Category: Politics

Wage hike costs Ontario hort growers $297 million over two years

The Liberal government’s minimum wage hike will cost Ontario fruit and vegetable growers $297 million over the next two years. The impact on the industry was calculated by professional consultants and presented to all levels of the provincial government, but Premier Kathleen Wynne, Members of Provincial Parliament (MPPs) and senior bureaucrats chose not to listen, says… Read more »

The race is on — Jeff Leal talks ethanol, wages and election prospects

The Ontario Liberal government has had its share of challenges in 2017. For starters, Premier Kathleen Wynne’s approval rating sunk to the low teens as Ontarians continued to gnash their teeth in response to the government’s hydro power plan. And then there was the government’s plan to increase the provincial minimum wage to $15 by… Read more »

It’s been a rough fall for Trudeau and agriculture

Even though rural Canada voted Conservative, I personally had some hope for the Trudeau government. For me it was a case of giving them the benefit of the doubt on some of their campaign promises. The basis for much of this optimism was on the trade file and Trudeau’s ability to connect Canada to Asia…. Read more »

Canadian farm groups and ethanol producers very positive about Clean Fuel standard

The Canadian government has outlined its long-awaited Clean Fuel Standard (or CFS), which Environment Minister Catherine McKenna says will allow Canada to cut its greenhouse gas emissions by 30 million tonnes annually by 2030. A key piece of the CFS is the carbon intensity requirement, which encompasses all facets of biofuel production, measuring carbon emissions… Read more »

Talking election strategy with OFA’s Keith Currie

For decades, the Ontario Federation of Agriculture has provided pointed advice to provincial politicians seeking to win power in the country’s most populous province. Typically, the provincial farm organization could be counted on to lobby for infrastructure investment and renewed commitment to support stronger risk management and cutting red tape. Those issues are still priorities,… Read more »

From taxation to trade, how is the Trudeau brand holding up?

With taxation troubles, trade missteps and realigning political forces across Canada’s political landscape, it appears Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s love-in with Canadians is drawing to a close. That’s the view National Post columnist Andrew Coyne shared with 500 delegates attending the Grain World conference in Winnipeg, Manitoba last week. Trudeau has had a couple of… Read more »

Liberals drop plan to restrict lifetime capital gains exemptions

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Finance Minister Bill Morneau and Small Business and Tourism Minister Bardish Chagger took a quick trip to Stouffville, Ontario on Monday morning to announce the lowering of small business tax rates, and a change to the controversial small business tax proposal they introduced in July. “We made a promise to middle… Read more »

Ontario minimum wage hike ‘devastating’ to horticulture producers

In May, Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne announced that the province would see three hikes in general minimum wage over 18 months. The first increase happens this week, as wages move from $11.25/hour to $11.40/hour. Subsequent hikes will occur on January 1 of 2018 and 2019, seeing moves to an even $14.00/hour and $15.00/hour, respectively. The… Read more »

Canadian cattle industry receives over $4 million in federal investment

The Canadian cattle industry will receive a $4.4 million boost in federal investments. Minister of Sport and Persons with Disabilities and Member of Parliament for Calgary Centre, Kent Hehr, was in Calgary to announce the funding on behalf of the Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food, Lawrence MacAulay, who was in New Orleans. “Our government’s targeted… Read more »

Gerry Ritz announces he’s moving on from federal politics

Former agriculture minister Gerry Ritz is leaving federal politics. Ritz, 66, plans to announce he will step down as MP for Battlefords-Lloydminster on Thursday morning. First elected to parliament in 1997, Ritz served as minister of agriculture from 2007 to 2015. Following the Liberal victory in the 2015 election he served as critic for the… Read more »

MacAulay remains in place after Liberal cabinet shuffle

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced changes to the Ministry, Monday, with a federal cabinet shuffle that will see the Ministry of Indigenous and Northern Affairs split into two departments, and six MPs receive a new title: Carolyn Bennett will become Minister of Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs; Jane Philpott will take the helm as Minister… Read more »

Alanna Koch throws her name in the Saskatchewan Party leadership ring

In a decision that had been rumoured for weeks, Alanna Koch, Deputy Minister to the Premier of Saskatchewan, has officially announced her intention to run for the leadership of the Saskatchewan Party. Koch highlighted how she wants to continue on the track that Brad Wall put the province on, in an interview with Shaun Haney… Read more »

The reason for Brad Wall’s close relationship with farmers

Last week when Saskatchewan Premier Brad Wall announced he is retiring from public politics, ag twitter exploded with an outpouring of kind words and mentions of sorrow that the unofficial leader of conservatives across from Western Canada will no longer be there to represent them. So what is it? Why did Premier Brad Wall have… Read more »

Brad Wall announces retirement

After almost 10 years as Premier of Saskatchewan, in a surprise to many, Brad Wall announced his upcoming retirement from politics on Thursday. “I’ve always thought that the 10 year mark – should I be so fortunate to serve that long – might be the right time to reevaluate,” said Wall in a video announcement…. Read more »

Goodbye, Glen Murray — Ontario farmers will never forget you

I thought goodbyes were supposed to be hard, and that they usually bring tears, hugs, and long waves of sorrow. Not always. Glen Murray’s resignation as Ontario’s Minister of Environment and Climate Change has left many farmers across the province smiling, even though the wake of his non-science-based decision-making will be felt long after he… Read more »