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NEWS: Comox councils consider chapter’s CETA exemption request

The Comox Valley Echo reports, “The local chapter of the Council of Canadians is raising the alarm on what they say is a bad trade deal for local government. Alex Turner and other local members of the Comox Valley branch of the organization brought their concerns to Comox Council last week, and are set to make a presentation at the Comox Valley Regional District today.”

“Turner told Comox councillors the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA) currently being negotiated between Canada and the European Union would have dire consequences for local governments’ ability to self-determine local procurement policies, and open the door to water and sewage services privatization. …Speaking on behalf of the Council of Canadians, Turner urged council to request an exemption for municipalities and local authorities from the trade agreement, as well as more information on the agreement from the federal and provincial governments.”

“Union of British Columbia Municipalities passed a resolution in October 2010 seeking more information on the trade agreement, and also requested an exemption from the agreement for municipal governments.”

“The matter has been forwarded to Comox staff to prepare a report on CETA’s impact on local procurement practices. …Mayor Paul Ives also noted the issue could come before the Association of Vancouver Island Coastal Communities conference in April.”

To read the Council of Canadians web-page on passing municipal resolutions opposing CETA – a page that also includes a map of where resolutions have been passed across the country – please go to http://canadians.org/action/2011/CETA-resolution.html.