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Disappointment felt in Saskatchewan after federal budget

The federal budget was released Tuesday, but it didn't make much of a ripple in Saskatchewan.

In the hours after Finance Minister Jim Flaherty rose to deliver the budget politicians and lobby groups in our province pored over the details to see how Saskatchewanians would be affected. On the whole there wasn't a lot of enthusiasm to be seen.

LACK OF INFRASTRUCTURE DETAIL A CONCERN

Flaherty's Saskatchewan counterpart, Finance Minister Ken Krawetz, offered tempered enthusiasm after the budget was handed down.

Regina mayor hopes for infrastructure, housing in federal budget

Regina’s mayor would like to see consistency out of the 2014 federal budget when it’s tabled from Ottawa Tuesday afternoon.

Michael Fougere said his top priority is to see steady, yearly transfers from the federal government to address issues like housing and infrastructure in the Queen City.

“Certainly we want some indication for the 2014 construction summer year and, beyond, what that is going to be,” he said.

The city has roads and bridges that are in dire need of repair and improvement, but Fougere insists there are limited options to help pay for them.

SGI looking for 5.2 per cent rate increase

Car insurance could get quite a bit more expensive in 2014 if SGI has its way.

The Crown insurance company is looking for an average 5.2 per cent increase in auto insurance rates. It announced that request is being submitted to the Rate Review Panel, which must approve any increase, on Tuesday morning. If it goes ahead it will be a rebalancing proposal: 84 per cent of drivers will see rate increases of an average $49; the other 16 per cent will either maintain the same rate or get a decrease of an average $12.

Regina city council to deliberate making accessible cabs more accessible

There could be some changes coming to the City of Regina’s taxi cab bylaws that will make it easier and more affordable for disabled persons to catch a ride.

The Community and Protective Services Committee is recommending that council pass a motion to increase the number of accessible cabs from four to ten this May with a study on doubling in the next four years.

Lawsuit over faulty Toyota and Lexus brakes

It’s said to be the largest class-action settlement in Canada’s history.

A total of 1.4 million Toyota and Lexus owners across the country are set to receive benefits after faulty brake pedal and acceleration issues forced recalls in 2009 and 2010.

“The value is in the range of $157 million,” said Regina lawyer Tony Merchant, part of a team of over a dozen lawyers in the case.

Regina taxpayers react to proposed 7 per cent rate hike

The Mayor of Regina may be standing behind the city’s 2014 proposed budget but not all taxpayers feel the same way.

The city is proposing a property tax hike of seven per cent. That is among the highest rate the city has ever seen, at least in recent history. The city’s average rate hike has been 3.27 per cent over the last five years.

Add an eight per cent increase on top of that in the water and sewer utility rate and the average ratepayer with a $300,000 home can expect to pay another $220 out of pocket this year.

Safeway announces closure of Cumberland Square location April 5

After 50 years serving neighbourhoods on the east side, the Safeway at Cumberland Square will close its doors for good on April 5.

What could be replacing the Safeway could be anything from a Wal-Mart to a Lowe’s or even bigger. Concorde Properties commercial sales and leasing representative Kyle Chatterson sheds some light on the future of the 31,000 sq. ft. building.

“There's massive interest in that property in some respect there's interest in the site itself some of it is in the building,” Chatterson said.

Motorcycle review committee proposes test for new riders

There are some new ideas for the provincial government to consider regarding motorcycle safety in Saskatchewan.

A Motorcycle Review Committee released its recommendations Tuesday morning.

“There’s a balance there in terms of encouraging riders to do the right thing, and also starting new riders out on the right path,” said SGI President and CEO Andrew Cartmell. “So it is a balance and a compromise.”

Canada Post stamp honours curler Sandra Schmirler

A new series of stamps to recognize pioneers of winter sports is honouring the late-Saskatchewan curler Sandra Schmirler.

Schmirler's family and former teammates gathered at the Callie Curling Club in Regina Monday as Canada Post unveiled the stamp.

"You don't think of it being a big deal," said Sara England, Schrmirler's daughter, "but then you realize, not many people get a stamp."

CFIA orders Brit Foods to export or destroy illegal products

The owner of a popular Saskatoon British food store has to either re-export or destroy some of his product according to a recent letter from the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA).

According to Brit Foods owner Tony Badger, the CFIA letter he received Jan. 30 said he can’t sell a variety of British imported non-meat and meat products and current stock must be disposed of or exported out of Canada. Badger must tell the CFIA what he’s going to do by April 10.

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