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Speaker rules Kenney, Shandro didn’t lie to Legislature

Independent MLA Todd Loewen raised a point of privilege Monday saying the pair made “dishonest statements” in their defence of the controversial dinner.




Alberta Legislature Speaker Nathan Cooper has ruled Premier Jason Kenney and Health Minister Tyler Shandro did not “deliberately mislead” the house with statements over the Sky Palace dinner.

Independent MLA Todd Loewen raised a point of privilege Monday saying the pair made “dishonest statements” in their defence of the controversial dinner.

And NDP MLA Irfan Sabir agreed with Loewen there was a breach of privilege in Kenney’s statements.

Loewen said Kenney made remarks he “knew were untrue when given.”

Kenney last week defended the dinner by saying it was “fully compliant” with all COVID-19 regulations and said his party made “every reasonable effort” to follow the rules.

Shandro last week told the Legislature “no rules were broken.”

But Sabir said there was no way Kenney and Shandro didn’t know about the COVID-19 regulations.

Independent Cypress-Medicine Hat MLA Drew Barnes spoke in favour of Loewen’s point, saying the “evidence” was there and Kenney knew regulations had been broken.

But Tuesday, Cooper ruled the two did not deliberately lie.

“Many Albertans may believe the case is cut and dried, but it isn’t,” said Cooper.

Cooper said it was “entirely conceivable” Kenney and Shandro thought all the rules were being followed.

He also noted on Monday the premier and Shandro both apologized in the Legislature.

Monday, Kenney told a press conference he was “taking full responsibility” after photos emerged of him and top ministers breaking COVID-19 regulations during an outdoor dinner meeting on the Sky Palace balcony.

Kenney was pilloried after photos emerged last week showing him sitting with eight other people – including cabinet ministers – on the Sky Palace’s patio, clearly not following socially distancing rules. The linen-covered table is topped with a 40 oz. bottle of Jameson Irish Whiskey, wine glasses and bottled water.

The Western Standard’s Fact Check found Kenney and his guests have 18 counts of violating their own regulations, and eight counts of violating their own guidelines.

Kenney claimed it was a working business dinner that was taken outside because the risk of virus transmission is lower than being inside. He brushed aside NDP criticism, saying they did not want Alberta to reopen and no COVID-19 regulations were broken.

The Sky Palace was a media-dubbed name when it emerged former Premier Alison Redford was renovating the top of the Federal Building into a private residence for her and her daughter.

Dave Naylor is the News Editor of the Western Standard

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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  1. Left Coast

    June 9, 2021 at 10:14 am

    What is another word for intentionally misleading?
    Need synonyms for intentionally misleading? Here’s a list of similar words from our thesaurus that you can use instead.
    Denotes deception or a deliberate attempt to be dishonest
    deceitful deceptive devious dishonest disingenuous duplicitous insincere cheating equivocal evasive fraudulent tricky treacherous guileful underhand shifty crooked shady underhanded sharp bent disloyal unfaithful rogue double-dealing two-faced misleading fast two-timing false sly crafty cunning sneaky wily unscrupulous untrustworthy scheming artful slippery Janus-faced dodgy slick lying . . . .

    The Last Word pretty much sums it up . . .

  2. Proudly_Free

    June 9, 2021 at 9:49 am

    Cooper was exposed as a complete coward and total zero loser a few weeks ago when he bowed to Kenney’s demands for an apology after signing an anti-lockdown letter. Now he has confirmed this exposition with this sham verdict. This is no different than NY Governor Andrew Cuomo last year hand picking his own investigative team to look into whether there was any wrongdoing in regard to Cuomo’s own nursing home COVID policies. Low and behold, wouldn’t you know it, the answer came back negative. Cooper’s opinion doesn’t count worth jack. To hell with these fake, fraudulent ZEROS. They are the complete opposite of HERO.

  3. K

    June 9, 2021 at 7:49 am

    Human (?) garbage

  4. Baron Not Baron

    June 8, 2021 at 10:06 pm

    The left hand washed the right hand.. and the right hand washed the left hand.. and both hands washed the ass..

