Lobster fishery restrictions imposed to safeguard access to US market LeBlanc

first_imgMONCTON, N.B. – The federal fisheries minister made his case Friday to lobster fishermen that rules aimed at protecting the endangered right whale should remain — with the alternative being a “disastrous” loss of access to the American market.Representatives of lobster harvesters met with Dominic LeBlanc in New Brunswick to argue some of the newly imposed fishing restrictions make no sense and could have a devastating impact on their lucrative industry.Carl Allen of the Maritime Fishermen’s Union had said his members are worried the strict measures will result in significantly lower catches if certain areas are closed due to the presence of the imperilled whales.The union asked for the emergency meeting with LeBlanc just ahead of Monday’s season opening.After the meeting, LeBlanc emerged to say the restrictions on fishing near whales are essential as there’s a risk American agencies might restrict Canadian access to vital U.S. markets if they’re changed.“There is a building pressure in the United States and globally to look at the sustainability in the Canadian fishery in light of the death of North Atlantic right whales last year,” the minister said.“I cannot as federal fisheries minister … make decisions that would be insensitive to that.”“I don’t have to wait for somebody to tell me, ‘Guess what on a certain date you’ve lost access to the U.S. market,’ to take every measure that I can to prevent that disastrous moment from coming, and that’s exactly what these measures are.”Asked by reporters about who in the United States is suggesting trade restrictions, LeBlanc said members of Congress have been writing to U.S. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross.He said they’re arguing that provisions of the U.S. Marine Mammal Protection Act — which sets rules protecting marine life — should be enacted in Canada sooner than an originally envisioned 2020 deadline.“There is a movement in the United States at the highest level of the American government to look at how and when the law should apply,” he said.Carl Allen of the Maritime Fishermen’s Union was not available for comment after the meeting.However, he said beforehand that his group was concerned about the impact on their livelihoods if they lose up to three weeks of a two month fishing season due to the whales.“How do you make that up?” he asked. “Everyone’s on edge, everyone’s anxious.”The group had been hoping to convince the minister to alter new rules around how the fishery will be conducted in an area known to be a right whale feeding area.The new measures announced Tuesday by the Fisheries Department include possible closures, restrictions on the amount of rope used, and mandatory reporting of lost gear and whale sightings. A total of 18 North Atlantic right whales were killed in Canadian and U.S. waters last year — mainly due to vessel strikes and entanglement in fishing gear.The union is particularly concerned about so-called dynamic closures that occur when whales are spotted in an area, forcing it to be temporarily closed to fishing for a minimum of 15 days.A static closure will be enforced along New Brunswick’s northern coast, where 90 per cent of right whales were observed over the summer. That closure will be enforced from Saturday to June 30.Allen says the measures are heavy handed and illogical because the whales haven’t arrived in the Gulf yet and aren’t thought to travel through some of the areas that will be subject to the closures.Allen said the northwest corner of the static area is a very productive lobster and snow crab habitat, with an estimated 25 per cent of last year’s total allowable catch of snow crab for the southern Gulf coming out of that area.He said lobster fishermen are being lumped in with those in the snow crab fishery, which has been associated with more whale entanglements and is also subject to similar restrictions.There are only about 450 North Atlantic whales left, and many spend their summers feeding in the Gulf. Experts have said that unless the numbers change, the species could become functionally extinct in less than 25 years.– By Alison Auld and Michael Tutton in Halifaxlast_img read more

Thunder Bay Ont police chief charged with breach of trust obstructing justice

first_imgORILLIA, Ont. – The police chief of a northwestern Ontario city is facing charges following a five-month investigation into alleged criminal wrongdoing.Ontario Provincial Police say J.P. Levesque, 53, of Thunder Bay, Ont., is charged with breach of trust and obstructing justice.The police force says in a news release that it was contacted by RCMP in January and asked to conduct an external, independent and thorough investigation.No other details of the investigation have been released and the OPP says Levesque is to appear in court June 13.Levesque’s lawyer, Brian Gover, says his client is “a person of outstanding good character.”Gover says in an email that Levesque, who is on leave, looks forward “to fully responding to the allegations against him.”“As a police officer, Mr. Levesque has served the people of Thunder Bay in an exemplary manner for 30 years, including as chief of police since July 2011,” he said Tuesday in a statement.last_img read more

