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Police warn of home repair scam targeting seniors

BT Toronto | posted Thursday, Sep 26th, 2019

Toronto police are asking people to be extra cautious after seniors in the Lawrence Park area were reportedly victims of a home repair scam.

Police were made aware of the fraudulent scheme when officers were called to the area of Bayview Avenue and Blythwood Road on Tuesday.

Between one to three men were reportedly approaching homes occupied by seniors and convincing them that they needed roof, driveway or some other type of home repair.

Police say the men provided a list of repairs and usually quoted a price but after allegedly starting some work, they would suggest more repairs, increase the price and demand payment.

The men mostly accepted cash and would go to a nearby bank machine with the resident to withdraw money and take their payment.

Police say it is believed that no actual repairs were ever required or completed.

All three suspects are white men, about five feet ten inches tall.ho

The first suspect is described as having short dark hair, a medium build and a thick Scottish accent. The second suspect is described as fair skinned with an athletic build, blue eyes and a heavy Scottish accent. The third is estimated to be in his late 30s with dark short hair and a muscular build. They may be driving a white van.

Police are cautioning people about being approached for unsolicited home repairs and suggest calling police to report any such suspicious solicitation.

Party leaders scatter from Vancouver Island to Montreal as campaign starts Week 3

THE CANADIAN PRESS | posted Thursday, Sep 26th, 2019

Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer and Green Leader Elizabeth May are both in Montreal today, as the third week of the federal election campaign begins.

Scheer has a morning announcement scheduled at Jarry Park and then hits the town with Conservative candidates in what have historically been among the safest Liberal ridings in the city: Mount Royal and Saint-Leonard-Saint-Michel.

Mount Royal has gone for the Liberals in every election since 1940; it was the seat of Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau’s father Pierre for nearly 20 years.

Saint-Leonard-Saint-Michel has elected Liberals since it was created in the 1980s, though its three MPs have been Alfonso Gagliano, a minister brought down in the sponsorship scandal of the early 2000s; Massimo Pacetti, whom Justin Trudeau expelled from the Liberal caucus in 2014 over allegations he’d harassed another MP; and Nicola Di Iorio, who stopped showing up in the House of Commons before eventually resigning last winter.

Still, Conservatives have never come close to winning there.

May is to speak in the afternoon about the role she sees Quebec playing in the Greens’ vision of a Canada powered by renewable energy.

Trudeau starts his day in Sudbury, Ont., expected to continue a string of environment-related announcements at a conservation area, before whistlestopping his way southeast to a rally in Peterborough, where cabinet minister Maryam Monsef is fighting to keep her seat.

The NDP’s Jagmeet Singh is spending a third day in a row in British Columbia, talking mainly about housing in events on Vancouver Island. He’s playing defence: Vancouver Island is where the Greens see their best chances of picking up seats, after a byelection win over the New Democrats in Nanaimo-Ladysmith last May.

Singh is starting in Campbell River and plans to roadtrip south to Nanaimo.

And Maxime Bernier of the People’s Party continues his own trip to the West, spreading his populist message in Calgary after spending Wednesday in Vancouver.

Matthews incident a reminder of responsibility of being a Maple Leaf

CHRIS JOHNSTON | posted Thursday, Sep 26th, 2019

Kyle Dubas found out on Twitter.

Let that sink in a moment as you contemplate the ramifications of Auston Matthews’s error in judgement this summer. No boss likes a surprise. That fact is multiplied roughly a million times over when your boss manages a very front-facing entity like the Toronto Maple Leafs and the star of the operation has a run-in with the law.

That’s why Dubas didn’t hide his disappointment when speaking with reporters about the complaint for disorderly conduct Matthews received in Scottsdale, Ariz., four months ago and only disclosed to the organization on Tuesday afternoon.

The general manager phoned his star centre as soon as that piece of news passed through his Twitter timeline.

“(He was) very honest about it,” Dubas said Wednesday night after watching Matthews score in a 3-0 exhibition win over the Montreal Canadiens.

