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TMCNet:  Top News Advisory for Friday, Feb. 14, 2014

[February 15, 2014]

Top News Advisory for Friday, Feb. 14, 2014

(Canadian Press Broadcast Wire (Canada) Via Acquire Media NewsEdge) Friday, Feb. 14 5:45 p.m.

TOP NEWS ADVISORY Here are the latest Top News stories from The Canadian Press. All times are Eastern unless otherwise stated. Coverage plans are included when available. Entries are subject to change. Contact the National Desk at 416-507-2150.


TOP NEWS: OLYMPICS Canada's Patrick Chan wins Olympic silver OLY-FIG-Men SOCHI _ Canada's Patrick Chan has won silver in men's singles figure skating at the Sochi Games.Chan scored 178.10 in the free program to finish with second behind Japan's Yuzuru Hanyu. Moves Sports and National.

Mark McMorris set for Regina homecoming OLY-Mark-McMorris TORONTO - When Olympic slopestyle bronze medalist Mark McMorris heads home to Regina on Saturday, he'll be bracing for a big welcome from fervent fans and hankering for time with pals and a plate of his mom's homemade pasta. ``I'm kind of scared. I hope nobody knows my flight details,'' the snowboarding heart-throb and social media sensation said with a big smile in an interview on Friday. Moves National and Sports.

For other planned stories Olympic stories, see the separate Olympic advisory OLY-Olympic-Advisory.

TOP NEWS: OTHER NEWS Senate expense scandal runs deeper: poll Senate-Poll OTTAWA _ Public-opinion polling ordered by the Harper government suggests the Senate expense scandal has tarred all politicians with the same brush.A newly released report finds Canadians fed up with ``rich politicians'' and their ``lush lifestyles,'' and wondering how deep the flagrant spending abuse runs.

White House to PM: Don't expect KXL answers Obama-Harper-KXL WASHINGTON _ The White House says Prime Minister Stephen Harper shouldn't expect any new information if he presses for details on Keystone XL next week.Senior officials in the Obama administration say Harper will be told in private the same thing he's hearing in public: that a process is underway, it's not political, and it's unclear when it will end.

Jason Kenney 'good friends' with Jim Flaherty Kenney-Flaherty-Rift ST. JOHN'S, Nfld. _ Employment Minister Jason Kenney says there's no federal Conservative caucus rift that he knows of and that he remains ``good friends'' with Finance Minister Jim Flaherty.Kenney and Flaherty have been at odds in recent public comments ranging from Toronto Mayor Rob Ford to the Canada Job Grant.

Feds broke species at risk law, court rules Species-At-Risk OTTAWA - A Federal Court judge has ruled that Canada's environment and fisheries ministers both broke the law by failing to enforce the Species at Risk Act. In a case covering four endangered species that Justice Anne Mactavish called ``just the tip of the iceberg,'' the court found there's ``an enormous systemic problem'' in the two ministries charged with protecting Canada's endangered and threatened wildlife.

Cities, towns ready pitches for federal infrastructure spending blitz Infrastructure-Funding OTTAWA - Canadian municipalities are lining up for a piece of the Conservative government's $14-billion blitz on infrastructure spending, with proposals for projects ranging from wastewater treatment to public transit. Pitches have been in the works for weeks - if not months - in anticipation of this week's unveiling of the New Building Canada Fund, which was first announced in last year's federal budget.

Vets' records to be held by private firm: NDP Vets-Files OTTAWA - The NDP says the federal government is transferring veterans' medical records to the custody of a private American company.MP Peter Stoffer says veterans seeking help will now have to wait while files are retrieved from a company called Iron Mountain Holdings.

Flaherty noncommittal on income splitting Income-Splitting-Flaherty NORTH VANCOUVER _ Finance Minister Jim Flaherty isn't saying what could become of his government's promise to introduce income splitting, or other campaign promises that have yet to be realized.Flaherty has sowed doubt about the future of the Conservatives' promise in 2011 to allow income splitting since he questioned the wisdom of such a policy earlier this week. Will be writethru Featured family watches Tory promise closely Income-Splitting-Family OTTAWA - If there's one Canadian who's paying close attention to the fate of the Tory election promise on income splitting, it's Steve Wellburn. Wellburn and his wife Tanya allowed the Conservatives to use their Vancouver Island home - and their family - as a backdrop during an important 2011 federal campaign stop.Now that it appears Harper and Finance Minister Jim Flaherty are having serious doubts about the wisdom of the $2.5 billion promise, Wellburn is watching closely to see what happens. PHOTO.

Key recommendations in Baldwin inquest Baldwin-Inquest-Recommendations TORONTO _ A coroner's jury hearing the inquest into the death of Jeffrey Baldwin, a five-year-old who was starved to death by his grandparents, delivered 103 recommendations Friday. Many focused on improving the child welfare system. Here are 10 key recommendations:_ The Ontario Ministry of Children and Youth Services should ``fully deliver on its pledge'' to implement the Child Protection Information Network (CPIN) within two years to all children's aid societies across the province, permitting societies to access each other's information.

See also: Baldwin-Inquest Baldwin-Inquest-Chronology Twitter account targeting teens under probe Twitter-Cyberbullying-Probe TORONTO _ Toronto police are investigating a Twitter account that purported to expose the sexual behaviour of high school students _ a fate that some of its 1,500 teenage followers believe the victims ``deserve.''The account was recently suspended after concerned teens flagged it to the Toronto District School Board, the city's Catholic school board and the police.

