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Around Red Deer March 22nd…..

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5:01 pm – The City of Red Deer is pleased that the Federal Budget announced on Wednesday will continue with stable Gas Tax funding for municipalities but is also hoping to benefit from Infrastructure Investments. Read More.

2:39 pm – Red Deer RCMP have arrested numerous people wanted on outstanding warrants. They were arrested between March 15th – 21st. They include 29 year old Daniel Wade Shields, 24 year old Rickell Jessica Frenchman, 27 year old Kayla Marie Cecka, 22 year old Kyla Joy Harter, 25 year old Matthew Robert McKinney, 20 year old Courtney Darlene Reid, 40 year old Brandy Christine Carl, 25 year old Nicholas Dale Krock and 46 year old James Mitchell. Read More.

1:13 pm – The Red Deer Catholic Regional School District has amended it’s Three Year Capital Plan. This, after Alberta Education’s school projects announcement on March 21st that indicates St. Patrick’s Community School will receive funding for modernization and has now been removed from this plan. Priority #1. Our Lady of the Rosary 8 classroom addition. #2. A new 6-9 middle school in Red Deer. #3. A new K-5 school in Red Deer. #4. A new K-5 French Immersion school in Red Deer. #5. A new K-5 school in Sylvan Lake.

12:48 pm – Red Deerians are being encouraged to turn off the lights for Earth Hour Saturday night! Read More.

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12:19 pm – Members of the public are invited to join the Red Deer College Board of Governors, President & CEO Joel Ward and special guest, Minister of Advanced Education Marlin Schmidt on Wednesday, March 29th from 5 – 6 pm as RDC’s new Board Chair is introduced. A report on the College’s contributions to central Alberta will also be presented. A reception is to follow in the Arts Centre Foyer.

11:54 – The Honourable David Eggen, Minister of Education, will visit St. Patrick’s Community School in Red Deer this Saturday, March 25 at 1:00 p.m. to discuss the new modernization project. Alberta Premier Rachel Notley and Minister Eggen announced funding to modernize St. Patrick’s Community School on March 21st. This comes as exceptional news as the school has been operating at 130% capacity. The school is one of seven in the province to undergo modernization. This modernization will provide improvements to the school including functional upgrades to ensure students have access to effective and modern learning environments. The Minister will visit with the school Principal, Senior Administration and Trustees.

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11:16 am – Red Deer RCMP are looking for a missing woman. Read More.

10:59 am – On Friday, March 24 at 7:00 AM, Red Deer County road bans will come into effect. With the recent warmer conditions, Red Deer County Operations staff have implemented road bans on many different County roadways, excluding all industrial and commercial subdivisions. Gravel roadways will be banned on an as-needed basis. For a complete listing of effected roads, go to www.rdcounty.ca or contact Red Deer County at 403.350.2150.

10:23 am – Rocky Mountain House RCMP are looking for an assault suspect possibly on the O’Chiese First Nation. Read More.

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10:09 am – Improvements to Main Street in Lacombe will soon be underway. Here, the City’s Engineering Services Manager Jordan Thompson provides a brief overview of the upcoming 2017 Main Street Improvements project:

9:54 am – The Red Deer Regional Catholic School Board received an update Tuesday regarding their current capital projects. St. Marguerite Bourgeoys School Work is progressing in the last stage of the project. This work is expected to be completed by the end of March. St. Gregory the Great Catholic School Ceiling grid has started on the second floor, painting is occurring in all areas, gym floor hardwood is starting in April and all other work is progressing on schedule. The school is scheduled to be completed at the end of May. St. Joseph High School Construction is complete other than some seasonal deficiencies which will be addressed in the spring. Our Lady of the Rosary Modular relocation is currently out for tender with results expected by the end of this month. St. Elizabeth Seton Modular relocation will be going out to tender shortly. Father Henri Voisin Modular addition planning has begun. ABC School, as part of the P3 contract, will deal with all aspects of this project.

9:32 am – The Red Deer College Men’s and Women’s Curling teams are competing in Camrose for a national title over the next few days. The University of Alberta (Augustana) will host the event from March 22nd to 25th at the Rose City Curling Club.

