News

1. Charges dropped in security failure case

In a short press release issued yesterday — which still manages to confuse a security failure with a data breach — Halifax police announced they are not pursuing charges against the 19-year-old who was arrested:

Halifax Regional Police has concluded its investigation into the data breach that was reported to the police on April 7. After a thorough investigation, the police have determined there to be no grounds to lay charges in the matter.

“This was a high-profile case that potentially impacted many Nova Scotians,” said Superintendent Jim Perrin, Officer-in-Charge of Criminal Investigations Division. “As the investigation evolved, we have determined that the 19-year-old who was arrested on April 11 did not have intent to commit a criminal offence by accessing the information.”

I’ll have more on this later today.

2. Fire

A police release early this morning:

At 02:26hrs Halifax Regional Police responded with fire to 5450 Inglis St. 15 unit dwelling. Flames were coming from the roof. Police and Fire will be on scene for much of the morning and people are asked to avoid the area as Inglis St. is closed from Tower Rd to Victoria Rd and surrounding side streets are also closed.

Tempa Hull lives nearby and filmed this video of the fire department’s response:

At 5:43am, police updated their earlier release:

With respect to the fire scene, there are hoses running down the street and sidewalks along Inglis Street. Members of the public are asked not to drive over the hoses to get out of driveways as it could cause damage to the hoses.

As of publication, there’s no word on injuries or on the number of people displaced by the fire.

3. Cannabis sales

Graphic: Nova Scotia Liquor Corporation

“Nova Scotians nostalgic for the good ole days when buying liquor meant having their favourite brand hand-delivered by a store clerk behind a counter are going to love the new cannabis store model the Nova Scotia Liquor Corporation will be using,” reports Jean Laroche for the CBC:

Customers will line up, consult menus and place their orders, which clerks will fill from behind a counter. The orders will then be placed in a sealed brown paper bag.

In the 11 NSLC locations being renovated to include pot sales, the transactions will take place in an area of the store that will be behind a frosted glass enclosure.

The 12th location will be a standalone outlet on Clyde Street in downtown Halifax. That location will be the only one where a buyer will be able to smell product samples.

I get that people want to be able to smell the pot before they buy it, but I personally don’t want to buy cannabis laced with other people’s nostril hairs. So I hope they work that part out.

Laroche helpfully found this archival photo of a former NSLC outlet on Buckingham Street, back in the days when the clerk filled your order:

The cigarette butt collectors at each customer station are a nice touch.

Back when I was a kid, the state-run liquor stores in my native Virginia were even more stark. The clerk was behind bulletproof glass, with a little slot to exchange money and a drawer beneath to deliver the bottles to the customer. There were no bottles or advertising of any sort in sight. You had to know what you were ordering, and the clerk would go into the back room to retrieve your order, which was given to you in a plain brown paper bag. There was a liquor store in the little strip of stores in my neighbourhood — sandwiched about halfway between a cool little drug store with an honest-to-dog soda fountain at one end and a topless bar at the other end. Virginia was weird.

4. New Horizons

Image from tubman.info.yorku.ca

“Members of the Cornwallis Street Baptist Church voted Sunday to change the church’s name to New Horizons Baptist Church,” reports the Canadian Press:

The change comes after years of public debate about the namesake of the street for which it is named, Edward Cornwallis.

Shortly after arriving in Chebucto Harbour in 1749, Cornwallis issued a reward of 10 Guineas on Mi’kmaq scalps, prompting calls — centuries later — for his name to be removed from schools, rivers, streets, parks and monuments.

Senior pastor Rhonda Britton said the new name reflects the church’s vision for new opportunities and growth.


Government

City

Tuesday

City Council (Tuesday, 10am, City Hall) — there’s not a lot on the agenda. I’m not sure if I’ll have time to get to the meeting; if so, I’ll be live-blogging it on Twitter at @hfxExaminer.

Wednesday

Special Events Advisory Committee (Wednesday, 9am, City Hall) — grant time.

Regional Watersheds Advisory Board (Wednesday, 5pm, HEMDCC Large Meeting Space, Alderney Gate) — no action items.

Province

Tuesday

No public meetings.

Wednesday

Public Accounts (Wednesday, 9am, Province House) — Lynn Hartwell, the deputy minister at the Department of Community Services, and Denise Perret, the deputy minister at the Department of Health and Wellness, will be asked about services and supports for children with Autism Spectrum Disorder/Complex Needs.

Select Committee on Establishing an Electoral Boundaries Commission – 2018 (Wednesday, 3:30pm, One Government Place) — an organizational meeting.


On campus

Dalhousie

Tuesday

Do Bacteria Have Sex? (Tuesday, 11am, Room 3H-1, Tupper Medical Building) — Rosie Redfield from the University of British Columbia will speak.

Thesis Defence, Nursing (Tuesday, 12pm, Room 3107, Mona Campbell Building) — PhD candidate Christine Cassidy will defend her thesis, “Development of a Behaviour Change Intervention to Improve Sexual Health Service Use Among University Undergraduate Students​.”

An Ocean of Opportunity (Tuesday, 4:30pm, in the auditorium named for a bank, Marion McCain Building) — Prince Albert II of Monaco is going to lecture on “sustainable development, especially as it relates to ocean management,” because who knows more about sustainability than someone who inherited both his title and his billion-dollar wealth? Of course Dal prez Richard Florizone and Wendy Watson-Wright, the CEO of the Ocean Frontier Institute, will be there because those types always like to rub elbows with people who inherit titles and wealth.

