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Saints confident of seeing off Chelsea’s interest in youngster – report


first_imgSouthampton are confident they will keep defender Luke Shaw in spite of Chelsea’s £4m bid, The Sun on Sunday report.Chelsea are among several leading clubs to have shown an interest in the Saints prospect, 17, but have been told he is not for sale.Related West London Sport story: Chelsea to table bid for Saints prospect (2 July)Chelsea expect to complete the signing of Victor Moses from Wigan for £8.5m this week, according to the Daily Star Sunday.Wigan chairman Dave Whelan said: “I have spoken to Chelsea’s chief executive and they are easy to deal with. We have told them the price and they will agree it or not.Striker Torres reportedly has two weeks to prove himself.“We would much prefer Victor to sign a new contract but he wants to go to Chelsea. It’s a good club so we cannot stand in his way.”The Star also say Fernando Torres has two weeks to prove he can fill the boots of Didier Drogba.It is claimed that if the Spaniard doesn’t strike – starting against Manchester City today – boss Roberto Di Matteo won’t think twice about replacing him.Meanwhile, Fulham boss Martin Jol is considering a move for Sunderland’s Kieran Richardson and is making a surprise £3m bid to sign Bolton striker David Ngog, according to The People.Richardson has been tipped to leave the Stadium of Light for £2m, while Frenchman Ngog has been linked with several clubs since Bolton were relegated last season.It is also claimed that Jol is weighing up a move for Peterborough striker Paul Taylor if he misses out on Huddersfield’s Jordan Rhodes.The Mail on Sunday suggest Liverpool boss Brendan Rodgers is prepared to offer Charlie Adam to Fulham as part of an exchange deal for Clint Dempsey.Blackpool have rejected the chance to sign Joey Barton from QPR on a season-long loan, the Sunday Mirror say.It was claimed that Barton was on the verge of a move to Bloomfield Road and that Blackpool were keen to sign him to get one over neighbours Fleetwood Town, where the midfielder had been training.It is now said that Blackpool did not think it made financial sense to sign a player who is suspended for the first 12 matches of the season.QPR are ready to tempt St Etienne with a £7.5m offer for young French centre-back Kurt Zouma, according to The Sun on Sunday.Rangers supposedly face competition from Juventus, who planned to watch the 17-year-old face Lille on Saturday.And The People pick up on R’s boss Mark Hughes’ apparent interest in signing William Gallas from Tottenham.This page is regularly updated.See also:Victor Moses ‘will complete £9m move to Chelsea’Follow West London Sport on TwitterFind us on Facebooklast_img read more


Grossly disproportional Ski resort appeals 2M fine for cutting trees


first_imgCALGARY — A world-renowned Alberta ski resort is appealing a $2.1-million-dollar fine it received for cutting down endangered trees five years ago.Lake Louise Ski Resort pleaded guilty last December to taking down a stand of trees, including 38 endangered whitebark pine, along a ski run in 2013.The fine, which was imposed last month for charges under the Species at Risk Act and Canada National Parks Act, amounts to roughly $55,000 per tree.“The sentence is grossly disproportional and demonstrably unfit given … the actual facts and background of the offence,” defence lawyer Alain Hepner wrote in the appeal notice filed Friday.The court will be asked to either stay the charges or reduce the penalty to $200,000.An agreed statement of facts said that in 2013 a trail crew, consisting of six employees including a supervisor, began cleaning up, doing fencework and trimming and removing some trees on Ptarmigan Ridge at the ski resort.The document said that in late September of that year, the workers cut down a number of trees, including endangered whitebark pine, without a permit.Judge Heather Lamoureux ruled Nov. 30 there was a “cumulative impact” on the whitebark pine with “potential risk of undermining the survival of the species in the decades to come.”She noted the trees were cut in a national park, the resort failed to ensure its employees knew the whitebark pine was endangered and the trees that were destroyed were all healthy.The five-needle whitebark pine provides food and habitat for animals, as well as helps stabilize steep subalpine slopes.The tree exists at high elevations in western North America at, or close to, the treeline. They have been growing on the continent for 100,000 years and can grow to be between 500 and 1,000 years old.But Hepner said the judge didn’t take into account remediation efforts the resort took after the trees were cut down or the “lack of impact of the loss of 38 whitebark pines to the population.”With 200 million whitebark pines in Canada, Hepner said the trial judge erred in finding the loss of 38 trees affected the species as a whole.A spokesman for the resort says steps have been taken to ensure no other whitebark pines are cut down. Staff are better educated and the 7,000 whitebark pines within the resort area are now marked, the resort said.— Follow @BillGraveland on TwitterBill Graveland, The Canadian Presslast_img read more


Conservatives axe First Nations statistics Crown corporation


first_imgBy Jorge BarreraAPTN National NewsOTTAWA–The Conservative government has axed a First Nations-led Crown corporation created to fill the statistical “gap” that exists when it comes to getting numbers from First Nations reserves and the urban Aboriginal population.The First Nations Statistical Institute (FNSI), which was created through legislation passed in 2005 during the Liberal government under Paul Martin, will see its $5 million budget cut in half this year and eliminated next year, according to the federal budget unveiled Thursday.Keith Conn, the FNSI’s chief operating officer, said the agency was in the midst of 25 projects across Canada working with First Nations communities and organizations.“Now we have to figure out what we can do for this year,” said Conn.Conn said he found out about the cut while sitting in the budget lock-up in Ottawa Thursday. The information was buried near the back of the budget document under a section outlining total cuts to the federal Aboriginal Affairs department.Aboriginal Affairs will see cuts of $26 million this fiscal year, $60 million the next and $165 million the year after for a total 2.7 per cent reduction of the $6.22 billion that was put on the table for review, according to the budget.“I saw something in the tea leaves,” said Conn. “I told my board of directors that I had an inclination. “I was connecting the dots on several activities and inactivities.”The institute currently has 23 people on staff, but they won’t all be laid off immediately, he said.“We will have to determine what some of those priorities are as an organization”, he said. “We have projects that we may want to wrap up.”The FNSI was created, through legislation along with three other Crown agencies: The First Nations Tax Commission, the First Nations Financial Management Board and the First Nations Finance Authority.Conn said the institute didn’t really get going until 2009 because it took the Conservative government two years to pick a board, which was created through cabinet orders in council.“Most Crown corporations have a pre-existing infrastructure, but this particular one was a new concept, so essentially it was created out of thin air,” he said.The institute was created to make up for the data gap that exists when it comes to getting a clear picture of the demographics on reserves and from the Aboriginal population in general.Many First Nations communities refuse to participate in the national census and Aboriginal people living in urban centres often slip through the data cracks because of their social conditions.“There are social and economic disparities that are widespread and so it was important to provide data to measure progress,” said Conn. “There are gaps in the urban populations for First Nations, Metis and Inuit people that are either missed or excluded from the survey processes.”The institute was also helping communities make sense of their administrative data to better plan for the education, housing and labour force needs, said Conn.It was also preparing economic data for a project in conjunction with the First Nations Financial Management Board that would see several communities create a borrowing pool for bond debentures to access long term debt financing to pay for infrastructure like roads and schools.“We were the first on the planet to deal with First Nations bond debentures,” he [email protected]last_img read more