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Business/Labour

Regina venues upset, confused about tariff on foreign musicians

Several groups in Regina are concerned with new federal rules that will see the cost skyrocket when it comes to bringing in musical entertainment from outside the country to some bars and restaurants.

The rules came in to effect on July 31, with non-traditional music playing venues to pay $425 per band and crew member, which includes a combination of an application fee and a work permit. Prior to the changes it cost $150 per member, but there was a cap of $450. Recognized concert venues are exempt from these fees.

New report suggests P3s paying off in Canada

It appears more often than not public/private partnership (P3) projects are working just fine in Canada.

"Canada As A Global Leader: Delivering Value Through Public-Private Partnerships At Home And Abroad" is a new report released recently by the Conference Board of Canada. It's an update on a previous report done several years ago, analyzing new P3 projects that have started up in the last three years to find if they're delivering what they've promised.

Weekly crop report shows mixed results for farmers

The province says harvest is lagging behind this year despite the recent warm weather.

The weekly update from the Ministry of Agriculture finds that all regions have begun harvesting. Only five per cent of this year's crop has been combined, however, falling short of the five-year average of 15 per cent. A further 14 per cent has been swathed or is ready to straight cut, also behind the five-year average of 22 per cent.

There is positive news, however. Most areas have reported above-average yields and a dearth of rain the last week has helped speed up crop development.

Provincial government won't oversee Regina referendum

The Government of Saskatchewan doesn’t plan on stepping in to oversee Regina’s first referendum since 1991.

On Sept. 25 Reginans will go to the polls to make a choice on how a new waste water treatment plant will be paid for, voting yes or no to the following declaration: "That the Council of the City of Regina publicly finance, operate and maintain the new wastewater treatment plant for Regina through a traditional Design, Bid, Build (DBB) approach."

Petition group wants referendum oversight from province

The date for Regina's referendum has been set but now Regina Water Watch wants the province to step in.

On Monday the group, which circulated an extensive petition that fell short of triggering a referendum on how the city will fund a new waste water treatment plant, asked the Government Relations Minister to oversee the referendum because it doesn't trust the City.

Regina Mayor Michael Fougere said the province can do what it wants, "but I think we have a transparent and open system here."

Saskatoon business ballooning with clients

A new business in Saskatoon is bravely floating where no one has gone before.

Jennifer Korney, who calls herself the "Balloonatic" sells huge three foot balloons with long, handmade tissue paper tails.

"People don't realize how big they are until they actually see them," she laughed.

"That is actually the comment that everyone says the second I show up they're like, 'Wow! That's way bigger than I thought it was going to be.'"

CN works on rail improvements before construction season ends

Construction isn’t just happening on city streets, the CN rail yards in Saskatoon are getting a facelift too.

Earlier this year, CN announced the company would be investing $1.9 billion in capital improvements across their network.

“We are making investments right across our network in Canada and the United States to improve the fluidity of our network and to manage the growth that we are seeing in certain commodities,” Warren Chandler, CN senior manager for public and government affairs, said.

Union charges safety at risk as Sask. fire towers dismantled

The government employee's union and the province have been butting heads ever since the end of manned fire towers in the province was announced.

Now, the Saskatchewan Government Employee’s Union (SGEU) is saying northerners are at risk as fire hazards rise.

The government forged ahead with the plan to dismantle the fire towers and have now taken down 12 of the cupolas.

“We thought we had the government listening but obviously it doesn’t look like it. They just pretended they were listening and all of a sudden they rolled right in again,” said President Bob Bymoen.

Regina realtors not worried about increased mortgage interest rates

The Association of Regina Realtors (ARR) has no concerns about recent mortgage interest rate increases affecting sales.

On Friday, the National Bank of Canada became the latest of Canada’s biggest banks to increase their interest rates. One-year fixed rate open term mortgages now sit at 6.7 per cent interest, an increase of 0.4 per cent. Meanwhile, three, four and five year closed term mortgages were increased by 0.2 per cent.

Municipal Rail Safety Group calls for more information for first-responders

First-responders need more information according to the Federation of Canadian Municipalities rail safety group.

The group's statement is at the top of a list of recommendations for improved rail safety.

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