City of Regina trapping and euthanizing rabbits to control population – Regina


A growing rabbit population has led to a rabbit control pilot program in the City of Regina, which has some residents raising concerns and speaking out.

“The temperature, it’s way too cold to be doing trapping. There could be other animals that get caught in there — cats, dogs,” said Harbour Landing resident Karen Roberts.

Some Regina residents concerned over rampant rabbits in city’s east end

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Roberts is new to Harbour Landing and said she was appalled when she came across traps in the soccer field, across the street from the Grasslands plaza.

“I love wildlife, so it’s very upsetting seeing what’s going on,” Roberts said.

The city said the program was started last year in response to growing concerns from citizens and developers in the newer areas of the city.

“When the snow gets deeper, the rabbits get a little bit more aggressive, a little bit more hungry in the sense they start to go after city trees,” said Russell Eirich, manager of forestry, pest control and horticulture with the City of Regina.

Eirich adds while other deterrents are being explored, the damage to the trees costs money and causes problems for homeowners.

“We’re trying to see what is effective and are we making a long term solution,” Eirich said. “We’re trying to balance the needs of the community when it comes to that.”

Last year, the city began its pilot program, catching 27 rabbits. It released 10 and euthanized the other 17. This year, Eirich said most of the ones the city traps will be euthanized.

Mosquitos swarm Regina after summer showers

But wildlife biologist John Polson said trapping jackrabbits is not done in other cities, including Saskatoon.

“To me it’s a real waste of taxpayers money and I just don’t see why they’re doing it,” Polson said. “Eventually what’s going to happen is disease will take them. Any population that gets too high, eventually something thins them out.”

Polson adds that the traps the city is using are not conducive to catching rabbits, saying they won’t survive the cold weather.

“Jackrabbits just freak out in any wire enclosure. They can’t go into anything open; they just don’t survive in that,” Polson said.

Eirich said the traps are checked twice a day and the city will monitor the program to determine if it will continue in the future.


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Quebec government creates guidelines to control problem hockey parents – Montreal


Parents of minor hockey players in Quebec will now be required to make sure their conduct in the stands measures up to new guidelines set by the provincial government.

The Education Department in conjunction with Quebec’s minor hockey federation has put together a behaviour protocol governing how hockey associations should handle aggressive and unacceptable events involving parents of minor hockey players.

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READ MORE: Acadia, St. Francis Xavier to meet in first round of AUS men’s hockey playoffs for first time since brawl

“Excessive bad language and disgraceful conduct cannot be tolerated in hockey,” Junior Education Minister Isabelle Charest said Monday at a news conference presenting the 43-page booklet.

“And unfortunately today, we continue to see this type of behaviour too often in Quebec’s arenas.”

READ MORE: Call of the Wilde: Montreal Canadiens and Toronto Maple Leafs go to overtime

Paul Menard, head of Hockey Quebec, said the guide will be sent immediately to all minor hockey associations across the province. He said parent behaviour won’t change overnight, but he expects people to fall in line soon.

“If we have a situation, we will have to address it by what’s in the guide,” he said in an interview.

“And if you start working with a tool, people will join in.”

The guidelines set out the roles and responsibilities for parents, team and arena personnel, officials, league administrators and fans who wish to intervene when an aggressive situation risks getting out of control. The booklet also includes a list of unacceptable behaviours and suggests ways to intervene.

If parents tell a child to fight another player, for instance, the guidelines suggest they be confronted, placed into a mediation process and then brought in front of a disciplinary committee. For parents who threaten a coach or someone else, they could be expelled from the league.

WATCH: Hockey teams involved in brawl had ‘agreement’ about on-ice comments two seasons ago: league

Menard said the guidelines detail how associations should react up to the point when police need to be called.

“When a situation gets out of hand, or when people are not stopping, the thing to do is to call the police,” Menard said.


