National News Eastern and Central Canada blasted by winter storm; More Canadians cutting it close at the end of the month SHARE ON: Casey Kenny, staff Monday, Jan. 21st, 2019 Winter storm hits much of Eastern and Central Canada After a mild start to the season, a powerful winter storm has brought heavy rain and snow to much of Eastern and Central Canada. It closed schools, flooded streets, knocked out power and forced school buses to stay off the roads. In Saint John, New Brunswick some streets were knee-deep in water from heavy rain that followed hours of snow and ice pellets. Poll finds growing number of Canadians cut it close at the end of the month A poll is suggesting that by the end of the month, 46 per cent of Canadians are $200 or less away from financial insolvency. That’s up from 40 percent from the poll that insolvency firm MNP conducted in September. MNP says many Canadians have so little wiggle room that any rise in living costs or interest payments can tip them over the edge and the survey also finds 51 percent of Canadians are feeling the pinch of interest rate increases. Canada not just looking at China to build wireless network Despite threats of repercussions if Ottawa bars Chinese telecom giant Huawei from bidding, Public Safety Minister Ralph Goodale says that isn’t the only company that can build the next-generation wireless network. The threat last week by China’s ambassador to Canada followed the RCMP’s arrest last month of a top Huawei executive at the request of the United States. Goodale says the government is continuing to reviewing security and technical issues surrounding Huawei’s potential involvement in new 5-G networks. Ottawa taking new approach to Indigenous education Starting in April, the federal government is going to take a new approach to funding elementary and secondary education for Indigenous students. The government says the changes will mean more predictable money for First Nations schools and make their budgets comparable to those of public schools run by the provinces. Ottawa is expected to spend 1.89-billion dollars on First Nations elementary and secondary education in 2018-19. Two men charged in Ivory Coast with attempting to blackmail MP Police in Ivory Coast have charged two men for attempting to blackmail MP Tony Clement into paying them 50-thousand euros. Investigators say the men posed as a woman online and demanded money after Clement shared sexually explicit images with them. Clement asked the RCMP to investigate last November, saying he believed he had sent the images to a “consenting female” and he was soon ejected from the Tory caucus after admitting he had inappropriate online relationships with more than one woman.