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August 13, 2018 8:24 PM Ontario will rely on private sector to sell recreational cannabis

Ontario will sell recreational cannabis online only when it is legalized Oct. 17 and allow “tightly regulated” private retail stores into the weed business by next April 1. The sales model from Premier Doug Ford’s new Progressive Conservative government marks a shift from the previous Liberal administration’s plan for 150 brick-and-mortar Ontario Cannabis 7

August 13, 2018 4:45 PM Ontario pauses opening three overdose-prevention sites as it conducts review

Ontario’s health minister says the province will hold off on opening three new overdose-prevention sites intended to help fight the opioid crisis. Christine Elliott says the sites in Thunder Bay, St. Catharines and Toronto will be frozen as the province conducts a review of harm-reduction practices and determines if the sites “have merit.” Overdose prevention 5

August 10, 2018 10:13 PM Battling one of the worst fire seasons, Ontario commits millions more to the fight

Dry conditions and frequent lightning have led to one of the province’s worst fire seasons, prompting the Ontario government to spend an extra $100 million to battle the blazes. “This is an additional amount of money to be injected into our fire system,” Minister of Natural Resources and Forestry Jeff Yurek told the Star in a telephone interview Friday 9

August 9, 2018 5:02 PM Ontario Power Generation buys U.S. renewable energy firm for $388M

Ontario’s government-owned power company is making its first foray outside the province, announcing a deal to buy New Jersey-based Eagle Creek Renewable Energy for $388 million. Ontario Power Generation says Eagle Creek owns 63 small hydropower facilities in the United States providing a total of 216 megawatts of capacity. The privately held target company’s 11

August 8, 2018 5:28 PM Some vets forced to wait months for case manager, records show

Veterans Affairs Minister Julian Fantino was warned in May that nearly 300 veterans had been waiting months for a case manager to help them gain access to support services. The warning, contained in internal documents obtained by the Citizen, was delivered as Fantino prepared to defend millions of dollars in Veterans Affairs Canada budget cuts. Veterans 22

August 8, 2018 1:15 PM Ontario should offer incentives to reverse psychiatrist shortage, report says

And though enrolment in medical school is growing, the percentage of applicants choosing psychiatry is declining, the report says. “Governments are investing a significant amount of money into improving mental health services, which is great ... (but) there’s some issues with access to treatment at this point, and if we don’t have enough psychiatrists 6

August 7, 2018 8:30 PM Blackhawks legend Stan Mikita dead at 78

He was named one of the top 100 NHL players of all time by The Canadian Press in 2017. Mikita remains the only NHL player in history to win the Art Ross (scoring champion), Hart (MVP) and Lady Byng (sportsmanship) trophies in the same season, and he accomplished the feat in consecutive years in 1967 and 1968. He became the first player to have his jersey 12

August 7, 2018 2:27 PM Buck-a-beer by Labour Day weekend, Doug Ford says

Buck-a-beer will be available by Labour Day weekend — and brewers who get on board will get free promotions in LCBO stores, Premier Doug Ford announced Tuesday. Speaking at a brewery in Picton, Ford said “the day you’ve been waiting for is finally here. We’re bringing back buck-a-beer to Ontario,” as promised during the election campaign. He said by Aug. 27, brewers 8

August 3, 2018 1:36 PM Ontario firefighters ‘make excellent progress’ in battling Parry Sound 33 forest fire, officials say

The ministry says crews are holding back the fire in critical areas of Parry Sound 33, especially along the northeast edge. Higher winds tested that perimeter on Thursday, but the hose lines held and the fire was kept in check. The ministry says no new fires were discovered on Thursday and one was extinguished, but there were still 47 active forest fires 8

August 1, 2018 3:32 PM Parry Sound 33 forest fire forcing evacuations in Northern Ontario

Environment Canada says a special air quality statement has been issued for the northern Ontario cities of Sudbury and North Bay due to smoke from forest fires in the area. The agency says smoke is causing poor air quality and reducing visibility, and warns conditions may deteriorate if the smoke descends to ground level. The main source of the smoke 7