Sousa to focus on cutting the deficit

Posted By: Justine Lewkowicz · 2/12/2013 7:10:00 PM

Charles Sousa says his number one priority as finance minister will be tackling the province's deficit and thinking long-term.

He joined the Live Drive with John Tory on Newstalk 1010 Tuesday.

Sousa says the province has to be focused on eliminating the $11.9-billion deficit by 2017-18 while still being able to afford the things that matter.

"Like health care, education, and social programs. We still have to provide the services of government," Sousa says. "But we need, we need to take every step possible to stimulate that economic growth without taking measures too drastically that will hamper us."

Sousa says he is "for the most part" very eager and excited about the opportunity to work as finance minister.

Without giving a timeline for introducing his own budget, Sousa says it will come "in due course." He says he wants to consult with the public and opposition first.

"I want to ...

Witnesses Describe Kachkar Before Death of Sgt. Russell

Posted By: Russ Courtney · 2/12/2013 6:49:00 PM

Just days before now 46 year-old Richard Kachkar stole a snow plow and killed Toronto Police Sgt Ryan Russell in January 2011, his behaviour had changed, court heard on Day 6 of his murder trial.

According to testimony, Kachkar had an appointment scheduled with employment counselor Nadine Janzen on Monday January 10th, 2011, two days before Russell was killed. Kachkar missed the appointment.

The previous week Kachkar met twice with Perry Bartley, who also worked at the centre.

Court heard that by the second meeting Kachkar's behavior had changed and he told Bartley he was "feeling a bit off" and he was concerned about his upcoming appointment, saying he had "a lot of stuff going on."

Bartley thought he was just a "lack of self-esteem."

Both Bartley and Janzen testified that in their dealings with Kachkar they noticed "nothing out of ordinary" and "nothing unusual."

What stood out was his ...

Wilfrid Laurier students talk mental health

Posted By: Justine Lewkowicz · 2/12/2013 5:03:00 PM

A new survey shows that high school students are feeling stressed about their future.

The TDSB conducted a survey of just over 100,000 students, showing that 66 per cent of them are feeling stressed sometimes or all of the time.

Almost 75 per cent of high school students are worried about their future and more than half are losing sleep over it.

The board is planning to use the results to create a mental health strategy.

Wilfrid Laurier Collegiate Institute already has seven program that tackle mental health issues. One program tries to remove the stigma around the problem, another deals with sexuality, another promotes diversity.

Students say the programs get them to work as a team. Grade 11 student, Kevin, says peer-to-peer conversation is empowering.

"I love to have conversations with friends," he says. "Personally, I'm more open when I'm talking to my friends than when I'm talking to a teacher."

He and ...

LAPD say body of fugitive ex-cop Christopher Dorner has not been found

Posted By: Newstalk 1010 · 2/12/2013 10:10:00 PM


There were reports that a body had been recovered from a torched cabin in Big Bear, California and that it belonged to fugitive and ex-police officer Christopher Dorner. However, that isn't the case.

LAPD held a short news conference on Tuesday evening to tell media that misinformation had been put out. The charred cabin was still too hot and unsafe for crews to enter and no body has been found or recovered from the scene.

Law enforcement sources tell The Associated Press that single gunshot apparently fired inside the cabin was heard just before the fire broke out Tuesday.

Authorities believe Dorner barricaded himself in the cabin after exchanging gunfire with deputies, killing one and wounding another.

Dorner is an ex-LAPD officer, a former US Navy-trained marksman, and is accused in 3 killings, including the death of a member of the Riverside County police ...

Why No Snow Emergency?

Posted By: Dave Bradley · 2/12/2013 4:28:00 PM

Toronto residents watched as more than 30cms of snow piled up in some areas on Friday, and then tried to clean it all up.

But with that much snow, wouldn't it be time to call a snow emergency?

It wouldn't mean much, but it would mean drivers would be banned from parking on snow routes, and if they were parked there, it would give the city the ability to tow the cars.

Chair of Toronto Public Works, Denzil Minnan-Wong said in a press conference on Tuesday, that there needs to be 5cm before they can call a snow emergency.