“There was no ducking, there was no denying anything. He was very honest with me about what had happened, which was … I would have liked to have known before, but I’m happy that in the moment when he could have ducked away or deferred, that he was honest with me.”

The Leafs are still in fact-finding mode about what happened in the early hours of May 26. At the end of a drunken night with friends, Matthews is alleged to have dropped his pants ⁠— but not his underwear ⁠— in the direction of a female security guard after his group first tried to gain access to the security guard’s car.

Matthews was not arrested and said Wednesday that his legal team mapped out a plan for handling the case, acknowledging that he should have made the Leafs aware of what was going on as part of that process.

“You know what, I think that was just an error in judgement, to be honest with you,” he said.

It’s not a good look for the team’s highest-paid player and presumed next captain. That is likely off the table now.

While Dubas doesn’t believe this will negatively affect his relationship with Matthews over the long term, he said they’ll need to have an honest conversation at some point. The incident will also be used internally as a reminder about the responsibility that comes with being associated with the Leafs.

“We have to find out what’s happened, what’s going on and then subsequently we have to use it as an opportunity to continue to educate our whole organization ⁠— every player, every staff member ⁠— about the way that we expect our organization to conduct its business,” said Dubas.

“Here at the rink every day, in the weight room, in the community and how they interact with every citizen that they come into contact with because when they are doing so they’re representing the Toronto Maple Leafs.”

It should be a learning opportunity for Matthews.

As special as his athletic gifts are, he’s not exempt from being 22. Everyone makes mistakes and the consequences tend to be even more punitive when you’re in a privileged position like his.

“I know he takes it seriously, what’s gone on,” said teammate John Tavares.

“It’s been hard,” Matthews acknowledged. “I feel I still got to go out there and do my job and try to block that out. As easy it is to say, it’s not (to do).”

At least two mistakes were ultimately made in this situation.

The incident itself is serious enough in nature that Matthews is still facing legal action. Failing to share it with Dubas and president Brendan Shanahan was another error.

“I don’t think I have them in power rankings,” said Dubas, when asked which bothered him more. “They’re equally (bad), probably. No. 1 that there was a situation and No. 2 the way in which we found out. I think both are disappointing and will be addressed and will roll from there.

“Obviously, you don’t ever like for there to be any situations and then when you do, I think you want to know about them as soon as possible.”

