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Around Red Deer May 12th – 14th…..


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1:02 pm – Red Deer RCMP continue their ramped up efforts to arrest people wanted on outstanding warrants and patrolling targeted areas of the City for suspicious vehicles or activity. As a result, well over a dozen arrests have been made over the past 10 days, including the arrest of a man in a stolen truck with a loaded rifle inside. Read More.

9:56 am – Street sweeping continues in Sylvan Lake today. Find out where.

9:48 am – On May 3, 2017, Lacombe Mayor Steve Christie was joined by nine Grade 6 students from École Lacombe Upper Elementary School, Terrace Ridge School, Lacombe Christian School, Father Lacombe School and College Heights Christian School for the annual “Mayor for a Day” program at City Hall. Read More.

9:43 am – Trash To Treasure Week is now underway in Lacombe. Read More.

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9:40 am – Street sweeping resumes in Lacombe today. On Country Ridge Cl, Garden Rd, Fairway Dr, Northstar Dr & Eagle Rd. Don’t forget to move your vehicles!

9:35 am – The City of Lacombe has provided an update on the progress of the Main Street project currently underway. See it here!

9:29 am – It’s gardening season in Blackfalds! Construction of a new Community Garden is now underway in the Pine Crescent area. Read More.

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9:22 am – Tomorrow is a chance for you to take the kids out to see some cool, large equipment up close. On Saturday, May 13 between 10 am – 4 pm in the Crossroads Church parking lot, it’s the 2nd Annual Touch A Truck event. Members from Penhold Fire Department will be on site with their trucks. $5 a carload gets you in and with so much to see and do this event has something fun for everyone.

9:10 am – Charges have now been laid in an armed robbery on Broadway Avenue in Blackfalds on May 1st. 18 year old Connor Buyar of Lacombe, 18 year old Nicholas Gibson of Red Deer and a male youth from Blackfalds have all been charged in the incident.

9:02 am – Red Deer County and Innisfail Co-op Green Way have partnered once again to offer a Rental Sprayer Program. Read More.

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8:58 am – Just a reminder to local motorists of the Roundabout construction taking place at Gasoline Alley. It’s at the intersection of Laura Avenue and Lantern Street. Read More.

8:50 am – Lots going on at Westerner Park this weekend! The Red Deer Bike Swap, Deja Vu Kids Spring Sale and the Carswell Collectibles Antique Show! Read More.

8:40 am Numerous events and activities are going on throughout the City of Red Deer over the next few days. Looking for something to do? Check them out here!

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8:28 am – On Saturday, May 13, the Red Deer Kings Volleyball program will receive a prestigious honour when eight of its recent teams (1999/2000 – 2006/2007), as well as former player, Gavin Schmitt, will be inducted into the Alberta Colleges Athletic Conference (ACAC) Hall of Fame. During his time at RDC, Schmitt led the Kings in kills and kills per game, and he hit the last ball to win the national title during the team’s eight-in-a-row run.

8:13 am – They will be cutting the ribbon at the new NexSource Centre in Sylvan Lake tonight at 6:00 pm! Although it’s already been open to the public, the facility will feature many free events to the community over the next three days (May 12, 13 & 14). Read More.

8:00 am – Today marks the official Grand Opening of the new Runway Extension at the Red Deer Regional Airport. A special Ribbon Cutting Ceremony will take place at the Airport at 11:00 am with Deron Bilous, Alberta’s Minister of Economic Development and Trade. This project is the largest infrastructure project in the airport’s recent history.

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Allow unvaccinated Canadians to cross U.S. border, Poilievre asks President Joe Biden

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U.S. President Joe Biden shakes hands with Conservative Party of Canada Leader Pierre Poilievre, as Prime Minister Justin Trudeau looks on, during a welcoming ceremony on Parliament Hill in Ottawa, on Friday, March 24, 2023. Conservative Leader Pierre Poilievre says allowing Canadians who are unvaccinated against COVID-19 to cross into the United States was among issues he raised with President Joe Biden. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Justin Tang

By Stephanie Taylor in Ottawa

Conservative Leader Pierre Poilievre said Friday he asked President Joe Biden to remove the U.S. government’s requirement that Canadians be vaccinated for COVID-19 before crossing the border.

He told reporters after their meeting that American citizens are no longer required to have their shots and Canada allows unvaccinated Americans to visit.

“There are millions of good, decent, honourable people who, through a personal medical decision, are discriminated against at the border,” Poilievre said.

“I encouraged the president to lift those restrictions to allow them freedom of mobility.”

Poilievre won the leadership of his party a little more than six months ago by mounting a vocal opposition to COVID-19 health restrictions, including mask and vaccine mandates, but he has since focused his message on cost-of-living issues.

He met with Biden on Parliament Hill Friday during the president’s 27-hour visit to the Canadian capital, and later shared a photo of the two online.

Michael Ignatieff was the last Opposition leader to have face time with a U.S president. The former Liberal leader met with former President Barack Obama in 2009. It happened at the airport.

