Housing Minister Unveils Targets for Municipalities to Increase Housing Starts

Housing Minister Ravi Kahlon has announced the housing targets for the first 10 municipalities selected by the province to increase housing starts. The targets include not only the number of units but also the type of housing, including townhomes, condos, and single-family homes.

If the targets are met, it will result in over 60,000 net new housing units in these municipalities over the next five years. However, some mayors have expressed concerns about meeting these targets without support from the provincial and federal governments for infrastructure development to support growing communities.

The municipalities on the list must fulfill these housing targets, or they risk the province enforcing higher density measures. The targets for net new housing over five years are as follows:

– Abbotsford: 7,240 units
– Delta: 3,607 units
– Kamloops: 4,236 units
– Port Moody: 1,694 units
– Saanich: 4,610 units
– Vancouver: 28,900 units
– Victoria: 4,902 units
– North Vancouver: 2,838 units
– West Vancouver: 1,432 units
– Oak Bay: 664 units

In addition, the province aims for municipalities to include a certain number of units of different sizes, including one, two, and three-bedroom units, as well as rental units, below-market rental units, and supportive housing units. If the targets are met, it would result in the creation of 16,800 below-market rental units over five years.

Housing Minister Kahlon stated that the housing targets represent a 38% increase in housing developments compared to historic trends. The province plans to add 16 to 20 more municipalities to the housing targets list each year.

Under the Housing Supply Act, municipalities that meet the targets will be eligible for funding for amenities such as parks, bike lanes, and recreation centers. Those that do not meet the targets risk being overruled by the province, which has the authority to rezone entire neighborhoods to create more density.

The mayor of Oak Bay, Kevin Murdoch, expressed concerns about meeting the target of 664 units without support from the provincial government. Oak Bay has a small planning department with limited resources and approved zero net new homes in 2022, according to data from housing advocacy group Homes for Living.

The housing targets aim to address the increasing demand for housing in fast-growing communities and overcome challenges faced by builders due to interest rates, building costs, and labor shortages in the industry.

Extreme Heat and Low Rainfall Cause Saltwater Intrusion in the Mississippi River

Extreme heat and low rainfall in the Midwest this summer have led to a significant drop in water levels in the Mississippi River. This drop in water levels has made the river vulnerable to a saltwater intrusion from the Gulf of Mexico. The saltwater intrusion is a result of a “saltwater wedge” flowing north from the Gulf of Mexico, endangering the drinking water systems in and around New Orleans as well as smaller municipalities further south.

Officials in Louisiana, along with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, are working to slow down the influx of saltwater and bring in more fresh water to the region. The saltwater intrusion poses a threat to water treatment plants near New Orleans, and steps are being taken to address this issue. Many water treatment facilities are unable to handle water with high salinity levels as it corrodes pipes and causes metals to leach into the water.

To impede the flow of saltwater, an underwater sill or levee was built in the Mississippi River by the Army Corps of Engineers. However, the sill is only a temporary solution as it will eventually be topped unless there is significant rainfall soon. In an effort to provide safe drinking water, barges are being used to transport water that can be combined with water at the treatment facilities.

The threat of saltwater intrusion is not limited to the Mississippi River and New Orleans. Coastal communities worldwide, such as parts of the Jersey Shore, Long Island, and the Outer Banks of North Carolina, are also at risk due to rising sea levels. Countries like Bangladesh are already grappling with the consequences of saltwater intrusion.

While the saltwater intrusion issue has gained attention recently as it approaches more populated areas, officials have been aware of the problem since early summer. Drinking advisories have been in place in some areas since June, and efforts have been made to provide bottled drinking water for residents. However, officials state that there is no need for the public to stockpile bottled water and emphasize the importance of staying informed and calm.

The challenge posed by the saltwater intrusion is significant, and the problem could potentially last longer than previous instances in 1988. The impact of extreme heat and drought linked to climate change has led to drastic drops in water levels in the Mississippi River for the second consecutive year.