BCs minority NDP to table governing blueprint after 16 years in opposition

first_imgVICTORIA – British Columbia’s minority NDP government is set to table a throne speech outlining its political blueprint after months of tension, upheaval and backroom machinations following a spring election that failed to produce a clear winner.The New Democrats will walk into the legislature Friday with a promise to make life better for residents after 16 years of Liberal rule, said Deputy Premier and Finance Minister Carole James.“It’s been a whirlwind,” James said.The Liberals fell one seat short of a majority in the 87-seat legislature in the May 9 election, prompting 41 New Democrats and three Green members to reach an agreement that ousted the Liberals in a non-confidence vote. The move paved the way for a minority NDP government under Premier John Horgan.Former premier Christy Clark heightened the political drama with a failed attempt to force a new election before she resigned as Liberal leader and the MLA for Kelowna West. The vacant seat provides some breathing room for the tight NDP minority.Clark’s resignation also temporarily reduces the pressure on Horgan’s minority government, which will be expected to yield one of its voting members to take on the role of Speaker of the legislature. The first order of business in the legislature Friday will be to elect the Speaker, who may eventually be forced to break ties in votes.The NDP made numerous promises during the election, including pledges to cut medical services plan premiums, offer a $400 rent subsidy to offset the high cost of living, ban corporate and union donations to political parties and hold a referendum on electoral reform.“People have waited a long time, 16 years, for a change in government,” said James.“People are counting on us to work on their behalf. There are so many issues that need to be addressed and we’re not going to be able to fix them all overnight, but that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t get started.”The government will table a budget update Monday, followed by a more complete budget in February, James said. Independently audited statements released last month confirmed the NDP inherited a solid financial bottom line from the Liberals, including a surplus of $2.7 billion.Since being officially sworn in two months ago, the NDP increased welfare rates by $100 a month, scrapped tolls on the Lower Mainland’s Port Mann and Golden Ears bridges, waived post-secondary tuition costs for people who spent time in foster care and eliminated fees for adult basic education and English language programs.The government also pressed the reset button on a couple of multibillion-dollar mega projects tied to the former Liberal government.The $8.8 billion Site C hydroelectric dam project in northeast B.C. is under review. The $3.5 George Massey bridge project in suburban Vancouver is also on hold and the government is registered as an intervener against the $7.4 billion Trans Mountain pipeline expansion project between Alberta and B.C.“We said we wanted to show people that we were going to put people first,” James said. “We were going to get up everyday and go to work on their behalf.”Prof. Michael Prince, a social expert at the University of Victoria, said Clark’s final attempts to hold onto power by introducing a throne speech in June and adopting many NDP and Green election promises will make it difficult for the Opposition to criticize the NDP during the session.“It’s going to be a curious new environment to watch unfold,” he said. “I think the NDP wants to see this as a government that can govern for at least a year or two and then position themselves for another election where they’d go for a majority.”Interim Liberal Leader Rich Coleman said Thursday that they will have no difficulties hurling criticism at NDP policies they endorsed in the last Liberal throne speech.“We’re now opposition,” he said. “Our job isn’t to go out there and build the public policy but actually to hold the government to account for what they want to do. We’re going to do that.”Green Leader Andrew Weaver said he expects the NDP-Green voting agreement to hold despite differences that are bound to arise.“Everyone wants the good story of the B.C. Greens bringing down the NDP, but it’s not going to happen,” he said. “We have a very good working relationship.”last_img read more

UofT researchers launch new app to gather transit data help inform decisions

first_imgTORONTO – University of Toronto researchers are launching an app today designed to collect transit data that can be used by the provincial and local governments as they make transit planning and funding decisions.The university has been conducting transit surveys every five years since 1986, as part of a project funded by the Ontario government and municipalities in the Toronto area, as well as key transit agencies such as Metrolinx and the Toronto Transit Commission.Eric Miller, a professor of civil engineering at the university, and the principal investigator on the project, says that until now, the surveys have been conducted using landlines.But as more people are using smartphone, Miller says trying to reach subjects by landline has become an issue, which is why the university is launching the new app, called City Logger.The Android version will be released Monday and the iOS version will follow shortly after.The app is free and will have two different versions, each being assigned randomly to users who download it.The idea is to capture, in granular detail, transit users behaviour. It will run in the background collecting location and time data and will prompt users about the nature of their various trips, from commuting to work to trips to the grocery store to bicycle rides to walks.“One real advantage is once the app is loaded we can observe people day after day for a week or two,” Miller said. “You can identify patterns in people’s lives.”Miller said the traditional survey required “an army of people” that asked, when people answered their home phones, where they travelled on a given day.“But people tend to forget short trips. You ask them what they did and they say went to work and came home, but forgot about going for lunch,” Miller said.It is also a much better tool to capture walking and cycling trips, he said.“That’s becoming more and more important to understand what’s known as active transportation,” Miller said.The new initiative is far from perfect, he said, as not everyone has a smartphone — he estimates 60 to 65 per cent of Torontonians own one — and the data will complement their traditional survey, he said.The initiative is part of a three-year, $1-million research project, he said.Miller’s team reports to the Transportation Information Steering Committee, which is chaired by the province’s Ministry of Transportation.Muhammad Khan, a senior adviser with the ministry’s transportation planning branch, said the app is an experiment to see if it can address age bias with the traditional survey.He said they first noticed issues back in 1991 with the rise of cellphones.“The data was becoming more biased towards older generations and that was the critical issue we identified,” Khan said.He said they had some success with users filling out the survey online, but believes the app has potential to retrieve granular data that can be difficult get otherwise.last_img read more

