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Around Red Deer May 30th…..

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3:09 pm – A reminder from the Penhold Fire Department to not discard smoking material in gardens or planters. This, after a flower garden fire in Penhold today that caused ,000 damage to a garden and the adjacent home on Harvest Close just before 1:00 pm. Fire Chief Jim Pendergast says the flames spread to the vinyl siding on the outside of the house and up onto some electrical lines. Luckily there were no injuries, as everyone evacuated safely.

11:20 am – Red Deer College is inviting central Albertans to celebrate the best films of the year at Film Works 2017. This annual event features films created by RDC’s latest student actors, directors, cinematographers and all-around filmmakers. The event runs Friday, June 2nd and Saturday, June 3rd. Read More.   

11:15 am – RDC is getting set to hold it’s 53rd annual Convocation Ceremony on Friday, June 2nd. Read More.

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11:04 am – RCMP are looking for two suspects after a truck was stolen in Erskine and a break-in soon afterwards at the Erskine Grill May 5th. Read More.

10:25 am – Some road closures are in place throughout the Town of Innisfail today. Read More.

10:15 am – Temporary Road Closures are now in place at many rail crossings throughout Lacombe County over the next several days. CP Rail is doing some work at these locations. Read Where.

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10:08 am – Farm Vehicle Safety Checks are taking place in Lacombe County over the next couple of days. Read More.

9:54 am – It’s Vibrant Neighbourhoods Week and the Crossroads Church in Red Deer will be the site tonight to host a Rural evening with Jim Diers who will share his passion for getting people engaged with their communities. It runs from 7:30 – 9:00 pm. Read More.

9:43 am – The 2017 Summer Clash Against Cancer wrestling fundraiser is moving locations from Sylvan Lake to Red Deer on August 12th. Read More.

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9:25 am – Week 1 is in the books for the Central Alberta Bucaneer’s 2017 season. The Bucs emerged victorious with a final score of 44-14 over the Grande Prairie Drillers on Saturday, May 27th. Read More.

9:17 am – It’s Business After Hours at Westerner Park tonight, while the Southside RV Centre Spring Event continues on site. Read More.

8:56 am – The City of Lacombe has released it’s 2017 Spring Coffee with Council Resident Feedback Summary Report. Read More.

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8:45 am – Municipal property tax notices for the 2017 taxation year were mailed out to Lacombe residents on May 26th. Read More.

8:35 am – Grade 8 students in Red Deer will participate in a Track & Field Day at École Secondaire Lindsay Thurber Comprehensive High School today!

8:27 am – To celebrate Canada’s 150th birthday, every school in the Red Deer Catholic Regional School Division will celebrate on the 150th day of the year. That’s today, so all students are encouraged to wear Red and White to mark the occasion. Click here to see what the Catholic schools are doing!

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8:14 am – It’s the final concert of the season at Hunting Hills High School in Red Deer tonight. There will be performances by Concert Band, Jazz Band, Rock Band, Steel Drums, Drumline and Dance students. Tickets $10 each, available at Hunting Hills music room or at the door.

8:07 am – STEM Subjects, coding, 3D modelling and printing and robotics are all part of the Makerspace Open House from 5:30 – 7:30 pm at Mountview Elementary School tonight!

7:58 am – Students at Red Deer’s Glendale Science and Technology School have their Outdoor Education Spring Camp today and overnight into tomorrow. They will be at the Alford Lake Conservation Education Centre participating in fishing, camping activities, wildlife identification, archery and survival training!

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Biden getting 1st shot at making mark on federal judiciary

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WASHINGTON — President Joe Biden has two seats to fill on the influential appeals court in the nation’s capital that regularly feeds judges to the Supreme Court.

They are among the roughly 10% of federal judgeships that are or will soon be open, giving Biden his first chance to make his mark on the American judiciary.

Barring an improbable expansion of the Supreme Court, Biden won’t be able to do anything about the high court’s entrenched conservative majority any time soon. Justice Clarence Thomas, at 72, is the oldest of the court’s conservatives and the three appointees of former President Donald Trump, ranging in age from 49 to 56, are expected to be on the bench for decades.

Democrats traditionally have not made the judiciary a focus, but that is changing after four years of Trump and the vast changes he made. Biden’s appointments are also the only concrete moves he has right now to affect the judiciary at large, though there is talk about expanding the number of judges on lower courts.

The nearly 90 seats that Biden can fill, which give their occupants life tenure after Senate confirmation, are fewer than former Trump inherited four years ago. That’s because Republicans who controlled the Senate in the final two years of the Obama White House confirmed relatively few judges.

