All Posts Tagged With: "quebec"
Ontario is second
Quebec companies are by far the most heavily taxed in Canada and the United States, even after accounting for generous financial assistance from the province, according to a new University of Montreal business school study.
The HEC Centre for Productivity and Prosperity’s 2012 report said Wednesday that Quebec companies paid 26 per cent more in taxes than the Canadian average and face almost double the tax burden of U.S. companies.
Taxes represented 5.1 per cent of the gross output of Quebec businesses, compared with 4.1 per cent for Canada and 2.9 per cent for the United States, according to a Statistics Canada survey of 2008 data.
Ontario was the second least competitive province in terms of taxes at four per cent of gross output, followed by Alberta (3.9), B.C. (3.8), Nova Scotia (3.7), Manitoba (3.7), Newfoundland and Labrador (3.4), P.E.I. (3.1), Saskatchewan (3.0), and New Brunswick (2.6).
A fake medical student, a fake gun & Dalton McGuinty
1. After nine years as premier of Ontario, Dalton McGuinty stepped down last night and prorogued the legislature. By 9 p.m., the newspapers had stories suggesting he’ll run for the federal Liberals against Justin Trudeau. Paul Wells writes that he would be astonished by that. “But then, McGuinty has already astonished me once tonight,” he adds. Wells explores the Teflon Premier’s legacy and examines a (possibly) telling recent speech.
2. A man rejected from medical school at New Zealand’s Auckland University decided to go anyway. He spent two years attending classes, labs, and hospital placements and was only caught when a classmate put his name on a group assignment.
3. A 28-year-old woman who was walking to the University of Windsor Monday was told by a man carrying a fake gun to hand over a computer bag. The woman described the gun as “two sticks taped together.” The University of Windsor Campus Police arrested and charged a 21-year-old.
Lack of national news doesn’t meet licence mandate: study
A long-standing complaint concerning Quebec navel-gazing by the CBC’s French-language news service has been revived as the national broadcast regulator considers Radio-Canada’s licence renewal.
Sen. Pierre de Bane, a former Liberal cabinet minister under prime minister Pierre Trudeau, commissioned an exhaustive research study that suggests Quebec television viewers may be getting an “unrepresentative image of the Canadian reality.”
A scientifically vigorous sample of 2010 newscasts on Le Telejournal, taken by a Carleton University researcher, found that 42 per cent of the coverage focused on Quebec, a third dealt with international news and just 20 per cent covered Canadian “national” news.
A Bieber fan attacked, James Franco & #RIP Amanda Todd
1. A Vancouver Justin Bieber fan had her night nearly ruined. Simran Mann wrote her name inside a heart with a Bieber reference on a pillar outside Rogers Arena. The problem was that pillar was a memorial for Canuck’s player Rick Rypien. Hockey fans tracked her down on Twitter and unleashed a fury: “Please hang yourself, so I can destroy your grave,” wrote one. Ouch.
2. Speaking of the Canucks, Kevin Bieksa and Daniel Sedin will play a charity game at UBC on Oct. 17. Both men are angry that sold-out tickets are being re-sold by scalpers on Craigslist.
3. Canadians are standing up against bullying with the hashtag #RIP Amanda Todd, in honour of the 15-year-old B.C. girl who killed herself after releasing an anti-bullying video on YouTube.
Cop who pepper-sprayed students faces new accusations
A notorious police constable has been suspended after she was involved, once again, in an aggressive exchange captured on video.
The officer best known in Montreal as “No. 728,” in reference to her badge number, will be temporarily sidelined pending a disciplinary investigation, the local police chief announced Thursday.
Const. Stefanie Trudeau first rose to local prominence earlier this year when video surfaced of her generously pepper-spraying a crowd of student protesters who appeared to pose no threat last May.
This week new video surfaced of a forceful, profanity-laced arrest during a dispute that started with a man drinking a beer outdoors.
After the incident she was recorded unleashing expletives and derogatory comments about artists, protesters, musicians and dwellers of a certain downtown Montreal neighbourhood and she described the people on the scene as, among many other things, “rats.”
Cancellation of hike isn’t enough for them
One Quebec student group says that with tuition hikes officially off the table, it will now champion the idea of free education.
The new Parti Quebecois government scrapped a controversial increase in post-secondary tuition fees this week and a hardline student group is now turning to free education as its long-term goal.
CLASSE, which speaks for 100,000 Quebec students, says free education is entirely achievable and used a march attended by several hundred people on Saturday to highlight the issue.
“Our struggle for accessibility to higher education is not yet over,” said Jeremie Bedard-Wien, a spokesman for CLASSE.
Free education is not a position that is shared by the province’s two other major student associations and with the proposed hike by the former Liberal government formally cancelled, Quebec has the lowest tuition in the country again.
