GFM Network News


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Exemptions, extensions to be granted for rail crossing upgrades

New amendments would exclude low-risk field-to-field crossings

Some farmer-owned field-to-field grade crossings over Canadian rail lines are now expected to be exempted altogether from looming federal requirements for safety upgrades. Proposed amendments to the Grade Crossings Regulations, announced June 18 by Transport Minister Omar Alghabra, this week cleared their 30-day public comment period. The amendments are expected to tweak rules which were […] Read more

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Feather sector’s on-farm upgrade program underway

Applications now being accepted for funding

The federal free trade compensation program to help Canada’s poultry and egg producers pay for on-farm upgrades, renovations and improvements is now taking applications. The $646.8 million, 10-year Poultry and Egg On-Farm Investment Program (PEFIP) is now formally underway, Agriculture Minister Marie-Claude Bibeau announced Monday. Each eligible Canadian producer is entitled to an amount proportional […] Read more


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Rural, remote crime targeted in Tory MP’s bill

Bill would consider crimes' settings during sentencing

An Alberta Conservative MP is trying to tackle rural crime by introducing a law that would punish more severely those accused of targeting remote, and vulnerable, people or property. Red Deer-Lacombe MP Blaine Calkins introduced his private member’s bill for first reading in the House of Commons on Tuesday. “Rural Canadians too often don’t feel […] Read more

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Saskatchewan to pare school tax mill rate for farmland

EPT mill rates to rise for residential, other properties

Saskatchewan’s latest budget taps down the education property tax (EPT) mill rate it sets on farmland, while raising those mill rates on other property classes. The provincial government, in Tuesday’s budget, set the provincewide EPT mill rate on agricultural land for 2021 at 1.36, down slightly from the previous rate of 1.43. EPT mill rates […] Read more


U.S. Trade Representative Katherine Tai is sworn in at the White House on March 18, 2021. (Photo: Reuters/Tom Brenner)

New U.S. trade chief Tai focused on CUSMA, China ties in calls

New trade deals on hold for now, White House says

Washington | Reuters — New U.S. Trade Representative Katherine Tai mapped out her priorities and Washington’s desire to rebuild alliances in initial calls on Monday with her counterparts from Canada, Britain and the European Union. Tai, sworn in Thursday as President Joe Biden’s top trade negotiator, emphasized climate change, racial equity and the need to […] Read more

Members of the Regina Pats during a May 20, 2018 game against New Brunswick’s Acadie-Bathurst Titan at Brandt Centre in Regina. (CHL photo by Marissa Baecker)

Ag equipment maker buys WHL’s Regina Pats

Brandt takes full ownership of hockey club

Regina-based machinery manufacturer the Brandt Group is levelling up from partner to full owner of the Western Hockey League’s Regina Pats. Brandt, which since 2005 has held the naming rights to the Pats’ home arena, Brandt Centre — formerly the Regina Agridome — said Friday it has approval from the league’s board of governors and […] Read more


Incoming WTO director-general Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala takes part in an online meeting before speaking during an interview with Reuters in Potomac, Maryland on Feb. 15, 2021. (Photo: Reuters/Joshua Roberts)

Canada hails new WTO chief

Trade body names first African, and first female, DG

Canada is lending its support to the World Trade Organization’s (WTO) choice for its new director general. Ngorzi Okonjo-Iweala was chosen Feb. 15 by WTO members as the international trade body’s new head, making her the first woman and the first African to serve in the role. Mary Ng, Canada’s minister of small business, export […] Read more

Environment Minister Jonathan Wilkinson, with Infrastructure Minister Catherine McKenna (l) and Heritage Minister Steven Guilbeault (r), speaks at the Dominion Arboretum in Ottawa on Dec. 11, 2020. (Photo: Reuters/Blair Gable)

New greening programs planned for ag alongside carbon tax hike

Carbon price to hit $170 per tonne by 2030

A new federal climate plan which further cranks up taxes on carbon emissions also includes pledges of new programs to help sink more carbon into farmland. The government on Friday released the sequel to its 2016 Pan-Canadian Framework on Clean Growth and Climate Change — a “strengthened” climate plan, titled A Healthy Environment and a […] Read more


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Alberta offers equivalency plan, grants for aspiring truckers

Province to cut Class 1 qualifying time for Class 3 drivers

The Alberta government plans to reduce the entry fees — and the time required — for some drivers wanting to level up to become Class 1 truckers. Provincial Transportation Minister Ric McIver on Nov. 26 announced a new “Experience and Equivalency” program that’s expected to reduce the time required for Class 3 drivers to upgrade […] Read more

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau attends a news conference on COVID-19 response on Nov. 6, 2020 in Ottawa. (File photo: Reuters/Patrick Doyle)

U.S. border restrictions to last a long time yet, Trudeau says

COVID would need to be 'significantly more under control'

Ottawa | Reuters — Canada will not agree to lifting a ban on non-essential travel with the United States until the coronavirus outbreak is significantly under control around the world, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said on Tuesday. Trudeau’s comments were a clear indication that the border restrictions will last well into 2021. The two neighbours […] Read more