Controversial councillor squeaks out a win in Calgary's Ward 4

Incumbent Councillor Sean Chu remained the representative for Calgary’s Ward 4 as of Tuesday morning.

With all polls reporting, Chu unofficially won over DJ Kelly by a margin of 52 votes.

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There is the potential for a recount if one of the candidates seeks one within 44 hours of when the polls closed.

A recount would take place Thursday, according to returning officer Karen Martin.

Chu has been under fire after a CBC News story that focuses on an internal misconduct investigation that was done when he was a Calgary Police Service officer in 1997.

The CBC story alleges he had inappropriate contact with a minor.

Read more:
Calgary Coun. Sean Chu responds to misconduct allegations

Chu released a statement in response to the story on Sunday: “As many of you will have heard, there are serious allegations being made publicly against me based on a CBC News story that was released on Friday. These allegations misrepresent the truth of the matter and come at a time meant to hurt me the most in this campaign.”

Global News was unable to verify the findings of the internal misconduct review.

In a statement issued Monday afternoon, the Calgary Police Service said when the matter was raised in 1997, “it was taken seriously by the service and managed in accordance with the Police Act and Criminal Code.”

© 2021 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

COVID-19: Haliburton Kawartha Pine Ridge health unit reports 82% of residents fully vaccinated

More than 82 per cent of eligible residents within the jurisdiction of the Haliburton, Kawartha, Pine Ridge District Health Unit are now fully vaccinated against COVID-19, according to data released by the health unit.

In its weekly vaccination rate data released late Monday, the health unit — which serves the City of Kawartha Lakes, Northumberland County and Haliburton County — reported the following data:

All eligible residents (ages 12 and up):

  • Single dose: 86.7 per cent — up from 86.3 per cent on Oct. 11 (women 88.1 per cent; men 85. 1 per cent)
  • Two doses (fully vaccinated): 82.3 per cent — up from 81.5 per cent on Oct. 11 (female 84 per cent; male 80.3 per cent)

Adults (age 18 and up):

  • One dose: 87.2 per cent — up from 86.7 per cent on Oct. 11 (women 88.5 per cent; men 85.5 per cent)
  • Two doses: 82.8 per cent — up from 82.1 per cent on Oct. 4 (women 85 per cent; men 80.7 per cent)

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Other data:

First dose received by residents:

  • Over the past seven days: 627 (the week prior there were 544 first doses administered)
  • Over the past four weeks: 3,191
  • To date: 148,983

Second dose received by residents:

  • Over the past seven days: 1,478 (the week prior there were 1,683 second doses administered)
  • Over the past four weeks: 7,550
  • To date: 141,340

Fully vaccinated coverage rate by age group within the health unit’s jurisdiction:

  • Age 12-17: Approximately 74 per cent (female 73.7 per cent; male 73.8 per cent)
  • Age 18-29: Approximately 70 per cent (female 74.3 per cent; male 65.8 per cent)
  • Age 30-39: Approximately 80.7 per cent (female 84.4 per cent; male 76.9 per cent)
  • Age 40-49: Approximately 85.4 per cent (female 87.9 per cent; male 82.3 per cent)
  • Age 50-59: Approximately 78.3 per cent (female 81.5 per cent; male 75 per cent)
  • Age 60-69: Approximately 91.5 per cent (female 92.3 per cent; male 90.7 per cent)
  • Age 70-79: Approximately 88.4 per cent (female 86.5 per cent; male 90.5 per cent)
  • Age 80+: Approximately 80.5 per cent (female 81.8 per cent; male 78.2 per cent)

As of Monday afternoon, the health unit reported 10 active cases of COVID-19 within its jurisdiction. No updates are issued on Tuesdays.

There are no active cases of COVID-19 in schools within the health unit’s jurisdiction as of Tuesday afternoon after the Peterborough Victoria Northumberland Clarington District School Board reported a case resolved at St. Mary’s Catholic Secondary School in Cobourg.

Upcoming COVID-19 vaccinations are available at the health unit’s office in Lindsay (108 Angeline St. S.) from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Tuesday, Oct. 19 and on Friday, Oct. 22.