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Fly there faster? New satellite coverage promises to revolutionize air traffic control


OTTAWA—The aircraft symbols inch their way across the computer monitor — Air France 378 en route from Paris to Detroit; Delta 85, a Boeing 777 headed to Atlanta; and Lufthansa 412, an Airbus A350 flying Munich to Newark.

At first blush, there’s nothing exceptional about the air traffic control display — except for the piece of airspace it depicts.

These aircraft over the North Atlantic are far beyond the range of ground-based radar. What makes this real-time depiction of oceanic air traffic possible is a new constellation of satellites now orbiting the Earth, giving controllers a window on flights they’ve never had before.

It promises to revolutionize air traffic control, providing a view of air traffic in areas such as oceans, deserts, and mountainous and remote regions where ground-based radars are currently unable to provide surveillance.

With improved surveillance comes the promise of more efficient routing, potentially shorter trips and millions of dollars in fuel savings.

“It’s the greatest thing since the advent of radar,” spokesperson Ron Singer said.

Earlier this month, a SpaceX rocket carried the final 10 Iridium satellites into space, completing a constellation of 66 satellites and nine spares in low-earth orbit, to replace an existing network of communications satellites.

Aireon, a U.S. company, saw an opportunity to piggyback technology on the satellites that would be able to track aircraft from space.

The technology utilizes equipment — known as automatic dependent surveillance broadcast (ADS-B)— now being installed on aircraft that transmits GPS location, altitude, speed and other information.

Those signals are detected by satellites overhead, relayed to ground stations and on to air traffic control agencies.

Nav Canada is a partner in Aireon, along with the air traffic control operations in Ireland, the United Kingdom, Denmark and Italy. Other agencies are expected to sign on to use the technology to better manage air traffic in their regions.

At a Nav Canada technical centre at Ottawa airport, Steve Bellingham, manager navigation systems engineering for the company, walks a visitor through a demonstration.

On a computer display, he calls up a real-time display of air traffic in Canadian airspace using the satellite data and highlights flights over the ocean — where Nav Canada shares responsibility for air traffic control — and in Canada’s far north that until now has been out of view for controllers.

“These ones for sure we would not see,” he said. “It changes how you do your business.”

Ground-based radar has many limitations. It’s based on line of sight, meaning that anything beyond the horizon is lost to its electronic view. It requires antenna installations, which are costly to build and maintain.

But the main problem is that vast parts of the globe have no radar and hence there’s no accurate picture of the air traffic in these areas.

As a result, to keep aircraft safely separated in these areas, controllers resort to procedures using position reports sent from aircraft via datalink every five or 10 minutes.

It’s not unsafe. But it’s inefficient, with aircraft spaced far apart to provide an extra margin of safety. Space-based ATC will change all that.

“You know exactly where these guys are,” Bellingham said.

“You can have aircraft a lot closer here with confidence than you could when you only getting a report every few minutes.”

Having a more accurate depiction of air traffic will enable aircraft to fly closer together and thus increase the capacity of airspace. It will also allow controllers to better accommodate pilot requests for the best routing and altitude to reduce fuel burn, something that’s not always possible now.

It brings another benefit. Aircraft equipped with the technology will never be out of view, reducing the changes of another Malaysia Flight 370, which went missing in 2014 during a flight to Beijing from Kuala Lumpur. It’s presumed to have crashed in the Indian Ocean but the exact site has never been found.

Over the coming months, Nav Canada controllers will begin putting the space-based data to use, starting with flights over the North Atlantic and Canada’s northern region.

“They’re now getting spooled up on how to take advantage of that space-based ADS-B to provide safe but efficient tracks,” Bellingham said of controllers.

“They’re going to do it phased but from day one, they’re going to be separating aircraft closer than they are today.”

Bruce Campion-Smith is an Ottawa-based reporter covering national politics. Follow him on Twitter: @yowflier


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Equipment shed fire in Burnaby is ‘under control’, says Deputy Chief – BC


Fire crews have contained a fire at a commercial building at Aubrey Street and Pinehurst Drive in Burnaby, alarmingly close to the Kinder Morgan tank farm facility.

