In this edition:
EI claimants down by 16.5% in Niagara
In March, the number of Niagara residents receiving regular Employment Insurance (EI) benefits fell from 7,090 to 5,920 , a drop of 16.5%.
524,000 Canadians claimed EI in March, down by 41,000 (-7.2%) from February. The decline in March coincides with information from the Labour Force Survey (LFS) showing the unemployment rate reaching a record low of 5.3% in March and employment growth totalling 409,000 in February and March.
GO-VAXX returning to Beamsville
A vaccine clinic will take place in the parking lot at the Lincoln Community Centre in Beamsville to administer the Pfizer for 12+ (First, second, booster, and fourth) and Pediatric Pfizer 5-11 (first and second). The fourth dose will be available to all clients that meet the criteria.
Appointments are required and can be booked at Ontario.ca/bookvaccine or by calling the Provincial Vaccine Contact Centre at 1-833-943-3900. Walk-ins may be accommodated based on vaccine supply.
Bookings begin four days before the scheduled clinic date.
Doug Ford visits Niagara, commits to twinning Skyway
During his Niagara-on-the-Lake campaign stop this morning, PC leader Doug Ford said only his government will commit to the twinning of the Garden City Skyway.
Creating a second highway on the north side of the Garden City Skyway has been in the plans since an engineering firm told the Liberal government back in 2014 that the roadway would have to be replaced by 2025.
Canadian raw material prices up 38.4%
Prices of products manufactured in Canada, as measured by the Industrial Product Price Index (IPPI), rose 0.8% month over month in April 2022 and 16.4% year over year. Prices of raw materials purchased by manufacturers operating in Canada, as measured by the Raw Materials Price Index (RMPI), decreased 2.0% on a monthly basis in April 2022 and rose 38.4% year over year.
The overall increase in the IPPI was largely moderated by lower prices for softwood lumber, which declined 13.7% in April. This is the first monthly decrease for softwood lumber following six months of consecutive price increases.
Five things we learned from the GNCC provincial election debate for St. Catharines riding
St. Catharines Standard
Greater Niagara Chamber of Commerce hosted its debate for candidates in the St Catharines riding Monday.
The New Blue Party of Ontario candidate called for rehiring hospital staff who lost their jobs during the pandemic, in one of few opportunities voters have had to hear from the recently established political party.
Stevens said her party would help young families provide a down payment on a new home, while re-establishing rent controls to ensure new tenants pay the same rent as previous tenants and overhaul landlord and tenant boards.
Madill said a Liberal government would focus on doubling the supply of new housing, with plans to support construction of 1.5 million homes, including at least 138,000 affordable homes.
Canada inflation: How we compare to other G7 nations
While Canadians are feeling the pain of record-high inflation, among G7 nations we are surpassed by Germany, the U.S., and the U.K., who are also experiencing astronomical rates of increase over the past year.
While much of this inflation is fuelled by pandemic shutdowns and supply chain disruptions, Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has amplified these existing pressures among advanced economies, which are seeing a price rise in nearly everything — from food and fertilizers to energy and natural gas.
The spillover effects of COVID-19 and the Russia-Ukraine war are now affecting the pockets of many households in the advanced G7 economies.
The Election Section
Advance polls open
Starting today (May 19) and running until late in May, the advance polls will open for all four Niagara area ridings – Niagara West, St. Catharines, Niagara Centre and Niagara Falls.
Schreiner, Horwath test positive for COVID-19
Two of the leaders of Ontario’s four major political parties have been sidelined with COVID-19 with two weeks left to election day.
Both NDP Leader Andrea Horwath and Green Party Leader Mike Schreiner have tested positive, with Horwath’s result coming Thursday morning and Schreiner’s coming the previous evening.
All four party leaders were in relatively close proximity and unmasked on Monday night during a televised election debate.
Horwath said she doesn’t know where she caught the virus and Schreiner said he tested himself Wednesday after close contact with a staff member who ended up testing positive.
Niagara poll tracker
Provincial poll tracker
The 338Canada project is a statistical model of electoral projections based on opinion polls, electoral history, and demographic data.
GNCC election platform
The GNCC asks that the next Government of Ontario create an economic environment for success by removing remaining barriers to interprovincial trade, particularly on beverage alcohol. The Government of Canada has opened the door for provinces to remove trade barriers, and we now ask Canada’s provinces to walk through that door by enabling unfettered interprovincial trade.
Through the Daily Updates, the GNCC aims to deliver important business news in a timely manner. We disseminate all news and information we feel will be important to businesses. Inclusion in the Daily Update is not an endorsement by the GNCC.