LRT inquiry report slams senior city staff and RTG, and a rise in daytime car thefts: Top five stories this week
The final report into Ottawa's light rail transit system concludes there was "egregious violations of the public trust', an Ottawa lawyer accused of sexual misconduct and a tire flies off a car on Hwy. 7.
CTVNewsOttawa.ca looks at the top five stories on our website this week.
The final report into Ottawa's light rail transit system concluded the construction and maintenance of the $2.1 billion project was plagued by persistent failures in leadership and saw "egregious violations of the public trust."
Justice William Hourigan's report found that both the city of Ottawa and Rideau Transit Group lost sight of the public interest during the project.
The commissioner's report lists several reasons for the problems with the LRT. He found that the city chose unproven technology for the trains, RTG didn't coordinate the work of its subcontractors, the city rushed the LRT system into service before it was ready due to political pressure, and RTG and its subcontractors did not provide adequate maintenance.
The report makes 103 recommendations to fix the problems with the Confederation Line and ensure the same mistakes aren't made on other large projects.
Mayor Mark Sutcliffe directed city staff to develop an action plan to implement the report's key recommendations.
In his response to the report, Premier Doug Ford said the project "stunk to high heaven" and that senior city of Ottawa officials did a "terrible job."
Ottawa's LRT train on Thursday. (Natalie van Rooy/CTV News Ottawa)
Steve Kanellakos stepped down as Ottawa's city manager two days before the public inquiry tabled the final report into Ottawa's light rail transit system.
In an email to council, Kanellakos said he informed Mayor Mark Sutcliffe that Monday would be his last day as city manager.
“I’m sure there will be speculation about the reasons for my departure at this time. This decision is mine and mine alone. No one asked me to leave. I’ve always deeply believed in leadership accountability. As City Manager, I am ultimately accountable for the performance of the organization. I have always deeply believed that my role is to have your backs and that it is my duty to accept ultimate responsibility for our performance,” he wrote.
Kanellakos said he did not know what the LRT report would say, "I do believe, based on the line of questioning and approach taken by the Commission, that the report will be critical of the City of Ottawa and City Staff."
Kanellakos was hired as city manager in 2016.
Council approved a motion from Sutcliffe to name City Treasurer Wendy Stephanson as interim city manager.
Ottawa city manager Steve Kanellakos. (City of Ottawa)
An Ottawa woman is accusing a well-known lawyer of sexual misconduct, saying he offered her legal services in exchange for sexual favours.
James Bowie, who became known on Twitter this year for chronicling the court appearances of various 'Freedom Convoy' organizers, is the subject of an official complaint to the Law Society of Ontario.
The complaint alleges Bowie sent the woman "unsolicited intimate images, attempted to convince her to do illegal drugs with him, propositioned her, and offered legal services for sexual favours."
"These predatory acts violate multiple rules of professional conduct and were deeply harmful and offensive," the complaint said. "Mr. Bowie was seeking to prey on a vulnerable client."
CTV News called, emailed and texted Bowie to ask about the allegations in the complaint. He has not responded. CTV News also called his lawyer and has not heard back.
Bowie tweeted Tuesday evening, "It's fake. Just you wait. You'll see. It's fake."
None of the allegations have been proven.
Ottawa lawyer James Bowie is the subject of a complaint to the Law Society of Ontario. (Facebook)
'Thieves are getting brazen': Ottawa police warn of spike in daytime vehicle thefts at malls, grocery stores
Ottawa police are warning of a new trend heading into the holiday season of vehicles being stolen from parking lots at shopping malls, grocery stores and recreation and sporting venues in broad daylight.
"Thieves are getting brazen," Staff Sgt. Cathy Brown said in a statement.
"You may have your mind on your seasonal shopping list, but thieves are taking advantage of unattended vehicles in parking lots to steal your car, SUV or truck."
A total of 1,160 vehicles have been reported stolen in Ottawa this year. Police tell CTV News Ottawa that 173 vehicles were reported stolen in November.
In a media release, police say there has been "a surge" of reported vehicle thefts from the parking lots of grocery stores, recreation and sporting venues and shopping malls during daylight hours.
An Ottawa Police vehicle is seen behind police tape. (CTV News Ottawa)
Police in eastern Ontario are reminding people to make sure their winter tires are retorqued, after at least one wheel flew off a car on the highway.
Police say they investigated a collision on Highway 7 that was caused by a failure to retorque winter tires.
"When wheels separate from vehicles, it can be deadly," OPP said on Twitter.
Police are reminding people to retorque their wheels about 100 kilometres after a tire change.
OPP say a crash on Highway 7 was caused by a failure to retorque winter tires. (OPP)
CTVNews.ca Top Stories
A family in the remote community of Peawanuck, Ont., is dealing not only with the death of their young daughter, but the loss of everything they owned in a Jan. 28 house fire.
The beginning of February is expected to bring Arctic-like temperatures across much of Eastern Canada, thanks to frigid air from the polar vortex. The cold snap will descend on Eastern Canada this week, with temperatures becoming seasonable again on Sunday. In between, much of Ontario, Quebec and Atlantic Canada can expect the coldest days yet this winter.
Parks Canada says visitors will be able to start booking reservations for camping and other activities at its sites across the country in March.
The federal government is playing a dangerous game by refusing to force any company that makes or uses toxic chemicals to have a plan in place to prevent them from getting into the environment, a lawyer for the Canadian Environmental Law Association said Monday.
Canada's financial intelligence agency is stepping up the fight against the illicit wildlife trade by taking aim at the criminals who reap big profits from the global racket.
