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Found 6 results

  1. Tembec Industries Files Bankruptcy as Foreign Firm (Update1) By Christopher Scinta Sept. 4 (Bloomberg) -- Tembec Industries Inc., a unit of Montreal-based Tembec Inc., filed for protection from U.S. creditors to implement the debt restructuring approved by a Canadian court in February. The company said in papers filed today in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in New York that its assets and debts exceed $1 billion. Tembec Industries filed under Chapter 15 of the U.S. Bankruptcy Code, saying it wants the debt restructuring that was approved by the Ontario Superior Court of Justice to govern U.S. creditors. Chapter 15 allows foreign companies to reorganize outside the U.S. while protecting them from U.S. lawsuits and creditor claims. Holders of more than 98 percent of the company's notes and 95 percent of its stock voted earlier this year in favor of the restructuring that swapped debt for new equity, Michel Dumas, the company's chief financial officer, said in a statement to the court. Tembec had to restructure its debt due to the rising value of the Canadian dollar, declining U.S. home construction, a glut of timber because of a beetle infestation in British Columbia and falling newsprint demand, according to court papers. Douglas Bartner, an attorney with Shearman & Sterling in New York that filed the petition, didn't immediately respond to a phone call seeking comment. Tembec produces about 1.7 billion board feet of lumber, 1 million tons of paper and 2.1 million tons of pulp a year, according to court papers. Virtually all of Tembec's assets are in Canada, so the reorganization plan approved by the Canadian court should govern, Dumas said. Tembec joins another Canadian wood-products company, Pope & Talbot Inc., in filing for U.S. Chapter 15 as a foreign entity. The case is In re Tembec Industries Inc., 08-13435, U.S. Bankruptcy Court, Southern District of New York (Manhattan). To contact the reporter on this story: Christopher Scinta in New York at [email protected] Last Updated: September 4, 2008 16:37 EDT
  2. Having read of so many horrible experiences with immigration laws and officers, I always thought those things only happened to those who did not do their paperwork right or who did not meet the immigration requirements. Apparently I was wrong. My experience is nothing compared to the one of the Mexican mother who's all over the news lately, but what makes my case interesting is that the law is clearly on my side, and so are the Citizenship and Immigration Canada agents, yet there doesn't seem to be anything I or they can do about it, and I have to leave Canada soon with no right of appeal. I am not writing for advice, but advice is always appreciated. Here is my experience: My study permit was set to expire on August 31st. As recommended by the immigration website, I submitted an application for a new study permit on July 26th, more than 30 days before the expiry date. It often happens that the study permit expires before the new application is approved or rejected, so one is left without a valid study permit for an interval of time. During this time, one is said to have "implied status" and is allowed to travel out and into Canada as a temporary resident until a decision is made, as long as one has a multiple entry visa. This was my case, and I did travel outside of Canada during my implied status period, but the Canada Border Services agent who welcomed me at Trudeau Airport didn't seem to know the law very well (I didn't either), and only allowed me to stay in Canada for "further examination of my file". He also seized my passport and immigration documents and told me I had to leave Canada by September 30th if my new study permit had not been approved by then. I kept checking daily for updates on my application status with Citizenship and Immigration Canada. They repeatedly told me that my study permit was to be approved (or rejected) by the end of October. But I never told them about my situation at the Border Agency. Today I decided to call the Border Agency Office at Trudeau Airport to see if I could extend the September 30th deadline. A person who sounded like the same officer who seized my documents insisted that I should leave by September 30th before proceeding to threaten me with deportation and jail if I didn't leave Canada (I must add that I was never rude to him or any other agent. I didn't even contradict what he said). I asked him if I could at least return temporarily as a tourist, since I have a multiple-entry visitor's visa. He said that was illegal (it is not) and if I tried to do that, I would be denied entry to Canada for one year. He said he would write a note on my file to ensure this was done. After this call and a few seconds digesting the horrible feeling, I decided to call Citizenship and Immigration Canada to tell them what had happened. The call center agent who spoke with me was really nice. She asked me to calm down and reassured me. She spoke with two advisors and they all insisted that I should be allowed to stay in Canada due to my implied status, as long as I didn't see any university courses (which I'm not, as I am just working on my PhD thesis). She expressed a lot of concern at the fact that the Border Agent took my passport and tried to call them without success (line was busy the whole day after my call). She then instructed me to send the Border Agency a fax quoting the laws that protect me and asking them to call me on my phone to resolve my situation. I did this and they ignored this fax. I am sure if I call them again, the same will happen, and they will get even more hostile. Right now I see no option other than going to the US for a month. This doesn't seem like such a bad thing except for some extremely important personal plans I had for this month in Canada. In my short 25 years of existence so far I've had to spend the night in a restroom being completely sober, spend days sleeping on a chair for bureaucratic reasons, and I've had to make big changes on my future because of late paperwork. I guess these things happen to everyone and I've never complained about them, but I can't help but feel powerless and violated in this situation. It almost makes me think bad of Canada, but my mind is not sufficiently weak.