Burnaby Fire Deputy Chief Dave Samson assures local residents they are safe from danger, and there are no immediate concerns for those in the area.

Samson tells Global News that crews were called out to 7742 Aubrey Street at 7:53 p.m. to a second alarm fire at a commercial structure, which appears to be a large storage garage, situated about 400 feet away from the Kinder Morgan tank farm. There is a home nearby the structure, but Samson says it is protected and the owner is on site.

Samson explains the main concern for firefighters was keeping the fire contained and from spreading to surrounding forest.

Adding to that challenge was access to the site itself and water supply issues. Due to the blaze’s location at the top of the mountain, there’s relatively no water pressure. Crews circumvented that challenge by creating a water supply structure to relay pump.

Fire crews are not aware of what might have been inside the storage shed – perhaps some chemicals, Samson says – and their attack on the blaze was limited to the exterior due to the extreme heat.

The bright orange flames and plumes of smoke could be seen for quite a distance, causing some alarm to local residents no doubt because of the proximity to the Kinder Morgan facility.

Samson says he expects a long operation ahead cleaning up after the fire is put out, and with the ensuing investigation.

There are no reported injuries.

RCMP, BC Hydro and Fortis are all on hand.


© 2019 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.


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«Take back control» | Le Devoir


« La politique dans ce pays ne sera plus jamais la même ! » C’est à peu de chose près ce que disait le comédien Benedict Cumberbatch dans l’excellent téléfilm The Uncivil War, diffusé il y a une semaine sur la chaîne britannique Channel 4. Le célèbre interprète de Sherlock Holmes y jouait le rôle de Dominic Cummings, le jeune et brillant directeur de la campagne du Leave en 2016. Le scénario avait beau adopter un point de vue nettement favorable au Remain, toute la première partie était une démonstration magistrale des raisons pour lesquelles ceux qui voulaient quitter l’Union européenne l’ont emporté.

Les meilleures scènes montrent comment Cummings s’est opposé aux dinosaures conservateurs afin de formuler le slogan qui mena à la victoire. Après de nombreuses hésitations, le voilà qui met enfin le doigt sur les trois mots qui exprimeront la quintessence de cette campagne : « Take back control ! » (reprendre le contrôle).

On ne comprend rien au retrait du Royaume-Uni de l’Union européenne si l’on n’a pas compris combien la simplicité de ces quelques mots a exprimé la grogne de ces couches de la population qui ont fait depuis des années les frais de la mondialisation et du rêve néolibéral européen. La chose ne devrait pas être difficile à comprendre pour des Québécois qui ont vibré, à une autre époque, à des mots identiques qui disaient « Maîtres chez nous » !

Dans le discours qu’elle a prononcé mardi à la Chambre des communes, la première ministre Theresa May a bien résumé deux des principales raisons qui ont conduit les Britanniques à choisir de quitter l’Union européenne : la volonté de reprendre le contrôle de leurs frontières (notamment en matière d’immigration) et celle d’en finir avec le diktat de la Cour de justice européenne, dont les pouvoirs supranationaux n’ont jamais été soumis à aucun vote démocratique. On peut reprocher beaucoup de choses à Theresa May, mais il faut saluer la volonté de cette ancienne partisane du Remain de respecter la volonté démocratique exprimée en 2016.

D’ailleurs, sur quel écueil l’accord de retrait a-t-il buté sinon sur une question de souveraineté nationale ? On ne connaît pas de pays digne de ce nom qui signerait un traité l’obligeant à accepter indéfiniment l’instauration d’une barrière douanière à l’intérieur de ses propres frontières. Même un illuminé du « postnational » comme Justin Trudeau n’aurait jamais signé un accord avec Donald Trump créant la possibilité d’un contrôle douanier entre l’Alberta et la Colombie-Britannique. Or, qu’est-ce que ce backstop sinon un contrôle douanier en pleine mer d’Irlande !