Mike Yawney reviews the Nintendo Switch

BT Toronto | posted Wednesday, Sep 25th, 2019

Two years after introducing the ground-breaking Switch, Nintendo has released an updated version of the popular console. The Nintendo Switch Lite cuts back on some of the features, but in return eases the burden on your wallet. We’ve had a chance to use the new system over the past week. Read our review to decide if the Lite version is right for you and your family.
Smaller and Lighter
Nintendo has created a more compact version of the Switch, making it ever so smaller, and lighter. The Switch Lite comes in at roughly 120 grams lighter than the original. On paper, it doesn’t seem like a lot, but it’s noticeable. Size-wise, imaging removing one of the Joy-Cons from the original Nintendo Switch. This gives roughly you the footprint of the new version.
It’s surprising to see how the subtle changes in size and weight make such a big difference on how it feels in your hands. Switch Lite feels much more like a portable console compared to the original Switch. Part of the reason is it’s more stable. Since the Joy-Con controllers can’t be removed you don’t get the slight wiggle that you did on the original Switch.
D-Pad Makes a Comeback
Dual analog sticks have become the norm of modern-day consoles. While they work great for shooters and adventure games, the accurate control needed to play older 8-bit, even 16-bit just Isn’t there. Thankfully Nintendo has reintroduced the classic D-pad into the design of the Switch Lite.
If you tried playing some of the classic NES and SNES games on the Nintendo Switch you may have noticed the controls feel slightly off. The D-pad makes playing those classic titles much more enjoyable, Even newer versions of classic games like Tetris 99 just play better with the D-pad.
The Screen
Sure, smaller footprint means a slightly smaller screen. The screen size has dropped from 6.2 inches down to 5.5 inches. Will you notice it? Probably not. The resolution remains the same. It still looks beautiful
Just how good the battery life on the Nintendo Switch Lite is compared to the Switch really depends on which model of Switch you own. The original Switch, released back in 2017 held 2.5 to 6.5 hours worth of charge. Recently Nintendo launched a newer version which has a better battery life of 4.5 to 9 hours. The Switch Lite will get you anywhere between 3 and 7 hours. A slight upgrader if you owned the original
Strange to say this but if you are thinking about buying the Switch Lite you need to know that not all games are playable on the system. There are a few games that simply don’t support handheld mode which is the ONLY mode supported by the Switch Lite.
Games like 1-2 Switch, Just Dance and Nintendo Labo/Labo VR all require either HD Rumble or motion control. This is not an option on the Switch Lite. The Joy-Cons are non-detachable. The number of games that you cannot play is few, however, they do include favorites like Super Mario Party.
Game Sharing
This could be an issue for families with more than one Nintendo Switch. Nintendo forces you to dedicate one Switch in your home as a primary Switch. Any other Switches in the household will be considered secondary Switches. While you can transfer digital games, even saves from the primary Switch to a secondary Switch, the secondary Switch MUST be connected to the internet to play these titles. If you cannot connect at least once every three hours, you will not be allowed to play the game. You can also ONLY play games through the account that originally purchased them, which could be problematic if parents are buying games for kids from their account.
Some users (including myself) have found that dedicating your Switch Lite as the primary console alleviates this problem as it won’t have to go online for authorization…but if someone back home wants to play they would have to play through the owner’s account, not their own. This could cause problems for cloud saves if they did log into the game owner’s account.
Another workaround is to buy physical game cartridges instead of digital files. The only downside here is you have to carry those little things around with you wherever you go…and hope no one loses or misplaces one.
No Docking Allowed
This may be a deal-breaker for some. The Original Switch was called Switch for a reason, You could place the portable console in a docking station and use it like a traditional console along with your television, This latest version can’t be connected to a TV. It’s portable only. For some, it may not be a big deal. Personally I use my Nintendo Switch on the go and have maybe only docked it one or two times in the past two years.
The Bottom Line
Nintendo’s new Switch Lite feels much more like a portable console than the original Switch ever did. It’s more compact, more stable and has quickly become my go-to for gaming on the go. If you want to play your favorite Nintendo games on the go then this is the console for you! It feels like the perfect portable gaming machine. It just becomes problematic in households with multiple Switch consoles and multiple gamers. You’ll need to come to an agreement on who plays what games and where so you don’t have to buy multiple copies of digital titles.

3 party leaders campaign in B.C., Scheer tours Quebec

The Canadian Press | posted Wednesday, Sep 25th, 2019

British Columbia is getting attention from three federal party leaders on Wednesday, including the promise of a “new deal” from the NDP’s Jagmeet Singh.

Singh has already promised to cede authority in several areas to Quebec, including on the environment, immigration and justice, as part of his vision for more asymmetric federalism, in which the provinces don’t all have the same relationship with the federal government.

Singh is also to meet with Vancouver Mayor Kennedy Stewart, the former NDP MP whose old seat Singh now holds.

Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau is starting his day in Delta, B.C., where he’s expected to make another announcement on the environment before flying back east to a rally in Thunder Bay, Ont.

And People’s Party of Canada Leader Maxime Bernier begins a western tour, his first extended trip of the campaign, with an appearance at the Surrey, B.C., board of trade.

Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer is campaigning in Quebec and Green Leader Elizabeth May is to reveal the financials behind her party’s platform in Halifax.

Trudeau has been trying hard to paint Scheer as backward on environmental issues, especially climate change, by tying him and his opposition to the Liberals’ carbon-pricing policy to unpopular Ontario Premier Doug Ford.

He hopes a string of environment-related promises will help draw back some of the support that got shaky after last week’s revelations of his history dressing up in black- and brownface.

Singh made climate-change promises of his own Tuesday, including pledging to electrify Canada’s public-transit fleets by the end of the next decade and to construct a coast-to-coast clean-energy corridor.

Trudeau’s climate-change policies are hypocritical, the NDP said, considering the $4.5-billion the government spent to buy the Trans Mountain oil-pipeline project.