Ontario researcher joins annual NASAfunded Antarctica meteorite search

first_imgAn Ontario physicist is embarking on a NASA-funded expedition to Antarctica to collect meteorites, in hopes that the fallen space rocks will give researchers new insight into the outer reaches of the solar system.Scott VanBommel, a post-doctoral fellow at the University of Guelph, is joining the annual Antarctic Search for Meteorites for a six-week excursion to the Transantarctic Mountains, about 350 km from the South Pole.It will mean sleeping in a two-person tent in one of the least hospitable environments on Earth, but VanBommel said it’s a chance to give back to the scientific community.“I’m just really happy to go and be a part of this important work,” the 30-year-old said hours before his Friday departure. “We can learn a lot by studying these fragments of space rocks that potentially are in their native form, from when the solar system formed. They provide us little windows into the past, to study and potentially learn more.”Antarctica’s empty, ice-covered expanse makes the continent ideal for spotting space debris.“Meteorites fall pretty uniformly all over the world, but what makes Antarctica special is that you have this white backdrop, so you have these dark meteorites and this light background,” VanBommel said. “It makes them much easier to find than, say, around here where you have weathering and erosion and dirt.”Antarctica is also home to giant ice sheets which, over thousands of years, gradually shift toward the edges of the continent. When the ice sheets run up against mountain ranges or other natural barriers, old ice deep below the surface gets forced up, bringing deposits of old meteorites with it.Led by Ralph Harvey, a planetary materials professor at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, Ohio, the expedition team will split into two groups of four people.One group will continue the ongoing systemic search of an area visited in previous missions.The second group, which includes VanBommel, will conduct “spot-to-spot” reconnaissance, looking for new sites.“It’ll be exciting,” VanBommel said. “We’re covering a lot of ground this year.”The Norwich, Ont., native is one of a handful of volunteers selected from a pool of 100 researchers who apply each year to participate in the trip.As one of the rookie members of the team, VanBommel went through a three-day boot camp at Case Western to prepare him for the trip.“We went over all the details of what we’ll be doing, the type of equipment we’ll have, safety stuff. It was very thorough three days,” he said.Since 1976, the Antarctic Search for Meteorites has brought back over 21,000 meteorite specimens. The samples they recover are shipped to a laboratory at NASA’s Johnson Space Center in Houston. Samples of the meteorites are also sent to the Smithsonian Institution. Researchers from anywhere in the world can examine the meteorite samples, upon request.last_img read more

Canadian Alberta governments backing possible Calgary bid for 2026 Games

first_imgCALGARY – Calgary took another step towards bidding for the 2026 Olympic and Paralympic Games when the federal and provincial governments announced they’d support the formation of a bid corporation Thursday.Calgary mayor Naheed Nenshi had said a bid couldn’t happen without financial backing from the Canadian and Alberta governments.Calgary wants a three-way split on the cost of a bid estimated at $30 million.A bid corporation will continue to develop hosting plans and analyze costs, according to a joint statement released Thursday by the three levels of government.“This partnership is an exciting step towards determining if a bid for the 2026 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games is right for Calgary,” Nenshi said in the statement.“We have a strong legacy of sport in this city and we know we can host a great Games, and now, alongside our partners in the government of Alberta and the government of Canada, we can continue to figure out if a 2026 bid is the best interests of our citizens.”Calgary has already spent $6 million on exploring a potential bid. The city didn’t want to commit any more money to the process until the other two levels of government indicated they were on board.“Participating in the bid process will allow us to further examine the costs associated with hosting the 2026 Olympic and Paralympic Games and ensure they are carefully balanced around the needs and expectations of Albertans, within the greater context of Alberta’s economic recovery,” Alberta Culture and Tourism Minister Ricardo Miranda said.An Alberta government spokesperson said before a final decision is made the question of whether to make a bid would be put to voters in a plebiscite.“All parties agreed there should be a plebiscite,” the official said in an email. “Details on what that will look like will be decided later.”The International Olympic Committee will invite cities to bid for 2026 in October with the deadline to do so by January. The winning city will be announced in September, 2019.“We are always happy to see cities and sport partners showing interest in hosting national and international sport competitions, as these events support our athletes, our communities and our economy, and help galvanize a country around the power of sport,” Canada’s sports minister Kirsty Duncan said.The Canadian Olympic Committee said it was pleased with the announcement by the three levels of government.“Today is a very important step forward for the City of Calgary and for our collective efforts as we thoroughly assess the opportunity and impact of hosting an Olympic Games,” Chris Overholt, CEO of the committee said in a release.Calgary was the host city of the 1988 Winter Games.The Calgary Bid Exploration Committee concluded last year that a 2026 bid would cost $4.6 billion.But Kyle Ripley, the director of the city’s bid project team, told city council earlier this month that estimate will likely be too low when inflation, contingency and endowment funds are calculated.last_img read more

How impact of US tariffs is likely to vary from one province

first_imgOTTAWA – The National Bank of Canada says the impact of new American tariffs on steel and aluminum will vary sharply from province to province, because of regional concentrations. Some comparisons:Steel exports to the U.S. over the last 12 monthsOntario: $5.8 billion.Quebec: $1 billionB.C.: $0.3 billionOther provinces: $0.3 billionAluminum exports to the U.S. over the last 12 monthsQuebec: $7.2 billionOntario: $2.9 billionB.C.: $0.7 billionOther provinces: $0.2 billionThe bank says Canadian steel and aluminum exports to the U.S. represent less than five per cent of Canadian exports to that country and less than one per cent of Canadian GDP.Quote: “This latest stunt from the U.S. will hardly break the Canadian economy.”last_img read more