N’eût été l’intransigeance des bureaucrates non élus de Bruxelles, pour qui la souveraineté nationale est un vestige folklorique, l’accord aurait été adopté. Même les plus intransigeants brexiters auraient soutenu l’entente si Bruxelles avait au moins accepté de préciser dans l’accord (et non seulement dans les lettres d’intention) que ce backstop serait temporaire. Mais Theresa May s’est heurtée à une fin de non-recevoir.

En pleine crise existentielle, Bruxelles a choisi de ne rien lâcher. C’est ce qu’elle avait déjà fait avec David Cameron en 2015 en lui refusant tout compromis sur la sacro-sainte liberté de circulation des personnes. Sans ce rigorisme doctrinaire, le Brexit ne l’aurait probablement jamais emporté. Mais les dirigeants européens ont visiblement peur que les libertés que réclament les Britanniques donnent des idées à d’autres.

On a pourtant tort de penser qu’un retrait unilatéral de l’Union européenne ne représenterait une « catastrophe » économique que pour les Britanniques. À l’aube d’une récession annoncée par tous les économistes et alors que la survie de l’euro est loin d’être assurée, les dommages seraient tout aussi dramatiques, sinon plus, pour l’Union européenne.

À 70 jours du départ du Royaume-Uni, et alors que Merkel et Macron semblent tous deux frappés de paralysie politique, on voit mal ce qui pourrait faire bouger les choses. En supprimant toute possibilité d’une sortie unilatérale, comme le souhaitent certains élus, le Royaume-Uni ne ferait que se couper les ailes dans une négociation qui n’est pas terminée, comme l’a admis Angela Merkel. Quant au second référendum, il serait la pire des solutions.

Comme l’a répété tant de fois Theresa May, rien ne serait plus dramatique qu’un reniement du référendum de 2016, dont la légitimité ne peut être contestée. Les chiffres trafiqués du Leave valant bien la campagne de terreur du Remain orchestrée de toutes pièces par le Conseil du Trésor aux frais de l’État.

Une telle décision ne ferait que conforter le « paternalisme » qui sévit à Bruxelles, pour reprendre la formule polie du philosophe Marcel Gauchet. Ce ne serait pas la première fois que Bruxelles ferait ravaler aux peuples des décisions qui ne lui plaisent pas. Les Irlandais, les Grecs, les Néerlandais et les Français ont déjà goûté à cette médecine et vu leurs référendums passés par pertes et profits.

Faudra-t-il ajouter les Britanniques à cette longue liste ? Ce pays a la chance d’être un des rares où les partis populistes n’occupent pas le terrain. Renier le Brexit reviendrait à leur ouvrir toutes grandes les portes.


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December wildfire burning out of control near Cadomin in western Alberta


It’s not something you’d expect to hear in December, but a wildfire is burning out of control in the western Alberta foothills, south of Edson and Hinton.

Alberta Wildfire said the blaze broke out Friday afternoon in an area that has seen little snowfall so far this winter.

High winds of more than 100 km/h have fanned the flames.

READ MORE: Mountain pine beetle epidemic sparks wildfire concerns in Jasper

A wind warning is in effect for the foothills, and Environment Canada said gusts of 100 to 120 km/h were expected overnight and into Saturday, before the winds are set to weaken early Saturday afternoon.

The province said the wind speed has made it impossible to determine the size of the fire, which is burning about 14 kilometres northeast of the hamlet of Cadomin.

Ground crews are on the scene alongside heavy equipment such as graders and dozers.

An Alberta Emergency Alert said the wildfire is burning approximately 10 kilometres south of Robb and is heading north by northeast.

Robb and Mercoal are the that could potentially be affected by the fire.

Kevin Hampton, owner of Bryan Hotel in Robb, said the area is home to about 300 people.

