BALDREY: Paris climate change goals a long way from reality

Written by admin on 16/07/2019 Categories: 长沙夜网

There was a lot of high-fiving and celebratory handshakes when the world’s countries reached that “historic” deal last weekend to fight climate change, but the harsh truth is that the ambitious goals of the deal are going to be hard to reach.

Of course, that doesn’t mean it’s not worth trying to achieve them, but the road to success is going to be a very difficult one to navigate in the years ahead (if the world can actually agree to stay on that road).

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Related

  • How will the Paris climate change deal affect you?

  • Canada won’t feel immediate impact from Paris climate agreement: experts

    The “Paris agreement” commits countries to keep the rise in global temperatures by the year 2100 to below a further 1 C (temperatures have already risen by 1 C since the industrial age began). In practical terms, to reach that goal would mean a complete halt to all greenhouse gas emissions (from the burning of any oil, coal and gas) over the next 50 years, according to scientists.

    READ MORE: How will the Paris climate change deal affect you?

    While it may seem noble that 195 countries could actually agree on anything —; let alone a plan that may theoretically “save the world” – the lofty goals they’ve reached consensus on are not necessarily entrenched in reality (despite that, it appears much of the environmental movement seems to think the deal should have gone much further, and therefore be even more unrealistic).

    First of all, the countries agreed to “voluntarily” act to reach the new target, but there are no sanctions to be imposed on any country that throws in the towel and decides that weaning itself almost completely off of the use of oil or gas is simply too problematic a goal to strive for.

    Second, while some jurisdictions —; notably right here in B.C., home to a carbon tax —; are indeed taking steps to slow down greenhouse gas emission levels, the fact is that many are not and will not anytime soon, even with the Paris agreement.

    In the larger scheme of things, places like B.C. really don’t matter much in reaching any kind of world target. We simply aren’t a big player on the world stage (we contribute 0.1 per cent of the world’s GGEs), so even reaching the targets this government has set out may be a laudable goal, but it’s still almost irrelevant compared to the bigger problem.

    READ MORE: What you need to know about the landmark Paris climate agreement

    Unless places like China (28 per cent of the world’s emissions), the United States (16 per cent) India (six per cent), and Russia (six per cent) take drastic steps to curb their own GGEs, the accomplishments of less populated countries may count for nothing.

    But China continues to burn coal (seen any pictures of the smog in Beijing recently?) in huge amounts, and they are consuming more natural gas than ever before. Russia’s own climate plan has been criticized for still allowing a 40 per cent increase in GGEs over the next 15 years.

    And despite turning its back on the Keystone oil pipeline, the United States still remains very much wedded to its gas guzzling automobile culture.

    We can debate, in this province, whether we should indeed raise our carbon tax (as the climate leadership team advocates) or not, but the reality is we’re just a little fish in a very large pond.

    In fact, if other jurisdictions show little evidence of taking measurable, concrete steps in fighting climate change, raising the carbon tax in this province may become a non-starter for any of our politicians.

    For now, Premier Christy Clark has taken the position that any increase in the carbon tax could only occur with a corresponding reduction in some other kind of tax. NDP leader John Horgan seems to favor Alberta’s approach, which is to take any new carbon tax revenues and invest them in renewable energy sources.

    But if B.C. is seen as going it alone, I doubt either party leader will advocate a carbon tax increase as part of their next election campaign in 2017.

    Now, this skepticism doesn’t mean throwing in the towel of course. But it does mean shedding some romantic notions arising from the Paris agreement, and recognizing how tough a job keeping temperatures down is going to be.

    Keith Baldrey is chief political reporter for Global BC

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Calgary police investigate violent sexual assault in downtown core

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CALGARY – Calgary police are investigating a violent sexual assault in the city’s downtown core.

Officers were called to a parkade in the 200 block of 6 Avenue S.W. at around 3:45 a.m. on Sunday by security guards. The guards had found a woman who had been severely beaten and sexually assaulted in one of the parkade stairwells.

The victim, in her 40s, was rushed to hospital with serious injuries.

“Physically, she will recover but she’s in rough shape,” said Staff Sgt. Bev Voros with the Calgary Police Service.

