Five stories in the news for Wednesday, Sept. 19
NAFTA TALKS RESUME AS DEADLINE LOOMS
Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland is back in Washington — and back in search of a way to bridge the divide that's keeping Canada out of a new North American free trade pact. Freeland flew back to the U.S. capital Tuesday as a prominent congressional ally of President Donald Trump made it clear that American lawmakers are growing weary of what they see as Canadian intransigence. House of Representatives majority whip Steve Scalise warns of "growing frustration" on Capitol Hill with what he calls Canada's "negotiating tactics."
COURT TO RULE ON STAY IN TORONTO COUNCIL CUT APPEAL
Ontario's highest court is expected to announce today whether it will stay a court ruling that derailed the province's plan to cut Toronto city council in the middle of a municipal election campaign. The province has argued the stay is necessary to eliminate uncertainty surrounding the Oct. 22 vote and allow the city to move forward with its preparations. Meanwhile, lawyers for those opposed to the stay say the Ontario government is responsible for the upheaval and shouldn't seek legal relief for problems it has caused.
LEADERS' DEBATE COMMISSIONER POSSIBLE BEFORE NEXT FEDERAL VOTE
The Trudeau government has offered a glimpse of its vision for a new independent body to organize leaders' debates during federal elections, which it believes could be in place by next year's vote. Democratic Institutions Minister Karina Gould offered the teaser this week in a letter to a House of Commons committee, which called in March for the creation of a debates commissioner. Gould affirms the importance of an "impartial and independent" body guided by various high-minded principles to ensure it is organizing leaders' debates "that are in the public interest."
DERAILED TRAIN LEAKING FUEL INTO RIVER
A train that derailed in northern Manitoba on Saturday, killing a railway worker, is leaking diesel fuel into the Metishto River. Manitoba Sustainable Development says the fuel is from one of the locomotives. The province says spill recovery equipment is being used to clean up the fuel at the site west of Ponton. The train was carrying cargo including gasoline, liquid propane gas and butane, but there has been no indication that any of that has spilled or leaked. The Arctic Gateway Group has said a second railway employee sustained serious injuries in the wreck, and VIA Rail says it has been forced to suspend operations between Winnipeg and Gillam because of the derailment.
CANADIANS CONCERNED ABOUT VAPING TEENS
A national survey suggests the majority of Canadians are concerned about the use of e-cigarettes among youth, with almost 90 per cent backing a ban of the vaping products for those under 18. The survey by the Angus Reid Institute, released Tuesday, found that support for prohibiting vaping among minors crossed all age and gender demographics, among tobacco smokers and non-smokers alike. In the online survey of 1,500 adults aged 18 and older, 75 per cent of respondents said government should be able to make rules for packaging and labelling of e-cigarettes; 69 per cent agreed promotion and marketing of vaping products should be restricted; and 62 per cent endorsed the idea that flavoured versions should be taken off the market.
ALSO IN THE NEWS TODAY:
— Elections Canada launches its new civic education resources and website with an event in the Halifax area.
— G7 environment, oceans and energy ministers continue to meet in Halifax on the theme of "Working Together on Climate Change, Oceans and Clean Energy."
— The National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls will hold hearings in Quebec City to discuss oversight and accountability in the criminal justice system.
— The Dairy Farmers of Canada (DFC) will hold a press conference to voice their concerns related to the NAFTA negotiations as they relate to the dairy sector.
— Transport Minister Marc Garneau will make an announcement concerning the safe transportation of dangerous goods by rail.
— Science Minister Kirsty Duncan and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau attend the second annual Prime Minister's Science Fair on Parliament Hill.
— The preliminary inquiry reopens for Allan and Carolina Perdomo, who are charged with manslaughter in the death of five-year-old Emilio Perdomo. A trial has already been set for November.
— Trans Mountain will host an emergency response exercise at various locations within the Burrard Inlet, including Westridge Marine Terminal in Burnaby, B.C.
The Canadian Press