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Found 13 results

  1. amNY.com Extreme Commuter: From Montreal to Queens By Justin Rocket Silverman, amNewYork Staff Writer [email protected] January 28, 2008 [/url] This Extreme Commuter rides a plane the way most of us ride the subway. Professor Adnan Turkey lives in Montreal but teaches computer science at DeVry Institute of Technology in Long Island City. He's been making that commute once a week for nine years, 45 weeks a year. Although the flight itself is only about 75 minutes long, getting to and from the airport makes it impractical to make the ride daily. Price is a factor, too. Flying directly from Montreal is too expensive even once a week, so for half the ticket price he drives across the border to fly out of Burlington, Vt. So every Monday at noon he leaves his house in Canada and makes that 2-hour trip to Vermont. He puts the car in long-term parking ($6 a day) and flies to New York, where he will sleep in a small rented apartment and teach until Thursday afternoon. Then he takes the flight and drives back home. Door-to-door it's about seven hours each way. "After working many years in Canada, I thought, 'why not come to New York City?'" he asks. "It's just next door and it's the capital of the world." Adnan knows of no other commuters on the Montreal/New York City run, and says many of the border guards laugh in amazement when he states his business in the U.S. Although the weekly $150-round trip JetBlue ticket, and the monthly rent in New York takes a bit out of his income (he won't say how much), Adnan says he has no plans to ask his wife, also a university teacher, and two college-age daughters to move to New York. Besides, money has never been his primary interest. "Education is a noble mission, so salary is not the No. 1 concern, at least for me," he says. "When I see the next generation of students learning and becoming skilled, that's my job satisfaction." Know an Extreme Commuter? Transit reporter Marlene Naanes wants to hear the story. Email her at [email protected] Copyright © 2008, AM New York http://www.amny.com/sports/football/giants/am-commuter0128,0,4574142,print.story
  2. Montreal seen from just across the border, in upstate New York.
  3. Dana FlavelleBusiness Reporter Dana Flavelle Business Reporter There’s a bill before the U.S. Congress that would allow Americans to bring back $1,000 worth of Canadian goods duty-free after just a few hours of shopping across our border. Meanwhile, Canadians can’t bring back anything from the U.S. duty-free until they’ve been away for 24 hours. Even then the limit is $50. This protectionism is one of the reasons U.S. retailers who open up shop in Canada can charge higher prices here than in their home market, an economics professor says. “There are two reasons prices are higher in Canada,” said Ambarish Chandra, a professor with the University of Toronto’s Rotman School of Management. “It is more expensive. Retailers here have to pay higher taxes and have somewhat higher costs. But a larger part of it is because they can get away with it.” Canadians can complain all they like but unless they do more cross-border shopping, retailers here will charge whatever the market will bear, Chandra said. The same barriers exist online: Canadians are charged duty on items shipped across the border. The Consumers Association of Canada says it has lobbied Ottawa to raise the limits, noting the maximum exemption - $750 after a week-long stay - hasn’t changed in more than 15 years. But the consumer group says its efforts are always opposed by Canadian retailers. The Retail Council of Canada denies it has lobbied the government on this issue. “In an age when you can shop around the world, travellers’ exemptions would be the least of our concerns,” said council president and chief executive Diane Brisebois. “We have not had any conversations with the government about exemptions.” Ottawa doubled the exemption for 48-hour trips outside the country to $400 from $200 in 2007, but has no plans to make further changes at this time, said a spokesperson for federal Finance Minister Jim Flaherty. “We continually monitor the adequacies of the travellers’ exemption for Canadians. This includes taking into consideration the impact of any further modifications on the government’s budgetary balance and the impact on Canadian retailers,” the minister’s office said in a written statement. The U.S. currently allows $200 for same-day shopping. The issue of retail price parity arose again this week after some Canadian customers complained U.S. retailer J. Crew is charging higher prices in its new Canadian store and on its Canadian website than in its U.S. stores and on its U.S. website. The difference in the stores averages 15 per cent; the difference online is up to 40 per cent, once taxes and shipping are included. Canadians have been railing about price differences between the two countries ever since the Canadian dollar rose to parity with the U.S. greenback in 2007 after years in the doldrums. “It’s come to the fore again because the Canadian dollar is so strong and so many U.S. retailers are coming here,” said Lynn Bevan, a partner with the consulting firm RSM Richter in Toronto. Bevan said retailers who bring their operations north of the border face a slew of higher costs, from duty and freight to real estate and labour. Overhead costs in Canada are spread across fewer stores, and in some cases the Canadian business is separately owned and must pay royalty and other fees to the U.S. parent. “It’s not like Canadian retailers are making out like bandits,” she said. Prices were on average 20 per cent higher in Canada than in the U.S. on a broad range of goods from DVDs to luxury cars to golf balls, according to a survey last April by Doug Porter, deputy chief economist at BMO Capital Markets. The only times the price gap has closed in the past four years are when the Canadian dollar has dropped below the U.S. greenback, Porter said. http://www.thestar.com/business/article/1043928--canadians-need-higher-duty-free-limits-prof-says
  4. 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.