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It’s believed the woman met her attacker around 3 Street and 7 Avenue S.W. and agreed to go with him to meet a friend. After meeting the friend, the group dispersed, with the suspect and woman continuing to the stairwell where the woman was allegedly beaten and sexually assaulted.

“They were strangers, they had just met,” Voros said. “There was no relationship at all.”

“The victim did not ask for this, it’s not her fault. No one ever asks to be sexually assaulted.”

Police describe the first suspect as a dark-skinned man between 5’6″ and 5’8″ tall with a slim build. He was wearing a toque, a brown sweater, black jacket and blue jeans. His jacket had fur around the hood and he was wearing runners.

Officers are also hoping to speak with a second man who is considered is a person of interest. Police describe him as having a slim build. He was wearing a track suit and a red coat.

Calgary police are hoping to speak to this man, who was captured on video surveillance in the vicinity at the time of the offence.

Calgary Police Service handout

Anyone with information about this case or the persons involved is asked to call police or contact Crime Stoppers.

– With files from Doug Vaessen

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Search called off for roaming cheetah in B.C.

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VANCOUVER – Conservation officers have called off the search for a cheetah last seen roaming a highway in British Columbia’s Interior late last week.

Insp. Joe Caravetta of the Conservation Officer Service said Monday that there have been no reported sightings of the stray cat since it was originally spotted in the Kootenay region last Thursday.

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“We haven’t found the cheetah. Whether it’s at large or not, we can’t confirm,” he said.

“At this point in time we don’t feel there’s a present, immediate safety risk to the public.”

RCMP sent out a release Thursday evening that the big cat had been seen wandering along Highway 3 near Crawford Bay, about 50 kilometres northeast of Nelson in the Kootenay region.

The witness who happened upon the cheetah took several pictures of it walking along the gravel shoulder between the highway and a snow-covered field. The witness said the animal was wearing an orange coloured cloth collar.

Officials have spoken to one person of interest since the investigation began, Caravetta added, but didn’t elaborate on why they talked with that person.

WATCH: Conservation officer discusses unusual search for cheetah

“Obviously somebody brought it here, it didn’t just walk from Africa,” he said. “So who brought it, where did they have it and where is it now?”

Caravetta also stressed that conservation officers were not interested in killing the animal.

“We will not destroy this cheetah,” he said.

“We understand that these animals are threatened and endangered. The last thing we want to do is shoot a cheetah.”

Last week the province asked the Calgary Zoo to house the animal, if found, until a more permanent, licensed facility could be located.

Zoo spokeswoman Trish Exton-Parder said the Alberta facility has the proper permits and expertise to care for a cheetah and would be happy to help.

READ MORE: Cheetah on the loose in the Kootenays

B.C.’s Forests Ministry received a permit application currently under review to possess a cheetah in the Kootenay region, according to a ministry statement.

“However, ministry staff advise there is no indication or information as to whether the cheetah on the loose is or could be related to the above permit application,” the statement said.

The Greater Vancouver Zoo currently holds the only permit to possess a cheetah in B.C., said the statement.

As for the condition of the missing African cat, Caravetta couldn’t say if the animal might have died from exposure in an area where temperatures overnight Thursday reached minus 16.

B.C.’s provincial veterinarian says it would be difficult for a cheetah to survive any length of time in cold weather without food, said Caravetta.

“It doesn’t look good for it if somebody hasn’t already found it.”

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Blue Jays’ infield getting a dirt makeover

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The changes keep on coming for the Toronto Blue Jays.

Following their upgraded level of play in the 2015 season, and the recent rehaul of upper management, the infield at the Rogers Centre will also be undergoing a makeover.

According to the Blue Jays’ senior-vice president of business, Stephen R. Brooks, the Rogers Centre will be getting an all-dirt infield.

The news broke in an unexpected fashion.

London, Ont. native Andrew Goodfellow asked Brooks on 桑拿会所 when the team would be switching to a dirt surface.

Brooks then responded.

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An all-dirt surface will help make the ballpark more aesthetically-pleasing but could also have an impact on the Jays all-star infielders.

