International News Desk – At Home: Judges lose out on 18 per cent pay hike – In Foreign News: 72-year-old former sprinter gives teen thief a run for her money

International News Desk – At Home: Judges lose out on 18 per cent pay hike – In Foreign News: 72-year-old former sprinter gives teen thief a run for her money

At Home: Judges lose out on 18 per cent pay hike

When it comes to a hefty pay hike, It’s case closed for Canada’s 1,000 federally appointed judges: a proposed 18 per cent raise has been turned down.

The decision was announced by Justice Minister Rob Nicholson, and it means that federal judges will not see the base pay of $260,000 rise to $307,000 by 2011.

The increase would, in part, have been the result of recommendations by the Judicial Compensation and Benefits Commission, an arm?s-length body that called for salaries to be raised to $264,300 followed by two per cent increases each year up to 2011. The raise would have been retroactive to April 2008.

In addition to those amounts, cost-of-living increases would have seen judges? salaries rise to approximately $304,000.

But as the Toronto Star reports, judges have been told that the economic downturn will mean salary restraints for all public employees. As Nicholson told reporters, the 18 per cent pay hike would have been ?unreasonable? in the face of current financial woes around the globe.

If judicial raises are kept in line with those of other public service workers, it would mean a 1.5 per cent increase for each of the next three years.

The decision marks the second time that the federal Conservatives have rebuffed the commission’s recommendations. In 2006, the Liberal government had supported a 10.5 per cent judicial pay raise, but when the Conservatives took office the amount was reduced to 7.25 per cent.

In Foreign News: 72-year-old former sprinter gives teen thief a run for her money

It’s been a long time since 72-year-old Jean Hirst earned the title of All England Schools championship sprinter, but she still managed to give a teenage thief a run for her money.

When Hirst stopped her car to ask directions of three teenage girls, they insisted on getting in the car to show her the way. Hirst obliged, but soon realized that one of the trio was trying to escape with her purse.

As The Telegraph reports, the would-be thief made a run for it and Hirst reacted quickly: ?Suddenly I felt 18 again. The adrenaline just kicked in and I seemed to turn back the years,? she said.

The teenager had a head start, but as Hirst told reporters, ?I covered 70 yards in about 15 seconds and was within two strides of her when she looked over her shoulder and saw me.?

As Hirst continued to close the gap, the teenager threw the purse away and the 72-year-old widow was able to retrieve her property.

At the age of 17, Hirst was the Nottinghamshire County Schools 100 yards champion. She also qualified for the final of All England Schools Championship in Northumberland.

The only ill effects from the unplanned dash were a few aches and pains, and as Hirst told reporters, ?My daughter turned to me and said it was because I didn’t warm up properly.?

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