YouTube Family Vlogger Arrested on Child Abuse Charges

The neighbors of recently-arrested YouTube family vlogger Ruby Franke were reportedly not surprised to see her Utah home swarmed by police. Some were just happy that the authorities weren’t pulling bodies from the house.

Ms Franke, a 41-year-old mother-of-six, was arrested this week and charged with six counts of aggravated child abuse after one of her sons escaped her home and sought help. The child, aged 12, was reportedly suffering from malnutrition and had evidence of duct tape on his limbs and lacerations from being restrained, according to police. When officers arrived at the home, they found another child in a similar condition.

Ms Franke became popular online for her “8 Passengers” family YouTube channel, which had 2.5 million subscribers at its peak. She eventually partnered with fellow family influencer, Jodi Hildebrant, joining her “Connexions” life counseling service. Both Ms Franke and Ms Hildebrant have been charged with six felony counts of aggravated child abuse. Ms Franke was arrested on 30 August.

Neighbors said that Ms Franke frequently butted into their lives. They also accused Ms Franke of punishing her children by withholding food as a punishment. She also allegedly cancelled the children’s Christmas one year. Despite the extreme control she seemed to want to exert over her children, neighbors said that she would regularly disappear for weeks at a time, leaving the children home alone.

Her youngest daughter, Eve, aged 10, would allegedly be left to wander the neighborhood to look for friends. Police reportedly found a 10-year-old girl malnourished and suffering similar restraint lacerations as the 12-year-old who escaped.

Neighbors said they tried to get police to intervene but that past welfare checks were rejected by Ms Franke. The family vlogger gained notoriety for the severity of the punishments she would dole out to her children.

Decentralized Finance (DeFi) and its Impact on the Blockchain Industry

The blockchain industry has been growing at an unprecedented rate over the past decade, and it shows no signs of slowing down. One of the most exciting developments in the blockchain space is the rise of decentralized finance (DeFi), which has the potential to revolutionize the way we think about traditional financial systems.

DeFi is a term used to describe a new type of financial system that is built on top of blockchain technology. Unlike traditional financial systems, which are centralized and controlled by a small group of institutions, DeFi is decentralized and open to anyone with an internet connection. This means that anyone can participate in DeFi, regardless of their location or financial status.

One of the key benefits of DeFi is that it allows for greater financial inclusion. In traditional financial systems, many people are excluded from the system due to factors such as their location, income, or credit score. With DeFi, anyone can participate in the system and access financial services such as lending, borrowing, and trading.

Another benefit of DeFi is that it is more transparent and secure than traditional financial systems. Because DeFi is built on top of blockchain technology, all transactions are recorded on a public ledger that is immutable and transparent. This means that it is much more difficult for fraud or corruption to occur within the system.

As DeFi continues to grow and evolve, there are several trends and predictions that are emerging for the future of the industry. One of the most significant trends is the rise of decentralized exchanges (DEXs). DEXs are platforms that allow users to trade cryptocurrencies without the need for a centralized intermediary. This means that users can trade cryptocurrencies directly with each other, without the need for a middleman.

Another trend in the DeFi space is the rise of stablecoins. Stablecoins are cryptocurrencies that are pegged to the value of a stable asset, such as the US dollar. This makes them less volatile than other cryptocurrencies, which can fluctuate wildly in value. Stablecoins are becoming increasingly popular in the DeFi space, as they provide a stable store of value that can be used for lending, borrowing, and trading.

In addition to these trends, there are several predictions for the future of DeFi. One prediction is that DeFi will continue to grow and become more mainstream over the next decade. As more people become aware of the benefits of DeFi, it is likely that adoption will increase and more traditional financial institutions will begin to incorporate DeFi into their systems.

Another prediction is that DeFi will become more user-friendly and accessible over time. As the technology behind DeFi continues to improve, it is likely that the user experience will become more intuitive and user-friendly. This will make it easier for people to participate in DeFi and access the benefits of the system.

