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Morning Brew: February 15th, 2008

Photo: "Woodbine Beach / Kew Beach Lifeguard Station" by blogTO Flickr pooler scott3eh.

Your morning news roundup for Friday February 15th, 2008:

Anyone else feel that we're being royally funked by our monopolistic phone/net/TV companies? A class action lawsuit against Bell ExpressVu has been giving the go-ahead after an Ontario man objected to paying a $19 "administrative fee" for late payment of a bill. Did you know that Bell also charges a $20 "administrative fee" when you cancel your long distance plan, when you've already paid an activation fee as well? And $3 a month for touch-tone service? It's highway robbery, and we shouldn't put up with it.

Monday is the first ever Family Day holiday in Ontario. But rather than rejoicing and anticipating a day of leisure, a good number of Ontarians are grumbling about how this new "holiday" doesn't benefit them in any meaningful way because they either have to work or lose a day off elsewhere during the year. The province has done a horrible job introducing and ensuring that this holiday is treated like a holiday.

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It's another case pitting safety against religious freedom. Should Sikhs in Ontario be exempt from laws that require them to wear helmets when they ride motorcycles? That's the question that's being addressed in our courts. A logical but ridiculous compromise: create a helmet design that fits comfortably over a turban.

There's a new proposal to help combat the snow removal backlog/narrow roads problem - tow cars parked on the streets at the owner's expense in order to make way for efficient, timely plowing.

Funding to hire 160 additional librarians is good news for elementary schools in the province. Hopefully these funds don't get reallocated elsewhere over the next four years.


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