Four stories in the news for Wednesday, May 22
NATIONAL MONEY LAUNDERING INQUIRY NOT NECESSARY: BLAIR
The federal minister in charge of Canada's fight against money laundering says dirty money is being spread across Canada, but a national public inquiry into the problem is not necessary. Organized Crime Reduction Minister Bill Blair says he supports British Columbia's decision to hold a public inquiry into money laundering, but the federal government will focus on implementing other measures to combat illegal money. But the author of a recent C.D. Howe Institute report on money laundering says Canada is behind the times when it comes to fighting the crime. Kevin Comeau's report said Canada's anti-money laundering policies are among the weakest of Western democracies and billions are laundered in Canada annually.
FEDS TO BUY TWO MORE ARCTIC SHIPS FROM IRVING
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is expected to announce today that the federal government is buying two more Arctic patrol ships on the top of the six it has already ordered from Halifax-based Irving Shipbuilding. However, unlike the first six ships, which are being built for the navy at a total cost of $3.5 billion, a government source said the seventh and eighth will be built for the Canadian Coast Guard. The source said the move is intended to address the Canadian Coast Guard's desperate need for new ships. The second problem is the threat of layoffs, which Irving has long warned will happen unless the government fills a gap between when the last Arctic patrol ship is finished and construction on the navy's new $60-billion warship fleet.
CASE OF OTTAWA-AREA BARTENDER COULD SET PRECEDENT
The rare case of a bar server charged with criminal negligence in the suspected drunk-driving deaths of two teens is up in court today. Two young men, Brandon Hanniman and Alexander Paquette, were killed and two others were injured when police say their car veered off the road and plowed into a rock cut. Police later said the group had been drinking at a local establishment and alcohol contributed to the crash. While bartenders and bars may face lawsuits related to serving drunk drivers, legal experts say they are not aware of a case in Ontario where someone has been found criminally responsible.
DOUG FORD AND BLAINE HIGGS TO MEET IN TORONTO
Ontario Premier Doug Ford is set to meet with his New Brunswick counterpart today to discuss a number of issues, including their shared opposition to the federal carbon tax. Ford and Blaine Higgs have both been vocal in their opposition to the tax, which the federal government imposed earlier this year on provinces that didn't have their own price on carbon. Ontario's government is waiting for a decision after fighting the tax in court. Saskatchewan's top court ruled in favour of the federal government in a separate legal battle against the carbon price, but that province has said it plans to appeal the decision. Higgs has said New Brunswick will join in that fight.
ALSO IN THE NEWS:
— The Department of National Defence and Statistics Canada will hold a news conference roday to address the findings in the 2018 Statistics Canada Survey on sexual misconduct in the Canadian Armed Forces.
— Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland will meet with steel workers and businesses in Regina to discuss the elimination of tariffs on steel and aluminum, and the new NAFTA.
— Statistics Canada releases the retail trade results for March.
— Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp. to release its national mortgage and consumer credit trends report.