Overall, the future of DeFi looks bright. As the industry continues to grow and evolve, it has the potential to revolutionize the way we think about traditional financial systems. With greater financial inclusion, transparency, and security, DeFi has the potential to create a more equitable and accessible financial system for everyone.

Calgary to Receive Federal Funding for New Housing Builds

Calgary has been approved for federal funding from the Housing Accelerator Fund, although the exact amount has not yet been disclosed. The approval was conveyed in a letter from federal Housing Minister Sean Fraser to Mayor Jyoti Gondek on September 21. This news follows the city council’s endorsement of a new housing strategy on September 16, aimed at increasing the supply of market and non-market housing by relaxing zoning restrictions and expediting affordable-housing projects.

The Housing Accelerator Fund is a $4-billion federal program designed to incentivize Canadian cities to develop more high-density housing. Its goal is to construct 100,000 new middle-class homes by 2024-25. London, Ontario, was the first city to benefit from the program, receiving $74 million for the creation of 2,000 homes.

The specific funding allocation for Calgary has not been disclosed, as both the relevant offices have emphasized that the amount is confidential until formally announced. Nevertheless, housing advocates in Calgary have expressed their enthusiasm for the news. Kathryn Davies, co-founder of the grassroots organization More Neighbours Calgary, described it as “great news” for the city and highlighted the pressing need for action to address the housing situation, which she believes is approaching a crisis level.

In the face of Meta’s decision to block news articles from appearing on its Facebook and Instagram platforms in Canada, readers are encouraged to access news directly from the original sources to stay informed.

Toronto Police Pursuit Ends in Collision on Highway 401

The westbound collector lanes of Highway 401 at Morningside Avenue in Ontario are currently blocked as a result of an ongoing investigation led by Toronto Police. The incident originated in 43 Division as a call concerning an individual in crisis within a vehicle. Authorities subsequently initiated a pursuit which eventually unfolded onto the highway. During the pursuit, the fleeing vehicle collided with another vehicle before veering off the roadway.

Police have disclosed that one individual from the vehicle that was struck sustained minor injuries and has been transported to a local hospital for treatment. The Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) are currently assigned to investigate the collision while Toronto Police are focusing on the pursued vehicle and the circumstances surrounding the initial incident.

Motorists are advised to avoid the affected section of the highway as the investigation is expected to continue for an undetermined amount of time. However, it is important to note that the westbound express lanes and the eastbound lanes of Highway 401 remain open and unaffected by the investigation.

Please exercise caution when driving in the vicinity and consider utilizing alternate routes to minimize traffic congestion and delays. Stay tuned for further updates on the ongoing investigation conducted by the Toronto Police and OPP.

Convicted Drug Dealers Running Businesses Selling XL Bullys from Behind Bars

Convicted drug dealers have found a new avenue for criminal activity by operating businesses that sell XL Bully dogs while serving their sentences. One such example is drug kingpin Thomas Rayment, who managed his own breeding firm from behind bars.

These rogue breeders are actively exploiting the aggressive nature of XL Bully dogs, demonstrated through videos of “bite work” sessions. In these sessions, the dogs are trained with leather sticks, steroids, and treadmills to enhance their aggression.

XL Bullys are a specific breed known for their size and aggressive temperament. They are popular among certain individuals who seek guard dogs or participate in illegal dogfighting activities.

Thomas Rayment’s case highlights the challenges faced by authorities in preventing incarcerated individuals from engaging in criminal activities. Despite being imprisoned for drug offenses, Rayment was able to establish and run a successful breeding business.

While it is not clear how Rayment managed his operations from behind bars, it raises concerns about the effectiveness of prison systems in preventing inmates from running illegal operations. There may be a need for increased security measures to combat these activities.