Having dirt underfoot in the infield may be easier on the body for third baseman Josh Donaldson and shortstop Troy Tulowitzski, potentially preventing injuries. The new dirt surface could also be less painful to slide on.

The installation of the dirt infield may be one of many renovations in the next few years. The University of Guelph signed a contract with the Blue Jays in February to research different strains of grass under lighting similar to the artificial light in the Rogers Centre.

Out of all the stadiums with retractable roofs, only the Rogers Center still maintains an artificial surface.

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Spain ruling party could be out with big vote for upstarts

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MADRID — A strong showing Sunday by a pair of upstart parties in Spain’s general election upended the country’s traditional two-party system, with the ruling Popular Party winning the most votes but falling far short of a parliamentary majority and at risk of being booted from power.

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Days or weeks of negotiations may be needed to determine who will govern Spain, with the new far-left Podemos and business-friendly Ciudadanos parties producing shockwaves because of strong support from voters weary of high unemployment, a seemingly endless string of official corruption cases and disgust over the country’s political status quo.

If forced out of government, Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy and his Popular Party would become the third European victims this year of a voter backlash against austerity — following elections in Greece and Portugal seen as ballot box rebellions against unpopular tax hikes and spending cuts invoked during the eurozone’s debt crisis.

In past Spanish elections, the Popular Party and the main opposition Socialists were the established powerhouses and only needed support from tiny parties to get a majority in parliament when they didn’t win one from voters.

READ MORE: Spaniards vote in historic election

But Podemos came in a strong third place and Ciudadanos took fourth in their first election fielding national candidates — setting up a period of uncertainty as parties negotiate with each other to see which ones may be able to form a governing alliance.

“Spain is not going to be the same anymore and we are very happy,” said a jubilant Pablo Iglesias, the pony-tailed leader of Podemos.

With 99.9 percent of the vote counted, the Popular Party won 123 seats in the 350-member lower house of Parliament — far below the 186-seat majority it won four years ago after beating the Socialists in a landslide.

The Socialist Party received 90 seats, while Podemos and allies won 69 and Ciudadanos got 40.

Analysts said the outcome will make it extremely difficult for the Popular Party to form a government because it cannot get a majority of seats in parliament by allying with Ciudadanos, its most natural and closest ideological partner. Spain has never had a so called “grand coalition” that would bring the Popular Party and the Socialists together.

Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy told cheering supporters shortly after midnight Monday that he would try to form a government but didn’t provide any details of how he might accomplish that goal.

WATCH: Spain general election voters hope for change

“This party is still the No. 1 force in Spain,” Rajoy declared.

But Socialist leader Pedro Sanchez said the result clearly shows “Spain wants a move to the left,” adding that he and his party are ready for talks that could lead to a governing accord.

The Socialists could try to team up with Podemos and Ciudadanos in a three-way “coalition of losers” similar to an electoral outcome that happened in neighboring Portugal last month. Also possible for the Socialists is a deal with Podemos plus smaller regional parties that won just a few seats each — not requiring the support of Ciudadanos.

“It looks like a Socialist government,” said Federico Santi, a London-based analyst with the Eurasia Group political risk consultancy.

“Reaching a deal between the Socialists, Ciudadanos and Podemos is not going to be straightforward. … But if the alternative is leaving the country without a government, the pressure will be on the parties.”

Podemos and Ciudadanos both gained strength by portraying the Popular Party and the Socialists as out-of-touch behemoths run by politicians who care more about maintaining their own power than citizens’ needs.

Miguel Redondo, a 19-year-old Madrid university student, said he voted for Podemos because “it’s the party that best understands the difficulties that young people are going through” in a nation where joblessness for people under 25 is more than double the country’s overall 21 percent unemployment rate.

Spain’s 36.5 million registered voters elected representatives to the lower house of parliament and to the Senate, which has less legislative power. Voting was brisk with lines outside some polling stations and voter participation of 73.2 percent, up from 68.9 percent in the 2011 election.

Francisco Herrera, a 43-year-old porter in Madrid, said he was disappointed with Rajoy’s leadership, but voted for the Popular Party because it “defends the economy and the type of government that suits us right now.”

