Sitar Virtuoso, Ravi Shankar Dies

Posted By: Michelle Rosa · 12/11/2012 11:44:00 PM

Ravi Shankar, the sitar virtuoso who became a hippie musical icon of the 1960s after hobnobbing with the Beatles and who introduced traditional Indian ragas to Western audiences over an eight-decade career, has died. He was 92.

The prime minister's office confirmed his death and called him a ``national treasure.''

Labeled ``the godfather of world music'' by George Harrison, Shankar helped millions of classical, jazz and rock lovers discover the centuries-old traditions of Indian music. He also pioneered the concept of the rock benefit with the 1971 Concert For Bangladesh. To later generations, he was known as the estranged father of popular American singer Norah Jones.

As early as the 1950s, Shankar began collaborating with and teaching some of the greats of Western music, including violinist Yehudi Menuhin and jazz saxophonist John Coltrane. He played well-received shows in concert halls in Europe and the United States, but faced a constant ...

Woman Killed After Head-On Collision in King Township

Posted By: Newstalk 1010 · 12/11/2012 9:13:00 PM

A woman is dead after a two car collision in King Township.

York Regional police say there was a head-on collision at 18th Side Road and Highway 27 just after 6 p.m., Tiesday.

The woman is said to have been driving a minivan.  It apparently collided with a dump truck.

She was pronounced dead at the scene.

Mother and Two Children Struck By Car in Mississauga

Posted By: David Woodard · 12/11/2012 9:10:00 PM

A child has been rushed to a Hamilton hospital with life threatening injuries after being struck by a vehicle in Mississauga.

A woman (the child's mother) and another child were also struck by the vehicle near Bromsgrove and Tredmore Drive just after 6 p.m., Tuesday.

They were also taken to hospital, but were said to suffer non-life threatening injuries.

Police say it's not clear what happened at this point, but believe the three were walking in the crosswalk when they were hit.

No word yet on whether charges will be laid.

DEVELOPING: Several Dead After Shooting Inside Portland Mall

Posted By: David Woodard · 12/11/2012 8:20:00 PM

Sheriff's deputies say there has been a shooting in a shopping mall near Portland, Oregon.

One witness at the Clackamas Town Center told television station KATU at least two people were shot, and he saw sheets put over them.

Three people have been confirmed dead, including the shooter.

Another witness told the station she saw people screaming and parents grabbing their children as they fled the mall.

That witness said the gunman had a rifle and was wearing a camouflage outfit and a mask. 

Another witness said ambulances were arriving at the scene. Nearly 100 officers are still at the mall.

(The Associated Press)

Christmas Tree Stolen In Mid-Town Toronto

Posted By: Newstalk 1010 · 12/11/2012 4:38:00 PM

It's a disturbing story out of Mid-town Toronto.

A man claims someone stole a living Christmas tree from the garden on his property.

Dave Sparrow lives in the Bayview and Eglinton area, and told Newstalk1010's Jim Richards, that he'd planted the tree about 8 years ago and was shocked to find someone had cut it down in the middle of the night.

He says the tree was an Yew tree and was about 7 feet tall.

Sparrow says he knows lots of 'pranksters' but can't think of anyone who would do something like this. He says at worst someone he knows would decorate the tree with obscene things.

What makes this more astounding, is that Sparrow says it didn't happen in some back lot in the country. It happened in his garden, right near his house in Mid-Town Toronto.

Families' Financial Pressure of Teacher Strikes

Posted By: Katie Franzios · 12/11/2012 4:22:00 PM

As parents try to cope teacher walkouts across the province, there could be a major financial strain on some families.

While elementary teachers are staging one-day strikes right now, there is uncertainty on if there will be longer ones in the future.

With the average hourly wage in Ontario at around 25 dollars for adults, a parent could lose $200 a day if they wanted to stay home to look after their kids and don't have paid vacation. If they turn to daycare, they're looking at spending between $20-40 each day, if they can get in.

Both the Toronto Coalition for Better Child Care and the Ontario Coalition for Better Child Care stress the system is already strained, with wait-lists for both daytime and after-school programs.

That means parents could be sent scrambling if strikes begin to last longer than a day and may have to tighten their budgets no ...

Pearson Employee Busted For Watching Porn

Posted By: Dave Bradley · 12/11/2012 3:40:00 PM

It turns out, surfing porn, while at work is frowned upon.

At least it is, if you work at Toronto's Pearson Airport.

The Greater Toronto Airport Authority, has disciplined an employee after a video surfaced, of the man allegedly watching pornographic movies.

It's still not known if the worker, who's name hasn't been released, will be fired.

The alleged incident happened over the weekend, when a visitor captured the images on video in Person's Terminal 3.

In the video, the employee can be seen watching porn on a laptop while sitting behind a desk.

NDP To Start More Public Consultations

Posted By: Katie Franzios · 12/11/2012 3:21:00 PM

Ontario's NDP is more focused on public consultations on eliminating the deficit, than pushing for an election next year.