But he added, on top of that there needs to be a request from Toronto Transportation Services, and that request never came on Friday.

However, he admitted if he was in the same situation again, he would have done things differently.

Minnan-Wong said there were 102 calls of cars blocking streetcar ...

*UPDATE* Brazeau Booted from Senate

Posted By: Dave Bradley · 2/12/2013 2:32:00 PM

Senators have voted to force Senator Patrick Brazeau, who is facing criminal charges, to take a leave of absence from the
upper chamber.

The Conservative motion passed today by senators calls on Brazeau to step aside temporarily in order ``to protect the dignity and reputation of the Senate and the public trust and confidence in Parliament.''

Brazeau made a surprise appearance in the chamber just prior to the vote on the motion, which also gives a Senate committee the power to cut off his access to his expense account.

The 38-year-old Brazeau, who is currently free on bail, was charged with assault and sexual assault after he was arrested last
week at his home in Gatineau, Quebec.

His leave of absence would remain in effect until the case is resolved.

If convicted, Brazeau could either be suspended or expelled by the Senate, or he could choose to resign.

VIDEO: Liz Sandals Wants To Listen

Posted By: Katie Franzios · 2/12/2013 2:26:00 PM

She has one of the hardest jobs in cabinet - smooth things over with the province's teachers.

But newly sworn-in Education Minister Liz Sandals says she's ready for what she believes is an uphill battle, with plans to reaching to union heads soon.

Sandals says she wants to listen to union concerns when it comes to the future but she underlines her discussions with them will not be a new set of negotiations.

The province's relationship with its teachers was severed after Ontario used Bill 115 to impose contracts on teachers late last year.

Returning extra curricular activities to schools is a top priority for Sandals, who says she believes not only students and parents want them back, but many teachers realize they are valuable ways to reach out to students.

Sandals believes her experience in the education system will help her in the portfolio. She was a school board ...

Grades Important Factor For Student Aid: Tories

Posted By: Katie Franzios · 2/12/2013 2:17:00 PM

Ontario's Tories want university and college students' marks to determine if they get money from the province.

Progressive Conservative Training, Colleges and Universities Critic MPP Rob Leone says any form of student aid should be given to those with top marks. The former professor also wants students to prove they're putting any money given towards education.

This is all part of a PC bid to scrap the Liberals 30 per cent tuition grant. Leone underlines that the majority of Ontario students don't qualify for the grant, pointing specifically to single parents who are going back to school.

Leone adds schools should be the ones administering financial aid since they know their students better.

UPDATE: Wynne Willing To Testify On Gas Plants

Posted By: Katie Franzios · 2/12/2013 3:41:00 PM

Kathleen Wynne reveals she will appear before the committee looking into the relocation of the gas plants if asked. The premier issued a written statement, after the Tories revealed intentions to call on Wynne and former Premier Dalton McGuinty to testify about the Mississauga and Oakville gas plant cancellations which cost taxpayers $230 million.

The PCs are demanding the Liberals to bring back committee hearings to look into the matter when the legislature returns next week.

PC MPP Rob Leone says he doesn't believe the full truth surrounding the gas plant cancellations is out there. He points out that Wynne was the Liberals 2011 campaign co-chair and the decision to stop construction on the Mississauga plant was made before the election.

While Wynne can't forced to testify at the committee because she's premier, now that McGuinty has resigned and is an MPP, he isn't protected.

Energy Minister Bob Chiarelli says ...

Fatal Fire in Beaverton Probed

Posted By: Newstalk 1010 · 2/12/2013 1:13:00 PM

The bodies of two people have been found during the investigation of a house fire south of Beaverton.

Durham Regional Police have called in the homicide squad to probe the case, but have very few answers at this point.

Fire crews were called to the home on the 2nd Concession in Brock Township, early Sunday morning.

The home was destroyed, and the Fire Marshall's Office has been called to try and determine the cause.

Family members of Jerry and Eve Cudahy held a vigil along the road near the burnt home, on Monday.