The nation’s devastating economic crisis, non-stop corruption scandals and a separatist drive in the northeastern region of Catalonia have dominated Spanish politics over the past four years. Rajoy has boasted about his handling of the economy, done his best to skirt the corruption minefield and has vowed to halt the independence push.

READ MORE: Landmark election gives Spaniards chance to weigh in on state of nation

His administration’s biggest success has been in pulling Spain back from an economic abyss in 2012 and returning the economy to steady growth, but the jobless rate has come down slowly and salaries for people entering the workforce are 30 percent lower than they were in 2008. This fueled claims by Ciudadanos and Podemos that the Socialists plunged Spain into an economic crisis and the Popular Party failed to fix the problem.

Rajoy’s party adopted unpopular austerity measures and labor and financial reforms that are credited with creating jobs but blamed for damaging the country’s social welfare system. Although Spain’s economy is now one of the fastest-growing in the 28-nation European Union, its unemployment rate is the second-highest in the EU after Greece.

Rajoy’s administration has also been hurt by his U-turn on a promise not to raise taxes and by cuts to national health care and public education. And many Spaniards are angry about what they perceive as the impunity of politicians and business leaders amid incessant corruption cases.

The question of independence for economically and politically powerful Catalonia has divided that region and soured political ties with the rest of Spain. Rajoy vows to quash what is seen as the biggest threat to Spanish unity in recent decades. Other parties favor negotiations to devolve more power to Catalonia, and Podemos wants to let Catalan separatists hold a secession referendum.

Rajoy, 60, championed conservative social policies, siding with the Roman Catholic Church against abortion. But he raised questions about his future as the Popular Party leader by including his deputy, 44-year-old Soraya Saenz de Santamaria, on campaign posters.

Sanchez, a 43-year-old former university economics professor, was unknown to most Spaniards until he was elected leader last year of the Socialists.

Iglesias, 37, and his radical left Podemos party want to break the mold of Spanish politics. Podemos, or We Can in English, was born from massive Madrid street protests in 2011 that drew mainly young Spaniards weary of corruption.

Ciudadanos, which means Citizens, has the media-savvy Albert Rivera as its leader. At 36, he is the youngest candidate, and his moderate, business-friendly policies plus a pledge to crack down on corruption attracted voters.

After casting his ballot in a Barcelona suburb, Rivera said the election marks the start of a new era — especially for young Spaniards like himself, born after the nation’s 1939-1975 dictatorship.

“Those of us who didn’t experience the first democratic transition are experiencing a second one,” Rivera said.

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UPDATED: Regina inmates are once again eating at the Regina Correctional Centre

Written by admin on 15/06/2019 Categories: 长沙夜网

REGINA – UPDATE: On Tuesday afternoon Global News received word from Regina Correctional Centre inmate Forrest Pelletier that he and his fellow inmates are eating again.

Executive Director of Corporate Affairs at the Ministry of Justice Drew Wilby said that corrections has spoken with the food provider Compass Group. He said that Compass will be serving meals that meet provincial standards and follow the Canada Food Guide.

A hunger strike involving over 50 inmates began Saturday morning at the Regina Correctional Centre.

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Inmates are objecting to the quality of food that is being served to prisoners, which is also available to staff at the facility.

Global News has learned that raw and uncooked eggs were served to inmates Saturday.

“I’m aware of the concerns of yesterday’s meal with the eggs and obviously that’s unacceptable,” said Wilby.
Concerns about uncooked food have been raised numerous times in the past month.

Inmates say a petition was created and then submitted Nov. 18 to management with a list of demands.

“I just think that this is inhumane what they’re serving us. I wouldn’t serve this to my dog and what they’re doing is wrong and enough is enough,” said Pelletier, who is serving time for break and entering and possession of a weapon.

“The offenders have obviously raised their concerns and we’re addressing those and looking at that. Both the team in Regina and the Ministry team here,” added Wilby.

Also in November, the private company Compass Group began serving food at all Saskatchewan jails.