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Arts

Louie Anderson, Emmy-winning comedian, dies at 68

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LOS ANGELES (AP) — Louie Anderson, whose more than four-decade career as a comedian and actor included his unlikely, Emmy-winning performance as mom to twin adult sons in the TV series “Baskets,” died Friday. He was 68.

Anderson died at a hospital in Las Vegas of complications from cancer, said Glenn Schwartz, his longtime publicist. Anderson had a a type of non-Hodgkin lymphoma, Schwartz said previously.

Anderson won a 2016 Emmy for best supporting actor for his portrayal of Christine Baskets, mother to twins played by Zach Galifianakis. Anderson received three consecutive Emmy nods for his performance.

He was a familiar face elsewhere on TV, including as host of a revival of the game show “Family Feud” from 1999 to 2002, and on comedy specials and in frequent late-night talk show appearances.

Anderson voiced an animated version of himself as a kid in “Life With Louie.” He created the cartoon series, which first aired in prime time in late 1994 before moving to Saturday morning for its 1995-98 run. Anderson won two Daytime Emmy Awards for the role.

He made guest appearances in several TV series, including “Scrubs” and “Touched by an Angel,” and was on the big screen in 1988′s “Coming to America” and in last year’s sequel to the Eddie Murphy comedy.

Anderson also toured regularly with his stand-up act and as a stand-up comedian.

Lynn Elber, The Associated Press

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International

No national security issue in Chinese takeover of Canadian lithium company: Liberals

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OTTAWA — The pending takeover of a Canadian lithium mining company by a Chinese state-owned company raises no national security concerns, federal Liberals argued Thursday.

Liberal MP Andy Fillmore, parliamentary secretary to Industry Minister François-Philippe Champagne, told a House of Commons committee that the Industry Department reviewed last fall the proposed takeover of Neo Lithium Corp. by China’s Zijin Mining Group Ltd.

That review concluded that Neo Lithium is “really not a Canadian company,” he told the industry committee, describing it as an Argentine company with directors in the United Kingdom and only three Canadian employees “on paper.”

He said the only reason Neo Lithium “had any Canadian toehold whatsoever,” was to get on the Toronto Stock Exchange in a bid to raise money for what Fillmore called an “increasingly dubious appearing” mine development project in Argentina.

Moreover, he said that project involves lithium carbonate, not the lithium hydroxide used to manufacture batteries that are critical for electric vehicles.

For those reasons, Fillmore said a formal national security review of the takeover was deemed unnecessary.

“These are the things they found, right? That in fact it’s not a relevant lithium to Canada’s national security interests and it’s not really a Canadian company.”

However, Conservative MP Ed Fast, who had called for the emergency committee meeting to find out why no formal security review was done, said it’s “just false” to say Neo Lithium is not a Canadian company.

And he noted that the company’s own website touts the mine as “the pre-eminent lithium brine asset in the world” to meet surging global demand for electric vehicle batteries.

“It goes without saying but bears restating that critical minerals such as lithium are a strategic asset, not only for Canada but for the world, and will play a critical role in driving our future prosperity and in meeting our environmental objectives,” Fast said.

While the mine in question is in Argentina, Fast argued that it is incumbent on Canada and other “free-trading, rules-following allies” to ensure the global critical minerals industry is not monopolized by one country, especially one whose interests “are sometimes hostile toward ours.”

China currently dominates the world’s supply of lithium and batteries.

Conservative MP Tracy Gray further argued that lithium carbonate can be converted into lithium hydroxide for use in batteries.

But Fillmore countered that the conversion process involves additional costs and “significant environmental implications,” which is why lithium hydroxide is preferred.

“I could probably make a passable hat using my socks but I’d much rather wear a hat,” he said.

Thursday’s meeting was called to consider a motion by Fast, calling for the committee to hold six meetings to explore the Neo Lithium takeover and whether a formal national security review should have been conducted.

In the end, committee members unanimously agreed to a Bloc Quebecois compromise to hold two meetings on the subject next week. The steering subcommittee, which is also to meet next week to set the committee’s agenda for the coming months, could decide to schedule more meetings on Neo Lithium.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Jan. 20, 2022.

Joan Bryden, The Canadian Press

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