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Upcoming mobile vaccination clinics this week:

Northumberland County:

  • Wednesday, Oct. 20: Alnwick Civic Centre (9059 County Rd. 45) in Roseneath from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m.
  • Saturday, Oct. 23: Keeler Centre (80 Division St.) in Colborne from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Haliburton County:

  • Tuesday, Oct. 19: Stanhope Fire Hall  (1123 North Shore Rd.) in Algonquin Highlands from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. — drive-thru clinic
  • Thursday, Oct. 21:  Oxtongue Lake Fire Hall (3979 Hwy. 60) in Dwight from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. — drive-thru clinic

Visit Ontario’s pharmacy COVID-19 page for a list of pharmacies that offer a vaccination.

© 2021 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

Variety Week on Global BC 2021 – Day 2

The sixth annual Variety Week continues Tuesday, highlighting stories from children and families around the province who have been helped by Variety – the Children’s Charity.

Viewers can donate to help kids in B.C. through Variety by calling 310-KIDS or donating online.

And thanks to partnerships with organizations and matching donors from across the province, viewers will have a chance to double their donations throughout the week.  They can also make an automatic $20 contribution by texting KIDS to 45678.

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Variety Week on Global BC 2021 – Day 1

Here are some of the stories we are sharing on the second day of Variety Week.

Seven-year-old Charleigh has a terminal disease called Batten’s Disease CLN2. To make the most of the precious time they have left with their daughter, Charleigh’s parents required a wheelchair-accessible van. Thanks to Variety’s Sunshine Family Van program, the Vancouver Island family can now do more things together. We spoke with former Vancouver mayor Sam Sullivan about the importance of accessibility

© 2021 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

Kenney and Hinshaw to provide COVID-19 update Tuesday afternoon

Infectious diseases expert Dr. Issac Bogoch makes sense of the latest COVID-19 headlines.

Alberta Premier Jason Kenney will join Dr. Deena Hinshaw for the province’s COVID-19 update on Tuesday.

The two will also be joined by Alberta Health Services president and CEO Dr. Verna Yiu.

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Alberta records 2,181 new cases of COVID-19, 30 additional deaths since Friday

All three are scheduled to speak at 4:30 p.m. The news conference will be carried live in this story, as well as on 630 CHED and Corus Alberta Facebook pages.

On Monday, Alberta Health reported 2,181 new cases of COVID-19 had been confirmed over the previous three days. Thirty new deaths were also reported, bringing Alberta’s COVID-19 death toll to 2,976.

There were 981 people in hospital with COVID-19, with 225 of those people receiving care in the ICU.

The weekend marked the first time since Sept. 22 there were fewer than 1,000 Albertans in hospital with COVID-19.

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As of Monday’s update, 86 per cent of eligible Albertans 12 and over had received at least one dose of COVID-19 vaccine. Just over 77 per cent of the same group was fully vaccinated.

To date, 316,433 Albertans have contracted COVID-19, while 301,155 people have recovered.

© 2021 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

Finance committee OKs $64M extra spending on new Ottawa central library

Ottawa’s finance and economic development committee agreed to cover its share of the inflated costs tied to the new central library facility at its meeting Tuesday morning, with a groundbreaking now expected in the weeks ahead.

Councillors first learned last week that the costs related to the new joint facility with Library and Archives Canada had jumped significantly due to soaring construction industry costs tied to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Initially pegged at a cost of $192.9 million, the grand total for the project will now come in around $334 million, per the lowest-cost bid from PCL Construction.

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Ottawa’s share of the cost will now be $168 million, or $64 million more than initially budgeted in 2018 when the project was first approved.

The finance committee approved the extra spending with a unanimous vote Tuesday morning. The price hike still needs sign-off from the Ottawa Public Library Board at its meeting later in the day on Tuesday and at city council’s next meeting on Oct. 27.

The library board itself would cover roughly $12 million in additional costs in development charge debt and an extra $16 million from its reserves, which are sitting relatively flush after two years of surpluses, the committee heard Tuesday.

There would be roughly $3 million left in the library reserves after the withdrawal, according to the city’s chief financial officer Wendy Stephanson.

The city would cover the rest of the funding through taking on additional debt.

Stephanson told the finance committee the city is able to get preferential rates on the debt by extending its term to 40 years from the originally planned 20 years.

Much of the new debt will replace debt currently on the city’s books that’s set to mature in the coming years, she added.

An extra $10 million needed for a 200-spot underground parking garage will also be covered off by debt but would be paid back by parking fee revenues from the facility.