  5. Steven Ruthven

    June 8, 2021 at 5:23 pm

    Would an independent adjudicator, not tied to the UCP, and facing the same evidence. Come to the same conclusion as the House Speaker?

    Did not “deliberately mislead” the house with statements over the Sky Palace dinner. However, the Premier & Health Minister did deliberately mislead the citizens of Alberta with their statements of defense that were clearly not in line with the COVID-19 restrictions.

    Trust Government to take the high road, nope. Trust no Government when it comes to being straight forward with it’s citizens. None.

    I do hope the Wildrose Independence Party will be a breath of fresh air for Albertans. The legacy of the AB Conservatives & AB NDP isn’t very good.

  6. berta baby

    June 8, 2021 at 3:55 pm

    What a pile of BS man, how many different house holds ? Corrupt bastards , of course the premier and health minister can’t be charged .
    Fleck them and their rules

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Canadians hit with millions of dollars of COVID fines

Cabinet tabled in the Commons detailed enforcement actions under the Quarantine Act.




The feds have issued tickets for close to $3 million for COVID-19 scofflaws who have refused to quarantine at hotels after arriving back in the country, says Blacklock’s Reporter.

Other tickets handed out include fines for fraudulent COVID-19 test results.

Cabinet tabled in the Commons detailed enforcement actions under the Quarantine Act.

“I think it is important that we adhere to the public health advice that we are all getting, that we do our part as Canadians to try and protect our health care system,” Health Minister Patricia Hajdu earlier told reporters.

Records show a total 988 air passengers were each ticketed $3,000 for “refusing to go to government-approved accommodation” on arrival in Canada. The majority of tickets, 621, were issued at Toronto’s Pearson International Airport followed by Vancouver (194 tickets) and Montréal (173).

Cabinet on January 7 passed an order requiring all air travelers to prove they were COVID-19-free with tests taken a maximum 72 hours prior to arrival. An identical order for cross-border drivers was invoked February 22.

The Canada Border Services Agency found 62 travelers with fake tests, said the report, and four were each ticketed $3,000.

Another 9,003 travelers were cited for not having proof of a valid test, including 4,583 drivers and 4,420 air passengers.

“This would include individuals who did not test at all, who were in possession of tests outside the required 72-hour time frame, tests that did not originate from the required country of origin, tests that are suspected fraudulent and other reasons,” wrote staff.

Public Safety Minister Bill Blair defended the enforcement.

“Cancel your vacation plans,” Blair told reporters February 12.

“Stay home. Respect the rules. We believe that through these effective measures, appropriate screening and the testing measures in particular that we have put in place coupled with robust and enforced quarantine orders, it is the best way to prevent variants from spreading across our borders into Canada.”

Dave Naylor is the News Editor of the Western Standard

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Poll shows deepening trouble for CPC leader O’Toole

“Conservative leader Erin O’Toole is viewed unfavourably by 56% of Canadians, a decline of four more points from March,” said a release by the Angus Reid group, of the poll.




A new national poll is showing worsening results for Conservative Leader Erin O’Toole.

“Conservative leader Erin O’Toole is viewed unfavourably by 56% of Canadians, a decline of four more points from March,” said a release by the Angus Reid group, of the poll.

“Prime Minister Justin Trudeau finds his approval up four points over the last three months to 45%, though the number of Canadians who strongly approve (8%) of him is four times less than those who strongly disapprove (34%).”

Angus Reid poll

The poll found Trudeau improving as COVID-19 vaccine rollouts continue across the country.

“Despite the resignation of the top general in charge of the vaccination delivery program in May, vaccination appears to be running smoothly and shortages of vaccine that defined the first three months of this year are no longer a problem,” said Angus Reid on a statement.

“A troubling trend continues for the Leader of the Opposition. Erin O’Toole’s unfavourability deepens to 56% this quarter. The CPC leader has faced criticism from both ends of the political spectrum, taking heat from his own ranks for the Conservative’s new carbon pricing plan while those to the left of centre dismissed it,” said Angus Reid.

In a shocking flip-flop in February, O’Toole tore up his leadership campaign’s signature promise to end carbon tax, and will be campaigning on a large, re-branded carbon tax in the next federal election. O’Toole written pledge with the Canadian Taxpayers Federation included a clear commitment to not replace the Trudeau carbon tax with “any future national carbon tax or cap-and-trade scheme.”