Adding some milk to your morning coffee may boost the body's anti-inflammatory response, new research out of Denmark shows.
Cindy Williams, who was among the most recognizable stars in America in the 1970s and 80s for her role as Shirley opposite Penny Marshall's Laverne on the beloved sitcom 'Laverne & Shirley,' has died, her family said Monday.
A report commissioned by a non-profit organization founded by the late Jean Vanier says the Canadian sexually abused 25 women during his decades with the group.
A six-year-old girl died in hospital Sunday night after being involved in an incident at the Val-Saint-Côme ski resort in Lanaudiere. Quebec police are investigating, though details into the event are not yet known. Officers indicated that it involved a T-bar lift, but they were not able to say more.
Police departments in Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island say there are issues with 911 emergency calling Tuesday morning.
Frigid temperatures are expected to hit the Maritimes later this week as a wave of Arctic air moves into the region.
An inmate at the provincial jail in Cape Breton has died after he was found unconscious in his cell.
An Ontario woman said she was shocked when she had to pay for repairs after her car was struck from behind by a pick-up truck and the driver fled the scene of the collision.
A new report says Ontario job seekers are increasingly looking for work in other provinces, especially those looking for jobs in remote-friendly sectors like tech.
Traffic is a mess on the eastbound Highway 401 in Mississauga following a collision involving the drivers of a tractor trailer and three other vehicles.
The family of a Montreal man who died after he was seriously injured by jail guards while he was illegally detained is calling for surveillance video of the incident to be released publicly. 'It is our understanding that the footage has been reviewed – and is extremely disturbing. But that is more reason to release the video footage immediately,' said the CCLA's Akwasi Owusu-Bempah.
For its first real full session, the Coalition Avenir Quebec (CAQ) government will be able to test the effects of its supermajority in the national assembly on the smooth running of parliamentary business and the results it has promised the population. During this session, which opens on Tuesday and ends on June 9, there will be a lot of talk about improving the health and education networks, the labour shortage and inflation.
An IT transformation aimed at offering easy-to-use and secure online services at Quebec's auto insurance bureau (SAAQ) has been underway since last Thursday, and involves the suspension of several current services. The transformation will last until Feb. 20.
While Londoners have generally united behind The London Plan’s philosophy that the city must slow sprawl through intensification, delivering on that promise is fueling division.On Monday, a pair of higher-density developments became the latest test of council’s commitment to intensification.
A person has been charged following the death of a pedestrian in a crash last week. As previously reported by CTV News, a pedestrian was struck by a car near Hamilton Road and Watmar Avenue on Jan. 24.
One person has died after a house fire in London. Crews were called to the scene on Tremont Road near Trafalgar Street around 8:30 p.m. on Sunday.
'We don't turn anyone away': How organizations are helping Winnipeg's most vulnerable during cold snap
An extreme cold warning is in effect for Winnipeg, and as temperatures dip to dangerous levels, some shelters are at – or even over – capacity.
Winnipeg police are investigating the death of a 40-year-old Winnipeg man at a Main Street hotel as a homicide.
For anyone looking for a break from the frigid Manitoba cold, you may have to wait another few days.
Ontario Greens leader and MPP for Guelph, Mike Schreiner, said he is going to take time to "think about the arguments" following an open letter requesting him to run for the Ontario Liberal Party leadership.
The Region of Waterloo has lost a court bid for an injunction to evict residents of an encampment on municipally owned land at Victoria Street North and Weber Street West in Kitchener.
Though Bobby Hull will forever be remembered for the excitement he generated on the ice, the late hockey star also had a local connection, launching his junior hockey career in Waterloo region.
A new political poll crafted by ThinkHQ Public Affairs says if an election were held in Alberta today, voters would be split on who should form the next government.
It happened at a show home owned by Jayman at 68th Street and Corner Meadows Way N.E. just before 6 p.m. on Monday.
A new committee to be officially created next month will hope to push a proposal for a new fieldhouse in Calgary across the finish line.
Saskatoon police are investigating a suspicious death in the city's Mayfair neighbourhood.
A man accused of murder said he has been behind bars at the Saskatoon Correctional Centre for the last 1,310 days and is only allowed out three hours each day.
The Rosthern Wheatkings senior men’s team was so desperate for players for its game on Saturday it put out a tweet calling for them.
The Mindbender roller coaster at Galaxyland has been shut down, West Edmonton Mall announced on Monday. The redevelopment of the area is already underway, and the roller coaster is being decommissioned and removed.
Epcor responded to a transmission main break downtown Monday evening that has caused some localized flooding.
A 20-year-old man has been arrested and charged after police say he caused more than $5,000 worth of damage to an Edmonton Transit Bus and threatened a female passenger, acts that drew condemnation from Alberta's premier.
As the B.C. government decriminalizes small amounts of hard drugs, critics note there are still not enough treatment resources for the users seeking them.
A cyclist in Chilliwack is frustrated with ICBC’s decision to find her 50 per cent at fault after a car allegedly drove over her bike in a road rage incident.
A crow that made the Vancouver International Airport its home for weeks has been released into the wild.
More than 100 Evraz employees will be laid off from Regina's steel mill in February, according to the company.
Regina resident Kenneth Dorsch had the surprise of a lifetime when he discovered he won big in December of 2022.
The Maidstone RCMP are looking for a suspect following the alleged sexual assault of a 10-year-old girl in the dressing room at the Lashburn Sportsplex on Sunday afternoon.