  3. Dec. 11 (Bloomberg) -- The Senate rejected a $14 billion bailout plan for U.S. automakers, in effect ending congressional efforts to aid General Motors Corp. and Chrysler LLC, which may run out of cash early next year. “I dread looking at Wall Street tomorrow,” Majority Leader Harry Reid said before the vote in Washington. “It’s not going to be a pleasant sight.” The Bush administration will “evaluate our options in light of the breakdown in Congress,” spokesman Tony Fratto said. The Senate thwarted the bailout plan when a bid to cut off debate on the bill the House passed yesterday fell short of the required 60 votes. The vote on ending the debate was 52 in favor, 35 against. Earlier, negotiations on an alternate bailout plan failed. GM said in a statement, “We are deeply disappointed that agreement could not be reached tonight in the Senate despite the best bipartisan efforts. We will assess all of our options to continue our restructuring and to obtain the means to weather the current economic crisis.” Reid said millions of Americans, “not only the autoworkers, but people who sell cars, car dealerships, people who work on cars,” will be affected. “It’s going to be a very, very bad Christmas for a lot of people as a result of what takes place here tonight.” Asian stocks and U.S. index futures immediately began falling after Reid’s comments. The MSCI Asia Pacific Index slumped 2.2 percent to 86.13 as of 12:33 p.m. Tokyo time, while March futures on the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index slipped 3.4 percent. ‘Deja Vu’ “Remember when the first financial bailout bill failed” in Congress in late September, said Martin Marnick, head of equity trading at Helmsman Global Trading Ltd. in Hong Kong. “The markets in Asia started the slide. Deja vu, this looks like it’s happening again.” Congress approved a financial-rescue plan weeks later. Senator George Voinovich, an Ohio Republican, urged the Bush administration to save the automakers by tapping the $700 billion bailout fund approved earlier this year for the financial industry. “If this is the end, then I think they have to step in and do it -- it’s needed even though they don’t want to do it,” Voinovich said. Connecticut Democrat Christopher Dodd, who helped lead the negotiations, said the final unresolved issue was a Republican demand that unionized autoworkers accept a reduction in wages next year, rather than later, to match those of U.S. autoworkers who work for foreign-owned companies, such as Toyota Motor Corp. ‘Saddened’ “More than saddened, I’m worried this evening about what we’re doing with an iconic industry,” Dodd said. “In the midst of deeply troubling economic times we are going to add to that substantially.” Republican Bob Corker of Tennessee, who negotiated with Dodd, said, “I think there’s still a way to make this happen.” Earlier today, White House spokeswoman Dana Perino warned that an agreement was necessary for the U.S. economy. “We believe the economy is in such a weakened state right now that adding another possible loss of 1 million jobs is just something” it cannot “sustain at the moment,” Perino said. Also earlier, South Dakota Republican John Thune suggested that if talks collapsed, the Bush administration might aid automakers with funds from the financial-rescue plan approved by Congress in October. “I think that is where they go next,” Thune said. “I wouldn’t be surprised if they explore all options.” The Bush administration thus far has opposed that option, which was favored by Democrats. To contact the reporters on this story: Nicholas Johnston in Washington at [email protected] Hughes in Washington at [email protected] Last Updated: December 11, 2008 23:34 EST http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601087&sid=aDkK4lEZsSsA&refer=home
  4. One island, one giant wireless dream Non-Profit group of computer nerds is seeking city hall's help to make Montreal completely Wi-Fi friendly MICHELLE LALONDE, The Gazette Published: 8 hours ago A small group of self-described computer nerds has been quietly beavering away to make wireless Internet access freely available across Montreal Island, and city hall seems poised to help them achieve that goal. Calling themselves Île sans Fil (which translates roughly to "wireless island") and charging not a penny for their services, the group has so far equipped 150 "hotspots" in central Montreal neighbourhoods with wireless capability. The idea is that anyone who wanders into any of these hotspots with a laptop or handheld computer (a BlackBerry, for example) can get free Internet access as long as they have a Wi-Fi card. Île sans Fil is what's known as a community wireless networking group. Its members are students and professionals of varying ages who are interested in Wi-Fi's potential "to empower individuals and to foster a sense of community," according to the group's website. "At the core of this group are just some pretty nerdy people, early adopters of technology I guess we are called," said Daniel Drouet, president of Île sans Fil. "We all had Wi-Fi cards a long time ago, but we saw that people running the cafés and places we wanted to go hadn't heard of Wi-Fi and had no idea how to install it. A lot of business owners seemed to want to offer it, but they were in the business of selling coffee, or whatever, and didn't know where to start." So the group began approaching business owners and offering to set them up. Some of these business owners had already tried charging customers for Internet access, and learned the hard way that few would pay. But offering wireless access for free was a good way to attract customers, they wagered. The group has set up Wi-Fi access at dozens of cafés and restaurants, some sports facilities, a couple of parks (Jarry Park, for example), a few doctors' waiting rooms and at least one laundromat. The group is impatiently awaiting the city of Montreal's approval of their proposal to create about 250 more wireless hotspots, including many outdoor areas, such as city parks and public gathering spots like the Place des Arts. City hall's interest in wireless movement has been growing, especially as it watches other other large North American cities - such as Philadelphia, New York, San Francisco and even Toronto - take steps toward establishing city-wide wireless networks. In the fall of 2007, officials from the mayor's office contacted Drouet and asked the group to come up with a proposal on how the city could help them accelerate their efforts to expand the wireless network. That proposal was submitted to city officials last fall. A standing committee of the agglomeration council also held a public meeting on the issue late last year and the committee subsequently recommended the project go ahead. The partnership, as proposed by Île sans Fil, would see the city contributing $200,000 a year for five years to the group to support the installation of 150 more wireless service points in outdoor locations, and at least another 100 points in local businesses. Drouet said he was told the contract would be approved at a spring executive committee meeting, but is still waiting. He has been informed there is no money left in the 2008 budget, but the project may be included in the 2009 budget. Alan DeSousa, executive committee member responsible for economic development, said he is working to get the project approved as quickly as possible. As mayor of the St. Laurent borough, DeSousa has approved Île sans Fil's installation of Wi-Fi hotspots in several borough locations, such as the borough hall and Marcel Laurin Park. "I think this is an exciting and important project," DeSousa said Friday. "I will do what I can to see it is stickhandled as quickly as possible to make sure it sees the light of day either in 2008 or 2009, but the sooner the better." For more information on Île sans Fil, go to http://www.ilesansfil.org [email protected]anwest.com