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WIN! Prince Albert city council expresses further concern about CETA

Prince Albert-based Council of Canadians Board member Rick Sawa reports that Prince Albert City Council has voted to go further than just supporting the Federation of Canadian Municipalities seven-points of concern about the Canada-European Union Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA), specifically expressing concern about the impact of the deal on municipal procurement. City council will also be sending a letter to Saskatchewan Premier Brad Wall asking for public consultations on the draft agreement.

Sawa and Saskatchewan Environmental Society Board member David Henry highlighted concerns to City Council about CETA.

Last week, the Prince Albert Daily Herald reported, “There’s a lot unknown about an impending Canadian-European trade agreement, but a group that’s meeting with city council on Monday (February 25) thinks we’re getting a bum deal.”

The news report adds, “In March, city council approved the Federation of Canadian Municipalities’ seven principles when it comes to CETA. …During last week’s executive committee meeting in preparation for the Feb. 25 meeting, Councillor Ted Zurakowski spoke in favour of gathering more information when it comes to CETA. ‘When I read that municipalities like Toronto and Hamilton and Victoria and Nelson, B.C., have opted out of this agreement — whatever this agreement says — I think we need to put our ear to the wall and ask why,’ he said.”

In his presentation to City Council, Henry presented an open letter that would have the city ask Saskatchewan Premier Brad Wall to hold public consultations on the draft agreement.

Council of Canadians trade campaigner Stuart Trew has stated, “More than 40 local governments want the Harper government to stop gambling with their futures through CETA. Another 30 to 40 municipal councils, school boards or associations have asked for more information and a greater say in the CETA negotiations.” For more on the Council of Canadians campaign to have municipal resolutions passed in opposition to CETA, please go to http://canadians.org/action/2012/CETA-resolution.html.