  5. Pay what you want in this Montreal restaurant PETER MCCABE FOR THE TORONTO STAR Crescent St. tavern hard hit by drop in business tries something new Feb 25, 2009 04:30 AM Andrew Chung QUEBEC BUREAU CHIEF MONTREAL – Already stung by a slide in American tourists and a deepening financial mess that's keeping business customers away, the Taverne Crescent, situated on one of Montreal's historic party streets, decided to implement a new policy: Pay what you can. So yesterday, lunch-hour customers were given the choice of an appetizer, plus either tagliatelle bolognese, salmon or braised beef, and coffee or tea, for whatever they wanted to pay. For a dollar even. Or nothing. "Some people might pay nothing," said owner George Pappas, "but maybe when they have more money in three or six months, they'll come back and pay more." Desperate times call for desperate measures, it seems. Pappas's actions, though gimmicky, illustrate the darkening picture for all those attached to the tourism industry in the province. Despite the proximity of major Canadian cities like Montreal to the border, the number of American tourists coming into Canada by car – still the vast majority compared to other means of transport – reached a record low last year, data from Statistics Canada show. There were nearly 10 million of those trips in 2001. Last year, just 7.4 million. It wasn't even that bad during the last two recessions, including the oil shock of the 1970s. Meanwhile, Americans are taking 1.3 million fewer trips to Quebec compared to 2001. That number, which includes same-day trips, is off by nearly half Canada-wide. "It's astounding," said Statistics Canada analyst Paul Durk, "these are very big drops." There are a number of reasons why the Americans are staying away. New border security requirements, the perception of long border wait times, and even cross-border shopping may be less attractive for aging baby boomers, Durk suggested. Overall, there is a growing fear for the coming year, particularly since the recession has gone global. Already, there has been a sharp decrease in tourism from Britain and soon the rest of Europe will follow. "It will affect big cities the most," said Pierre Bellerose, vice-president of Tourism Montreal. "The cities get more international clients." In the last few years, the American malaise has been offset by increases in tourism from Europe and Mexico. And Montreal's hotels were saved last year by a strong convention calendar. But this year will be different. Bellerose said they're expecting the tourism sector to decline 2 to 3 per cent overall. Quebec's government has stepped in. On Sunday, Tourism Minister Nicole Ménard announced she's giving $4.2 million in financial help to certain businesses and groups, such as Aventure Écotourisme Québec, to try to pump up the tourist volume, and, a spokesperson said, to get past the economic crisis. It won't be easy. The horizon is bleak. Last year, there were 336 restaurant bankruptcies, the Association des restaurateurs du Québec reports – a 20 per cent increase from the year prior. Pappas, who also owns a nightclub in Montreal, describes having to cut staff in response to the American tourist decline. And until his bright idea to "pay what you can," his Taverne Crescent was closed on Mondays and Tuesdays because it was losing money. With no Formula One Grand Prix in Montreal this summer, he said, "It's going to be worse!" http://www.thestar.com/article/592677#Comments
  6. A few weeks ago I saw an excellent 20/20 report by Libertarian reporter John Stossel on the recession and solutions to it, etc. I thought it was all quite well done. Part 1 - Stimulus <object width="425" height="344"><param name="movie" value="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Tda0-cDyD0U&hl=en&fs=1"></param><param name="allowFullScreen" value="true"></param><param name="allowscriptaccess" value="always"></param><embed src="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Tda0-cDyD0U&hl=en&fs=1" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" allowscriptaccess="always" allowfullscreen="true" width="425" height="344"></embed></object> Part 2 - Solution to traffic problems? <object width="425" height="344"><param name="movie" value="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dtwdVInR1Gw&hl=en&fs=1"></param><param name="allowFullScreen" value="true"></param><param name="allowscriptaccess" value="always"></param><embed src="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dtwdVInR1Gw&hl=en&fs=1" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" allowscriptaccess="always" allowfullscreen="true" width="425" height="344"></embed></object> Part 3 - Medical Marijuana <object width="425" height="344"><param name="movie" value="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m0vpzxWU9io&hl=en&fs=1"></param><param name="allowFullScreen" value="true"></param><param name="allowscriptaccess" value="always"></param><embed src="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m0vpzxWU9io&hl=en&fs=1" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" allowscriptaccess="always" allowfullscreen="true" width="425" height="344"></embed></object> Part 4 - Universal Pre-Kindergarten <object width="425" height="344"><param name="movie" value="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-K93hZbWB_I&hl=en&fs=1"></param><param name="allowFullScreen" value="true"></param><param name="allowscriptaccess" value="always"></param><embed src="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-K93hZbWB_I&hl=en&fs=1" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" allowscriptaccess="always" allowfullscreen="true" width="425" height="344"></embed></object> Part 5 - Mexican Border Fence <object width="425" height="344"><param name="movie" value="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JmpDbM1YDWg&hl=en&fs=1"></param><param name="allowFullScreen" value="true"></param><param name="allowscriptaccess" value="always"></param><embed src="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JmpDbM1YDWg&hl=en&fs=1" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" allowscriptaccess="always" allowfullscreen="true" width="425" height="344"></embed></object> Part 6 - Is the American dream still attainable? <object width="425" height="344"><param name="movie" value="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hYE4gO0b3K4&hl=en&fs=1"></param><param name="allowFullScreen" value="true"></param><param name="allowscriptaccess" value="always"></param><embed src="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hYE4gO0b3K4&hl=en&fs=1" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" allowscriptaccess="always" allowfullscreen="true" width="425" height="344"></embed></object>