He spotted “pretty good smoke” around 3 p.m. Friday.

Hampton said the skies cleared in the evening after wind persisted all day.

He thought the smoke was coming from near the Coalspur Mine, about 10 kilometres to the south.

READ MORE: ‘Hard on water:’ Smoke not the only long range effect of wildfires

Stefan Felsing with Yellowhead County said peace officers are in the area to assist residents in case an evacuation is needed.

No evacuation alerts or orders had been issued as of 11 p.m. Friday.

Yellowhead County has also opened an emergency operations centre to coordinate its efforts, Felsing said.

Staff are in continuous contact with the province in case the situation changes, he added.

© 2018 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.


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Ground Control s’invite sur les Champs-Élysées


VIDÉO – Après la Gare de Lyon, le lieu de vie «libre et curieux» investit une galerie commerciale de 1500m2 dans le VIIIe. Le chef Stéphane Jégo coordonne le volet gastronomique du projet. Visite avant l’ouverture ce 11 décembre.

Le timing n’est pas des meilleurs. Envahis chaque samedi par les «gilets jaunes» depuis trois semaines, les Champs-Élysées s’apprêtent pourtant à accueillir ce mardi 11 décembre Ground Control. L’espace «libre et curieux» qui mêle cuisine de rue et programmation alternative à la Halle Charolais (XIIe) ouvre les portes de son nouveau lieu pour une durée de neuf mois, planqué dans une galerie commerciale en bas de la plus belle avenue du monde.

Habitués des friches XXL – propriété de la SNCF – et des quartiers populaires (XIIIe, XVIIIe, XIIe), les organisateurs de Ground Control s’attaquent ici à un nouveau challenge. «On sort de notre zone de confort, explique Denis Legat, directeur associé de La Lune Rousse, qui coordonne le projet. L’objectif est de faire revenir les Parisiens sur les Champs-Élysées, mais aussi de toucher un nouveau public». L’espace, bien plus petit qu’à Gare de Lyon – 500m2 intérieurs et 1000 m2 extérieurs contre 4500m2 intérieurs et 1500 m2 extérieurs – se révèle aussi très différent. Le look industriel est remplacé ici par le chic et la froideur blanche d’une galerie commerciale des années 1970. Propriété des Qataris, elle sera entièrement détruite pour être remise au goût du jour.

Cinq espaces à découvrir

Denis Legat et Stéphane Jégo.
Denis Legat et Stéphane Jégo. Julie Limont

D’ici là, ce «havre de paix» à l’abri de l’agitation des Champs est le nouveau terrain de jeu de Ground Control. Qui a investi et transformé cinq anciennes boutiques, disposées autour d’un patio central à ciel ouvert, futur star des beaux jours. Une galerie d’art contemporain avec un bar à vins et à champagne (et une petite restauration froide) ; un coffee shop ouvert en continu, qui fait aussi office d’espace de coworking avec wifi gratuit, auquel est accolé un concept-store (avec vinyles, livres, maroquinerie, meubles, vêtements…) ; un pop-up store à louer pour des marques (pas encore aménagé) ; et une cantine-bar dotée de longues tables d’hôte en bois clair, de tables hautes (environ 120 couverts) et d’une petite scène pour des concerts acoustiques ou des DJ’s. «L’été sera aussi propice à des ateliers» détaille Denis Legat.

