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Carra says he’ll chain himself to traffic cones to prevent road closure

That prompted several area residents to promise to act as his security guards so he doesn’t get lynched by angry drivers stuck in traffic jams.

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Calgary councillor Gian-Carlo Carra says he’ll chain himself to a traffic cone to try and prevent the city from reopening roads that have been shut down to allow physical distancing during the COVID-19 pandemic.

And he claimed if he did that, angry Calgary motorists would probably “lynch” him.

Carra said a road linking Ramsey and Inglewood is too important for cyclists and walkers to reopen to vehicles.

“I’ve informed that two things will happen if they attempt to remove that adaptive MUP between @ramsaycalgary & @InglewoodYYC: 1) I will chain myself to the pylons; and if they’re still successful in removing it; 2) I will probably be lynched,” Carra tweeted.

That prompted several area residents to promise to act as his security guards so he doesn’t get lynched by angry drivers stuck in traffic jams.

“We’ve used this connection countless times this summer. If you’ve got extra chains, our crew will join you. Don’t send us to the narrow sidewalk from hell,” wrote David Frid.

CrankedCyclist tweeted: “Count me in @gccarra as your bodyguard. Why can’t Memorial still be flipped at weekends? Doesn’t social distancing, mental health, infrastructure gaps and progressive mobility networks matter?”

The route in question is located on 11 and 12 streets S.E. running from the zoo bridge south to 21 Ave.

“No, we are not giving this one up,” Carra told Global.

“It is a short stretch, and people are fairly socialized that it is happening. I feel that this is one that absolutely has to stay open, and we are having that conversation right now with administration.”

Carra tweet

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. 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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NDP motion calls for denunciation of independence movement in Alberta

The motion, which could be debated as early as Monday, says it is in Alberta’s best interest to stay within Canada.

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Alberta’s NDP is putting forward a motion calling on the legislature to denounce the independence movement in Alberta.

The motion, which could be debated as early as Monday, says it is in Alberta’s best interest to stay within Canada.

“Be it resolved that the Legislative Assembly affirm that it is unquestionably in Alberta’s interest to remain part of the Canadian federation and unequivocally denounce calls for Alberta to become a state that is independent of a strong and united Canada,” reads the motion brought forward by Rod Loyola, NDP MLA for Edmonton-Ellerslie.

While Premier Jason Kenney has repeatedly said he’s a Canadian patriot, others, including some within his own UCP caucus, say independence needs to be on the table if there is any chance of getting a fair deal from Ottawa.

Drew Barnes, UCP MLA for Cypress-Medicine Hat who wrote a dissenting Fair Deal panel report saying independence needs to be on the table, said the NDP motion comes as no surprise.

“The NDP has been unwilling to stand up for Alberta families – this is no surprise at all,” Barnes said in an interview with theWestern Standard.

“It’s clear the actions of the feds and Ottawa have limited opportunity and hope in Alberta. We need opportunities to work hard.

“Ottawa and the Laurentian elite have to realize there has to be consequences. I look forward to having a discussion about this with Albertans in the coming days.”

In June, Alberta’s Fair Deal panel is recommended numerous changes the province can make quickly in order to get a better deal in Confederation – but there was no talk of long-term Constitutional change nor any mention of independence.

The report said Alberta should take immediate steps to create a provincial pension plan, set up its own police force and appoint a chief firearms officer.

In terms of the controversial issue of Fiscal Stabilization, the Fair Deal panel said Alberta should “press strenuously for the removal of the current constraints on the Fiscal Stabilization Program, which prevent Albertans from receiving a $2.4 billion equalization rebate.”

Other suggestions on what Alberta should do immediately is to secure a seat at the table when the federal government negotiates and implements international agreements and treaties affecting Alberta’s interests, opt out of new federal cost-shared programs, subject to Alberta receiving full compensation and continue to diversify Alberta’s economy in the energy sector and beyond.

Barnes wrote his own report to Kenney urging a much stronger stance against Ottawa for the province to get a fairer deal in Confederation, adding that the issue of Alberta independence needs to be on the table.

…This story will be updated as reaction comes in

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

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Alberta unions hint at general strike

Guy Smith said it’s hoped the support will lead to “province-wide protest actions…and possibly a general strike.”

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Five Alberta unions have launched a “Stand up to Kenney” campaign that will see province-wide protest and a possible general strike.

