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Alberta adds more than 1K new cases for 6th straight day

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The provinces reproduction number, the average number of people someone with COVID-19 will infect, indicates daily case counts are unlikely to fall in the immediate future.
The province's R-value remained above one across all four regions it's measured for a fourth straight week, including a 1.12 provincewide value.
Hospitalizations due to COVID-19 grew to 390 on Monday, including 90 patients in intensive care units. 
Alberta registered a 9.05 per cent test positivity based on just over 12,000 tests. 
As of the end of Sunday, Alberta had administered 864,941 doses of vaccines, including 177,560 second doses.

Downtown Dining Week a 'critical time' to support local: association

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EDMONTON --
Downtown Dining Week in Edmonton is still a go. It kicks off on Tuesday and will run until April 25.
More than 45 restaurants are offering “crave-worthy” multi-course menus for takeout and patio-friendly dining. 
Each restaurant will feature a price-fixed menu ranging anywhere from $20 to $65 for lunch, brunch and dinner, according to the Downtown Business Association (DBA).
The “Keep your Cravings Local” campaign is aimed at supporting local business and independently owned restaurants in the city.
Several downtown patios have opened early this season on the heels of new restrictions. According to the association, 26 participating restaurants will offer al fresco dining from sidewalk tables to parking-space patios.

Edmonton Folk Fest cancels 2021 festival with 'variants and vaccine rollout still uncertain'

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EDMONTON --
The Edmonton Folk Music Festival cancelled its 2021 festival at Gallagher Park for the second year in a row.
Set to take place in August, Edmonton Folk Fest cancelled the event on Monday citing safety concerns with the ongoing pandemic.
"With so many variables at play, the complexity of planning and delivering a festival of this size makes it impossible to move forward in our usual manner," a release read. "Without full vaccination, we won’t be fully safe from the spread of the virus. With virus variants and vaccine rollout still uncertain, the impossibility of social distancing at our event could lead to community spread."

Alberta legislature speaker apologizes for signing letter opposing COVID-19 restrictions

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Alberta's legislature speaker apologized on Monday after he and 16 MLAs denounced the province's latest COVID-19 restrictions last week.

Dog rescue caught on camera prompts ice warning from firefighters

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Another dog was rescued from the North Saskatchewan River in Edmonton over the weekend.

Oilers acquire D Dmitry Kulikov from Devils

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The Edmonton Oilers acquired defenseman Dmitry Kulikov from the New Jersey Devils on Monday in exchange for a conditional fourth-round pick in the 2022 NHL Draft.

Transit bump could 'decrease ridership': Free Transit Edmonton

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EDMONTON --
More than 1,400 Edmontonians signed a petition calling for a freeze on transit fares as the cost is expected to rise.
The planned bump would see fares go from $3.50 to $3.75.
On Monday, Free Transit Edmonton an organization that believes in a fare free transit system, presented their petition to city council before they met with Edmonton Transit Service to discuss the change.
Paige Gorsak an organizer with Free Transit Edmonton, said while the 25 cent increase doesn’t seem like much, it could mean the difference of some individuals finding other modes of transportation.
“We’re seeing our bus fare go up to being one of the highest in the country,” Gorsak said. “Above Vancouver, above Toronto, above Montreal for a system that I don’t know would compare if we were looking at services offered.”

O'Chiese First Nation calls on ASIRT to complete 'unbiased' investigation into death of community member following RCMP confrontation

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The O’Chiese First Nation is calling on the Alberta Serious Incident Response Team (ASIRT) to investigate a police confrontation resulting in the death of a 24-year-old community member with “objectively” and “without favoritism.”

Mandatory vaccinations in Alberta no more under new UCP proposed legislation

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Bill 66 would repeal sections of the controversial Bill 10 that allowed cabinet to make changes without the approval of the legislature while also removing legislation to make vaccines mandatory.

Edmonton fire chief pleads for firefighter's inclusion in vaccine rollout

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Edmonton’s fire chief is asking the province to allow firefighter’s access to the COVID-19 vaccine as a growing number of them contract COVID-19 and overtime costs soar to $1 million.

Crown and Anchor Pub & Grill in north Edmonton given closure order by AHS

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EDMONTON --
A local restaurant tried to keep its indoor dining open to the public despite current public health restrictions.
Under current restrictions, only patio service and take-out are permitted because of rising COVID-19 cases. Indoor dining was to end Friday at noon.
Terry and Theresa Shaw, owners of The Crown and Anchor Pub & Grill in Edmonton said in an interview with CTV News Edmonton on Saturday, that they will remain open for indoor dining.
They say it’s a matter of keeping the doors open to survive or going out of business.
“We are doing this because our staff cannot do another lockdown,” Theresa said. “They have just used all their money and savings and everything on the first two lockdowns. They cannot go for another lockdown.”

Getting an early start to patio season with indoor dining shut down

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EDMONTON --
Edmonton restaurants have started to set up patios earlier than usual, in an effort to stay in business after in-person dining was shut down again.
“The tables were frozen, the chairs were (frozen) at 8 a.m. this morning,” said Vik Mahajan with the River Cree Resort and Casino
This is the first year setting up a patio for the River Cree Resort and Casino, one of many doing so as the third wave of COVID-19 hits the province.
“We decided, let’s do an outdoor patio, it was a spur of moment decision,” said Mahajan. “There’s been a lot who have been laid off, so at least this gives an opportunity to some people to stay on and keep working.”