Cette fois-ci, le volet gastronomique n’a pas été confié à plusieurs enseignes de restauration parisiennes, mais à un seul homme, Stéphane Jégo. Le patron du très coté L’Ami Jean (VIIe) supervise la cantine, le coffee shop et le bar à bulles. Le chef bistronome travaille déjà avec le Refugee Food Festival, qui tient un stand à la Halle Charolais. C’est là qu’il a rencontré Denis Legat. «Une rencontre humaine. Je ne voulais pas reprendre un autre restaurant. Mais mon idée a été de m’entourer des producteurs de L’Ami Jean pour proposer une cuisine de rue, abordable, de partage, avec un niveau de cuisine similaire à celui de mon restaurant, et des produits de la même qualité» raconte le chef. Lièvre à la royale, crème de parmesan, riz au lait… Le ticket moyen du midi est de 22€, contre 35-40€ le soir. Le tout à récupérer au comptoir. Jégo a ainsi fait appel, parmi de nombreux autres, à Cathy Aimé (viande bovine), Kalios (olives et huile), Sôcisse (saucisse de Marseille), Sylvain Erhardt («le prince des asperges»), Emmanuel Ryon (gâteaux de voyage), Pariès (gâteau basque)… Côté coffee shop, on sert du café de spécialité GramGram, des viennoiseries de Julien Duboué (Boulom) et des planches de charcuterie Aitana et Ospital. «Les Champs sont une belle vitrine pour tous les producteurs, qui viendront présenter leurs produits» conclut Stéphane Jégo. En espérant qu’elle ne soit pas trop abîmée.

Ground Control des Champs. 26, av. des Champs-Élysées (VIIIe). Du mardi au samedi, de 8h30 à 23h30. Entrée libre.


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Ottawa considers gun control options with a handgun ban seen as costly and possibly ineffective


OTTAWA—The federal government is considering further restrictions on handguns but will stop short of an absolute ban, as the cost to buy back legally owned handguns is pegged as high as $2 billion, the Star has learned.

Escalating gun violence across the country, including Toronto, spurred calls for the federal Liberals to act. After public consultations, deliberations are now underway with a proposal being readied to take to cabinet early next year.

Among options under consideration are the imposition of tougher legal obligations on gun owners such as mandatory storage in secured lockers at a shooting range, not at home, and wider powers for police to preventively suspend a gun owner’s licence where there is a risk someone may be harmed. For instance if a health professional raises an alarm about an individual’s mental health, police would be able to act to suspend a licence in absence of a criminal charge or the registration of a criminal conviction.

A senior government official who was granted anonymity in order to discuss the debate underway within government, said no final decisions have been made about whether to propose a ban on handguns and assault weapons.

In the case of the latter, there is no precise definition in law of just what an assault weapon is, but the government wants stricter controls on “assault-style” firearms, said the source.

Overall, the Liberal government is looking to package a combination of measures that will be effective at addressing gun violence and at curbing the diversion of legal guns into illegal hands; and there are doubts that a ban will have the desired effect, according to the insider with knowledge of the file.

It appears, however, there is public support for a handgun and assault weapon ban in most parts of the country, with the source citing internal polling that indicates 70 per cent of Canadians would support a ban. The numbers vary across regions, the source said, with the highest support in Quebec at 76 per cent, roughly 73 per cent in Atlantic region, 70 per cent in the Greater Toronto Area and support dropping to as low as 50 per cent in western Canada.

(That overall number — 70 per cent — appears slightly higher than a recent opinion survey by Nanos Research conducted for CTV News, published in September, which said 48 per cent support a ban, while 19 per cent “somewhat support” a ban.)

After the tragic Danforth shooting last summer, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau appointed Scarborough Southwest MP Bill Blair as minister of border security and organized crime reduction, and instructed Blair, a former Toronto police chief, to work with Public Safety Minister Ralph Goodale to examine “a full ban on handguns and assault weapons in Canada, while not impeding the lawful use of firearms by Canadians.” Blair has said he wants to complete his examination by the end of this year.

On Thursday in Montreal — where the 29th anniversary of the École Polytechnique massacre was marked — Trudeau pointed to Bill C-71 which his government has already introduced in the Commons that tightens some aspects of current gun laws, but said “we are very open to doing more.”

“Certainly there is the problem of criminals’ access to assault weapons and handguns and we will be looking at measures to continue to keep our communities safe.”