Poilievre said Friday he found Biden wants to be a “friendly” and “decent” neighbour to Canada, and on a personal level, he said he told the president they share Irish heritage.

He said they discussed the need for Canada to bolster its defence systems and “bring fairness” to workers by seeing the U.S. exempt Canada from its Buy American policies.

The Tory leader also said he expressed a need for Biden to axe tariffs on Canadian softwood lumber, arguing that the long-standing dispute saw a brief reprieve under Conservative prime minister Stephen Harper.

“I don’t believe that Prime Minister (Justin) Trudeau has pushed and fought on behalf of Canadians,” he said.

Before the meeting, Poilievre had shared some unscripted moments with the leader of the free world.

As he stood in a receiving line of Canadian politicians from all parties who were greeting Biden upon his arrival at Parliament Hill, Poilievre introduced himself as the “Leader of His Majesty’s Loyal Opposition.”

That prompted Biden to question, still shaking Poilievre’s hand: “Loyal opposition?”

Poilievre assured him that yes, “we believe that opposition is an act of loyalty in our system.”

Biden chuckled, patting Poilievre on the arm.

“We do, too, unfortunately,” he said, chuckling.

Later, while addressing the House of Commons, Biden noted that both he and Trudeau appointed cabinets that were half women, making them the first in their respective countries to do so.

Many in the chamber broke out in applause.

Biden noticed that Poilievre and the Opposition Conservatives were not quick to rise, and quipped: “Even if you don’t agree, guys, I’d stand up,” which Poilievre and others then did.

Asked afterwards about that interaction, Poilievre said only: “We support gender equality for all Canadians.”

Poilievre was on the guestlist for a dinner with Biden Friday evening, along with other government ministers, officials and celebrities.

The invitation process came with a dash of partisanship.

Earlier in the day, staff in Poilievre’s office were left scratching their heads when they said it had not received an invite from Trudeau’s office to attend, and asserted that any suggestion he had refused the invitation was false.

The Prime Minister’s Office confirmed it had sent Poilievre notice of the dinner — but the invitation went to a personal email account that notifies senders it is not monitored.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published March 24, 2023.

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Federal Election 2021

Trudeau says he accepts MP’s choice to leave Liberal caucus amid meddling allegations

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Then-Provincial Liberal candidate Han Dong celebrates with supporters while taking part in a nomination event, in Toronto, Thursday, May 22, 2014. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette

By Stephanie Taylor in Ottawa

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says he accepts Han Dong’s decision to leave the Liberal caucus after an allegation he spoke to a Chinese diplomat about delaying the release of two Canadians.

Trudeau sidestepped a question Friday about whether he believes the allegation, saying only that Canadians should watch Dong’s “strong” speech for themselves.

He said at a news conference alongside U.S. President Joe Biden, who was visiting Ottawa, that he fully accepts Dong left the Liberal caucus “to vigorously contest these allegations.”

The prime minister also added that he and Biden discussed foreign interference, and said it is “unacceptable,” whether from China or from other countries such as Russia and Iran.

Dong, a Toronto MP, announced he would sit as an Independent on Wednesday night, telling the House of Commons that he would defend himself against “absolutely untrue claims” regarding his alleged involvement in Chinese interference.

Global News published a report that night, citing unnamed security sources who alleged that Dong spoke about Michael Spavor and Michael Kovrig, who at that time had been detained in China for just over two years, with a Chinese diplomat in Toronto in February 2021.

The two Canadian men had been detained by China in December 2018, just over a week after the RCMP arrested Huawei executive Meng Wanzhou in Vancouver on a U.S. extradition warrant.

Global News alleged that Dong told China’s consul general in Toronto that releasing the men would benefit the Conservatives, but also that showing some “progress” in the case would help the Liberals.

The Canadian Press has not independently verified the allegations.

The MP said he met with the diplomat but disputes any suggestion he urged China to delay releasing Kovrig and Spavor, telling the House of Commons he did nothing to cause them harm.

Kovrig and Spavor were treated as honoured guests when Biden addressed the House of Commons on Friday.

Members of Parliament and others who packed the gallery gave the men no fewer than four standing ovations. It was their first time in public together since returning to Canada in September 2021.

Conservative Leader Pierre Poilievre told reporters it was moving to see Kovrig and Spavor, whom he described as “two courageous men who survived unimaginable hell.”

Poilievre added: “I was very heartened that everyone in the chamber gave them such a warm welcome.”

The Tory leader declined to weigh in on the allegations against Dong, but repeated his position that holding a public inquiry is the only way to get to the bottom of China’s alleged meddling in Canadian affairs.

He noted that all opposition parties agree on that — and pointed out that even Dong himself voted in favour of a motion that called for a public inquiry, the day after he left the Liberal caucus.

“So for his sake and for everybody’s sake, and most importantly, for the sake of the truth, the prime minister has to end his cover up and call a full public inquiry,” Poilievre said.

Trudeau has not ruled out the possibility of calling a public inquiry, but he has said that any recommendation to do so will have to come from former governor general David Johnston, who was recently appointed to probe the issue as a special rapporteur.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published March 24, 2023.

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