Trudeau and Singh did speak late Tuesday about the times Trudeau darkened his skin for costumes, but neither camp would say just what they talked about.

Scheer, meanwhile, has mostly been playing his own game in central Canada, talking about undoing Liberal changes to the tax treatment small corporations get and eliminating regulations.

Case of 11 disqualified Ontario pot shop licence applicants in court today

JOHN MARCHESAN | posted Wednesday, Sep 25th, 2019

An Ontario court is expected to hear the case today of 11 people who won the chance to apply for a cannabis retail licence only to be disqualified shortly afterwards.

The applicants are requesting a judicial review of their rejection, as well as the procedures involved in the lottery that has been used to grant all Ontario’s pot shop licences.

The Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario said in August the group had missed a deadline in the application process but the group says that’s not the case.

Earlier this month, a Toronto judge paused the licensing process for the latest round of cannabis stores until the case is resolved.

Lawyers representing the commission had contested the stay, saying it would interfere with the integrity of the lottery system.

There was also opposition from lawyers representing a new slate of applicants selected to replace the 11 eliminated.

So far, there have been two rounds of the government lottery to determine who can apply to open cannabis stores. The first involved 25 spots and the second, 42.

Lottery winners have five business days to turn in their application along with a $6,000 non-refundable fee and a $50,000 letter of credit.

The legal challenge may affect the government’s timeline to increase the number of legal pot shops in the province.

3 youths arrested in connection with car break-ins, stolen vehicle in Brampton

BT Toronto | posted Wednesday, Sep 25th, 2019

Peel Regional Police arrested three youths who were driving an allegedly stolen vehicle in Brampton on Tuesday night.

Police were called to the area of Bersan Terrace and Delport Close around 10:20 p.m. for reports of three people breaking into cars.

Officers found three youths in an allegedly stolen vehicle in the area and there was a minor collision between the vehicle and a police cruiser. The three suspects then fled on foot.

A police K9 unit tracked and found one of the suspects who suffered a minor injury from the dog biting the youth.

The two other suspects were also located and all three are now in police custody.

Police say there are no more outstanding suspects.

Leafs’ Auston Matthews facing disorderly conduct charge in Arizona

HE CANADIAN PRESS AND NEWS STAFF | posted Wednesday, Sep 25th, 2019

The Toronto Maple Leafs say they are aware of a complaint of disturbing the peace against star forward Auston Matthews.

In a statement, the Leafs say “Auston is co-operating fully with the relevant authorities but neither he nor the Club will comment any further out of respect for the process involved.”

A Scottsdale, Ariz., police spokesperson said the department in Matthews’ hometown investigated a disorderly conduct case involving an Auston Matthews on May 26. He said Matthews was not arrested and the case has been forwarded to the City of Scottsdale Prosecutor’s Office for review.

A Scottsdale police report alleges Matthews and a group of people attempted to open the door to a female security guard’s vehicle that was parked outside a condo building at 2 a.m.

At some point during a confrontation with the guard, Matthews allegedly walked away before he “pulled down his pants, bent over and grabbed his butt cheeks.”

Online court records show that an Auston Matthews, with a birthdate of September 1997 was issued a summons on July 23 for “disorderly conduct – disruptive behaviour or fighting.” The Leafs centre was born Sept. 17, 1997.

The City of Scottsdale’s court website listed a pre-trial conference set for Wednesday morning.

The lawyer for Matthews is listed as Larry Kazan. His website includes names of a number of past high-profile clients including Glen Campbell, Stephon Marbury, David Boston, Jason Kidd, Nikki Sixx, Terrell Suggs, Jason Richardson and Charles Barkley.

A message left at Kazan’s Phoenix office Tuesday afternoon wasn’t immediately returned.

Matthews signed a five-year, US$58.17-million contract extension with the Leafs back in February that kicked in July 1 with a signing bonus of more than $15 million.

The first pick in the 2016 NHL draft, Matthews has 111 goals and 205 points in 212 career regular-season games. He’s added 10 goals and three assists in 20 playoff outings for Toronto.

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