Alberta Federation of Labour President Gil McGowan announced the action plan in Edmonton on Wednesday flanking by four other union leaders from the United Nurses of Alberta (UNA), Health Sciences Association of Alberta (HSAA), Canadian Union of Public Employees Alberta (CUPE Alberta) and U of A Non-Academic Staff Association (NASA).

“We’re asking all Albertans to join us…and stand up to (Premier Jason) Kenney,” said McGowan, adding an online petition is being started.

“By taking the pledge people will be indicating that they’re ready to take part in province wide protest actions,” said McGowan.

“These protest actions will include rallies demonstrations – both in person and online – and they may include work related protests like workplace strikes, and even a provincewide general strike.”

On Monday, hundreds of health care workers wildcat walkouts.

The walkout took place by AUPE hospital workers in Calgary, Edmonton and around the province.

AHS went to the Alberta Labour Relations Board “to formally ask the board to direct the affected employees back to work.”

In a statement, AHS said all sites remained open but some surgeries and ambulatory care clinics are being postponed.

Health Minister Tyler Shandro announced earlier this month the AHS was shedding 9,700 jobs by shifting them to the private sector.

Most of the 9,700 other jobs will now be outsourced in labs, housekeeping, food services, and laundry.

There will be 2,000 laboratory jobs, 4,000 housekeeping jobs, 3,000 food service jobs, and 400 laundry jobs cut.

The province said about 70 per cent of lab results are already contracted out, as is 68 per cent of laundry.

Franco Terrazzano, the Canadian Taxpayers Federation’s Alberta Director, said it was disappointing to hear a general strike being mentioned.

“It’s very disappointing that government union bosses are threatening work stoppages when too many Albertans want nothing more than to have a job,” said Terrazzano

“All taxpayers should be concerned that this is a campaign to make struggling Albertans pay more for our high cost provincial government.”

Terrazzano pointed out that the Alberta government spends more per person than every other province and would spend $10 billion less annually if its per-person spending were brought in line with provinces such as British Columbia, Ontario and Quebec, according to the Blue Ribbon Panel on Alberta’s finances.

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

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EXCLUSIVE: Tory insider says Kenney, UCP trying to recruit Calgary mayoral candidates

Gary Mar denies meeting with Jason Kenney to discus a mayoral run.

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Senior members of the UCP – as high as Alberta Premier Jason Kenney – have been trying to recruit high profile candidates to run against Jeromy Farkas – and possibly Naheed Nenshi – in Calgary’s mayoralty race, the sources tell the Western Standard.

A high-ranking UCP insider who spoke on condition of anonymity, said that Kenney is leery of the conservative Farkas candidacy and wants someone with closer ties to the Tory establishment.

The source said former Tory cabinet minister Gary Mar and former Wildrose leader Danielle Smith have been approached and urged to run, with Mar approached directly by Kenney.

When contacted Tuesday by the Western Standard, Mar admitted some UCP members have approached him, but denied that Kenney was personally involved.

The Tory source said Mar told him that Kenney personally met with him to discuss a mayoral run, but that Mar was uninterested.

“Lots a people have suggested I run but my time in public life is over,” Mar said in an interview.

Mar held six different cabinet posts as a Calgary MLA between 1993 and 2007 when he was appointed Alberta’s trade representative in Washington. In 2011, he ran for and lost the Tory leadership. He was then posted to Asia as the province’s trade representative.

He was named President and CEO of the Canada West Foundation in April 2020.

When asked about being recruited by Kenney, Mar brought up an old quote from American Civil War General William Tecumseh Sherman when he was being considered as a Republican candidate for president in 1884.

Tecumseh said: ‘I will not accept if nominated and will not serve if elected,'” Mar said of the attempts to woo him to run.

Smith served as Wildrose leader from October 2009 to Dec. 17, 2014 when she resigned to cross the floor and join the governing Tories. In 2015, she lost the nomination battle in the riding of Highwood.

Smith is currently a talk show host on QR77.

In an email to the Western Standard, Smith said: “I have lots of people who have asked me to consider it but I have no knowledge of UCP involvement. I am not considering it – my husband doesn’t want me back in politics.”

The Conservative source told the Western Standard that Smith said that she was approached by senior UCP members like former Kenney campaign manager Allan Hallman, but not by Kenney himself.

Premier Jason Kenney’s office has not yet responded to request for comment from the Western Standard.

Calgarians go to the polls next October.

Mayor Naheed Nenshi hasn’t yet said whether he will run again.

This story will be updated if a statement is received from the office of Premier Kenney.

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

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