READ MORE: Skepticism voiced over changes to food services at Sask jails

After privatizing food services, the province boasted it would save $12 million over the five year contract with Compass Group and increase food quality.

“This will ensure consistency on nutritional values, on actual delivery of food throughout our correctional facilities. We currently don’t have that,” said Corrections Minister Christine Tell, in a scrum with media in August.

The opposition NDP has come out swinging with a statement warning against the potential impact to public safety.

“The Sask. Party is risking public safety in order to pursue privatization… Saskatchewan families also don’t want to see a flood of inmates needing medical care as a result of spoiled or raw food,” said Warren McCall, NDP Central Services critic.

Global News made numerous attempts to contact Compass Group but received no response.

The Ministry of Justice has confirmed that this isn’t the first time they’ve spoken to Compass Group about concerns over food quality. Another call between the parities is scheduled for Monday.

Follow @BrandonGonez

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Break-in robs grieving Penticton man of mother’s items

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PENTICTON – The holidays haven’t been as happy for Brian Moore as he had hoped. Sunday morning the Penticton man discovered his vehicle was broken into.

“Both the driver and passenger windows were smashed, the back hatch window was smashed,” says Moore.

He says this comes just two days after his mother passed away suddenly from heart failure.

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“She was up at her sister’s place in Enderby because this year I was going to be working through Christmas and she likes to spend Christmas with her sister and all her nieces,” says Moore.

On Saturday, Moore went to the residential care home in Penticton where his mother lived to collect her items. He loaded up his vehicle with her personal belongings and even an urn which he planned to take to a funeral home on Sunday. But all of that was stolen when his vehicle was broken into. He has a message for whoever’s responsible.

“If you really realize what you’ve done to a few people’s lives, there’s been a little bit of tragedy over the last couple of days and you basically put the icing on the cake,” he says.

Friends of Moore and his fiancée, Brenda Filipenko, invited the couple for an unplanned night out at the Barley Mill Pub on Saturday night.

“We had a couple so we decided to leave the vehicle in the parking lot. We locked it up and got a designated driver to get us home,” says Moore.

Barley Mill staff retrieved some items which were found discarded outside the pub.

“It’s a little bit of Christmas decorations,” says Filipenko.

But they say everything of value, minus a few photos, is gone. Among the items reported to be stolen were a television that belonged to Moore’s mother, her clothing, stuffed animals, even some cash meant for her great-grandkids.

“They are starting their first bank account,” says Moore.

“These people, when they do these things, they don’t know what they’re doing and the devastation that might be there already. That’s what really makes me upset,” says Filipenko.

Police are looking into whether surveillance video can be obtained from the pub and are asking anyone who may have seen anything to contact them. In the meantime, Moore is staying positive, saying that’s just what his mother would have encouraged him to do.

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Local families struggle to bring adopted children to Canada

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EDMONTON- The Siebert family has only one wish this Christmas, to bring their children home.

“It’s confusing because they’ve been told they’re going to have parents, told they’re going to have a family,” said adoptive mother, Faith Siebert.

“Then you have to walk away because you’re not allowed to take them home.”

It’s been three years since the Sieberts started the process to bring their two adopted children to Canada. Ruth is now 8-years-old and Jonathan is 5. Their mother died shortly after giving birth to her son.

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Related

    Congo adoption woes

  • Adoptions rise for B.C. children in need

    Surrey couple ask Justin Trudeau for help bringing adopted son home

    In September 2013, the Congolese Government stopped issuing exit papers for internationally adopted children. The decision left families like the Sieberts in limbo. Initially though, they were told the moratorium would be removed within a year.

    So they waited. As months went by, the Sieberts chose to take Ruth and Jonathan out of the orphanage they were living in and pay for foster care. They also send care packages regularly.

    According to the Sieberts, there are 18 adopted Canadian children stuck in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Eight of those have been adopted by families in northern Alberta. Some children were permitted to leave in November, but the Sieberts are still waiting.

    The family feels they have the support of Canadian Foreign Affairs and Immigration, but are hoping the Prime Minister will step in and put their waiting to an end.

