B.C. aims to tackle money laundering at casinos

VANCOUVER – British Columbia is attempting to crack down on money laundering at casinos with help from the province’s anti-gang police agency and strategies that encourage gamblers to come without a wad of cash.

Finance Minister Mike de Jong said 22 officers with the Combined Forces Special Enforcement Unit will eventually be dedicated to investigating groups that use gaming facilities to legalize proceeds of crime.

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He said Monday that police will work with the B.C. Lottery Corp. and the Gaming Policy Enforcement Branch as part of the Illegal Gaming Investigation Team.

“British Columbians that attend our casino and gaming establishments do so in the knowledge that they are participating in a lawful form of entertainment. They want to know and deserve to know that the people sitting at the tables with them are doing so on the same basis.”

Ernest Yee, executive director of the BC Gaming Industry Association, said in a statement that his group welcomes the new team and looks forward to working with authorities on the new initiative.

“We welcome the joint team’s efforts to raise public awareness of the role that casino operators play in identifying and reporting financial transactions,” the statement said.

A provincially funded RCMP team that targeted illegal gaming in B.C. was disbanded in 2009.

De Jong said suspicious currency transactions of $20.7 million last July led in part to the creation of a new unit, which will get 30 per cent of its funding from the federal government through the RCMP.

Government figures show that was the highest transaction between April 2015, when $11.8 million in dubious activity was recorded, and March 2016, when the figure was $7.3 million.

He said the government’s anti-money laundering strategy involves developing and promoting the use of cash alternatives at gaming facilities.

“We’re at a point now where it isn’t really necessary for people to enter casinos with vast sums of cash,” he said. “Operators will tell you that there is still, in some cultures, the propensity to do so.”

Other strategies include restricting patrons from exchanging small bills for large currency denominations and temporarily banning people from establishments while they are being investigated.

Solicitor General Mike Morris said the Combined Forces Special Enforcement Agency already deals with money laundering and organized crime and the new team is ready to take on illegal gamblers.

“It’s going to make a dent,” he said. “These folks are going to feel the brunt of this organization.”

Morris said the province’s civil forfeiture program stands to benefit as proceeds of crime are seized and money is funnelled into crime prevention strategies.

Supt. Kevin Hackett of the Combined Forces Special Enforcement Unit said officers will target high-level, violent crime groups that launder money through a lucrative source of funding to further their criminal exploits.

Where you live and what you earn help determine life expectancy

CHICAGO – The richest Americans live at least 10 years longer on average than the poorest, but that gap isn’t as wide in many communities, especially affluent, highly educated cities, a major study found.

The research emphasizes that where you live and what you earn help determine life expectancy, along with changeable behaviours including smoking and lack of exercise.

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Stanford University economist Raj Chetty and colleagues analyzed more than 1 billion tax records between 1999 and 2014, along with government records on nearly 7 million deaths. They used the data to estimate life expectancy at age 40 by income and geographic area.

READ MORE: Living in poverty in Winnipeg can lower life expectancy by 19 years: report

Their analysis was published online Monday in the Journal of the American Medical Association. It comes during an election season marked by heated debate about income equality and the endangered middle class.

The report examines the well-known connection between income and longevity, but with more precision and detail than previous research, Princeton University economist Angus Deaton said in a journal editorial.

“The infamous 1 per cent is not only richer, but much healthier,” Deaton said.

READ MORE: Report shows life-expectancy gap between high and lowest income is almost 20 years

KEY FINDINGS

Men with the top 1 per cent in income lived 15 years longer than men with the lowest 1 per cent in income; for women that gap was 10 years.

Between 2001 and 2014, life expectancy didn’t change for people in the lowest 5 per cent of income, but it increased by about 3 years for men and women in the top 5 per cent. Those changes, and life expectancy in general, varied substantially by region.

The poorest Americans lived the longest in areas where smoking, obesity and inactivity were scarce, and access to medical care had less influence than previous studies have suggested.