See also: Twitter-Cyberbullying-Tips (Tips for parents on cyberbullying) Indonesia volcano erupts; 3 killed, 100K evacuated AS-Indonesia-Volcano-Erupts SUGIHWARAS _ A powerful volcanic eruption on Indonesia's most populous island blasted ash and debris 18 kilometres (12 miles) into the air Friday, killing three people and forcing authorities to evacuate more than 100,000 and close seven airports.The eruption of Mount Kelud on Java island could be heard up to 200 kilometres (125 miles) away, Indonesia's disaster agency said. PHOTO.

Koreas agree to hold family reunions as planned AS-Koreas-Tension SEOUL _ North and South Korea agreed in a rare high-level meeting Friday to stop insulting each other and to go ahead with planned reunions of Korean War-divided families next week despite a dispute over upcoming U.S.-South Korean military drills.Highly emotional reunions of long-separated families haven't been held in three years. PHOTO.

US sees more delay likely on Afghan security pact US-United-States-Afghanistan WASHINGTON _ The Obama administration has quietly stopped demanding that Afghan President Hamid Karzai finalize a stalled security pact within weeks, opening up the possibility that a decision on keeping U.S. and international forces in Afghanistan after this year might not be made until after Karzai's successor is elected this spring.While U.S. officials say they still strongly prefer that the agreement be signed quickly, they did not rule out the possibility of waiting to see if a new Afghan leader might be easier to work with. Pushing off the decision on keeping troops in Afghanistan comes with increased risks and complications for the U.S. military, though the Pentagon is making adjustments to give President Barack Obama that option.

Italy's premier resigns after sacking by own party EU-Italy-Politics ROME _ Premier Enrico Letta drove himself to the Italian president's palace and resigned Friday after he was sacked by his own party in a back-room mutiny designed to catapult Florence's young mayor into the helm of Italy's government.President Giorgio Napolitano accepted the resignation and immediately scheduled talks with political party leaders Friday and Saturday. After that, he was expected to ask the head of Letta's Democratic Party, Florence Mayor Matteo Renzi, to try to form a new government. PHOTO.

NSA: Co-worker provided a digital key to Snowden US-NSA-Surveillance WASHINGTON _ A National Security Agency employee resigned from the agency after admitting to federal investigators that he gave former NSA analyst Edward Snowden a digital key that allowed him to gain access to classified materials, the NSA has told Congress. Snowden has previously said he did not steal any passwords.The unnamed civilian employee who worked with Snowden resigned last month after the government revoked his security clearance, according to a letter that NSA legislative director Ethan L. Bauman sent this week to the House Judiciary Committee. A military employee and a private contractor also lost their access to NSA data as part of the continuing investigation by the FBI, Bauman said. PHOTO.

ALSO IN THE NEWS Quebec budget to be tabled on Feb. 20 QUEbudget QUEBEC _ Quebec Finance Minister Nicolas Marceau will present his second budget next Thursday.The government is confirming the budget will be tabled at 4 p.m. on Feb. 20. Moves National and Business, guard against duplication Gov. Gen. David Johnston to visit India Gov-Gen-India OTTAWA _ The Prime Minister's Office says Gov. Gen. David Johnston will make a state visit to India at the end of the month.The visit will run from Feb. 22 to March 2. PHOTO.

Former B.C. lieutenant-governor injured Iona-Campagnolo VANCOUVER _ Former British Columbia lieutenant-governor and Trudeau-era cabinet minister Iona Campagnolo is in hospital with a spinal cord injury, but she is expected to make a full recovery.Campagnolo's daughter, Jennifer, said her mother was injured in a recent fall and is now in the spinal care unit at Vancouver General Hospital.

BUZZ $200K bond for NYC man arrested amid Hoffman probe US-Hoffman-Investigation NEW YORK _ A musician charged with keeping a 300-packet heroin stash amid an investigation into Philip Seymour Hoffman's death is an addict, and any heroin the musician allegedly had would have been largely for his own consumption, his lawyer said Friday.But a judge expressed skepticism about viewing veteran jazz and pop sideman Robert Vineberg as just a drug user caught up in a high-profile probe.

Man, 19, charged in Ontario cat shooting case Cat-Shot SARNIA _ Police say they have made an arrest in an animal cruelty case involving a cat found in a southwestern Ontario community suffering from as many as 17 pellet wounds to his head.The cat, named ``Joe'' after his rescue earlier this month in Brights Grove, east of Sarnia, is being cared for by the local humane society.

Second chance for grumpy B.C. moose Hormonal-Moose SMITHERS _ Residents of Smithers, B.C., are being urged to give a morose moose a wide berth, at least until after it gives birth.Smithers conservation officer Flint Knibbs says the creature was first spotted Wednesday near homes in the northwestern B.C. town.

'Angry Birds' movie to be made in Vancouver Film-Angry-Birds-Vancouver VANCOUVER _ The worldwide phenomenon ``Angry Birds'' will be bringing its furious fowl and evil green pigs to Vancouver as it makes its way to the big screen.Finnish video-game developer Rovio Entertainment says in a news release that it has picked Vancouver-based Sony Pictures Imageworks to be the primary animation house for the upcoming ``Angry Birds'' movie. Moves National and Entertainment. Guard against duplication.

(The Canadian Press) (c) 2014 The Canadian Press

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