2 hospitalized in separate Sunday shootings: police

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EDMONTON --
Police are investigating two shootings that happened in south Edmonton on Sunday and which saw two people hospitalized.
Around 2 a.m., gunshots were reported in the Windermere area. Investigators said one male was taken to hospital but was being uncooperative.
His age and condition were not released.
The second shooting happened three-and-a-half hours later near Gateway Boulevard and Whitemud Drive. A 29-year-old man was found hurt in the area and taken to hospital. His injuries were described as non-life threatening. ​ 
The shootings were the third and fourth in the city that week. 
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Bernier among demonstrators calling for Alberta to end COVID-19 public health restrictions

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The crowd  appeared to reach between 300 and 400 about a half hour after the rally began at noon. 
Alberta's public health restrictions have not included more forceful measures like the curfew currently in effect in Quebec or the stay-at-home order issued in Ontario.
Earlier Monday, Bernier deleted a tweet promoting the rally that included an image of the legislature building he used without permission. The photographer pointed out he took the photo during Greta Thunberg's visit to the legislature building in October of 2019.
The PPC ran 315 candidates and received more than 294,000 votes across the country in the 2019 federal election, but failed to win election in any riding.

'100 per cent preventable' fire from smoking materials caused $6M in damage: officials

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A massive fire that caused the collapse of a 31-suite apartment building in northwest Edmonton caused $6 million in damages, investigators say.

Pandemic causing more dental issues, including 'mask mouth': U of A study

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COVID-19 pandemic stress cited as cause in rising dental issues.

Proposed river footbridge would join Edmonton, Strathcona County

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A footbridge that would connect Edmonton and Strathcona County is being proposed to improve access and connectivity towards a multi-use trail system.

Dmitry Kulikov


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April snowfall causes collisions, poor road conditions in Edmonton

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EDMONTON --
Spring snowfall was behind a number of crashes in Edmonton and the surrounding area Saturday.
The lack of visibility, blowing snow and slick roads were blamed for a semi-involved collision on Yellowhead Trail and 149 Street.
Stay safe on the roads if you're heading home. If not, stay home. Whitemud was a mess and at a crawl on Quesnell. #yegtraffic#yegwxpic.twitter.com/n9sGiimpe6
— Lincoln Ho | Yegventures (@yegventures) April 11, 2021
Conditions on Whitemud Drive were also less than ideal, several Edmontonians sharing images of traffic disruptions and vehicles in the ditch.
Bus has slid and is blocking lanes on EB Whitemud Dr just after Fox Dr turnoff. Left lane looks like it’s getting through. Stay off the roads if you can, #yeg. #yegtraffic#yegwxpic.twitter.com/khFf9rjHz0

Friends and family remember Colby Cave

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Cave died April 11, 2020 of a brain bleed at the age of 25.
The virtual ceremony was held at Rogers Place, participants from all over the world took part in it.
“He was one of the most incredible human beings I have ever met,” said Oilers player Patrick Russell. “There isn’t a day that goes by that we don’t remember Colby, or feel his presence in the locker room.”
Instead of flowers, Cave’s family asked for donations to be made to the Colby Cave Memorial Fund. The fund helps cover the costs of community programs with an emphasis on mental health.

P.1 COVID-19 outbreak confirmed in PTW Canada offices in central Alta.

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EDMONTON --
PTW Canada has confirmed three of its employees have been infected with the P.1 variant of COVID-19.
The company said the cases were at their Drayton Valley, Edson and Hinton offices.
“Our immediate priority upon becoming aware of any employee symptoms is to ensure they get tested, isolate and follow all AHS protocols,” said PTW Canada in a news release.
The company also said it has hired a third party to carry out a “comprehensive review” of its safety protocols.
“We are working closely with AHS and Alberta Occupational Health and Safety to ensure we are enacting a consolidated effort to monitor, communicate and manage the situation,” the company added.

Committee in charge of public health restrictions in Alberta to meet tomorrow

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EDMONTON --
The provincial government committee responsible for determining public health restrictions will meet Tuesday.
The Emergency Management Cabinet Committee will decide on whether to implement new restrictions as the number of COVID-19 cases and variants of concern continue to rise in Alberta. The Ministry of Health confirmed those details to CTV News on Monday.
Dr. Deena Hinshaw, Alberta’s Chief Medical Officer of Health, is scheduled to deliver a full update to the province on Tuesday after limited online updates through the Easter long weekend.
Variant cases now represent nearly 40 per cent of Alberta's 10,582 active cases following the province's Easter Monday update, an increase from 27.2 per cent on March 29.

Edmonton salon-turned-nightclub owners at the centre of weekend firearm dispute at Summerside Beach Club

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EDMONTON --
An Edmonton family believe they have been targeted after hosting COVID-19 parties that defied public health restrictions.
After Edmonton police raided a nightclub-style party at Khrome Beauty Lounge, one co-owner apologized for the gathering.
“We take full responsibility,” Ahmad Imran said in an interview with CTV News Edmonton. “My wife and I are very ashamed for what happened.”
Now, it appears that Imran may have been beaten in a fight that saw a gun fired at the Summerside Beach Club Friday afternoon.
Imran’s wife told CTV News Edmonton that the confrontation was connected to their business.
Faroda Hussaini said that this is not the first time that she and her husband have been targeted.

Policing is not the proper response to person-in-need calls: BLM Edmonton

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Additionally, the report suggested freezing the overall police budget.
Belen Samuel, an organizer and member of Black Lives Matter (BLM) Edmonton, said in an interview with CTV News Edmonton that divesting 32 per cent of the EPS budget to supports that are more adequately equipped to properly respond to person-in-need calls is the better action than simply freezing the EPS’ budget.
“Policing is not the solution to these issues and concerns of mental health, trauma, and housing concerns.
Getting police involved right away in crisis calls like these is harmful Samuel said, who has worked at Youth Empowerment and Support Services in the past.

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