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Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Get Ready For Double And Triple Cruise Ship Days

The Port City is a busy spot with two cruise ships in town and another double-day on Friday.

While September has been busy, October is even busier with six days featuring at least two cruise ships in port and two triple-ship days on the 5th and 25th.

Police Seek Help Finding Uptown Robbers

 City police looking for a man and a woman for robbing a man walking on Charlotte Street Sunday morning and for trying to rob a cabbie nearby.

Just before 4am Sunday,  a man was robbed while walking on Charlotte Street between Princess and Duke Street.
About forty minutes later, the pair attempted to rob a taxi driver near St James and Wentworth Streets.

The Major Crime Unit believes the robbery and attempted robbery were committed by the same man and woman.

The man is about 35 years old, 5 foot 10, 200 pounds with shaggy shoulder length blonde hair and a pot belly wearing beige shorts and a dark jacket.
The woman is about 5 foot 4, shoulder length dirty blonde or light brown hair pulled back, pale complexion with moles or acne and wearing dark clothing.

If you have any info contact police at  648-3333 or Crimestoppers at 1-800-222-8477(TIPS).

The Deer Dilemma Is The Focus Of A Valley Meeting

Those dastardly deer eating cedar hedges in Hampton and tulip tops in Rothesay are the subject of a public meeting in Quispamsis.
The regional deer committee which includes representation of those towns along with the Departments of Natural Resources and Health.
DNR Deer Biologist Rod Cumberland tells CHSJ news others towns with deer problems have allowed specialized hunts using crossbows.

He says in Maine they have hired sharpshooters but that also comes with pros and cons.
Cumberland says the meeting will include an update on lyme disease from the Department of Health.
The meeting runs 7-9 pm tomorrow night at K.V. High.

New Report On What Poverty Costs The Province

Poverty costs New Brunswickers 2 billion dollars a year according to new report released by the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives.

Co-author Christine Saulnier tells CHSJ News poverty costs the provincial government half a billion dollars yearly but a comprehensive plan to alleviate poverty would be half that. She says that 500 million dollar figure does not include what's paid out in income assistance.

Saulnier claims poverty costs the province 196 million dollars a year in health care costs alone. She also includes the cost of lost potential in the calculations.

International Sculpture Symposium Heading To Saint John

An international sculpture symposium is heading to the waterfront next year.

6 artists from around the world will be chosen to sculpt a piece of art from a 10-ton piece of granite over the course of six weeks.

Diana Alexander is the Chair of Sculpture Saint John.  She tells CHSJ News the public event will bring awareness and appreciation of a dying art to the city.

Once the sculptures are completed, five of them will be transported to Grand Bay-Westfield, Quispamsis, Rothesay, St. George, and UNB Saint John while one will remain on the waterfront.

The event will take place from August 2nd to September 15th in 2012 at the Coast Guard site.

For more information, click here.

New Municipal Plan Getting Closer To Completion

The process to formally adopt the city's new Municipal Plan is getting closer to becoming reality.

Council receiving the fourth and final public engagement report during last night's council meeting.

PlanSJ's Jacqueline Hamilton says the next step is a public presentation set for October 11th.

That will then commence a 30 day public review period and public hearings in November and December.

The final adoption of the plan is expected to take place in early 2012.

Deputy Mayor Says Unions Will Need To Dig Deeper To Help Solve Pension Problems

Deputy Mayor Stephen Chase says further talks are needed between the city and union representatives over solving the pension woes.

Chase says he can understand everyone's frustration as reforms were made in good faith but the reality is the province did not accept the initial reform package.  He says everyone will need to "dig deeper."

The Saint John Police Association says its members will not take any more cuts.

Council Prepares For Doomsday Scenario With Pension Reforms

Councillor Chris Titus says a worst-case scenario needs to be prepared sooner rather than later for the city's budget in case the province falls through on approving pension reforms.

Titus making the motion during last night's council meeting and he says a budget should be formed that factors in as much as 10 million dollars in cuts to major city services like police, fire, and recreation.

He says its not a scare tactic but council needs to be ready

The motion was passed and council stated it would not raise property taxes, which would shoot up as much as 16 cents, to pay for the pension shortfall.