  7. Smart licences now available for border-hopping Quebecers Last Updated: Monday, March 16, 2009 | 6:04 PM ET CBC News New driver's licence will be accepted instead of passport at land crossings. Quebec Premier Jean Charest showed off his "smart" driver's licence near the Canada-U.S. border on Monday as his province became the first in the country to issue the new border-friendly licences. Quebec Premier Jean Charest holds up his new, high-tech driver's licence near the Lacolle border crossing on Monday.Quebec Premier Jean Charest holds up his new, high-tech driver's licence near the Lacolle border crossing on Monday. (CBC) Quebecers who sign up for the enhanced licences will be able to use them instead of their passports at land and water crossings when the U.S. government brings in more strict security measures in June. "It doesn't solve all of the problems, but it goes a long way in making the lives of a number of our citizens simpler," said Charest at a news conference near the Lacolle border crossing south of Montreal. Charest said he wanted to set the example by becoming the first Quebecer to get the new licence, known as PC Plus. He said the licence will be especially handy for people who cross the border often. "Not everybody carries a passport with them everyday of their lives," said the premier. He also hopes the new licences, which are also being developed by states such as New York, will make it easier for Americans to travel to Quebec. "If there are five people, five kids and two parents, if they had to all pay for a passport it would be an expensive requirement for them to come here," said Charest. Charest aware of privacy concerns The new licence contains an electronic chip that when scanned gives border guards a special code. The guard can then punch the code into a computer to search a database for information about the cardholder. The information will include the same details contained on a passport such as address, birth date and name. Charest said the fact the card contains a code, instead of personal details, will help protect the privacy of individuals who sign up for the licence. The database will also be located on the Canadian side of the border. "[Privacy] is a serious issue. We believe we need to do what has to be done to protect the privacy of individuals," said Charest. The card will cost $40 on top of the standard government licence fees. It will be good for four years. A passport will still be required for air travel. Five Canadian provinces including British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan and Ontario are already testing the technology or have licences in development. Saskatchewan has temporarily put its project on hold pending a review of potential privacy issues.
  8. Une des forces de Montréal est sa diversité. Et une des raisons pourquoi j'adore cette ville est bien évidemment la diversité que l'on peut décliner de plusieurs façons différentes. La diversité s'exprime par une diversité de climats/saisons, une diversité de restaurants/gastronomies etc. Mais une facette de la diversité de Montréal est son coté multiethnique, religieuse et/ou linguistique. En voici un bel exemple dans cet article provenant du New jersey et faisant part du dynamisme de la communauté juive qui s'exprime dans les nombreux commerces, lieux de cultes et quartiers ayant une forte concentration de gens de cette communauté. http://www.jewishlinknj.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=8716:vacationing-in-montreal&catid=165:travel&Itemid=577 Merci à Montréal city weblog pour avoir posté cet article. C'est là que je l'ai vu et j'en profite pour le partager avec la communauté de mtlurb.com
  9. I'm a huge James Bond fan. I happened to stumble upon this: It would be awesome in the 23rd 007 film (coming in 2011), if Bond made an appearance in Montreal (even if it was short). Just imagine James Bond walking along a cobblestone street in Old Montreal on his way to a rendez-vous with a local informant. He hasn't yet set foot in Canada yet in one of the movies. Montreal seems like the perfect location (although Quebec City and Newfoundland are close seconds). When you think about it: The producer of the original Bond films, Harry Saltzman was from Sherbrooke. Joseph Wiseman the first major Bond villain (Dr. No) was from Montreal. It would do wonders for the city's tourism industry and international image!
  10. So next time your crossing the border check out Twitter for the times. http://twitter.com/CBSA_BWT
  11. Tiens tiens..ça ne vous rappelle rien? Scotland warned it could lose the pound and be forced to join Euro as price of independence. A spokesman for David Cameron said there were no guarantees that the Scots could keep sterling if they voted against remaining affiliated with the rest of the union. Mr Cameron’s spokesman said: “Once you start asking the question about independence, one part of that is what currency to have. Would Scotland retain the pound, and if so, how does that work? Or does it join the euro? That’s one part of the independence question.” Other issues which Downing Street said would need ironing out are shared defence capabilities, the national debt and border security. A carve up of assets between England and Scotland could leave both countries facing years of legal wrangling. Today Mr Cameron told MPs that he passionately believed in the United Kingdom and accused Scottish nationalists of attempting to delay a referendum on separation indefinitely. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/scotland/scottish-politics/9007878/Scotland-warned-it-could-lose-the-pound-and-be-forced-to-join-Euro-as-price-of-independence.html