5 Things To Know Today
Environmental spill suspends Line 1 subway service. Federal government to introduce motion this morning to expand ISIL airstrikes. Ontario energy board approves natural gas rate cut. TCDSB meeting to discuss cutting librarians, literacy instructors. Record-low turnout at ACC for Monday night’s Leafs game. *German Airbus A320 plane crashes in French Alps*
ENVIRONMENTAL SPILL SUSPENDS LINE 1 SUBWAY SERVICE
A potentially hazardous water leak has suspended some subways for Tuesday morning’s commute. Subways were shut down between Bloor and St. Andrew stations shortly before Midnight on Monday night due to a fire investigation. As of 5:40 am Tuesday, TTC confirmed subways would not be running from Bloor to Union, with shuttle buses running between Bloor and St. Andrew stations. According to Captain Mike Strapko of Toronto Fire services, crews were working all night to clean up what appears to be a water spill. There’s no estimated time when subways will re-open.
UPDATE: Service suspended on Line 1, btwn Bloor & Union due to an environmental spill at College. Shuttle buses operating Bloor to St Andrew— Official TTC Tweets (@TTCnotices) March 24, 2015
CANADA TO EXPAND ANTI-ISIS MISSION
Prime Minister Stephen Harper is expected to table the long-anticipated motion to expand and extend Canada’s mission in Iraq in the war against the Islamic State. According to the Canadian Press, the announcement will be coming from Harper himself at 10 am Tuesday from the House of Commons. Harper has previously hinted that he would be extending the current sixth-month mission after it expire on April 7th. Reports say the Prime Minister will be looking for authorization to extend the mission for one year, so it won’t have to be renewed during the fall federal election. Details on the mission are still slim, particularity when it comes to expanding the air strikes over Syria. Opposition leader Tom Mulcaire says the NDP’s will be voting against Canada’s participation in the conflict, while Justin Trudeau and the Liberals voted against the motion, saying Harper did not provide enough detail about the operation. Harper, however, does not need authorization from Parliament to go ahead with the mission, however, his practice is to ask the House for support.
ONTARIO ENERGY BOARD APPROVES NATURAL GAS RATE CUT
Energy bills are soon on the way down. The Ontario Energy Board has given the green light for decreases in natural gas rates for Enbridge and Union Gas customers. On average, Enbridge customers could see a drop of about $100 in their yearly bills, while Union Gas clients anywhere from $116 to $168. The new rates come into effect starting next month.
TCDSB MEETING TO DISCUSS CUTTING LIBRARIANS, LITERACY INSTRUCTORS
The Toronto Catholic District School Board says librarians, literacy instructors, and gifted program instructors are on the chopping block. Trustees will be meeting Thursday to consider around $24 million in cuts as a way to balance a $42 million shortfall. According to the Toronto Star, they’ll be discussing cutting all librarians, some literacy instructors, and some secondary teachers for gifted programs. Broken down, it’s 42 high school teachers, 14.4 secondary gifted teachers, 48 teacher-librarians that are subject to job cuts, as well as an additional $2 million in support staff cuts. The board is also reportedly eyeing to cut international languages programming as a way to reduce costs. Remaining cuts will be addressed once the province issues final grant figures.
MAPLE LEAFS ATTENDANCE DIPS TO A 16-YEAR LOW
Leaf’s fans appear to feel almost as defeated as the team. Monday’s 2-1 loss against the Minnesota Wild saw the lowest attendance in 16 years, drawing only 18,366 fans, around 450 people shy of a sellout. In October, the team had a non-sellout, but before that, the last time the team failed to sell capacity was in 2002. Less than an hour before the game began, ticket prices were slashed in half. Leaf’s are eliminated from the playoff’s, placing 28th overall. Ratings have also dropped to the point where the game has been removed from Hockey Night in Canada for the first time since 1972. Leaf’s are back on the ice Thursday when they host the Florida Panthers.
Reports in Europe say a Germanwings airline Airbus A320 has crashed in southern France. According to the AFP News Agency, the plane was travelling between Barcelona and Dusseldorf when it came down in the French Alps near Digne. It’s believed at least 148 passengers and six crew members were on board at the time of the crash. More to come.