Homeopathic and veterinary products recalled due to possible contamination

first_imgOTTAWA – Health Canada is advising consumers and pet owners not to use homeopathic and veterinary products made by King Bio Inc. and labelled as “Dr. King’s,” “Dr. King’s Natural Pet” or “Natural Pet.”Health Canada says the products may pose a health risk to people and pets, especially children, pregnant women and those with compromised immune systems, because of potential microbial contamination.The U.S. Food and Drug Administration says high levels of microbial contamination were identified at the manufacturing site in Asheville, N.C.The products are being recalled by the Canadian distributor, Ecotrend Ecologics Ltd., and include products for children, adults and pets.They are promoted for various uses, including flu relief, respiratory care, arthritis and joint pain, and stress control.Health Canada is advising consumers who may have used the recalled products to contact a doctor or veterinarian if they or their pet has health concerns.last_img read more

Hundreds of Canadian troops deployed to flood zones in Quebec and NB

first_imgMONTREAL — Many people in Quebec and New Brunswick will be spending their Sunday filling sandbags as they keep an anxious watch on rising floodwaters that are wreaking havoc across a wide region.About 200 soldiers started filling sandbags and carrying out evacuations in Quebec’s Outaouais and Mauricie regions overnight, with an additional 400 troops standing ready to deploy there and in Laval today.Urgence Quebec says that as of last night, bloated rivers had resulted in 903 flooded residences, 251 isolated residences and 317 evacuees across the province.Eight major floods have been identified as threatening thousands of Quebecers, and so far one death has been blamed on the high water.Police say 72-year-old Louise Seguin Lortie died Saturday morning after driving her car into a sinkhole caused by flooding in the Pontiac area, about 30 kilometres northwest of Ottawa.Some of the worst flooding has been in the Beauce region south of Quebec City, where 868 homes were swamped and 94 people evacuated.Meanwhile, about 120 Canadian soldiers are being deployed across western New Brunswick to help residents threatened by rising floodwaters.Fifteen communities in that province have been warned to remain on high alert. The Canadian Presslast_img read more

A brawl for the climate change vote

first_imgIn today’s Big Story podcast, the Green party has seen its poll numbers spike as Canadian voters focus on climate change. How will that impact the fall election?The Liberals would now like you to know they care very much about climate change. So would the NDP. If you’re wondering why they’re telling you this so loudly at every opportunity, blame the Greens. And the Canadians who are using them as a lever to demand action.Elizabeth May’s party has seen a jump in the polls this year, while also nearly winning the PEI provincial election, then taking a B.C. by-election to give them a second seat in the House of Commons. The party also released a comprehensive climate emergency plan, that pushed both the Liberals and NDP to race to reaffirm their climate bona fides. But how much of this is real? Can a spike in the polls translate to success in October? Will the greens own the balance of power, or will they fracture the progressive vote?GUEST: Cormac Mac Sweeney, Parliament Hill reporterAudio Playerhttp://radio.pmd.rogersdigitalmedia.com/podcasts/thebigstory/tbs_05272019.mp300:0000:0000:00Use Up/Down Arrow keys to increase or decrease volume.You can subscribe to The Big Story podcast on iTunes or Google Play.You can also find it at thebigstorypodcast.ca.last_img read more