READ MORE: Inuit life expectancy trails rest of Canada

The study did not include people with no income.

LOCATION, LOCATION, LOCATION

Data from Dallas, Detroit and New York help illustrate the findings. Among the lowest-income men and women, life expectancy was lowest in Detroit and Dallas and highest in New York. Among men at the lowest income level, life expectancy was 72 in Detroit, but almost 80 years in New York — a nearly seven-year difference. Among men at the top income level, it was about 86 years in Detroit and 87 years in New York, a difference of just one year. The gap was smaller among women.

The lowest life expectancies for the poorest men and women — less than 78 years — were in Indiana, Nevada and Oklahoma. For the richest, the lowest life expectancies — less than about 85 years — were in Hawaii, Nevada and Oklahoma.

READ MORE:Death by postal code: Income still dictates lifespan in Ontario

THE IMPLICATIONS

The poorest Americans fared best in affluent cities with highly educated populations. These tend to be areas with health-related public policies including smoking bans and high levels of funding for public services, the researchers said.

The findings raise the possibility that community-based public health approaches could help address the income-based longevity gap, a journal commentary said.

Life Expectancy by Country | HealthGrove

Durham Bridge residents tired of illegal dumping problem

Story highlights

Residents in Durham Bridge are fed up with their roadways being used as illegal dumping sites.

Many of the roadways in Durham Bridge are littered with garbage that has been illegally discarded and some people in the area have had enough.

“They think they can get away with it and put it in someone else’s backyard so to speak,” said Donna Bliss who walks several kilometres with her neighbour each morning, noting various types of trash along the way.

“I’ve seen automobile gas tanks, I’ve seen bicycles…the type of plastic that can be recycled, wood construction pieces that could go to be reused.”

Although she says she’s not surprised by the items she comes across, she admits some have made her scratch her head.

“I’ve seen dryers,” she said. “You can take metal to the land fill and they’ll pay you for it. You don’t have to dump it out here.”

“People feel they have a right to bring their garbage and dump it wherever they feel,” Bliss said.

Conservation officers say they’re as puzzled by the practice as residents are.

“The tipping fees aren’t expensive at the landfill,” says Conservation Enforcement Superintendent, Rick Nash.

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“A lot of the time they’ll drive a long ways into the woods to find a spot to dump it and I would think that it would be cheaper to pay the tipping fees than some of the gas to go there.”

Nash says each year another 50 or so new illegal dumping sites are found.

He says it can be a difficult crime to catch someone committing, but still the risk isn’t worth the reward.

“Anybody caught dumping, it’s a $604.50 ticket,” he explained.

“The second thing we’ll normally do is issue an order for them to pick it up. Failure to comply with the order can result in a daily penalty of up to $500 a day.”

With the snow melting and many looking to get rid of unwanted items during the spring season, Bliss fears her morning walks will only uncover even more discarded trash in her area, but she hopes those thinking about dumping their garbage will reconsider.

“You have choices this should be a no-brainer that its not a choice,” she said.

“We are fortunate that we have garbage pick up, we have landfills, we have places where you can recycle. There’s no excuse for bringing it out and just dumping it.”

Anyone who witnesses illegal dumping is asked to call the Conservation office or Crime Stoppers.

Your Saskatchewan – Saskatoon: April 2016

Every day on the Evening News and News Hour Final, we feature a viewer submitted photo for Your Saskatchewan.

To submit a picture for Your Saskatchewan, email to [email protected]老域名出售.

Pictures should be at least 920 pixels wide and in jpeg format.

GALLERY: Your Saskatchewan – Saskatoon: March 2016

April 1: Ashley Adrian took this Your Saskatchewan photo near Kenaston.

Ashley Adrian / Viewer Submitted

April 2: This Your Saskatchewan photo was taken by Derek Sylvestre of his father fishing at Palmbere Lake, which is 40 km south of La Loche on Highway 955.