Police haven't confirmed if they are the bodies found in the rubble.

TDSB Report Finds That Student Mental Health Needs Attention

Posted By: Suzette Francis · 2/12/2013 11:12:00 AM

A report from the Toronto District School Board suggests a strong need to better support students' social and emotional well-being.

The wide-ranging report from the TDSB found 73 per cent of students surveyed between Grades 9 and 12 were worried about their future, while 59 per cent of respondents in Grades 7 and 8 said the same.

The 2011 survey also found 72 per cent of students polled between Grade 9 and 12, and 63 per cent of students surveyed in Grades 7 and 8 said they felt nervous or anxious often or some of the time.

Meanwhile, 66 per cent of students surveyed between Grades 9 and 12 said they were under a lot of stress often or sometimes, while that figure stood at 40 per cent for respondents in Grades 7 and 8.

A spokeswoman for the board says the report's findings will be used to craft a ...

Police shoot coyote seen roaming Cabbagetown

Posted By: Michelle Rosa · 2/12/2013 6:26:00 AM

Residents of Cabbagetown can rest a little easier.

A coyote or a mix-breed coyote/wolf that had wandered into the Carlton and Parliament Street area Sunday evening. Apparently, it came back Monday night and that's when police shot and killed the animal.

They tried to surround the coyote, but say it became aggressive.

Toronto police say, "officers tried to get the coyote back into the ravine, however that failed, at which time, officers had to discharge their firearms and destroy the animal for the safety of the public."

Police are advising Torontonians to be careful and vigilant. Coyotes don't normally attack humans but they urge you not to leave young children unsupervised and if you happen to be confronted by a coyote, the best way to defend yourself is to wave your arms, make loud noises and throw objects at them. Slowly back away from the animal if those measures don't ...

Wrestling dropped from 2020 Olympics

Posted By: Michelle Rosa · 2/12/2013 5:43:00 AM

An official familiar with the decision says IOC leaders have dropped wrestling from the program for the 2020 Olympics.

In a surprise decision Tuesday, the offficial tells The Associated Press that the IOC executive board decided to retain modern pentathlon and remove wrestling instead.

The official spoke to the AP on condition of anonymity because the decision hadn't been announced yet.

The IOC board reviewed the 26 sports on the current Olympic program. Eliminating one sport allows the International Olympic Committee to add a new sport to the program later this year.

(The Associated Press)

North Korea conducts third nuclear test, defying UN orders

Posted By: Newstalk 1010 · 2/12/2013 1:11:00 AM

North Korea successfully detonated a miniaturized nuclear device at a northeastern test site Tuesday, state media said, defying UN Security Council orders to shut down atomic activity or face more sanctions and international isolation.

The underground explosion could take North Korea a big step closer to its goal of building a nuclear warhead small enough to be mounted on a long-range missile that could threaten the United States.

Official state media said the test was conducted in a safe manner and is aimed at coping with ``outrageous'' U.S. hostility that ``violently'' undermines the North's peaceful, sovereign rights to launch satellites. North Korea faced sanctions after a December launch of a rocket the UN and Washington called a cover for a banned missile test.

The North said it used a ``lighter, miniaturized atomic bomb'' that still has more explosive force than past tests.

The United States Geological Survey said earlier Tuesday ...

UPDATE: 15 year old boy dies after being shot

Posted By: Michelle Rosa · 2/12/2013 8:03:00 AM

A 15 year old boy has died after being shot Monday night, Toronto police confirm.

The call for help came in around 10:30pm Monday night, after shots rang out at an address on Turf Grassway, off Jane Street, just south of Finch.

EMS says the teen was shot in the stomach and did not have any vital signs while being transfered to hospital.

Three people were taken in for questioning, but no word on any charges being laid.

Reports from the scene suggest that police are looking at the possibility that the shooting could be accidental.

This is the third shooting incident within the past month that has left a young person dead in the GTA.

On Jan. 18, 15 year old Tyson Bailey was shot dead at an apartment building near Dundas and River streets. No one has been arrested in connection to that shooting.

9 year old Kesean ...

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