Additionally, the videos shared by rogue breeders showcasing aggressive training methods raise ethical concerns regarding the well-being of the animals involved. The use of steroids and the intense training regimen may lead to health issues and unnecessary aggression in XL Bully dogs, making them potentially dangerous to both humans and other animals.

Efforts should be made to investigate and crack down on these illicit breeding operations. Stricter regulations and oversight may be required to ensure the well-being of these animals and to prevent convicted criminals from profiting off their illegal activities while behind bars.

Pedestrian Hospitalized After Serious Collision on Marine Drive in North Vancouver

A person has been sent to the hospital following a “serious” collision involving a coach bus on Marine Drive in North Vancouver. The incident occurred in the 2000 block of Marine Drive near the Lions Gate Bridge, causing the closure of two lanes of westbound traffic.

According to Const. Mansoor Sahak of North Vancouver RCMP, the pedestrian was transported to the hospital with serious injuries. The incident took place at approximately 2:10 p.m. The bus driver remained at the scene, and no additional information about the incident or the patient’s condition was provided.

An investigation is currently underway, and the police have already spoken to several witnesses present at the scene. Const. Sahak encourages anyone with additional information or dashcam footage to come forward and contact the police.

To report any further information, please contact the non-emergency line for North Vancouver RCMP at 604-985-1311.

Police Hunt Burglars Who Stole £10,000 Worth of Cash, Tobacco, and Vapes

Police in Newcastle are searching for three burglars who broke into Fayms Convenience Store by smashing through its shutters. The incident occurred on Monday, June 26, just before 2am.

The burglars gained access to the store with the help of a crowbar and proceeded to steal £10,000 worth of cash, tobacco, vapes, and other items. They also took money from the store’s till.

Northumbria Police are currently investigating the burglary and are appealing for the public’s help in identifying a man who may have information regarding the incident. A CCTV image of the man has been released, and it is believed that he was in the area at the time of the burglary.

Anyone with information on the man’s identity is urged to contact the Northumbria Police using the ‘Tell Us Something’ page on their website or by calling 101. Please quote the reference number 080214B/23 when providing information.

Investigations into the burglary are ongoing, and the police are determined to bring the perpetrators to justice.

Cold Case Investigation Uncovers Potential Evidence at Former Home of BTK Serial Killer

Authorities conducting an investigation into cold case murders and unsolved disappearances have discovered “items of interest” during a recent search at the former residence of Dennis Rader, also known as the BTK serial killer. The search was conducted in Park City, Kansas over the past two days.

Osage County Sheriff Eddie Virden stated that through their investigation, they obtained information regarding possible trophies belonging to Dennis Rader. Acting on this information, they collaborated with Park City and conducted a dig in the area, resulting in the recovery of the aforementioned items of interest.

Investigators have been focusing on Rader’s potential involvement in the unsolved disappearance of Cynthia “Cyndi” Dawn Kinney in 1976. They are also exploring possible connections between Rader and other unsolved cases in the region.

Kinney was last seen in Pawhuska, Oklahoma, which is approximately a two-hour drive from Rader’s former residence. Rader, who used the signature “Bind, Torture, Kill” method on his victims, has previously denied any involvement in cases other than the ten murders he confessed to after his capture in 2005.

Sheriff Virden clarified that the intention of the search was not to find bodies but rather to recover items. However, the sheriff did not disclose the nature of the items discovered.

As of now, it remains unclear whether the recently recovered evidence is related to the known murders or other cases. Sheriff Virden expressed his belief that the items are connected to Rader’s crimes based on the location where they were found and the fact that they had never been located before.

During the search, Rader’s daughter, Kerri Rawson, speculated that investigators were looking for trophies her father may have hidden on the property, potentially beneath stone pavers and inside jars.

Authorities are expected to release further information about the investigation this afternoon. The primary focus is on providing closure and justice to the families of the victims while respecting the delicate nature of the situation. The story is developing, and updates can be found on Fox News Digital.