Wednesday

Innovation Rounds: Virtual Reality Can Put the Patient at Ease While Capturing Unprecedented Data (Wednesday, 8am, Weather Watch Room, Dickson Building, VG) — Ryan Cameron, CEO of Electric Puppets, will demonstrate “how virtual reality and eye tracking can create a diagnostic tool that has never been possible before.”


In the harbour

There’s lots of activity off the Halifax coast this morning at 7:30am. Multiple supply vessels (teal coloured boats) are working the offshore operations around Sable Island, while fishing boats (pink) work to the west. The green ship is the YM Essence, which left Fairview Cove this morning. The red ship is the Toftenviken, a passing oil tanker. Map: marinetraffic.com

1:45am: Scotian Sea, supply vessel, moves from Old Coast Guard Base to Irving Oil
3:30am: Bomar Rebecca, container ship, sails from Pier 42 for sea
4am: YM Essence, container ship, sails from Fairview Cove for Rotterdam
5:30am: Atlantic Sky, ro-ro container ship, arrives at Fairview Cove from Liverpool, England
5:30am: Viking Queen, car carrier, arrives at Autoport from Davisville, Rhode Island
6am: Acadian, oil tanker, arrives at Irving Oil from Saint John
6am: Scotian Sea, supply vessel, sails from Irving Oil for the offshore
7am: Kitikmeot W, oil tanker, arrives at anchorage for inspection from Emden, Germany
1pm: Hollandia, general cargo, sails from Pier 31 for sea
3:30pm: Viking Queen, car carrier, sails from Autoport for sea
3:30pm: Atlantic Sky, ro-ro container ship, sails from Fairview Cove for New York


Footnotes

I have an early morning appointment, so short and sweet today.

Tim Bousquet

Tim Bousquet is the editor and publisher of the Halifax Examiner. Twitter @Tim_Bousquet Mastodon

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  1. I remember even in the early 80s there were still liquor stores in rural Ontario where you had to fill out a slip of paper with your order, and hand it to a person at the counter, who would go and get your booze out back. There was a listing of the products they carried, but you had no way of seeing the bottles first. Kind of like Lee Valley, but without any product out on display except for a few high-volume brands on a shelf behind the counter.

    Ontario also had those bleak Brewers Retail stores where you had to ask the clerk for your beer and the case came rolling down a line from out back. The stores all had an odd smell. I used to say this was probably how beer was retailed behind the Iron Curtain, except I came to learn that beer was usually retailed in a more liberal manner there.

    1. There are still some locations of “The Beer Store” in Ontario where you make an order and someone rolls the beer out from the back. They’re cheerier than they used to be and you can also pick out cans from a fridge by the cash, but they still have that old fashioned feeling.

    2. Brewers Retail still exists, it’s called The Beer Store now. They’re a bit less spartan – you can actually see the beer now – but the weirdness and “Sovietness” of the place is still intact.

      1. I used to live a half hour walk from the centre of Sydney, Australia and on the weekend I’d cross the street to the pub, buy a cold can of Coopers Ale, and walk into town drinking it – all perfectly legal as long as I was not “drunk and disorderly” and disposed of the bottle properly.

        Having moved to Toronto, I couldn’t believe how bizarre the whole Brewers Retail concept was. You confessed your sin to a clerk who mumbled into a mike and presently an unmarked brown bag rolled down the race which you had to immediately take home by the most direct route (people were being fined for stopping to buy groceries on the way). It seemed like a patronizing provincial government believed the feckless citizens of Hogtown would all run amok if allowed to consume beer in public view.

        So now we might import this kind of weirdness in our government dope monopolies. My guess is that this and the price will ensure illegal dope vendors will continue to flourish.

        1. Yeah, and remember Ontario had those ladies and escorts and men-only taverns for the longest time. That was before my drinking age but I do remember a lot of the older places still had the signs and the two separate rooms. And the small draft glasses with the lines on them….

          When I lived in Montreal, it was perfectly legal to drink beer in the street (and I believe it still is in most of Quebec) — except that people who lived there rarely did walk down the street drinking beer unless there was some kind of event going on, in which case there were oceans of beer. But you could tell when the Leafs were in town by the number of Ontarians grabbing cold beers at the depanneurs near the Forum, then walking around with cans of beer in their hands.

          I remember going to a summer village festival in Frelighsburg, near the US border. There was a place selling sausages and beer outside in a beer garden setting. I bought a sausage and the guy asked me if I wanted a beer too. I said no, I wasn’t sitting but planned to walk around. Well, obviously take the beer with you, he said. And then I noticed lots of people walking around with draft beer or wine. Much more civilized than the Maritimes.

          The sky hasn’t fallen in in Quebec. I cross the bridge here in the summer and have my lunch and a beer at a picnic table in a municipal park on the Quebec side. Nor is it odd in Europe, where you can pretty well drink where you please. On nice days in the UK people take their beers and go sit on the village green or in an old cemetery, politely returning the glasses to the bar when they are done. Even in cities they stand outside on the sidewalk, which I suppose is handy if you are a smoker.

          I will grant you things have improved vastly since the days of my youth (including the quality and variety of the beer), but I have no idea why we continue to have such ridiculous and puritanical laws about where and when we can buy and consume alcohol. I suspect the new pot laws will be just as bad.

  2. Weed in sealed bags bought behind frosted glass. Somebody needs to tell NSLC that weed is legal now.

  3. Senior pastor Rhonda Britton said the new name, “reflects the church’s vision for new opportunities and growth,” and she escaped without a tirade about boosterism, puffery, and vapid PR-speak?

    Are you feeling OK, Tim?

    1. I know you like to be the “contrary grump” to Tim’s own “contrary grump” (where contrary is pronounced with the emphasis on the “rar” like conTRARE-y) but even that’s digging quite a bit.