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Champs and opponents of a national carbon tax will be working overtime today as the Trudeau government reveals how it will impose a carbon price on provinces that haven’t fallen in line with its climate plan. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, along with Environment Minister Catherine McKenna and Finance Minister Bill Morneau will be in Toronto with big promises of big rebate cheques to offset the tax in Ontario. (Canadian Press)
The trio will venture into Etobicoke, the heart of Ford Nation, at 10:30 a.m. ET to make their pitch. Other similar announcements will be made in Saskatchewan, Manitoba and New Brunswick, which along with Ontario have joined forces to fight Trudeau’s carbon tax in court.
In the meantime, Alberta NDP Premier Rachel Notley is wondering, since Trudeau was game to buy a pipeline for Canadians, maybe he’d be interested in getting into the oil-by-rail business, too, at least until the price gap between Canadian and U.S. oil closes: “We need more cars. We need to order more locomotives in order to get more cars onto rail. That’s the bottom line. There are some other ideas out there but I think rail is one of the most immediate.” (Calgary Herald)
A day after Germany halted exports of military equipment to Saudi Arabia over the killing of Jamal Khashoggi, Trudeau said the option is on the table for Canada too, though he stopped short of actually taking action: “We have frozen export permits before when we had concerns about their potential misuse and we will not hesitate to do so again.” Last year Canada sent $1.37 billion of goods to Saudi Arabia last year, mostly armoured vehicles. (Bloomberg)
Calling it a “show of solidarity” Liberal MPs backed a Conservative motion calling on the Trudeau government to come up with a plan within 45 days to deal with Canadians who fought alongside ISIS. (Global News)
Stop us if you’ve heard this one, but the Phoenix pay system is a mess. A new report from Auditor General Michael Ferguson said the system for paying federal workers continues to be a “significant blemish” on Ottawa’s financial record. All told, $615 million in incorrect payments were made last year. In other words, nothing has improved. Here, by the way, is a video to help you understand how the Phoenix mess came about. (iPolitics)
Ferguson’s report accompanied the release of the annual public accounts of Canada, which showed Ottawa is in a forgiving mood—to the tune of $6.3 billion. That’s the tally of bad loans the federal government is giving up on, including. Among the losses: a long-forgotten $2.6 billion loan to a defunct arm of Chrysler that was made as part of the 2009 bailout of the car company. It’s a reminder of the information black hole that corporate welfare payments so often fall into after they get announced. (Canadian Press)
Appearing on Quebec TV Trudeau said he doesn’t see himself ever using marijuana again, after acknowledging as he has in the past to using pot years ago. But Trudeau isn’t the only one apparently swearing off pot. Investors who drove marijuana stocks to obscene highs ahead of legalization have fled pot stocks in droves since. One fund that tracks the sector fell 12 per cent Monday, and has shed a quarter of a billion dollars in value over the last week. (Globe and Mail)