Included in the tally are 10 seats on federal courts of appeals where nearly all appeals, other than the few dozen decided by the Supreme Court each year, come to an end.

One seat is held by Merrick Garland, whose confirmation as attorney general is expected in the coming days. Another longtime judge on the court, David Tatel, has said he is cutting back on his duties, a change that allows Biden to appoint his successor.

Chief Justice John Roberts, Justice Brett Kavanaugh and Thomas were appellate judges at the courthouse at the bottom of Capitol Hill before they joined the high court atop the Hill.

The late Justices Antonin Scalia and Ruth Bader Ginsburg also served on the appeals court, where they first formed their lasting friendship.

Following Scalia’s death just over five years ago. President Barack Obama nominated Garland to the Supreme Court, but Senate Republicans didn’t give him even a hearing, much less a vote.

When Trump took office in January 2017, he had a high court vacancy to fill. Trump ended up making three Supreme Court appointments to go along with 54 appellate court picks and 174 trial judges, aided by then-Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s determination to, as he put it, “leave no vacancy behind.”

Democrats and their progressive allies say they’ve learned a lesson or two from the Republicans, and intend to make judicial nominations a greater focus than in past Democratic administrations.

“It’s an exceptional situation where you have a president and the people around him people who really see this as a high priority,” said former Sen. Russ Feingold, the Wisconsin Democrat who served with Biden in the Senate for 16 years. Feingold now is president of the American Constitution Society.

“I think President Biden knows that a part of his legacy will be undoing the damage done by Trump to the extent possible,” Feingold said.

So far, liberal groups are encouraged by the signals the White House is sending. White House counsel Dana Remus wrote senators in December that recommendations for new judges should come within 45 days of a vacancy.

Biden already has pledged to name a Black woman to the Supreme Court if a seat opens up. Justice Stephen Breyer, 82, is the oldest member of the court and could retire, but he has not announced any plans.

Democrats are in search of several kinds of diversity, following the Trump years in which more than 75 per cent of judicial nominees were men and 85 per cent were white.

In addition to race and gender, liberal groups are pushing for diversity of experience so that public defenders and public interest lawyers are considered along with big law firm lawyers and prosecutors who have predominated in recent administrations.

“Our view is we would like to see them prioritize experiential diversity, which would be new and different from the two previous Democratic administrations,” said Nan Aron, president of the liberal Alliance for Justice, referring to the Obama and Clinton presidencies.

So far, the judges who have announced they are retiring or taking senior status, the term for a reduced workload, have mainly been appointees of Democratic presidents. Some appear to have put off retirement until Trump left the White House.

An additional four dozen or so are eligible to take senior status or will be before Biden’s term ends in 2025. Such judges must be at least 65 years old and with 15 years of service on the bench.

But Democrats also are eyeing a major expansion of the judiciary for the first time in 30 years. The creation of new judgeships to deal increased caseloads in parts of the country could draw bipartisan support, though it might provide a windfall of judicial appointments for Biden in the short term.

Idaho Republican Sen. Mike Crapo recently wrote about the need for another federal judge for his state, and Rep. Darrell Issa, R-Calif., backs the addition of judges in California and other states.

“There is broad agreement here on the dais on both sides,” Issa said last month during a House Judiciary subcommittee hearing on court expansion.

But some Republicans and conservative groups are wary about what Democrats might try to do now that they control Congress and the White House. If Democrats conclude “that the courts are somehow out of whack and create judgeships to fill them to skew the courts, I’m not OK with that,” said the Heritage Foundation’s John Malcolm, who helped compile a list of potential Supreme Court nominees for Trump.

At the same hearing, Rep. Steve Chabot, R-Ohio, said Democrats controlled the House in the last two years of Trump’s term, but held no hearings and proposed no legislation on expansion. “I wonder why?” he asked.

Mark Sherman, The Associated Press


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2019 Canada Winter Games

2019 Canada Winter Games Chair Lyn Radford Wins STC Sport Event Volunteer of the Year Award

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From the Canada Games Council

Lyn Radford, Chair of the 2019 Canada Winter Games, has been named the recipient of the 2020 Sport Tourism Canada (STC) Sport Event Volunteer of the Year Award.

The presentation of the 2020 PRESTIGE awards, postponed from last year, were hosted virtually as a gala on-line production. The presentation was hosted by Olympian, World Cup medallist and CBC Broadcaster Kelly VanderBeek.

The STC Sport Event Volunteer of the Year Award recognizes the outstanding contributions of an individual’s volunteer efforts during the hosting of one or more sport events in Canada in 2019.