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The mayors of Toronto and Montreal have urged Ottawa to adopt an absolute ban on handgun sales. Toronto Mayor John Tory also wants the Liberal government to enact tougher penalties for gun traffickers, tougher bail controls on accused persons with a track record of gun crimes, along with stricter gun storage laws.

The deadline for online consultations has passed, and Blair completed stakeholder consultations last week.

The source said the federal Liberal cabinet is not expected to deal with whatever recommendations arise from Blair’s examination until the New Year.

A second Liberal source suggested it is more likely that the government would look at enacting stricter storage, transportation and transfer regulations than an outright ban.

There are 1,400 shooting ranges across Canada where restricted and prohibited gun owners could be required to safely store their guns. Gun laws already require secure storage and handling of firearms and ammunition.

Yet advocates of stricter gun laws like Wendy Cukier, a co-founder of the Coalition for Gun Control formed nearly 30 years ago in the wake of the 1989 Montreal massacre at École Polytechnique, say a ban on handguns and assault-style weapons is crucial.

In an interview, Cukier said “an integrated approach” to gun violence is needed, including better screening of licence applicants, support for victims, and more resources for intelligence-led policing to counter smuggling, and she added a ban is key to that.

“Whatever the measures are, they have to reduce access and reduce the risk that people who shouldn’t get those guns will get them,” said Cukier in an interview. “And I don’t know what besides a ban could achieve that result.”

She added had governments acted sooner, the number of restricted and prohibited weapons would not have already ballooned from about 350,000 in 2004, to about 1 million, according to the annual reports of the commissioner of firearms.

The notion of banning certain firearms raises questions such as whether Ottawa would “grandfather” those owners who already have legally registered handguns and allow them to keep their weapons, or whether the government would buy back their weapons.

The source said the $1.5 billion to $2 billion estimate for a handgun buyback was based on a loose estimate of 1 million handguns registered in Canada. The source added there are “probably” twice that number in illegal, unregistered handguns in circulation.

In fact, the RCMP-led Canadian Firearms Program says 861,850 handguns were registered to individuals in Canada as of Sept. 30, 2018. The Mounties say those handguns are registered to 292,701 licensed gun owners. On top of that, according to the federal government, there are about 100,000 other non-handgun firearms — usually rifles and shotguns — legally owned and registered in Canada.

The federal government’s consultation document published to inform public debate on a handgun ban says in most cases, individuals own handguns for sport shooting or as part of a collection and it acknowledges “most gun crimes are not committed with legally-owned firearms.”

But the same document outlines a big concern for Blair and the government: that thefts from legal owners represent a growing source of illegally-acquired domestic handguns and other firearms, citing a 70-per-cent increase in break-ins to steal a firearm between 2010 and 2017 (from 673 to 1,175 incidents, according to Statistics Canada). It says there is no information about whether the thefts were from individuals or businesses, or whether they were related to improper storage or transportation of firearms.

It acknowledged any ban of handguns or assault weapons “would primarily affect legal firearms owners, while the illicit market would be indirectly affected as there would be fewer available to potentially divert.”

Federal Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer says if he formed government he would review laws and repeal any regulations or policies that unnecessarily target law-abiding gun owners. He says he would ensure Parliament, not the RCMP, has sole authority to reclassify guns, and he would provide more money for police to target gangs, to support programs for youth, and to conduct rigorous background checks on would-be gun owners.

Tonda MacCharles is an Ottawa-based reporter covering federal politics. Follow her on Twitter: @tondamacc


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Ground Control bientôt sur les Champs-Élysées


Le nouvel espace s’installera en novembre prochain à la place de la Galerie 26 sur la plus belle avenue du monde. Le chef Stéphane Jego gérera le volet gastronomique du projet.

Souvenez-vous, c’était en 2014. Le premier lieu de convivialité éphémère estampillé Ground Control ouvrait à la Cité de la mode, quai d’Austerlitz, à Paris. Le concept? Des bars, une piste de danse, des canapés, une nouvelle façon d’appréhender la ville de façon festive et informelle. Au fil du temps, d’autres zones urbaines furent investies, la dernière étant en 2017 l’ancien centre de tri postal de la SNCF, vieux de 150 ans, situé à deux plis de la gare de Lyon (XIIe).

