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Nenshi to Madu: Mind your own business on police defunding

“I’m not really into veiled threats. If you want to make a threat, make a threat,” Naheed Nenshi said.

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Calgary Mayor Naheed Nenshi is telling Alberta Justice Minister Kaycee Madu to buzz off with his warnings about not defunding police services.

“I’m not really into veiled threats. If you want to make a threat, make a threat,” Nenshi told reporters.

“The whole thing was, frankly, a bit ridiculous.

Nenshi noted all the revenue to Calgary the UCP government has cut.

“Look, we’re having incredibly critical, incredibly important, nuanced conversations with the grown ups in the room,” said Nenshi.

“To time a ridiculous letter with ridiculous slogans in it, while we’re having this adult conversation just shows you’re not really interested in being part of that conversation.”

On Thursday, Madu wrote letters to the mayors Calgary and Edmonton warning them against any moves to defund police forces in their cities.

MADU Tweet

Nenshi said earlier this month it’s time for the Calgary Police Service to cut their budget.

“I’ve made it extremely clear my opinion on the matter to the police chief, which is that every other department at the city has faced austerity over the last six years and it is time for the police to show us cost savings,” Nenshi said.

“I’ve also been very clear on the fact that we need a better mental health response system, we need different work that does a better job on fighting institutional racism in the city. Perhaps, some of that funding can come from the police.”

But in his letter Madu said any move to defund police services is “misguided.”

Madu said “racalized” groups such as Aboriginals, who are often victims of crime who need police protection.

“So in contrast with what some groups are claiming, reduced police funding poses risks – not benefits – to those groups,” Madu wrote.

“Alberta’s government will closely monitor how municipalities are managing their police budgets as well as responding to calls to “defund the police”. It should be clear that any substantial changes may lead us to explore options to ensure we maintain adequate funding for critical law enforcement for Alberta citizens.”

Iveson told reporters in Edmonton: “As minister of municipal affairs, (Madu) was very keen on scrubbing down our budgets. Now, as minister of justice, to suggest that we should not be looking at our largest cost centre — which is policing — seems a bit ironic to me.”

Edmonton council has removed $11 million from the 2021 police budget of around $389 million and approved 20 proposals to reform policing.

The issue of cutting police budgets has been a hot topic for months following the death of George Floyd, a black man, at the hands of a white police officer in Minneapolis.

Protesters have taken to the streets across North American demanding money be taken out of police budgets and used to create more social programming.

CPS members are meeting with city council Thursday to propose shifting some of their funding into social service agencies they work with.

Part of their presentation involves a large mea culpa signed by Chief Mark Neufeld and his deputy chiefs.

The letter states CPS is “committed to addressing systemic racism” in the service.

“We know by the very foundation by which policing was created was inherently racist,” the letter states.

The letter notes CPS members have met with BLM officials and other marginalized communities.

“We humbly apologize for the harm we have caused,” it reads.

Calgary councillor Sean Chu on Thursday made it clear what side he is on.

Chu pointed out a city citizen satisfaction survey found 80 per cent of Calgarians are pleased with CPS.

“We should defund Council instead!” he tweeted.

Dave Naylor is the News Editor of the Western Standard
dnaylor@westernstandardonline.com
TWITTER: Twitter.com/nobby7694

Dave Naylor is the News Editor of the Western Standard and the Vice-President: News Division of Western Standard New Media Corp. He has served as the City Editor of the Calgary Sun and has covered Alberta news for nearly 40 years. dnaylor@westernstandardonline.com

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Horgan told he can’t build a ‘BC Wall’

Many pundits said such a move would be against the Charter of Rights and Freedoms, but Horgan plugged away and last week ordered government lawyer to do some digging to see if he could.

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BC Premier John Horgan isn’t legally allowed to ban other Canadians from travelling to his province, his lawyers have told him.

Horgan has been musing for several months about the ban, which he said would help stop the spread of the COVID-19 virus.

Many pundits said such a move would be against the Charter of Rights and Freedoms, but Horgan plugged away and last week ordered government lawyers to do some digging to see if he could.

Section 6. (2) of the Charter of Rights and Freedoms states: “Every citizen of Canada and every person who has the status of a permanent resident of Canada has the right: to move to and take up residence in any province; [and] to pursue the gaining of a livelihood in any province.”

And guess what BC lawyers found – they concluded the pundits were correct!

“The review of our legal options made it clear we can’t prevent people from travelling to British Columbia. We can impose restrictions on people travelling for non-essential purposes if they are causing harm to the health and safety of British Columbians,” Horgan said.

