Day.” Names of the dead are immortalized in a village church.

‘Confused’ And Mismanaged

A damning pandemic audit, the first to date, cites confusion and mismanagement at the $675 million-a year Public Health Agency, including “limited public health expertise.” Agency President Tina Namiesniowski abruptly resigned twelve days before the internal audit was completed: "I need to take a break."

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Quickest GG Exit Since 1872

Julie Payette yesterday abruptly resigned as Governor General amid allegations of workplace harassment. Payette’s tenure was the shortest of any commander in chief in 149 years: "Tensions have arisen at Rideau Hall over the past few months."

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China Inspections Just ‘Paper’

An internal memo contradicts federal claims inspectors checked every shipment of medical supplies from China to spot shoddy goods. In some cases inspections were a “paper exercise,” though MPs on the Commons health committee were assured of vigorous scrutiny: "There is a quality check there."

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Second Only To Nfld On Debt

Cabinet’s finances as a share of GDP are now in the worst shape of any jurisdiction outside Newfoundland and Labrador, a federal agency said yesterday. Record low interest rates are expected to keep debt interest charges at 7.3 percent of federal revenues this year: "It can be useful to compare."

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Would Privatize Crown Corp

A Crown corporation once dubbed an “absolute mess” is slated for privatization. The Department of Fisheries yesterday said the Freshwater Fish Marketing Corporation of Winnipeg should be ‘transformed’ into a business: "Maybe in 1969 it was relevant."

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CBC Corrects Fuel Tax Libel

The CBC yesterday corrected a commentary claiming a Blacklock’s story on the federal carbon tax was an “attempt to confuse Canadians.” Max Fawcett, a Calgary pundit who made the claim, had not read the story: “This little episode is going in a future column of mine.”

6.7M Got Tax-Free Fed Grant

About 6,700,000 seniors received tax-free pandemic payments last year, by official estimate. The payout went to tax filers, from the poorest seniors to retirees with incomes up to $128,000 annually: "You’re making it sound like rich people are getting this."

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A Canadian First On Labour

A proposal to compensate federally-regulated employees asked to take Zoom calls, texts and company emails after hours will go to the labour department as early as this spring. Any “right to disconnect” would be a Canadian first: "They send and receive too many emails."

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Over-Estimated Airbnb Tax

A proposed tax on Airbnb rentals will see about twenty percent less revenue than expected, the Parliamentary Budget Office said yesterday. Cabinet has said it will charge the GST on short-term rental accommodations this summer: "Airbnb rentals have become very problematic."

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Worried By Green Farm Code

A federally-subsidized survey on green farming restrictions is not a blueprint for regulation of private lands, organizers said yesterday. One farm group cautioned the attempt to draft a Code Of Practice for grain growers “raises several concerns.”

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Tax Rebates Average $4/wk.

The first carbon tax rebates to consumers averaged $4 a week, according to Access To Information figures. Cabinet has claimed most Canadians received more in rebates than they paid in higher prices for fuel, home heating, groceries and other charges impacted by the tax: "We will win the race against climate change."

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Finds White Supremacy Here

Parliament Hill police yesterday said the Ottawa security threat level remained “medium” amid U.S. fears of demonstrations to mark the inauguration of a new head of state. One Québec senator expressed concerns about “white supremacy and political extremism” in Canada.

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