Derek Sylvestre / Viewer Supplied

April 3: This Your Saskatchewan photo was taken by Hjalmer Larson on a farm at Tobin Lake.

Hjalmer Larson / Viewer Supplied

April 5: This Your Saskatchewan photo was snapped by Brandy Kormish in Meadow Lake.

Brandy Kormish / Viewer Submitted

April 6: Loral Antonenko took this Your Saskatchewan photo in Biggar of a breakfast guest

Loral Antonenko / Viewer Submitted

April 7: This Your Saskatchewan photo of Canadian geese near Shields was taken by Judy King.

Judy King / Viewer Submitted

April 8: This Your Saskatchewan photo of a snowy owl was taken by Shelley Krobel at Last Mountain Lake.

Shelley Krobel / Viewer Submitted

April 9: This Your Saskatchewan photo was taken by Garfield MacGillivray at Quill Lake.

Garfield MacGillivray / Viewer Supplied

April 10: This Your Saskatchewan photo was taken by Chelsea Roesche in Saskatoon.

Chelsea Roesche / Viewer Supplied

April 11: This Your Saskatchewan photo was taken by Lori McNaughton south of Mortlach.

Lori McNaughton / Viewer Submitted

April 12: This Your Saskatchewan photo was taken by Tim Harris of his Siberian Husky at Hudson Bay.

Tim Harris / Viewer Supplied

April 13: This Your Saskatchewan photo was taken by Colleen Clavelle of an apricot tree in bloom in Maple Creek.

Colleen Clavelle / Viewer Submitted

April 14: Gary Hardy took this Your Saskatchewan photo of a coyote just north of Saskatoon.

Gary Hardy / Viewer Submitted

April 15: This Your Saskatchewan photo was taken by Annette McCann in La Ronge.

Annette McCann / Viewer Submitted

April 16: This Your Saskatchewan photo was taken by Kevin Leuschen in Saskatoon.

Kevin Leuschen / Viewer Supplied

April 17: This Your Saskatchewan photo was taken by Shannon Waugh at Regina Beach.

Shannon Waugh / Viewer Supplied

April 18: Brent Shepperd took this Your Saskatchewan photo at Disley.

Brent Shepperd / Viewer Submitted

April 19: This Your Saskatchewan photo of the northern lights was taken by Corrine Sheremata near Prince Albert.

Corrine Sheremata / Viewer Submitted

April 20: This Your Saskatchewan photo of a bald eagle was snapped near Aberdeen by Diane Kacher.

Diane Kacher / Viewer Submitted

April 21: Marilyn Wiggins took this Your Saskatchewan photo of crocuses blooming in her Saskatoon flowerbed.

Marilyn Wiggins / Viewer Submitted

April 22: This Your Saskatchewan photo of some precipitation-carrying clouds north of Saskatoon was taken by Heino Døssing.

Heino Døssing / Viewer Submitted

April 23: This Your Saskatchewan photo was taken in windy Saskatoon by Seth Dreger.

Seth Dreger / Viewer Submitted

April 24: @gamblei took this Your Saskatchewan photo near Hepburn.

@gamblei / Viewer Submitted

April 25: Tim Hecker took this Your Saskatchewan photo of today’s snow near Maple Creek.

Tim Hecker / Viewer Submitted

April 26: Rosalie Roesch took this Your Saskatchewan photo in Saskatoon.

Rosalie Roesch / Viewer Submitted

April 27: This Your Saskatchewan photo was taken by Gary Eagle at Whitecap First Nation.

Gary Eagle / Viewer Submitted

April 28: This Your Saskatchewan photo was taken by Richard Jackson on the banks of the South Saskatchewan River.

Richard Jackson / Viewer Submitted

April 29: Carla Grant took this Your Saskatchewan in La Ronge where spring has arrived:

Carla Grant / Viewer Submitted

April 30: This Your Saskatchewan photo was snapped by Terry Healey at Silver Lake Regional Park.