Lyn Radford Background and Accomplishments

-Lyn Radford served as the Chair of the 2019 Canada Winter Games Host Society from 2014 – 2019

-Lyn oversaw the leadership, planning, execution, governance, and fundraising of the 2019 Canada Games, while serving as the primary spokesperson for the organization

-She is the first singular female Chairperson of a Host Society in Canada Games history

Lyn has volunteered her time to other major events throughout Red Deer and Alberta including the following:

  • 2003, 2006 and 2007 Bid Committee member for Alberta & Western Canada Games
  • Committee member for 2013 Memorial Cup Bid
  • Chair of the 2006 Alberta Summer Games
  • Directed the 2010 Olympic Torch Celebration
  • Served as a Director for 1998 Alberta Winter Games
  • Served as a Director for the 2004 and 2012 Scotties Tournament of Hearts
  • Served as a Director for the inaugural 2013 Tour of Alberta cycling race
  • Served as Capital Campaign Chair for Red Deer’s Ronald McDonald House
  • Founding member of both the Alberta Sport Development Centre – Central and the Red Deer Leadership Centre
  • Served on the Alberta Sport Connection as the Provincial Games Chair
  • Served as a Director on Red Deer College’s Board of Governors

Lyn has been recognized through various other awards including:

  • 2005 Alberta Centennial Medal for Volunteer Service
  • 2006 Toyota Never Quit Award
  • 2007 Mayors Award of Distinction for Volunteer Service
  • Red Deer’s 2009 Citizen of the Year
  • 2011 Women of Excellence Lifetime Achievement Award winner
  • Governor General of Canada 2012 Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal
  • 2019 City of Red Deer Lifetime Achievement Award
  • 2019 honorary bachelor of interdisciplinary studies degree
Quotes

“The 2019 Canada Winter Games were an incredible event that showcased our nation’s top amateur athletes and left behind a legacy of infrastructure, sustainability, and community pride in Red Deer. Lyn Radford was the driving force behind how successful these Games were, and we are grateful for the years of hard work and dedication she invested in the 2019 Canada Winter Games. The Canada Games are stronger than ever because of Lyn, and we’re thrilled that she’s being recognized for all of her accomplishments.”

Evan Johnston, Chair, Canada Games Council

“Congratulations to Lyn on being recognized  by Sport Tourism as the Sport Event Volunteer of the Year.  What a well deserved honor. Lyn has worked tirelessly as a volunteer for all of her adult life. No task is too small or too large for her to tackle. But the legacy of her volunteerism goes deeper than just her own involvement in a myriad of activities and events. She leads, motivates, encourages, cajoles and celebrates in such an infectious manner that the result is literally thousands of people who are giving back to their community because of her passion for commitment. The 2019 Canada Winter Games was just one of many opportunities for her to lead others to impact our community. I am sure all of the nominees have been involved in their events because of an intrinsic motivation to make a difference.  And Lyn was no different. Her motivation is never about self but about transforming community and people. During one day in the preparation for the Games, Lyn made an important presentation to our political leaders in the morning, helped with the orientation of volunteers in the afternoon and then was found hanging ornamental snowflakes from the light posts of main street in the evening. She exemplifies the saying ‘life is short-do stuff that matters-for and with others.”

Hugh McPherson, Vice Chair, 2019 Canada Winter Games Host Society

“Thank you to Sport Tourism Canada for recognizing the 2019 Canada Winter Games, and the hard work of our “force-to-be-reckoned with” Chair, Lyn Radford. This award recognizes the leadership, strength and fortitude demonstrated by our Chair, Lyn Radford and CEO, Scott Robinson, and the more than 5,000 incredible community volunteers. We made this once-in-a-lifetime moment ours, as individuals, as a community, and as a country in pursuit of possibilities. Congratulations Lyn on this prestigious award.”

Tara Veer, Mayor of Red Deer

About the Canada Games

Held once every two years, alternating between winter and summer, the Canada Games are the largest multi-sport event in Canada for up and coming amateur athletes. Each Games features two weeks of competition, between 16 – 19 sports, approximately 3,400 summer and 2,350 winter athletes, and over 4,000 volunteers. Hosted in every province at least once since their inception in Quebec City in 1967, the Games are proud of their contribution to Canada’s sport development system in addition to their lasting legacy of sport facilities, community pride and national unity.

The organization of the Canada Games is made possible thanks to the contribution and support of the Government of Canada, provincial/territorial governments, host municipalities and the Canada Games Council.

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