Staff also managed to find some savings in the project itself largely by downsizing some of the planned spaces and swapping materials where possible, but councillors were promised that the design the public has been shown is largely the same as the planned end product.

Ottawa’s new library also “compares favourably” on a cost per square foot basis with other central libraries in Canada, Stephanson said.

Choosing not to go ahead with the new library at this stage would mean a series of financial complications and spurned partners in the project.

For one, PCL’s low-cost bid would expire on Nov. 8, so delaying past that point would mean starting the procurement process over again and, in all likelihood, paying more for the final product as bids are revised based on ongoing inflation.

Substantial delays would also be an issue for the current central branch location on Metcalfe Street. Ottawa sold that building and is leasing the space from the new owner, but that deal is set to expire in 2026 — the same year the new library facility is now expected to open.

Ottawa’s planning general manager Stephen Willis said Tuesday that the city does have a clause in its agreement to extend that term should the new library face further delays, but the rental rates would be higher than what the city is paying now.

The city has also signed agreements with LAC to develop their new shared home together; terminating that partnership would put the city in murky legal waters, staff said.

Canada’s chief archivist Leslie Weir told the committee that LAC’s current home on Wellington Street is slated to be taken over by other government stakeholders in the years to come, so any further complications to this project would leave the library in the lurch.

“It would be quite devastating for us,” she said.

Pumping the brakes on the new library could also hurt the city’s relationship with the First Nations of Kitigan Zibi and Pikwakanagan, who have partnered with the planning team to shape the design and other elements of the library from early in the process.

Ādisōke, the name for the library, borrows the Anishinābemowin word for “storytelling” and was unveiled at a ceremony with First Nations partners earlier this year.

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Speaking to the finance committee Tuesday morning, Kitigan Zibi director of education Anita Tenasco held up the new library as “an opportunity for us to work on reconciliation.”

“This is an opportunity for us to collaborate in such a strong, meaningful way. We certainly hope that the funding will be found for this facility,” she said.

Should the funding plans be confirmed by the library board and city council in the week ahead, the contract is expected to be awarded to PCL by Nov. 8. A groundbreaking would happen at the site before the end of the fall.

© 2021 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

90% of active duty London, Ont. police employees fully vaccinated against COVID-19

The London Police Service has provided a public update following the deadline for its members to adhere to its new COVID-19 vaccine policy.

On Tuesday, the service reported that 90 per cent of active duty employees have provided proof of full vaccination while “a number are in the process of becoming fully vaccinated and others have submitted requests for accommodation.”

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COVID-19 — London Police Service launches vaccine policy for all members

In late September, the force unveiled its vaccine policy, which stated that all employees with the LPS would have until Oct. 15 to provide proof of full vaccination against COVID-19.

At that time, LPS said those who failed to submit proof and who are not subject to an approved accommodation would face a scale of enforcement measures, with harsher measures used only as a last resort.

Enforcement begins with mandatory educational sessions on COVID-19, but additional measures may include reassignment, removal from active duties, an unpaid leave of absence and/or disciplinary action up to and including termination, the service said.

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“I’m very pleased with the level of compliance we are seeing from our members,” Chief Steve Williams said in a statement on Tuesday.

“As it has been throughout the pandemic, it remains our goal to ensure the health and safety of all members of the LPS as well as the community we serve, in accordance with governing legislation and the advice and recommendations of public health authorities.”

In its update Tuesday, the service again stated that it would “continue to work with unvaccinated members on a case-by-case basis” with a goal of achieving maximum compliance.

–with files from Global News’ Andrew Graham.

© 2021 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

Flair Airlines expands fleet, adds 14 new routes in Canada and U.S.

Flair Airlines rolled out its first Boeing 737 MAX on Thursday before flying the first passenger flight from Edmonton to Toronto. As Michael King reports, industry experts say the expansion is well timed.

Flair Airlines is growing its fleet and expanding its service to new destinations in Canada and the U.S.

The Edmonton-based discount carrier says it will add four new Boeing 737 MAX aircraft to its fleet in the spring of 2022.

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This brings Flair’s total aircraft count to 16, and will allow the airline to expand its route offerings by 33 per cent.

Flair will launch service this spring to new destinations including San Francisco, Nashville and Denver.

It will also launch service between Toronto and Victoria and to Comox, B.C., for the first time.