In the news today July 29

first_imgSix stories in the news for Monday, July 29———NEW TIP IN MANHUNT FOR B.C. MURDER SUSPECTSA new tip has led police involved in the escalating manhunt for two B.C. murder suspects to another remote community in northern Manitoba.  RCMP have sent helicopters, a plane, heavily armed officers and police canine units to York Landing to investigate a tip that Bryer Schmegelsky, 18, and 19-year-old Kam McLeod of Port Alberni, B.C., may have been spotted in the area. The duo are suspects in the death of three people in northern British Columbia. York Landing is about 90 kilometres southwest of Gillam, Man., where the search for the fugitives has been focused for the past week.———B.C. MURDER SUSPECT’S FATHER RELEASES BOOKThe father of a B.C. murder suspect has written a book that sheds new light on his mental health, explains harassment convictions involving his ex-wife and provides insight into the possible impacts the events had on his fugitive son. Alan Schmegelsky, the father of Bryer Schmegelsky, has sent a book to reporters titled “Red Flagged,” which he says is a novelization of actual events and fictionalizes some incidents. Bryer is a suspect in three murders in northern B.C. along with his friend, Kam McLeod. A massive manhunt for the two suspects continues in northern Manitoba.———FOUR FOUND DEAD IN HOME NORTH OF TORONTOA lot of questions remain to be answered today after four bodies were found inside a home in Markham, Ont., just north of Toronto. York Regional Police said officers discovered the bodies Sunday afternoon while responding to a 911 call about possible injuries at the home. They said the officers were met at the door by a 20-year-old man who was later taken into custody, but there was still word as of Sunday night whether he’d been charged with anything. And no information was immediately released about the identities of the deceased, their ages, genders, relationship to each other, or how they died.———FOCUS ON SHIPPING IN EFFORT TO SAVE WHALES The shipping industry is under increased scrutiny after two cargo ships were fined for sailing too fast through the Gulf of St. Lawrence, where the rising death toll among endangered North Atlantic right whales has been partly blamed on collisions with vessels. There have been eight deaths reported since early June, and examinations of five of the carcasses showed three of them had injuries consistent with ship strikes — a leading cause of death for these rare mammals. Transport Canada says that while the shipping industry has been overwhelmingly compliant in respecting new speed limits, there are still some exceptions, and it is examining all reported cases of non-compliance.———U.S. HOUSE BREAKS WITH NO NEW NAFTA: NOW WHAT?The U.S. House of Representatives begins its summer break today leaving the ratification of the new North American trade deal hanging, rekindling angst that a frustrated President Donald Trump will blow up the existing pact. Trade experts in Canada and the U.S. are divided on whether Trump may be driven to invoke the six-month notice period to withdraw from the current North American Free Trade Agreement — a threat he repeatedly made during the tense renegotiation of the pact that he pushed on Canada and Mexico. Mexico is the only country to give full legal approval to the new accord. Canada is waiting to see what the U.S. Congress will do.———20 DONORS GAVE MAX TO BOTH LIBERALS AND CONSERVATIVES  The chairman of the board of Bombardier, a scion of the Rotman family, the chairman of a major power company — these prominent Canadians all gave as much money as they’re allowed, or close to it, to both the Liberals and Conservatives in 2018. An analysis of Elections Canada documents by The Canadian Press shows they are among at least 20 Canadians who gave substantially to the country’s two most fiercely opposed parties last year. Such donations are fully legal: a person can give to all the political parties if he or she wishes — but they are unusual.———ALSO IN THE NEWS:— Green Leader Elizabeth May and candidate Greg Malone host a community meeting in Carbonear, N.L.— Veterans Affairs Minister Lawrence MacAulay makes an announcement in Hamilton about research into chronic pain issues concerning veterans.— Federal Environment Minister Catherine McKenna makes an announcement in Mississauga regarding clean-transportation infrastructure.— Small Business Minister Mary Ng is in Vancouver to announce the creation of an integrated market in the medtech industry.———The Canadian Presslast_img read more

Dikembe Mutombo Joins Honorary Committee At FACE Africa WASH Gala

first_imgOn March 22, 2014, UN World Water Day, FACE Africa will host its 5th Annual WASH (Water, Sanitation and Hygiene) Gala in New York City at Pier Sixty, Chelsea Piers.The Boston MA-based non-profit funds and supports sustainable clean water, sanitation and hygiene projects in sub-Saharan Africa.The Honorary Committee for this year’s WASH Gala include Alex Cummings, EVP and Chief Administrative Officer of The Coca-Cola Company, Dikembe Mutombo, Founder and Chairman of The Dikembe Mutombo Foundation and Ambassador for NBA Cares Foundation, Leymah Gbowee, 2011 Nobel Peace Laureate and Founder and President of the Gbowee Peace Foundation Africa and Mr. Kevin McGovern, Chairman and CEO of McGovern Capital and Chairman of The Water Initiative.
”We’re thrilled to celebrate our 5th year anniversary and the achievements we have made in providing clean, safe drinking water in Liberia. In keeping with tradition, the 2014 Gala will continue to pay tribute to all our friends, partners, and the many change-makers who have been instrumental in our growth and success,” says Saran Kaba Jones, FACE Africa’s Founder and Executive Director.This year’s event will honor the incredible work of Nigerian entrepreneur, investor and philanthropist – Tony Elumelu. The Tony Elumelu Foundation (TEF) was founded in 2010 by Mr. Elumelu and positioned as a 21st-century catalytic philanthropy. As a primary driver of Africapitalism, the Foundation is committed to the economic transformation of Africa by enhancing the competitiveness and growth of the African private sector.The evening will feature a cocktail reception, premium open bar, auction and live entertainment. Making clean water a reality, one community at a time is the core mission of FACE Africa. The goal of this year’s WASH Gala is to raise enough funds to provide 30 clean water projects for Rivercess County, Liberia which will serve 25 communities and provide 12,000 people with access to clean water.Sponsors include The Coca-Cola Company, Voss Water, Arik Air, Go Green Ride, MyExtensionz, Ecohomes Liberia, The Khana Group and Ethiopian Airlines. Confirmed special guests include Marcus Samuelsson, Maya Haile, Leila Lopez, Oluchi, and Hill Harper.For additional information on the Gala or to RSVP, please visit www.faceafricagala.com.last_img read more