Leader Andrea Horwath says it's not the New Democrat style to get what would essential be an election platform out there before talking to residents.

In recent weeks, the Tories have spoken about privatizing the LCBO and OLG. The Liberals are also getting ideas out there in the party's leadership race.

While Horwath admits there is a lot of work that needs to be done in the province, she's not "clamouring" to head to the polls like the other two parties.

McGuinty to Teachers: Don't Deprive Students

Posted By: Katie Franzios · 12/11/2012 3:07:00 PM

The teacher situation continues to heat up in Ontario, with word students may have to forgo extra curricular activities for another two years if a contract is imposed upon teachers.

The length of the possible job action coincides with the end of the Bill 115 contract framework.

And despite this looming threat, the premier isn't considering making extra curricular activities mandatory for teachers, underlining you can't pay for goodwill.

Dalton McGuinty says it's just too early to talk about what could be, given the deadline for local negotiations with school boards isn't until December 31st. He says only after then the matter be decided in the court system not schools.

McGuinty is urging teachers to focus on talks, pointing to how the province was able to get a deal with doctors despite a rocky start.

He's asking teachers not to deprive Ontario students of what they can bring to the ...

RUSH Getting Inducted Into The Hall of Fame

Posted By: Dave Bradley · 12/11/2012 2:32:00 PM

Rush is finally going to be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

The Toronto power trio behind ``Tom Sawyer'' and ``Y-Y-Z'' have been announced among the next batch of inductees into the Cleveland
rock shrine.

Public Enemy, Heart, Albert King, Donna Summer and Randy Newman
will also be admitted into the Hall.

Rush had long been one of the Hall's highest-profile omissions, which angered the group's many fans.

Guitarist Alex Lifeson tells The Canadian Press that he's happy to finally be inducted, but it means more to the fans than it does to the band.

He says the band's longevity and the outcry of fans might have combined to finally change the minds of voters who had excluded Rush before.

Donna Halper is credited with helping to discover the band many years ago when she was working as a music director at a radio station in Cleveland. ...

Former Storage Wars Star Claims It's All Fixed

Posted By: Dave Bradley · 12/11/2012 1:56:00 PM

If you've ever watched the show "Storage Wars" on A&E, you'll recognize the name Dave Hester.

He's the one seen as the villain on the show, and now he'll be seen as the villain by producers as well.

Hester has blown the whistle on the program, claiming the whole thing is fixed.

TMZ is reporting that in a lawsuit, Hester says the producers plant some of the best goods inside the storage lockers.

He even pointed to one case in particular where producers planted a BMW mini car under a pile of otherwise worthless goods.

He says he was wrongly terminated from the show, because he blew the whistle.

The allegations have not been proven in court.

Sir Ian McKellen Battling Prostate Cancer

Posted By: Dave Bradley · 12/11/2012 1:24:00 PM

Sir Ian McKellen has prostate cancer.

TMZ is reporting the Actor in the Lord of the Rings and the Hobbit, made the announcement recently.

McKellen is 73 years old and claims he's been suffering from prostate cancer for the last 6 or 7 years.

He says it's not life threatening.

McKellen says he's been monitoring it regularly and says the cancer is contained in the prostate.

He even called it 'no big deal'.

*VIDEO* Kids Take Flight In Search of Santa

Posted By: Justine Lewkowicz · 12/11/2012 5:40:00 PM

Dozens of children, some of them terminally ill, got an early Christmas wish Tuesday afternoon.

They boarded an Air Transat flight to head to the North Pole to try to find Santa, all thanks to the Children's Wish Foundation.

About 15 minutes after take off, Santa's reindeer landed on top of the plane, as it slightly shook from side to side.

Then Jolly Old St Nick made it safely onboard and greeted all the kids one by one.

They all had smiles on their faces as they told Jolly Old St Nick what they want for Christmas.

Air Transat also handed over a $780,000 donation to the Foundation.

Here's a video of the children before they boarded the flight:

VIDEOS: Toronto Fire Issues Holiday Safety Tips

Posted By: Newstalk 1010 · 12/11/2012 12:09:00 PM

Toronto Fire has launched its second annual "12 Days of Holiday Fire Safety" campaign providing the public with tips on how to prevent a fire from happening in your home over the holidays.

Some tips include:

Water fresh trees daily.

Check all sets of lights before decorating. If they are frayed or damaged get rid of them.

Make sure you have working smoke alarms.  Remember they wear out so replace them every 10 years.

Make sure you have working carbon monoxide alarms.  Replace every 7-10 years depending on manufacturer.

Make sure to have a fire exit plan.

Use extension cords wisely.

Give space heaters space.  Keep at least one meter away from anything flammable.

Blow out candles when you leave.

Keep matches/lighters out of reach of children.

Watch what your heat!  Don't leave food on the stove unattended.

Smoke outside.  Careless smoking is leading cause of fatal fires.  

Drink ...