“Much of current interprovincial travel is work related and therefore cannot be restricted.

“Public health officials tell us what is most important is for everyone to obey health orders, wherever they are, rather than imposing mobility rules. Therefore, we will not be imposing travel restrictions at this time.

“If we see transmission increase due to interprovincial travel, we will impose stronger restrictions on non-essential travellers. We will continue to work with the tourism and hospitality sectors to make sure all possible safety precautions are in place.”

In November, Horgan said: “We need a pan-Canadian approach to travel. People in Quebec and Manitoba should stay in Quebec and Manitoba.

“We want to make sure we have an approach to travel not inconsistent with citizenship. Non-essential travel should not be happening in British Columbia,” he said.

So far, BC has had almost 63,000 cases of COVID-19 with 1,119 deaths.

Dave Naylor is the News Editor of the Western Standard
dnaylor@westernstandardonline.com
Twitter.com/nobby7694

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Dastardly thieves steal entire herd of Saskatchewan cattle

While it’s quite common for the RCMP to be called in when one of two cows get stolen on the Prairies, it’s a whole different matter when the entire herd is pilfered.

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The cattle rustling – and there’s cattle rustlin‘!

While it’s quite common for the RCMP to be called in when one of two cows get stolen on the Prairies, it’s a whole different matter when the entire herd is pilfered.

RCMP in Saskatchewan are now on the look-out for 63 purloined cattle worth an estimated $100,000.

RCMP said between October and December, a Saskatchewan farmer had 35 cows and 28 calves on multiple quarters of land between Moosomin and Fairlight go missing.

It was only reported a couple of days ago and RCMP are investigating the matter as a theft.

“It’s definitely rare. Just everything about it,” Cpl. Dallyn Holmstrom told Global News.

“I’ve heard of people losing cows to the (United) States over frauds … but it’s always been a fraud where they’ve sold cows and then through frauds or whatever, they haven’t gotten money.

““But I’ve never heard of cows just being stolen — at this magnitude anyway.”

Holmstrom told Global all the cows are all branded with a line over a capital T and E.

“The calves aren’t branded, but they all have ear tags and the cows have ear tags as well, but they’re branded,” Holmstrom told Global.

“They can’t go to an auction mart, they can’t go to a butcher. They can’t because they’re branded.”

Anyone with information is asked to contact 310-7267 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477.

Dave Naylor is the News Editor of the Western Standard
dnaylor@westernstandardonline.com
TWITTER: Twitter.com/nobby7694

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Edmonton councillor calls for study on creation of urban reserve

An urban reserve is defined as a reserve within or adjacent to an urban centre.

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An Edmonton city councillor will ask administration to study the possibility of setting up an Aboriginal reserve with city limits, the Western Standard has learned.

Ward 5 Coun. Sarah Hamilton will make the request at the next council meeting on Monday.

She will move “that Administration prepare a report to formally implement an Urban Reserve Strategy for the City of Edmonton, to work with First Nations that would like to establish an urban reserve within the City of Edmonton boundaries.”

An urban reserve is defined as a reserve within or adjacent to an urban centre.

There are numerous urban reserves across the country – the majority being created as a result of a specific claim and Treaty Land Entitlement settlements, which provide First Nations with cash payments that, may be used to purchase land.

Hamilton asks administration to “outline how other municipalities in Western Canada have implemented an Urban Reserve Strategy, including bylaw compatibility, municipal service agreements and other considerations, and recommendations of feasibility on implementing a similar model in
Edmonton.”

In a federal government website on urban reserves, it notes it’s important for the new centre to have a municipal servicing agreement because it provides a fee for services such as water, garbage collection, police and fire protection, in an amount which is generally equivalent to the amount the municipality would have collected through property taxes.

“The same sales tax exemptions that apply to reserves in rural areas also apply to urban reserves,” the government said.

“Many First Nations in Canada are located in rural areas, far from the cities and towns where most wealth and jobs are created. This geographic remoteness can sometimes pose challenges for First Nations trying to increase their economic self-sufficiency. As a result, urban reserves are one of the most successful ways to address the problem of geographic remoteness of First Nations.

“Urban reserves offer residents economic opportunities that are generally unavailable in more remote areas. They give First Nation businesses the chance to establish themselves and provide employment and training opportunities. At the same time urban reserves can create jobs for Indigenous and non-Indigenous people and contribute to the revitalization of the host municipality.”

Dave Naylor is the News Editor of the Western Standard
dnaylor@westernstandardonline.com
TWITTER: Twitter.com/nobby7694

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