Nathan Fillion Launches Charity Birthday Campaign

first_imgNathan Fillion turns 43 on March 27, and to celebrate he has launched a campaign for charity:water.“The last two years, you helped celebrate my birthday by building 22 wells for over 8,000 people,” writes the Castle star. “That’s something none of us can do on our own, but together with charity: water it’s a piece of cake. But, don’t send cake. We want water. Let’s build even more wells this year.“Thank you in advance, for being amazing right now.”- Every $10 donation enters you and a guest into a chance to win a lunch or dinner date with Nathan (airfare + accommodations included)- Every $250 donation gives you 25 entries to win the trip + a signed photograph- Every $500 donation gives you 50 entires to win the trip + a signed photograph + a thank you tweet from @NathanFillion- The first 10 people to donate $1,500 get 150 entries to win the trip + a signed photo + a personalized video from Nathan (3 of 10 left)- The first 5 people to donate $2,500 get 250 entires to win the trip + a signed photo + a personal voicemail from Nathan (2 of 5 left)”Nathan wants to raise $150,000, and as of writing he has already raised $113,800. To find out more, click here.last_img read more

Ringo Starr A Lifetime Of Peace And Love Concert To Hit AXS

first_imgAXS TV celebrates the life and legacy of Ringo Starr, with the once-in-a-lifetime tribute concert “Ringo Starr: A Lifetime of Peace and Love,” on Sunday, July 13, at 8 p.m. ET.The David Lynch Foundation hosts the benefit event, presenting Starr with the Lifetime of Peace and Love Award for his dedication to spreading peace and love throughout the world as a pioneer of transcendental meditation — a method for self-development, stress reduction, and relaxation, that Starr famously began practicing during the Beatles’ trip to India in 1968.Filmed at the El Rey Theatre in Los Angeles on January 21, the unprecedented event is packed with heartfelt moments and great performances from some of music’s biggest names who have come together for the first ever tribute celebrating Starr’s music.Highlights include video tributes from Paul McCartney and Yoko Ono; Betty LaVette performing “It Don’t Come Easy”; Ben Folds with “Oh My My”; Ben Harper on “Walk With You”; Joe Walsh with the rocking “Back Off Boogaloo”; Brendon Benson revving up “Don’t Go Where The Road Don’t Go”; The Head and the Heart doing the timeless classic “Octopuses Garden”; and kicking it all off Giles McWilliams from Ark Life with “Can’t Do it Wrong.”Serving as house band for the evening is a super-group of rock royalty led by GRAMMY-winner Don Was on bass; Benmont Tench (Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers) on keyboards; iconic axemen Peter Frampton and Steve Lukather (Toto) on guitars; and Kenny Arnoff (John Mellencamp) on drums.The guest of honor himself, Ringo Starr, closes out the evening with a spectacular three song set, “Photograph” and “Boys,” and then for the finale, inviting all of the night’s performers — along with members of the star studded audience including Eric Burdon, Gary Wright, Gregg Bissonette, Jeff Lynne, Colin Hay, Richard Page, Sheila E., Edgar Winter, and comedian Jim Carrey — back on stage to join in an epic sing-along of “With a Little Help from My Friends.”To view a clip of “With a Little Help from My Friends,” click here.The David Lynch Foundation was founded in 2005, as a means of providing transcendental meditation training to adults and children throughout the world. Since that time, the foundation has treated tens of thousands of people, with special programs developed for underprivileged students, survivors of domestic violence, and veterans suffering from post-traumatic stress. The foundation launched the Ringo Starr Peace and Love Fund in January of 2014.“Ringo Starr is one of the true unsung heroes of rock n’ roll,” said AXS TV founder Mark Cuban. “The wide-reaching impact he’s had on the industry—both as an artist and a humanitarian—is on full display here, as evidenced by the variety of high-level performers that came out to pay tribute to his legacy. This is absolutely one of the most unique events you will see this year, and AXS TV is proud to be a part of it.”For information on how to make a donation to the Ringo Starr Peace and Love Fund, click here.Source:PR Newswirelast_img read more

Mario Batali And Michael Strahan To Host Food Bank For New York

first_imgFood Bank For New York City will host its annual Can-Do Awards Dinner on Wednesday, April 20.The star-studded Can Do Awards Dinner, presented by Bank of America, is instrumental in helping to provide support for the 1.5 million New Yorkers who rely on Food Bank For New York City’s programs and services. Since its inception, the Can Do Awards have raised more than $14 million dollars, helping to provide 70 million free meals. Every dollar donated to Food Bank helps provide five meals to a New Yorker in need.Among those expected to attend are hosts Mario Batali and Michael Strahan, as well as Jon Bon Jovi, Aziz Ansari, Jim Gaffigan, Liam Neeson, Emeril Lagasse, Rosanne Cash, Carla Hall, Michael Symon, Michael Kenneth Williams, Peter Cincotti, Marc Marphy, Anne Burrell, Stephanie March, Debi Mazar, Gabriele Corcos, Gail Simmons, Katie Lee, Lee Schrager, Julia Landauer, Brandon Maxwell, Ming Tsai, Stavros Niarchos III, Stephanie Seymour, Rene Lopez, Food Bank CEO Margarette Purvis, and more…WHEN: Wednesday, April 20th, 2016WHERE: Cipriani Wall StreetFood Bank For New York City has been the city’s major hunger-relief organization working to end hunger throughout the five boroughs for more than 30 years. Nearly one in five New Yorkers relies on Food Bank for food and other resources. Food Bank takes a strategic, multifaceted approach that provides meals and builds capacity in the neediest communities, while raising awareness and engagement among all New Yorkers. Through its network of more than 1,000 charities and schools citywide, Food Bank provides food for more than 64 million free meals for New Yorkers in need. Food Bank For New York City’s income support services, including food stamps (also known as SNAP) and free tax assistance for the working poor, put more than $150 million each year into the pockets of New Yorkers, helping them to afford food and achieve greater dignity and independence. In addition, Food Bank’s nutrition education programs and services empower more than 44,000 children, teens and adults to sustain a healthy diet on a low budget.To find out more about the event, click here.last_img read more