Terry Healey / Viewer Submitted


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Related

  • Your Saskatchewan: February 2016

  • Your Saskatchewan: January 2016

  • Your Saskatchewan: December 2015

Bike Share Toronto doubles in size with over 1,000 new bicycles and stations

A push to dramatically expand the network of bike rental stations around Toronto is getting some air in its tires – and rolling out at the same time the city makes room for more cycling lanes.

The Toronto Parking Authority on Monday released details of its plan to double the size of its Bike Share Toronto program.

Bike Share will see 1,000 additional bicycles added to its fleet along with 120 more docks to pick them up at.

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Existing locations are also getting a refresh, with the replacement of electronic components at the 81 pay stations and 1,500 bike spots to integrate them with the bigger network.

When the expansion is done by year’s end there will be 200 stations around the city, the TPA said.

The bike-share boom comes after the TPA inked a partnership last year with Metrolinx. The transit agency committed $4.9 million to bikes and stations, with most of that going to Toronto.

Advocate Jared Kolb with Cycle Toronto called the increase a “big step forward” for a service that “fills the gap between trips too close for transit, but too far to walk.”

Kolb added that city biking infrastructure should also expand with the quick-ride rental program.

“The growth of Bike Share Toronto should happen in lockstep with the growth of our cycling network,” he said in an email.

The TPA said the bikes and stations are being purchased from Quebec-based PBSC Urban Solutions, which has supplied bike-sharing programs around the world.

Toronto will see more bike spaces on the roads this year, as the existing lanes criss-crossing downtown are spread further out, and a proposal makes the rounds for a bike-lane pilot project on Bloor Street.

Halifax school board ‘deeply offended’ by Chronicle Herald article

The Halifax Regional School Board has publicly responded to an article published this past weekend by The Chronicle Herald.

The article, which garnered widespread criticism both on the news website and on social media, made unsubstantiated claims about Chebucto Heights Elementary School, HRSB superintendent Elwin LeRoux wrote in a letter to staff.

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“I was deeply offended to see the school represented so inaccurately. I know how hard teachers, administrators and support staff at Chebucto Heights have been working to support each student enrolled in the school,” LeRoux wrote.

The article alleged that a refugee student at the school choked another student with a chain, among other instances of violence against students by refugee children.

The allegations were made by two unnamed sources in the article.

READ MORE: Chronicle Herald suspends layoff notices to staff

LeRoux said all conflicts and bullying at schools are dealt with seriously, and the article undermined the work of school staff.

“When I read the article in the Herald I didn’t think it captured the great things that our staff was doing, and I was particularly concerned that the students and the staff and the community at Chebucto Heights would feel deflated,” LeRoux told Global News Monday.

The Chronicle Herald’s newsroom staff have been on strike for more than 12 weeks, leaving temporary fill-in staff to run the publication.

The article has since been pulled down from the website and replaced with an apology note from The Chronicle Herald.

“Our story was incomplete and insufficiently corroborated, given the serious nature of the allegations,” the correction reads.

“We should have done better and we will.”

LeRoux also states in his letter to HRSB staff that he spoke to the owner of the Herald, Sarah Dennis, to express his concern about the misleading article.

“I told her that the accusations, the language and the tone of the article were both harmful and hurtful to students, staff and the community of Chebucto Heights – and to our entire school system. They’re also not true,” he wrote.

READ MORE: Union says Chronicle Herald won’t return to the bargaining table

He adds that Chebucto Heights, and other schools in the school board, work hard to make newcomers to their schools and communities feel welcome and supported.

*With files from Guillaume Lapointe-Gagner.

Which dinosaur fossil best represents Saskatchewan?

UPDATE: Scotty the T.rex named Saskatchewan’s official fossil

It may be a tough choice between a T. Rex, a woolly mammoth or an ancient crocodile. Saskatchewan is voting to see which fossil it thinks best represents the province.

Until April 25, people can cast their vote online at the Royal Saskatchewan Museum (RSM) website. Voting can also be done in person at the museum.