Darwin’s Owner Heartbroken

Posted By: Amber Gero · 12/11/2012 7:57:00 AM

She’s the only mother he knows.  Yasmin Nakhuda says she’s been raising the rhesus macaque for the past 5 ½ months and says she is utterly devastated that Darwin “The Ikea Monkey” has suddenly been taken away.

“I agree that I made a huge mistake.”Nakhuda tearily told Newstalk 1010’s Amber Gero.  “But I needed to be with him at that time.”Nakhuda said referring to when Toronto Animal Services showed up at the North York Ikea.    “And when I went to see him he was crying.  He held onto me and he wouldn’t let go.  And anybody standing by could see that when you pulled him away he was crying.”

Yasmin Nakhuda says she was given the monkey by an unnamed breeder, but within days she tried to return him, feeling that the young primate needed to be with his mother.

“And when I gave him to the breeder and I ...

Rotating strikes by elementary school teachers continue

Posted By: Michelle Rosa · 12/11/2012 6:05:00 AM

The rotating strikes by elementary school teachers continue on Tuesday, with teachers walking out in schools in Niagara and Keewatin-Patricia in northwestern Ontario.  

On Thursday, York Region elementary students will have the day off while teachers there strike. That same day, high school students are planning a mass rally in front of Queen's Park. They agree with their teachers, that the province shouldn't have the power to take away their right to strike.

Sometime next week, its expected that Toronto schools will also be closed for a day for the same reason, although there hasn't been any official notice from the Elementary Teachers Federation of Ontario. The union has been giving parents 72 hours notice beforehand.

Elementary teachers in Ottawa-Carleton, Lakehead in Thunder Bay and Hastings-Prince Edward will walk out on Wednesday.

Premier Dalton McGuinty said Monday that the teachers are striking over money, but their union maintains it ...

Survey suggests positive job outlook to start 2013

Posted By: Michelle Rosa · 12/11/2012 5:42:00 AM

Canadian employers expect the hiring climate to remain favourable for the first quarter of 2013, according to the latest Manpower Employment Outlook Survey.

In a survey of nearly 1,900 employers, 13 per cent told the employment agency they plan to add jobs in the quarter. Seven percent of respondents said they anticipate cutbacks, 78 per cent expect to maintain current staffing levels and two per cent were unsure of their hiring intentions.

With seasonal variations taken out, the 13 per cent figure is a slight increase compared to the previous quarter, and down one percentage point from the same time last year. Manpower says with employers in transportation and public utilities report the strongest first quarter job prospects, with 21 per cent saying they expect to add to their payrolls.

Employers in the services sector said they anticipate a steady hiring climate in the first quarter, and construction companies surveyed ...

Nelson Mandela suffering from lung infection

Posted By: Michelle Rosa · 12/11/2012 5:26:00 AM

South Africa's presidency says former President Nelson Mandela is suffering from a recurring lung infection and is responding to treatment.

The statement Tuesday from presidential spokesman Mac Maharaj said the 94-year-old anti-apartheid icon is ``receiving appropriate treatment and he is responding to the treatment.''

Mandela was hospitalized Saturday at 1 Military Hospital near South Africa's capital, Pretoria.

In January 2011, Mandela was admitted to a Johannesburg hospital for what officials initially described as tests but what turned out to be an acute respiratory infection.

Mandela is revered for being a leader of the struggle against racist white rule in South Africa and for preaching reconciliation once he emerged from prison in 1990 after 27 years behind bars. He served one five-year term as president before retiring from public

(The Associated Press)

Police Board approves budget freeze

Posted By: Siobhan Morris · 12/11/2012 5:56:00 AM

The Toronto Police Services Board is showing Bill Blair the road to freeze the cop budget.

The board has unanimously approved a set of guidelines for the Police Chief to follow in crafting his spending plan.  Blair wanted $19.1-million more than the city is willing to give.

The board hit its budget target of $927.8-million, by freezing practically all hiring & promotion in the force for 2013.  They figure that'll save $6-million.

They're also asking Blair to scale back overtime pay by $1.4-million & put off a $5-million payment into a reserve fund for cars & equipment.

The Chief will also have to find $6.7-million worth of cuts.  Blair isn't sure where the savings will come from, but saying he'll look.

The Police Services' Board chair & vice chair suggested the cash could come a force surplus.  Toronto Police have posted a surplus of $8-$10-million in the last 5 or 6years, so ...

UPDATE: TDSB to examine selling off school playgrounds, again

Posted By: Michelle Rosa · 12/11/2012 5:40:00 AM

Toronto school trustees are looking again at an idea to sell off parts of school yards to developers.

A new motion has been introduced asking the board to request a report from its real estate arm in April on the amount of land they can afford to part ways with, and sell.

The motion will likely come before trustees on Wednesday, at their meeting.

They are also asking that no more than 2 schools a year are considered, there must be enough parking spaces available, and that elementary schools aren't reduced to less than 4.5 acres

Three weeks ago trustees voted down a motion to sell off school lands which could have raised $42 Million dollars in revenue.

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