Flair is also starting service to 6 U.S. destinations this fall and currently serves 18 destinations in Canada. The airline says it will grow to serve 28 destinations by spring 2022.

Fares to U.S. destinations start between $99 and $129 one-way and several of the new domestic Canadian routes have fares as low as $49 one way, including taxes and fees, the ultra low-cost carrier said.

Flair says the addition of the new aircraft will create 150 new jobs for flight attendants, pilots and operational support staff.

Flair is currently recruiting for 100 pilot jobs to meet the needs of its growing fleet.

Read more:
Flair Airlines unveils its first Boeing 737 MAX

© 2021 The Canadian Press

B.C. health officials to speak Tuesday as Pfizer asks Health Canada to approve vaccine for kids

B.C. health officials will be holding their weekly COVID-19 availability Tuesday afternoon.

Dr. Bonnie Henry and Health Minister Adrian Dix will speak at 1:30 p.m. That will be broadcast live in the post above, on BC1 and on the Global BC Facebook page.

Henry and Dix will likely face questions about Pfizer’s application to Health Canada to approve its COVID-19 vaccine for children ages five to 11.

Last month, Henry told reporters that the province is “actively preparing” so it will be ready to roll out the shot to children once it is approved.

Health officials are also looking to make sure parents have all of the information they would need to make a decision about whether to have their child immunized.

Read more:
Pfizer asks Health Canada to approve COVID-19 vaccines for children aged 5-11

Health Canada is expected to take some time before the vaccine is approved for kids and the lower-dose injection may not be available in Canada until late November or early December.

On Monday, B.C. reported 1,846 new cases of COVID-19 over the past three days, along with 26 deaths.

There were 753 cases from Friday to Saturday while 650 cases were reported from Saturday to Sunday, and 443 from Sunday to Monday.

Of the new cases, 212 were in the Vancouver Coastal Health region, 737 were in the Fraser Health region, 169 were in Island Health, 322 were in Interior Health and 406 were in Northern Health.

The number of people in hospital with the disease fell by seven to 360. Of those patients, 151 are in intensive care, a decline of one from Friday.

Read more:
COVID-19 — B.C. reports 26 deaths, 1,846 new cases over three days

There are 4,917 active cases of COVID-19 in the province. The province last reported fewer than 5,000 actives cases on Aug. 15.

This story will be updated following the press conference at 1:30 p.m.

© 2021 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

Manitoba says 30 health-care workers sent home for refusing testing under vaccine mandate

Manitoba’s health agency says there were no significant issues or service disruptions with the implementation of new COVID-19 vaccine requirements Monday.

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Shared Health says 30 direct-care workers across the province refused rapid testing and were subsequently sent home as of Monday afternoon.

Many front-line workers in health care, education and child care must be vaccinated or undergo testing up to three times per week under the new workplace orders.

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Shared Health estimates the rules impact about 42,00 workers and, as of Friday, 1,800 were identified as requiring testing.

Questions about COVID-19? Here are some things you need to know:

Symptoms can include fever, cough and difficulty breathing — very similar to a cold or flu. Some people can develop a more severe illness. People most at risk of this include older adults and people with severe chronic medical conditions like heart, lung or kidney disease. If you develop symptoms, contact public health authorities.

To prevent the virus from spreading, experts recommend frequent handwashing and coughing into your sleeve. They also recommend minimizing contact with others, staying home as much as possible and maintaining a distance of two metres from other people if you go out. In situations where you can’t keep a safe distance from others, public health officials recommend the use of a non-medical face mask or covering to prevent spreading the respiratory droplets that can carry the virus. In some provinces and municipalities across the country, masks or face coverings are now mandatory in indoor public spaces.

For full COVID-19 coverage from Global News, visit our coronavirus page.

© 2021 The Canadian Press

One dead after rollover near Saskatchewan-Manitoba border

A 21-year-old man is dead following a side-by-side off-road vehicle crash last Saturday in rural Saskatchewan.

RCMP from the Kamsack, Sask., detachment said the crash was reported west of Runnymede, Sask., just after 7 p.m. on Oct. 16.

Police said a man was driving the vehicle with a passenger when it rolled over.

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The passenger, who was from Kamsack, was declared dead at the scene of the rollover. Police say the family has been notified.

RCMP say the driver was taken to hospital to receive treatment for non-life-threatening injuries.

This investigation is ongoing.

© 2021 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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