Gene Simmons To Attend LA Police Memorial Foundation Celebrity Golf Tournament

first_imgOn May 21, 2016, celebrities, community members, LAPD and representatives from the US Armed Forces will help raise funds for the Los Angeles Police Memorial Foundation at Rancho Park Golf Course in Los Angeles.This day will also be a celebration of Armed Forces Day and several members of the US Armed Forces will be participating alongside LAPD Officers, sponsors and celebrities.The 44th Annual event will be hosted by actor Jack Wagner with a Special Guest appearance by rock legend Gene Simmons of KISS. Over 50 additional celebrities participating including from music the Backstreet Boys Nick Carter & AJ McLean, Alice in Chains’ Jerry Cantrell, Kendall Schmidt (Big Time Rush), Ryan Cabrera, Sophie Tweed-Simmons, Actors Luke Wilson, Ron Perlman, Jonathan Banks, Miguel Ferrer, Alan Thicke, Mark-Paul Gosselaar, Jeff Garlin, Sean Maguire, Vanessa Marcil, Cole Hauser, Don Most, C.S. Lee, Wesley Jonathan, Mark Moses, Galen Gering, the cast of Major Crimes – Phillip Keene, Raymond Cruz, Kearran Giovanni, Anne-Marie Johnson, sports stars Norm Nixon, Jason Collins, Tracy Murray, Kenny Landreaux, Sheldon Souray, current WWE Intercontinental Champion The Miz, Shannon Tweed-Simmons & more.Proceeds from this event benefit family members of LAPD employees experiencing catastrophic circumstances resulting from the officer’s injury or death. Since it’s inception in 1972, the Foundation has granted more than $16 million for medical, funeral and educational expenses without any taxpayer money.The event is family friendly and open to all ages. Fans will have an opportunity to walk the course and see their favorite celebrities golf. There will be live entertainment, food vendors, LAPD specialized unit displays, Armed Forces displays and a Traffic Safety Fair. This year will also feature the Star Wars characters onsite for photo opportunities.Sponsors Include Live Nation, Rubicon Resources, Kaiser Permanente, In-N-Out Burger, William Comfort Products.Tickets can be purchased at the event. General Info: 213-847-4239 or www.LAPMF.org.last_img read more

Call for Nominations – 2017 WGC Screenwriting Awards

first_img Facebook Advertisement Twitter Advertisement LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment center_img Login/Register With: Call for Nominations – 2017 WGC Screenwriting Awards!!Members, it’s time to submit your scripts for the 21st annual WGC Screenwriting Awards! Login to the members’ website to nominate a script, and get full details on the 2017 Awards Nominations page. This year the special awards include the Jim Burt Screenwriting Prize, the Showrunner Award, and the Sondra Kelly Award. There’s also a new awards category, “Best Script from a Rookie Series.” The complete category list is as follows:Best Script from a Rookie SeriesChildren’sDocumentaryFeature FilmMOW & MiniseriesShorts & WebseriesTV ComedyTV DramaTweens & TeensThe awards take place Monday, April 24, 2017 at Koerner Hall, 273 Bloor St. West, Toronto.And one final awards note for WGC members: Experienced screenwriters are needed as volunteer judges, so if you’d like to participate, please email awards@wgc.ca with the subject heading “WGC Awards Judges.” On April 24th, 2017, the Writers Guild of Canada will hold its 21st annual national awards evening honouring excellence in screenwriting.Nominations are now open for scripts in the following categories:• Best Script from a Rookie Series• Children’s (including Preschool)• Documentary• Feature Film• MOW & Miniseries• Shorts & Webseries• TV Comedy• TV Drama• Tweens & TeensEligibility & Important Information• To be eligible for entry, scripts must have been produced within the WGC’s jurisdiction.• All entries must be submitted by a WGC member in good standing.• The date of the first North American Broadcast (TV, digital), Theatrical or recognized Festival Screening – whichever came first – must be between December 1st, 2015 and November 30th, 2016.• A writer, or writing team, may now enter ONE (1) script per series, up to a maximum of TWO (2) eligible projects in a category.  Members may enter an appropriate script in more than one category to a maximum of FOUR (4) entries.• All entries for serialized programs are also asked to include a series synopsis in addition to their script.• A script entered into one category may not be entered into a different category as well.• The script draft submitted must contain primarily your own writing. If two or more writers are credited, you must obtain the permission of all credited writers and consensus on which draft will be entered.For more information, please see the Official Rule Handbook.How to EnterThe WGC Screenwriting Awards nomination process is online. Login with your member ID and click on “2017 WGC Awards Submissions.” You will be asked to submit an administration fee of $50 by Visa or Mastercard, after which you will need to complete the nomination form then upload a copy of the script and series synopsis where required. Please be sure to remove any references to the writer(s) from the script and series synopsis before uploading.If you are entering a Documentary, you must also mail a DVD copy of the finished project along with the Replication Authorization form, signed by the documentary writer (so that we may make copies for judging) to the WGC office.Members wishing to pay by cash or cheque must submit a completed entry form, available by request only to Holly Laflamme, along with the entry fee of C$50 payable to Writers Guild of Canada. Please mail, courier, or drop-off to:Writers Guild of CanadaAttn: Awards Administration366 Adelaide St. W., Suite 401Toronto, ON M5V 1R9.A copy of the script (PDF or Word document) must also be submitted in electronic form, either via USB key, disc, or email to awards@wgc.ca. Please note in your email that the entry form and payment has been submitted via mail, courier, or dropped-off. Once all components have been received your entry will be processed.Entries must be received at the WGC office by close of business (5:30 p.m. EST) on Friday, December 2nd, 2016 – or electronically by end of day (11:59 p.m. EST).Please note that an awards category may be eliminated for the current year, at the discretion of the awards committee, should insufficient entries be received.last_img read more