Price will return to $2,168
The tuition increase that triggered such social strife in Quebec was cancelled Thursday during an action-packed first full day in office for the Parti Quebecois government.
The new government repealed the fee hike, by decree, in its first cabinet meeting less than 24 hours after coming to power.
Student leaders cheered the news.
“Together we’ve written a chapter in the history of Quebec,” said Martine Desjardins, head of the more moderate university student association.
“It’s a triumph of justice and equity.”
Freshman 15, politics in the classroom & anger at OCAD U.
1. Yesterday there was a flash sale from Chartwells at the University of Prince Edward Island during which poutine was 50 per cent off for a few hours. Cadre reporter Josh Coles took on the breaking news assignment: “This poutine was weighty. Heavy. Thick. I would compare its weight to that of a litre of chocolate milk,” he wrote.
2. The poutine and chocolate milk diet seems like evidence for that legendary Freshman 15 weight gain, but another study suggests the weight gain isn’t really 15 pounds. Researchers from Auburn University in Alabama showed that the Freshman 15 is really more like the Four-Year 12. After four years at the college, students in the study had gained an average of 11.7 pounds.
3. Homecoming will likely make a homecoming next year at Queen’s University after students finally behaved in public with just 12 arrests over the weekend compared to 124 in 2008. In an email sent Monday to the Queen’s community, Principal Daniel Woolf wrote that he’s working with “various members of our community, including alumni, to plan for the potential safe return of fall reunions in 2013.” The University Council asked Woolf to reinstate the tradition, which was barred after many years of alcohol-related arrests. See The Perils of Drinking on Canadian Campuses for more.
No arrests so far
Quebec’s anti-corruption squad is searching the offices of the McGill University Health Centre in downtown Montreal this morning.
A spokesman for the unit says around 10 investigators from the department’s Hammer Squad are looking for signs of illegal activity.
Squad members are interviewing witnesses during the operation.
There are no immediate reports of arrests.
Quebec introduced Operation Hammer in late 2009 amid a flurry of corruption allegations that shocked the province.
The squad has been involved in a number of arrests since its inception.
PQ says it will index tuition to rate of inflation
Quebec student leaders are ready to face off against any plans the newly elected Parti Quebecois may have to increase tuition fees.
Students claimed a cautious victory after premier-designate Pauline Marois promised to reverse tuition increases for college and university students.
Less than 24 hours after the PQ won a minority in the Sept. 4 election, Marois announced she would undo the hikes introduced this year by the Liberal government of outgoing Premier Jean Charest.
For now, the near-daily protests in Montreal have come to a halt.
The downtown park where hundreds, and often thousands, of protesters gathered nightly for marches over the past few months has gone quiet. Classes have resumed at Quebec’s junior colleges and universities.
Premier-designate will cancel tuition hikes by cabinet decree
Premier-designate Pauline Marois says she will do her best to push ahead the more contentious parts of her campaign platform despite her minority-government status.
Marois, whose Parti Quebecois won 54 of the province’s 125 ridings on Tuesday, conceded the difficulty of the task ahead given that the Liberals have 50 members and Francois Legault’s Coalition party has 19.
In an indication of her political limitations, Marois never once referred to an independence referendum during her post-election news conference and no reporter bothered asking about one.
She said she will try to make progress on the more divisive parts of her platform — those dealing with language, culture and federal-provincial relations — but will need to seek consensus from the other parties.
Quebec Liberal premier lost own seat in last night’s election
Jean Charest has decided to put an end to a stormy 28-year political career, including the last nine as Quebec premier.
Charest, a staunch federalist who served as federal Progressive Conservative leader before becoming Quebec Liberal leader in 1998, spent a good part of his announcement Wednesday praising Canada.
”We are all blessed to have been born in this country,” Charest told reporters at the national assembly.
But the longtime premier also hailed Quebecers, who elected him premier in 2003, 2007 and 2008.
”We are a people of dreamers but also builders,” he said.
Charest’s resignation will take effect in a few days when the Parti Quebecois officially takes power after its minority victory on Tuesday.
Michelle Obama, Quebec election, Adderall & Harry Potter
1. U.S. First Lady Michelle Obama gave a heartwarming speech at last night’s Democratic National Convention. She mentioned that she and her husband Barack struggled with college debt, contrasting them with Republican challenger Mitt Romney. She said her husband believes “success isn’t about how much money you make. It’s about the difference you make in people’s lives.”
2. The Gateway student newspaper obtained documents that “revealed serious health and safety concerns” in Lister Residence at the University of Alberta, where alcohol was recently banned in common areas. Problems included “a Floor Coordinator and a student vomiting on each other, collecting it in a pitcher, and having a third student drink it.” Serious concerns indeed.