Largement réaménagé et agrandi au printemps dernier, Ground Control s’est doté dans la foulée d’une «halle à manger de 300 couverts» comportant six comptoirs culinaires, une épicerie, des bars à vin et à cocktails. À l’origine de ce projet, La Lune rousse, une agence spécialisée dans l’événementiel dont le directeur, Denis Legat, travaille sur de nouveaux modes de consommation tournés vers l’économie sociale et solidaire, ainsi que sur des canaux de création artistique inédits. Et dans sa besace, il y a l’ouverture en novembre prochain d’un nouveau Ground Control sur la plus belle avenue du monde, en lieu et place de la Galerie 26. Cette dernière étant appelée à disparaître dans un an, il y avait l’opportunité d’un nouvel espace décalé au cœur du triangle d’or. Et c’est Stéphane Jégo qui gérera tout le volet gastronomique.

Transparent et éclectique

«Nous allons construire avec des dizaines d’artisans et de producteurs une autre façon de consommer, en mode street food de qualité. Derrière chaque produit, il y aura une identité humaine.» Ses complices comme le chef Julien Duboué (Boulom, A Noste…), des artisans tels que le confiturier Stéphan Perrotte ou encore des maisons comme Aïtana et ses charcuteries d’exception seront, avec beaucoup d’autres, au rendez-vous. Le cuisinier managera ainsi une galerie d’art avec bar à champagne, un coffee shop-boutique proposant une restauration froide mais qui vendra aussi des vinyles et des livres, une épicerie, un bar et un restaurant. Celui-ci comprendra un comptoir, des mange-debout, un bar et même une scène pour des concerts. Ce nouveau Ground Control sera, comme les précédents, ouvert, transparent et éclectique. Il accueillera tous les arts dont la gastronomie et «permettra à M. Tout-le-Monde de savourer l’élitisme à des prix populaires».


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Changes to Nova Scotia’s Gaming Control Act on the horizon – Halifax


A win at the casino can be an exciting moment, but for an addict, it can be dangerous.

“If you make a lot of money your first time around, that is something they chase after, like a heroin addict,” said NDP MLA Lenore Zann.

READ MORE: Nova Scotia to eliminate lifetime ban for gamblers in self-exclusion program

She knows the feeling well herself, not from gambling, but from alcohol. “I’m an alcoholic, I quit drinking 24 years ago.”

That’s why she’s taken a stance against amendments to the Gaming Control Act.

Currently, the province has a voluntary exclusion program, which allows those with an addiction to voluntarily ban themselves from casinos in Nova Scotia. But it’s a lifetime ban, and amendments to the act are looking to change that.

The proposed legislation would allow for variable time lengths for the program.

“It is likely to mean a great number of people who would not have chosen self-exclusion because of the lifetime ban will now be able to opt into it,” said Jon Kelly, the former chair of Responsible Gambling Council.

“Where you have a variety of bans, you have more flexibility and you have more responsibility for the individual themselves.”

But Zann said that flexibility can be part of the problem.

“For most addicts, the only answer is they do need to abstain.”

Voluntary exclusion programs are common across the country but Nova Scotia is the only province with a lifetime ban. It also has one of the lowest take-up rates with only about 2,000 participants.

WATCH: Nova Scotia gambling revenue increases again

All four opposition MLAs on the Law Amendments Committee, including Zann, voted to stand the bill. But ultimately, it passed committee and will go back to the House for its third reading.

Zann said that if the bill helps more people to get help, then it will be a good thing but what she really wants is for the government to complete a gambling strategy.

“Look at what are the causes and effects of gambling in Nova Scotia, how many people are being affected, and whether or not the government should even take the money from this type of activity,” she said.

© 2018 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.


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