AND IN CANADA... CBC News/Nov. 20, 2018 & Megan Yamoal/Global News/Nov. 20, 2018

Sergeant-at-arms, clerk at B.C. Legislature on leave amid criminal probe

Sergeant-at-arms, clerk at B.C. Legislature on leave amid criminal probe

Sergeant-at-arms, clerk at B.C. Legislature on leave amid criminal probe Gary Lenz, Craid James on paid leave as RCMP investigates

CBC News/Nov. 20, 2018

Two key officials at the British Columbia Legislature have been placed on indefinite leave over what an official says is a criminal investigation.

NDP House Leader Mike Farnworth told the legislature that both Clerk of the House Craig James and Sergeant-at-Arms Gary Lenz were being put on leave while an investigation took place.

Alan Mullen, a special adviser to the Speaker of the legislature, says there is an active investigation by the RCMP and both men are on paid leave.

“It would be inappropriate this time to say any more because we do not want to jeopardize any investigation of the RCMP that’s ongoing,” he said.

Mullen also said the house leaders of all three political parties in the legislature agreed on the decision.

At a news conference that had been arranged earlier in the day for an unrelated matter, B.C. Premier John Horgan was peppered with questions about Lenz and Craig.

The premier said he was briefed about the “shocking” situation on Monday, but said he didn’t know any further details about the investigation.

‘Very disappointing’

As he left his office with personal belongings in hand, James told reporters he did not know what the investigation was about, that he was informed he was being placed on leave as Farnworth told the legislature, and was obtaining legal counsel.

“Somebody knows something, and I think out of the fairness principle [we] should be informed before we’re placed on administrative leave, exactly what it involves,” he said. “I think it’s very unfair, and very unfortunate, and very disappointing.”

James and Lenz walked out of the legislature separately and left the parking lot together in a vehicle driven by Lenz.

The clerk of the house gives non-partisan advice to the Speaker and can be consulted on procedural matters, as well maintaining a record of all the legislature’s proceedings.

The sergeant-at-arms is responsible for maintaining order in the legislative chamber and other areas used for the business of the house.

With files from Tanya Fletcher and The Canadian Press.


New Brunswick craft cidery inks deal with Chinese grocery chain

By Megan Yamoal/Global News/Nov. 20, 2018

A Fredericton cidery is about to go global.

Red Rover Craft Cider, the oldest craft cider company in New Brunswich, has inked a deal with a large Chinese grocery chain and th owner says the expansion will bring more jobs to New Brunswick.

Adam Clawson owns the cidery and says his recent success will be going back into the province he calls home.

“The amount of population here is limited and by creating a product that can be exported, and bringing in monies from other places in the world, we really expand the amount of disposable income that’s within the province,” said Clawson on Tuesday.

Greenland Business and Trade Group will sell the local craft cider in all 50 of their locations in China, and it will help Clawson’s burgeoning brewing business.

“The initial pilot program will be for the beginning of 2019 and if it’s successful, we’ll continue with larger purchases,” said Clawson.

“We’ll be able to tart creating more cider for the export market and by doing that, we are actually going to need to hire on some more staff in 2019 and [2020].”

Atlantic Canadian goods exported to China totaled more than $1.5 billion in 2017, according to Statistics Canada.

Clawson suggests other New Brunswick companies – from all sectors – look into the fiscal benefits of distributing their products internationally.

“China is one of the largest expanding markets with over 3 million people going from poverty to middle class every year and because of this, there’s a new appetite for really high-quality products,” he said.

“Not just in the alcohol sector but in the production sector, in general, we make great products here in this province and there really is a market that wants to buy high quality in China.”