3. Another student paper, The Harvard Crimson, has done something less impressive: run online advertisements for ADDTabz, the “Adderall Alternative.” Adderall is a prescription-only stimulant used to treat Attention Deficit Disorder. It is sold illegally as a study aid. This advertising partnership seems rather unbecoming of an Ivy League school, much like last week’s cheating scandal.
One dead, one injured at Parti Quebecois victory rally
What should have been an historic moment in Quebec — the election of its first woman premier — was tainted Tuesday night as an angry year of discontent reached its nadir.
“What’s going on?” an obviously concerned Pauline Marois said to one of her provincial police bodyguards as he plucked her by the elbow from her moment of triumph and whisked her from the stage at her victory rally in a bubble of burly plainclothes cops.
The premier-elect cast searching glances over her shoulder as she was moved quickly away, with a climate of confusion sweeping over the room.
It was only when audience members left that they learned what had happened: the acrimony of debate in the province in the last few years had been ratcheted up another chilling notch and charged into their midst.
Chuck Norris, Quebec election and Stanley Cup rioters
1. Chuck Norris, known for on-screen martial arts and a certain intractable meme, has a message for Americans. If you love your family and freedom as much as he and his wife Gena do, don’t vote for Obama. America is headed toward “socialism or something much worse,” says Chuck. Gina predicts “a thousand years of darkness.”
2. A Quebec election, which was at least partly called to settle the nightly student protests against tuition, is happening today. Polls put Liberal Premier Jean Charest in third place, but this is Quebec so anything could happen. Charest does look especially desperate. He warned over the weekend that a Parti Quebecois government could jeopardize the chances of NHL hockey returning to Quebec City. Read full coverage here.
Suit says not enough done to allow access to classes
A class-action lawsuit is being organized by young Quebecers frustrated because they say they were hurt by the province’s student strikes.
The motion to sue 25 universities and junior colleges, as well as the Quebec government, was announced Thursday by students and their lawyers.
The plaintiffs say not enough was done to let them have access to their classrooms and complete their courses.
One says she will get her nursing diploma six months late, which will cost her financially.
Police and security guards assaulted at U. de Montreal
Montreal police arrested 10 people at a university today as students staged more protests on the second day of classes.
A spokesman for the city’s police department says six women and four men face charges of assaulting officers and security guards at Universite de Montreal.
The alleged incidents took place near the spot where masked protesters clashed with police and security agents yesterday.
Montreal police briefly detained 19 people yesterday at the university for violating provisions of the province’s controversial new protest law.
Bill 78 sets out stiff penalties for protesters who block schools or who fail to provide police with their demonstration itinerary eights hours in advance.
Dozens of demonstrators forced class cancellations yesterday as school resumed at Quebec universities.
—The Canadian Press
19 under investigation after disruptions by demonstrators
Quebec’s controversial back-to-school law was wielded for the first time ever by Montreal police after showdowns involving masked protesters disrupted the reopening of universities Monday.
Authorities opened investigations into 19 people at Universite de Montreal for allegedly violating provisions of Bill 78, a police spokesman said.
The announcement came on the first day of university as crowds of demonstrators entered classrooms, noisily banging on pots, pulling fire alarms and blowing on air horns while ordering students to leave.
At Universite du Quebec a Montreal, in particular, the crowds worked their way from one room to another, emptying classes in any faculty that had voted to keep striking. That led to confrontations with security, staff and those students who wanted to study.
Masked protesters descend on U. de Montreal and UQAM
The calm of summer is being shattered with the return to school of Quebec universities, where some classes are being disrupted as protesters disobey the back-to-school law.
Chaotic scenes, which are reminiscent of those seen across the province in the spring, have suddenly flared up this morning after a relatively quiet summer.
Masked protesters at the Universite de Montreal warned a news photographer that he had better not try taking pictures of them: “Be careful,” she told him. “They’re going to take care of you.”
The provincial emergency law, known as Bill 78, sets stiff fines for people who block classrooms.
Disruptions at Montreal university force class cancellation
Several classes at a Montreal university are being disrupted as students disobey Quebec’s back-to-school law.
Small groups of students at Universite du Quebec a Montreal, armed with lists, are seeking out classrooms in faculties where students voted to remain on strike.
They are interrupting the classes by shouting and shutting off the lights. Some of the classes are being cancelled.
The provincial emergency law, known as Bill 78, sets stiff fines for people who block classrooms.
The vast majority of Quebec’s students have voted to end their strikes, and the student unrest has hardly been an issue in the current provincial election campaign.
Today’s events as universities reopen, however, are a flashback to events that captured international attention last spring.
—The Canadian Press