March 14, 2012 / 10:18 AM / 6 years ago

PRESS DIGEST - Canada - March 14

March 14 (Reuters) - The following are the top stories from selected Canadian newspapers. Reuters has not verified these stories and does not vouch for their accuracy.

THE GLOBE AND MAIL

- British Columbia may be on the left coast of Canada but it has become the centre of the battle to lead the federal New Democrats.

Amid reports that thousands of Martin Singh supporters in B.C.’s South Asian community are being urged to rank front-runner Thomas Mulcair as their second choice on the preferential ballot, the Quebec MP and two other contenders for the party’s top job are announcing endorsements from key British Columbia New Democrats.

- Elections Canada is combing through internal Conservative Party e-mails and database records as it tries to close in on Guelph robo-call scammer “Pierre Poutine,” sources said.

The election watchdog has gained access to the electronic logs that track who drew down information from the party’s database of voters in the riding of Guelph during the 2011 campaign.

- The Harper government is conceding it might back out of its multibillion-dollar plan to buy F-35 stealth fighters.

Delays and setbacks have cast confusion over the price tag of the fighter jets, so Ottawa is now acknowledging it will have to wait and see how much they will cost - even if it doesn’t have a clear idea of a Plan B.

Reports in the Business Section:

- Federal politicians worked late into the night to debate a back-to-work bill to send a pair of Air Canada labour disputes to binding arbitration in order to keep the airline flying.

Bill C-33, which passed 155-124 at about 0130 ET Wednesday, covers about 8,600 mechanics, baggage handlers and other ground crew at Air Canada and about 3,000 pilots.

- Tens of thousands of homeowners are at risk of break-ins and assaults if their personal information is made available online when they sell their homes, the country’s largest real estate board charges in a blistering attack against the country’s competition commissioner.

The Toronto Real Estate Board will launch a major public relations campaign on Tuesday against a Competition Bureau demand to include more detailed information in online listings, arguing that making information such as a seller’s name and phone number available to casual browsers endangers lives.

NATIONAL POST

- Mired in a $16-billion deficit and facing an uncertain financial future, Ontario is turning to consumers to help it dig out of trouble.

The province announced on Tuesday it will raise a range of driver fees, including licence validation, renewals, replacement, driver exam fees, trailer permits, as well as a range of other fees for commercial vehicles.

Reports in the Business Section

- Two directors at Canadian Pacific Railway Ltd acknowledged for the first time on Tuesday the company’s board could consider a management shake-up ahead of the railway’s annual general meeting in May if the proposed plan by activist shareholder Bill Ackman gains enough traction with shareholders.

- An Ontario Superior Court judge has approved a plan by securities regulators to distribute among holders nearly $60 million collected from a group of financial institutions as part of a settlement related to the failure of the third party asset-backed commercial paper.

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