    WATCH: Crystal and Bryan Meier talk about delays in the adoption of their daughters from the Congo.

    “We just want to be able to tuck them in at night and read them stories and send them to school,” Faith Siebert said.

    The Maul family is going through a similar process with their daughter, Jolie. They have presents under the tree for her.

    “We open them for her every Christmas and they sit in a box in her room,” explained Janice Maul.

    The Mauls say no matter how long it takes for the Congolese government to release Jolie, they won’t give up.

    “We were already matched with our daughter. We already saw her face. You can’t turn away from that.”

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Halifax firefighter, volunteers drop off care packages to people in need – Halifax

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HALIFAX – A Halifax Regional Fire & Emergency Services firefighter led a group of volunteers in handing out care packages for people in need Sunday morning.

“I think someone needs to step up and do something good for them,” said Joel Doyle in front of a Salvation Army centre near Gottingen and Falkland Streets, the first stop.

Along with several volunteers, made up of coworkers, family members, and friends, he delivered 100 care packages to people who are homeless and less fortunate.

The reusable bags had donated items inside, including a sandwich, tooth brush, toothpaste, water bottle, soap, chocolate, and homemade cookies.

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Related

  • Halifax firefighters give back to community by delivering sandwiches to needy

    The team drove around mostly downtown Halifax in a few vehicles, including two fire trucks, stopping on various streets to offer people packages.

    Doyle added he wanted recipients to “know that they’re not alone, and that there are people out here that do care.”

    The last stop of the morning was at Metro Turning Point, an emergency homeless shelter for men.

    “I probably wouldn’t have gotten anything for Christmas, so it’s pretty good,” said a 20-year-old recipient who did not want to be identified.

    The project, now in its second year, was thought up by Doyle, whose uncle Chris used live on the streets.

    Chris, who died in 2011, was also known as the “Clyde Street Pirate” for collecting donations for deaf and blind communities in front of an NSLC store on the eponymous street.

    “If he was still alive, I think he’d give me a high five and a hug,” said Doyle.

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Manitoba eyes high-income tax

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WINNIPEG – Manitoba Premier Greg Selinger is considering a surtax on high-income earners and feels he is no longer bound by a provincial law that would require a referendum on major tax changes.

Selinger says no final decision has been made, but he has been “looking at” high-income tax rates that have been implemented in Alberta, Ontario and federally under Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.

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“I note many jurisdictions have implemented a surtax already across the country — both east and west of us,” Selinger said in a year-end interview with .

“There’s different options that have been started to be proposed. We’re working our way through this consideration right now.”

Alberta’s NDP government has replaced the province’s flat 10 per cent income tax rate with a series of higher income tax brackets for people earning more than $125,000 annually. As of next year, the top bracket — for those earning more than $300,000 — will reach 15 per cent.

Manitoba’s current top tax rate is 17 per cent and kicks in at $67,000.

Selinger said it is too early to discuss details, such as at what level a surtax might apply and the rate. He also suggested that if a surtax is implemented, it would be at least partially offset by cuts to middle and lower income taxes.

“We’re always interested in making life more affordable for middle-class and working families in Manitoba. That’s important.”

Selinger ran into public anger in 2013 when he raised the provincial sales tax to eight per cent from seven. He suspended a section of the province’s balanced budget law that required a referendum on any increase to sales, income or corporate payroll taxes.

The Opposition Progressive Conservatives took the issue to court and argued Selinger was not allowed to sidestep the referendum. A Court of Queen’s Bench judge rejected the Tory argument. The judge said it is unconstitutional to force a referendum on tax changes because it infringes on the powers of the legislature.

With that court ruling, Selinger said he would feel no need to hold a referendum if he implements an income surtax.

“The courts ruled that the way the (balanced-budget) law was written was illegal and unconstitutional … but we do believe people need to have a chance to have input into things.”

Selinger said people would have their say via legislature committee hearings — Manitoba is one of two provinces in which every legislature bill must undergo public hearings. He also hinted a surtax could be an issue for the provincial election set for April 19.

“We would put that to the people as a proposal. They would have a chance to be aware of that, and they would have a chance to vote on it in an election.”

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