The new provincial fossil will be announced in May.

READ MORE: Scientists to drill into dinosaur-killing crater

All seven candidates represent fossils unearthed in Saskatchewan areas such as Eastend, Herschel, Carrot River, Kyle and Ponteix.

The candidates are as follows:

“Mo” the Ponteix Long-necked Plesiosaur, a giant marine reptile;“Scotty” the Tyrannosaurus rex;“Kyle Mammoth”, a 12,000-year-old woolly mammoth;The Herschel Short-necked Plesiosaur, a marine reptile;The Brontothere, a rhino-like mammal;“Big Bert”, a 92 million year-old crocodile;Thescelosaur, a plant-eating dinosaur.

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Related

  • Life-sized dinosaurs heading to Assiniboine Park Zoo this summer

  • ‘Pre-rex’: Horse-sized relative of T. rex discovered

  • Carnivorous dinos developed long legs to run down prey: study

    To discover more about each fossil, visit the RSM exhibit or its website. The museum in Regina is open daily from 9:30 a.m. until 5 p.m. CT.

    RSM is also orchestrating a competition which invites Grade 7 students in Saskatchewan to create and submit videos showing off their choices for provincial fossil. The deadline has been extended to April 25.

    “It is great that the RSM has been able to facilitate province-wide engagement for this fun and exciting process,” said Parks, Culture and Sport Minister Mark Docherty.

    “Not only will citizens help select a new emblem to represent our province, they will also discover many interesting facts about our palaeontological history.”

Charest, Marois join forces to encourage more women in Quebec’s National Assembly

QUEBEC CITY – The bi-election in Chicoutimi Monday has three women candidates vying for office.

However, in general, the number of women considering a career in politics remains well below 50 per cent.

Now, two unlikely allies are trying to change that.

Former opponents and premiers Jean Charest and Pauline Marois have joined together to promote gender parity in the National Assembly.

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Related

    Women of all political stripes joined together to celebrate Women’s Day: Catherine McKenna

    Trudeau: Convincing women to run for politics is difficult, ‘frustrating’

    Women in politics

    “It’s a challenge for generations to come,” Charest said.

    Women have made gains over the last thirty years, but recently, the numbers have started to drop.

    Nearly a third of MNAs in 2012 were women, but in 2016, that number dipped to 28 per cent.

    “We cannot get rid of the patriarchal character of institutions with the flick of a magic wand,” Marois said.

    Instead, she’s promoting a more pragmatic formula by supporting a committee to look into options for gender parity laws.

    “Over 100 countries have rules in their politics for gender parity, so I think Quebec and Canada are starting to ask themselves if they’re not too late. I mean, they’re really at the end of the train,” said Pascale Navarro, author of Femmes et Pouvoir.

    According to the latest figures from the United Nations, Canada ranks 60th for gender parity.

    Quebec is slightly higher than the national average, but nowhere near Rwanda where 64 per cent of elected officials are women.

    Quebec is also out-ranked by Cuba (49 per cent) and Mexico (42 per cent), but ties with Afghanistan (28 per cent).

    “For me, it’s important to have more women in politics, more women in the power circles,” affirmed Lise Theriault, Minister for the Status of Women.

    For now – and for the next provincial election – there are no promises.

Zika virus ‘scarier than we initially thought’: US officials

WASHINGTON – The more researchers learn about the Zika virus, the scarier it appears, federal health officials said Monday as they urged more money for mosquito control and to develop vaccines and treatments.

Scientists increasingly believe the Zika virus sweeping through Latin America and the Caribbean causes devastating defects in fetal brains if women become infected during pregnancy.

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READ MORE: Google engineers are trying to map future Zika virus outbreaks

“Everything we look at with this virus seems to be a bit scarier than we initially thought,” Dr. Anne Schuchat of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said at a White House briefing.

And while experts don’t expect widespread outbreaks in the continental U.S., “we absolutely need to be ready,” she said.

