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Monday, January 11, 2010

Man Faces Charges for Killing Ducks

Charges are pending against a 45-year-old man responsible for killing ducks at Rockwood Park.

The man was driving around the duck pond this afternoon and hit some ducks with his vehicle and killed two of them.
City Police are working with the Department of Natural Resources on the matter.
The charges will be filed under the Wildlife Act.

Sick Baby in Halifax

A 23-month-old girl is in critical condition at the IWK Health Centre in Halifax after ingesting methadone. It was on Friday of last week when paramedics were called to a home in Havelock. At some point during the previous 24 hours, the baby girl had ingested methadone.

RCMP is investigating to figure out exactly what happened. Two people were arrested and later released and no charges have been laid.

Alward Comments on Delayed Report

(Conservative Leader David

Conservative Leader David Alward says he isn't shocked that a report on the proposed sale of N-B Power to Hydro-Quebec isn't ready. An independent advisory panel tasked with providing advice says it needs more time to understand the complex deal. Alward says we have a committee that is very much sitting behind closed doors and isn't hearing from everyone in the Province which is nothing short of a disappointment.

Alward is calling for an all party committee of the Legislature that is hearing from all sides of the argument. Chairman David Ganong says it will likely be the end of the month before the panel releases its report.

Premier Graham Ready to Back up Provincial Airports

(Premier Graham Speaking Recently in Saint John)

If provincial airports require the new security scanners, than the Premier is willing to fight for them. Shawn Graham says the importance of trade to the United States is important, and is willing to go to bat for airports if the scanners are needed to stay competitive.

President of the Saint John Airport Bernie LeBlanc says it's a necessary tool to provide safe flights, and since security at the airport is regulated by Ottawa it will mean they supply the staff to operate it. The only airport in the region expected to get a scanner is Moncton.

More Power at Kent Hills Site

(Energy Minister Jack Keir)

The company building wind farms around the Province, TransAlta, has been awarded a 25-year power-purchase agreement to expand the Kent Hills site by 54 megawatts. Under the agreement, it will expand its existing 96 MW facility which began operation in December of 08. Today's announcement follows an NB Power request for proposals last June for the purchase of up to 100 MW of wind energy generation.

TransAlta expects construction to start early this year and for the facility to be in service by the end of the year. 18 turbines will provide up to 160,000 MW hours of electricity every year. That is enough power for about 9,000 homes.

Education Council Set to Meet and Hear From the Public

If you have a child or children attending a school in District Eight you will be interested in this. The District Education Council has scheduled five Town Hall style meetings over the next three months to get your feedback on any and all topics. Rob Fowler is Chair and tells CHSJ News, they will take a few days to go over all the info collected after the final meeting on March.25th.

The first of the five meetings is scheduled to go on Thursday at River Valley Middle School starting at seven o'clock.

Q-Plex Has It's First Manager

A coast to coast search by the Town of Quispamsis has found a new manager for it's Q-Plex. Brad Steel has been hired to manage the facility which is still under construction. Steel has an extensive background in the sports and recreation sector. He has managed a variety of mid to large scale sports and recreation centers in British Columbia and Ontario.

In his new role, Steel will be primarily responsible for overseeing the planning, operations and maintenance of the Q-Plex and Memorial Arena. The ribbon cutting for the Q-Plex is on target for late this summer.

Vandalism on the Peninsula

Hampton RCMP are on the look-out for someone who did some damage on the Kingston Peninsula over the weekend. Officers were called to a community mailbox on Hill Road yesterday to find several of the doors had been damaged.

The good news is no mail was stolen.

Big Cash for Mount Allison University

Students at Mount Allison University received good news today with Ottawa providing over $750,000 for upgrades at it's recreational facilities. Specifically, the project involves refurbishing the tennis courts, repairing the lighting system at the athletic field, improving the track, pool and change areas at the athletic centre.

No word on when construction will get started but has to be finished under terms of the deal by March.31st of next year.

Radio Station Renovations Continue

It's week two of our renovations at the radio stations here on King Street. Most of the walls are now in place and the electrical work continues. Both of the studios are taking shape as is the new look news-room and reception area. This is phase one of the two phase project with work expected to be finished by next month.

If you want to get a look at how things are coming along, just go to our website at

Radio Renovations Part Two

Bike and Trails system for South End

The first of four open houses this week goes tonight in the South End. City Officials are looking for your feedback as they continue to map out a bikeways and trails plan for the area. There will be a formal presentation to get the meetings started to show some of the ideas they have been kicking around down at City Hall with a consultant. Tonight's meeting gets started at seven at the South End Community Center.

Postal Rates Increase

If you're heading to the Post Office to mail a letter today, remember to pack a little extra cash. Canada Post are increasing the cost of sending a first class letter within the country to 57 cents from 54, while letters going to the US will cost a dollar, which is an increase of two cents. Letters heading outside North America will rise by five cents to $1.70. Canada Post is attributing the rate increases as a measure to raise funds to buy new machinery.

More Debate on City Budget

After having the weekend to review and make notes, Common Council is reconvening tonight to go over the proposed 2010 operating budget. Last week, acting city manager Pat Woods presented the Mayor and Council with the preliminary numbers and says the top priority when drafting the budget was keeping the tax rate stable. The tax rate is neither increasing or decreasing at the rate of nearly $1.79.
The budget is sure to spark more debate at tonight's meeting getting underway at 6 o'clock in the council chambers.

New Medical School on Schedule

The new medical school at the UNB Saint John Campus is on schedule for it's September opening. Dr. John Steeves is the Associate Dean and tells CHSJ News, the first admissions interviews have taken place with a second round planned for next month in Halifax. Dr. Steeves is confident the medical program will generate plenty of interest in some of the graduating students wanting to stay and set up shop somewhere in the Province. He doesn't expect any difficulty in filling the 30 available seats.

Snowmobiling Fatality

A 16 year old boy is dead after a snowmobile accident over the weekend in Williamstown, between Miramichi and Bathurst. The RCMP say Devon O'Donnell died after his snowmobile crashed into a wire fence. His father was seriously injured but is expected to recover.

More Debate on Canadian Blood Services in Saint John

The debate over the future of Canadian Blood Services in Saint John resumes on the 21st. CBS officials are sitting down with the members of the Saint John Medical Society to discuss their decision to move the distribution center to Nova Scotia. Health Minister Mary Schryer says her support is behind the doctors.
The last comment we heard from Premier Graham on this issue was that the Province was exploring getting into the blood businesse on it's own if Canada Blood Services was firm in it's stance to re-locate to Dartmouth.

Lung Cancer in Saint John

The amount of carcinogens released into the atmosphere in Saint John is ten thousand times higher than releases in Fredericton and Moncton. So claims Inka Milewski, the science advisor and Director of Health Watch for the Conservation Council in a report on lung cancer. She tells CHSJ News more men in Saint John are susceptible by virtue of their jobs and the amount of carcinogens released into the air have risen since 1995.
Milewski says the greater Saint John Community Foundation's Vital Signs report did not contain this information from her second report.

Premier Threatens Legal Action Over Lepreau

Premier Shawn Graham is threatening to take the federal government to court over the refurbishment of the Point Lepreau nuclear power plant. The Premier says his government will sue Atomic Energy of Canada Limited, unless Ottawa picks up the tab for the cost overruns of the 1.4-(b)-billion-dollar overhaul.
The refurbishment of the Point Lepreau nuclear power plant was supposed to be finished last September. The project is now 18 months behind schedule.