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First phase of transit funding can get projects shovel-ready for next round: Sohi’s office

By Rachel Aiello      

Industry groups called the public transit spending ‘unprecedented’ but opposition critics take issue with back loading and basing spending on ridership.

The office of Infrastructure and Communities Minister Amarjeet Sohi says much of the initial $3.4-billion in transit investments from the federal government can help municipalities plan projects that can get further funding through a second phase of transit funding in two years. The Hill Times photograph by Jake Wright

The Trudeau government’s first budget tabled on March 22 included $3.4-billion over three years for public transit through a new Public Transit Infrastructure Fund, as part of a first phase of its overall infrastructure plan.

‘Canadians are placing all their hopes and fears in the hands of government’ and successful political leaders should be honest, unscripted, say pollsters

News|By Abbas Rana
The evolution and the ultimate outcome of the COVID-19 pandemic will eventually decide if Prime Minister Justin Trudeau's and the premiers' rising approval ratings will last, say pollsters.

Feds partly responsible for treatment of asylum seekers turned back at Canadian-U.S. border, say refugee advocates

News|By Neil Moss
'We should be weary of using a crisis like this to turn our back on our human rights obligations,' says University of Ottawa law professor Jamie Chai Yun Liew.

Trudeau says feds ‘expect’ shipment of medical supplies from U.S. amid concerns from Ontario over delays

News|By Beatrice Paez
So far, the prime minister said some 240,000 people have successfully applied to Canada Emergency Response Benefit.

Feds ‘on the hot seat’ for past and new decisions, as journos, staffers contend with new media environment

News|By Mike Lapointe
'Crises have a life cycle, and this one looks like it will be long and have different phases or chapters,' says Josh Greenberg, a specialist in communications and media coverage of outbreaks and infectious disease.

Conservative Fund plans to double OLO annual budget from $241,200 to $474,000 for 2020 because of minority government

News|By Abbas Rana
The Conservative Fund Canada provided a confidential briefing to the national council on March 21 to explain where the OLO spent $925,000 in the first 10 months of last year.

Senate leaders ready to take another crack at COVID-19 committee 

The expected recall of Parliament will give Senators another chance to strike a committee to monitor the government’s crisis response.

House officers in ‘preliminary discussions’ on Parliament’s return, contingency plans, says NDP whip

News|By Beatrice Paez
Opposition parties need enough lead time to pore over the legislation, to avoid a repeat of the late-night sitting that occurred when they were 'surprised' to learn that the government was seeking unlimited spending powers until December 2021, says Rachel Blaney.

Trump administration’s demand for 3M to halt shipment of masks will ‘hurt’ Canada, U.S., Trudeau says

News|By Palak Mangat
The government is also spending $100-million to help food banks, which have been hit hard during the pandemic with fewer donations and limited volunteers.

Canada’s top doctor ‘voice of reason’ in face of uncertainty over COVID-19 fallout, say politicos, experts

News|By Beatrice Paez
In a time of great uncertainty and anxiety, Dr. Theresa Tam has emerged as a 'compelling' figure who has an ability to deliver information without dramatizing the stakes. 'She gives us straightforward, evidence-based
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