Clarke new Aboriginal Conservative caucus chair

first_imgAPTN National NewsOTTAWA–Conservative Manitoba MP Rod Bruinooge has been quietly replaced as chair of the Conservative Aboriginal affairs caucus, APTN National News has confirmed.Conservative Saskatchewan MP Rob Clarke officially became chair of the Aboriginal caucus in September, but discussions around the change began in the spring.Bruinooge, Winnipeg South MP, sat down and discussed his heavy workload with Clarke and said he didn’t think he could continue on as the caucus chair.Clarke, MP for Desnethe-Missinippi-Churchill River, said Bruinooge was overloaded with his work on the pro-life and post-secondary education Conservative caucuses.“We sat down early last spring, I’m not sure of the date, and Mr. Bruinooge withdrew his name as chair because he was too busy,” said Clarke, while riding on the MP’s Parliament Hill bus to attend a Commons Aboriginal affairs committee meeting.The two decided to officially make the change in September after the start of the new session of Parliament. After discussions over emails, other caucus members indicated they supported Clarke as the new chair.The usually secretive workings of the caucus briefly became public earlier this year after Bruinooge penned a letter, on Conservative Aboriginal caucus letter-head, that was critical of an Indian Affairs decision. The letter was leaked to APTN National News.The Feb. 24 letter to Chuck Strahl, the former Indian affairs minister, criticized the department’s decision to freeze out Aboriginal banks from a department program to backstop loans for on-reserve businesses and asked the minister to reverse the move.The $15.5 million program, called the Loan Loss Guarantee Program, only sought the involvement of large non-Aboriginal controlled banks and credit unions.Strahl later said the program would be reviewed.Indian Affairs is currently facing legal action over the program from Manitoba-based Tribal Wi-Chi-Way Win Capital Corporation.Health Minister Leona Aglukkaq sits in the Aboriginal caucus, along with Senator Patrick Brazeau, Senator Gerry St. Germain and Saint Boniface MP Shelley Glover, who is also parliamentary secretary for Indian Affairs.An 18-year veteran of the RCMP, Clarke is a member of the Muskeg Lake First Nation in Saskatchewan and grew up in Quesnel, B.C.last_img read more

In Perspective – the Truth and Reconciliation Commission and its bumpy road

first_imgAPTN National NewsThe Truth and Reconciliation Commission is about to hold its final event.The events around the presentation of the TRC’s final report will take place over four days next week in Ottawa and around the country.As APTN’s Matt Thordarson reports in the first of a three-part series it hasn’t always been a smooth road for the TRC.last_img

Trudeau offers full federal assistance to fire ravaged Fort McMurray

first_imgThe Canadian PressOTTAWA—Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says the federal government will provide all possible assistance to Alberta as wildfires ravage Fort McMurray.Trudeau is telling his caucus that Canada is a country of people who support each other in difficult times.The prime minister says he has already spoken to Alberta Premier Rachel Notley to offer his government’s support.Defence Minister Harjit Sajjan, in a conference call from Germany early today, confirmed a formal request for assistance has been received from the Alberta government.What form that will take—at least on the military side—is still being determined and National Defence is expecting to hear soon from the province about the kind of equipment and personnel required.The office of Public Safety Minister Ralph Goodale, the federal focal point for assistance, is expected to provide more details later Wednesday.last_img read more