President Barack Obama has sought about $1.9 billion in emergency money to help fight the Zika epidemic internationally and to prepare in case the virus spreads here, but the request has stalled in the GOP-controlled Congress. Last week, the administration said it would use $589 million in funds left over from the Ebola outbreak for some of that work.

Reported Zika Virus Cases in the United States | HealthGrove

But that “is not enough for us to get the job done,” said Dr. Anthony Fauci of the National Institutes of Health, whose agency hopes to have a possible vaccine ready for first-stage safety testing in early fall. “It’s just a temporary stopgap.”

Zika was long considered a nuisance virus, causing only mild symptoms, if any, in most people. But starting with reports from Brazil, over the last year infections in pregnant women have been strongly linked to babies born with unusually small heads, a birth defect called microcephaly that can signal underlying brain damage.

WATCH: Zika and microcephaly likely linked, UN told

“I’m not an alarmist,” Fauci said, but he and Schuchat cited growing reason for concern about Zika:

Researchers also have linked Zika to stillbirths, miscarriages, eye problems and other complications, with complications not only in the first trimester but throughout pregnancy.Brazilian researchers reported Sunday that Zika preferentially targets developing brain cells. They used stem cells to study embryonic brain development in lab dish, and reported in the journal Science that virus taken from a Brazilian patient destroyed the growing neural cells in a few days.There’s also evidence that some adults occasionally may suffer serious effects from Zika. Researchers already were studying whether Guillain-Barre syndrome, a nerve condition that can cause paralysis, is linked to Zika. And Sunday, another Brazilian research team reported two Zika patients who suffered yet another problem, a brain inflammation that damages the coating of nerve cells in a way similar to multiple sclerosis.

The CDC has warned women who are pregnant or attempting to conceive to avoid travel to Zika-affected areas. Because Zika sometimes spreads through sexual intercourse, the CDC also says men who’ve travelled to Zika-affected areas either should use condoms with their pregnant partners or avoid sex until the baby’s born.

READ MORE: Study: 1st evidence that Zika may cause temporary paralysis

More than 300 travel-associated cases of Zika have been reported in the U.S. so far, and the CDC also wants travellers to take extra steps to avoid being bitten by mosquitoes when they come home – so local insects won’t pick up the virus and spread it. While CDC does expect some clusters of homegrown Zika to occur, it is working with state and local governments to boost mosquito control.

In addition to research into a possible vaccine, Fauci said the NIH is screening medications in the quest for a treatment. A few – 15 of 62 screened so far – show some degree of possible activity against Zika in laboratory tests although “that doesn’t mean they’re going to turn out to be good drugs,” he cautioned.

Kyle Connor leaving Michigan to join the Winnipeg Jets

WINNIPEG —; Winnipeg Jets draft pick Kyle Connor is leaving school to join the team. He made the announcement on his 老域名怎么购买 account Monday morning.

Connor, 19, was the Jets 17th overall draft pick at the 2015 NHL Draft. He agreed to a three-year, two-way entry level contract that will pay him an average annual salary of $1.775 million.

Connor was a runner-up for Hobey Baker Award for the top player in U.S. college hockey. As a member of the University of Michigan Wolverines he led the nation with a jaw-dropping 35 goals and 36 assists in just 38 games in his freshman season. He finished the season on an incredible 27-game point streak before the Wolverines were eliminated in the NCAA Midwest Regional Final.

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“He’s a guy that has some really explosive skills, and his speed and his talent level.” Jets head coach Paul Maurice said. “He’ll get every opportunity like anybody to come in and show what’s he’s capable of doing.”

RELATED: Winnipeg Jets prospect Kyle Connor finalist for the Hobey Baker Award

Prior to attending the University of Michigan, Connor played three seasons in the USHL with the Youngstown Phantoms.

Connor could be asked to join Team U.S.A. at the upcoming World Hockey Championships.

WATCH: Winnipeg Jets on signing Kyle Connor