O’Toole says his proposed new carbon tax is “not a tax”, and that he didn’t break his promise to kill the Justin Trudeau carbon tax because his carbon tax’s revenues will be managed by bankers appointed by him, and not be held in government accounts.

“The low carbon savings account we’ve proposed will be kept by consumers, not one cent goes to government.”

Canadians would pay a carbon tax beginning at $20 per tonne, increasing to $50 a tonne, but the Tories promised it would go no higher than that. However, O’Toole promised emphatically that there would be no carbon tax at all under his leadership.

O’Toole is proposing to charge a $50/tonne carbon tax on everything from gasoline to home heating fuel, and use the money to fund government-controlled bank accounts, which Canadians can use to purchase government-approved, environmentally friendly products.

“O’Toole has taken a more progressive approach to social issues, having recently made statements about LGBTQ2 rights. That said, he received a cold reception in London this past week, standing with other leaders in solidarity with the Muslim community. Critics have pointed to O’Toole voting against a motion condemning Islamophobia and his “Take Canada Back” campaign, which they say exacerbated tensions in the country,” the Angus Reid poll found.

Angus Reid poll

“The other major party leaders fair much better in the eyes of Canadians than O’Toole: 47% have a favourable view of NDP leader Jagmeet Singh – though this continues to do little to make an impact on his party’s prospects of winning more seats in the House of Commons. About the same number in Quebec (46%) have a favourable view of Bloc Québécois leader Yves-Francois Blanchet. Green Party leader Annamie Paul remains an unknown to Canadians, and recent headlines generated have not exactly been positive, with internal party tensions spilling into the public and an embarrassing defection of a sitting Green MP to the Liberal caucus.”

Across the country it seems we are in for an exciting election race, the poll shows.

“The vote intention landscape continues to be competitive. Currently, one-in-three Canadians (33%) say that they would support the Liberal Party if an election were held in the near future. Slightly fewer (30%) say this of the CPC, while one-in-five (21%) would support the NDP:

“While there is little movement this quarter among the two parties most likely to form government in the next election, the NDP makes a slight gain since last month of three points to 21 per cent. Comparing these data to this time last year, the Liberal Party is down four points while the NDP is up four. The CPC continues to hold onto a solid base of three-in-ten, with little movement throughout the pandemic.”

Dave Naylor is the News Editor of the Western Standard

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Body found in Naramata home linked to double murder

Police discover a woman’s body while following up on previous homicide investigation




BC RCMP are investigating the murder of 57-year-old Kathleen Richardson, whose body was found inside of a Naramata residence, which may be linked to a double homicide.

Police approached the home at the 3900 block of 3rd Street and discovered Richardson’s body around 5 p.m. Wednesday, while following up on information regarding the murder of Kamloops brothers Erick Fryer, 29, and Carlos Fryer, 31 which occurred last month.

Officers described the home as “insecure,” and entered the residence on the shores of south Okanagan Lake when no one answered the door in order to “ensure the well-being of its occupants.” Once inside, Richardson’s body was discovered.

“Investigators want to speak to anyone who had dealings with Kathleen in the days before her death,” said BC RCMP spokesperson Dawn Roberts.

“Understanding her movements or activities will help continue to move this investigation forward.

Officers from the SED Major Crime and BC RCMP Major Crime units are working closely and sharing information, according to the acting officer in charge, Supt. Sanjaya Wijayakoon, who also said the deaths of the Fryer brothers are likely related to local drug and gang activities.

“We know that news of another homicide in the community of Naramata will be concerning,” says Supt. Brian Hunter, officer in charge of the Penticton RCMP.

“These appear to be targeted acts, and this type of violence, related to drug and gang activities, is not normal in our community. Additional police resources have been brought into the area and you can expect to see a higher police presence in the days ahead. Now is the time for anyone with information to come forward.”

The Combined Forces Special Enforcement Unit’s Uniformed Gang Enforcement Team has sent officers to Naramata and neighbouring communities to assist local RCMP detachments and the SED Major Crime investigators.

Reid Small is a BC correspondent for the Western Standard

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