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Friday, March 20, 2009

RCMP Seize Contraband Cigarettes



RCMP have seized 300,000 contraband cigarettes from a van traveling east on the Trans Canada Highway, near Saint Leonard. Mounties says the haul is worth about $33,000. The driver was arrested and released pending a court appearance at a later date. The cigarettes were believed to be destined for the north west area of the province.

Refinery Could Open Door for More Polluters



The Clean Air Coalition says approving a second refinery for East Saint John will open the door for other major polluters. Spokesperson, Gordon Dalzell tells CHSJ news if the Eider Rock refinery goes ahead, it will only be a matter of time before petro-chemical and plastics plants make their way to the city.

Coalition Member Gary Prosser says there is another problem to consider. He says industry belongs in industrial parks in order to make the city more people friendly--but--in Saint John industry is built anywhere.


Problem Tank Being Drained



Irving Oil says it will be early next week before there is an indication about what is causing a problem in one of the giant holding tanks at the refinery.
Nearby residents started complaining about a gasoline odor in the area Wednesday night -- refinery crews found gas pooling on the floating roof the tank.
Irving spokesperson Jennifer Parker tells us when crews finish draining the tank -- they will get inside to see why the gas was pooling on the top -- meantime -- foam is being sprayed to keep the odor down.

Sustainability Network Launched



The province has teamed up with Saint John to launch a Sustainability Network today. The goal is to work with government and business to encourage growth while protecting the environment. The Saint John Board of Trade has announced it will partner with the network to promote the efficient use of resources among its members.

The city has retained Dillon Consulting Limited, a national consulting firm with operations in Saint John and throughout Atlantic Canada, to coordinate Sustainable Saint John. Kim Hughes with the Department of Environment says Sustainability is not an end goal it's a way of operating.


Got Rythm? Check This Out



Are you ready to bust a move? So You Think You Can Dance Canada is coming to Saint John. Auditions for the dance tour will be held at the Imperial Theatre April 21st beginning at 8AM. CTV has confirmed today that the charismatic cast from Season 1 will return, including host Leah Miller.

Cops Cracking Down On Overnight Parking



Something to think about as we count down to the end of the month -- city police will be cracking down on people parking in no parking zones overnight in the uptown.
Police tell us they've received a number of complaints about vehicles being left in the "no parking midnight to 7" zones.
So beginning at midnight March 30th - police will be enforcing a zero tolerance policy and ticketing any vehicles parked in the no parking zones.

Battle Begins To Save Belleisle Ferry




(Belleilse Bay Ferry - photo courtesy DOT)

Rural residents faced with losing their ferry service are gathering for a meeting at Belleisle Regional High School tonight.
The Graham government announced in its provincial budget the Gagetown and Belleisle ferry runs will end later this month while the Hampstead Ferry will not operate in May.
Meeting organizer Linda Watson tells CHSJ News, she hopes they can come up with concrete ways to persuade the government to keep the ferries.
The meeting gets started tonight at 7pm in Belleisle.

Medical Research Up For Discussion



A full house is on hand at the Regional Hospital for it's Inter-professional Health Research Day.
Dr. John Steeves is the Director of Medical Education and tells CHSJ News a lot of medical research is underway between the hospital - UNBSJ - and - the Community College.
Steeves says the day long conference is really a chance to get familiar with all of the research underway in this part of the province and look for ways of better coordinating the efforts.

City Police Have a New Deputy Police Chief



One of Saint John's finest is being promoted to Deputy Chief of Police. Inspector Darryl Scribner with Major Crime is taking the position and tells CHSJ News, he's got some big shoes to fill taking the post formerly held by Police Chief Bill Reid. Scribner says he looks forward to the challenges the new position will have.

Scribner reports to his new job Monday morning.

City Police Issue a Challenge to Mcleans Magazine



City Police Chief Bill Reid is issuing a challenge to Maclean's magazine to do a follow up story on the city's Family Protection Unit. Earlier this month, the magazine named Saint John the most dangerous city in Canada with respect to sexual assaults. Reid says that is not the case and the numbers show the amount of sexual assaults reported.

Reid says his office sent the request Wednesday and expects a response, but isn't sure if the story will be done. Reid says no one is hiding behind bushes in the city, and this is a story that needs to be told.

Clean Air Coalition Standing Up Against Proposed Refinery



The Clean Air Coalition is getting its act together to make sure the proposed Eider Rock refinery is not rail-roaded through the public review process. An Environmental Impact Assessment of the massive project is expected to be released within weeks. Coalition Spokesperson Gordon Dalzell tells CHSJ News, they want the public to have their say about the refinery while they have the chance.

The Coalition wants to be ready with reasons why the refinery should not go ahead and recommendations on how to lessen its impact if it does. There will be no public hearings for the project, just a meeting and a short window of opportunity for the public to submit written comments. Dalzell says if the refinery is approved, the air pollution on the East Side will double.

Tank Problems At The Irving Refinery



Champlain Heights School got a visit from air quality inspectors yesterday afternoon when a gasoline leak at the Irving Oil Refinery caused a strong chemical smell in the area. The odor was first noticed Wednesday night and was apparently caused by a broken seal on the floating roof of the "G" tank which holds gasoline. The gasoline floated into the roof and pooled there.

Heavy equipment could be seen working around the base of the large tank yesterday as a precautionary measure in case the gas spilled over the edge onto the ground below. Gordon Dalzell with the Clean Air Coalition says he was told by Irving Oil officials the broken seal would take up to 2 days to fix.

Fire and Car Accident Last Night



A fire and car accident kept Kennebecasis Valley and City Police emergency crews busy last night. First call came just before 7:30pm about a fire at 474 Bradley Lake Road. When crews arrived, they found flames and smoke coming from a mobile home but quick action saved the trailer from being destroyed. No word on how the fire started. Then just after eleven o'clock, city fire and police were called to Lancaster Avenue near the Hillcrest Cemetery for a single vehicle accident.

A car tried to pass a City Transit Bus, hit a patch of ice, last control of the vehicle and smashed into a utility pole. The driver is going to be alright but the vehicle is a write-off. With the quick dip in the temperature last night, officer's remind everyone to slow down for the ride into the office this morning.