Linked Header

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Residents Support South End Grocery Store Proposal



grocery store meet.jpg

Residents at St John the Baptist-King Edward School for Grocery Co-Op Meeting.

Photo Taken By: Diane Henry

The South End community is showing keen interest in having a grocery store in the neighbourhood. The gymnasium at St John the Baptist-King Edward school was packed for Wednesday night's public meeting on Co-Op Atlantic's proposal. Resident Veronica Campbell tells CHSJ News with new condos being built on the waterfront and major industrial and energy projects planned for Saint John--a grocery store will help the neighbourhood grow.

Director of Retail Relations with Co-op Atlantic, Norma Babineau, tells CHSJ News now that they know the community is interested they will set up a steering committee and begin a viability study. They will later determine the size and location of the store. There hasn't been a grocery store in the South End since the Save Easy closed in the 90's.

City Councilors Support Grocery Store Idea



Ward councilors for the South End, Karl Killen and Donnie Snook, both agree a grocery store would be best placed in the deep South End. Killen tells CHSJ news he considers it a viable business opportunity.

There are about five thousand people living in the South End of Saint John. Snook says there is a great deal of momentum for the project and is hopeful it becomes reality.


Artist To Pitch His Paintings



jackson 1(1).jpg

(Jackson with his Obama painting - file photo)

Saint John artist Norm Jackson has made the cut -- he's off to Toronto next month to be part of the CBC tv program Dragons' Den where budding entrepreneurs pitch their ideas to potential investors.
Jackson tells CHSJ News he was a last minute entry for local auditions held in the city earlier this year.
He's hoping to market his paintings of historical events like the Obama inauguration -- and -- the moon landing.
Jackson says he thinks they lend themselves to things like calendars and commerative plates -- he leaves for Toronto next month.

Saint John MP Meets with Canadian Blood Services



Saint John MP Rodney Weston has met with officials at Canadian Blood Services to discuss the planned closure of Saint John's distribution centre. Weston says there were no consultations with medical professionals in the area before the decision was made--and-- he will not back away from having that decision reversed.

Chief Operating Officer with Canadian Blood Services, Ian Mumford, says a decision in 2002 to close the centre was not reversed. Weston says Mumford told him they simply decided not to proceed with the closure at that time.

Murphy Says He Will Ensure Safety Of Residents




(Health Minister Mike Murphy - file photo)

Health Minister Mike Murphy is drawing a line in the sand -- he won't tolerate the Emergency Room at the Regional Hospital being shut down because doctors are refusing to work overtime.
Murphy tells CHSJ News he wants the Region "B" Health Authority to resolve some outstanding internal issues with the ER doctors -- he says funding is in place for increased overtime rates and additional doctors.
The Minister says he expects the chair of the Health Authority to report back to him within ten days.
The Health Authority closed the Sussex Emergency Room on short notice Friday night so the doctor could be transferred to the Regional Hospital to cover the emergency room -- Murphy says doctors here refused to work overtime hours to keep the facility open and he says there are legislative options available to ensure the safety of residents.

Blaney Reaction to Minister Murphys Ultimatum



Health Critic Margaret Ann Blaney tells CHSJ News, she's not quite sure how the lack of doctors in the ER at the Regional Hospital caught Health Minister Mike Murphy by surprise.
Blaney says Murphy has known about the shortage of doctors for over a year, and there is still not a plan in place to hire more qualified doctors.

Blaney says the heavy recruitment Regional Health Authority B is claiming cannot be successful until a plan is in place to entice doctors.

Mayor Slams Wafflers On Council




(Mayor Ivan Court - file photo)

Mayor Ivan Court isn't worried about the growth numbers in the 2006 Census -- he says that was a snapshot three years ago before economic development really got started.
CHSJ News asked the mayor if he's worried about recent waffling by council on the Peel Plaza justice complex would hurt the city's ability to catch up to Moncton -- and -- he's not pulling any punches -- he says some councilors are doing us harm and costing taxpayers additional money every time they flip flop.
But -- Court says despite the waffling of some councilors the mayor and city are open for business.

Head Count Snapshot Shows City Lagging In Growth



news-statscan population.jpg

(Population comparison chart - courtesy of Statistics Canada)

The city was one of only two metropolitan areas to experience a population loss during the 2006 Census.
That's one of the many facts Stats Canada has found from number crunching the figures -- and -- Stats-Canada's Marc Melanson says that's not the case with the other two large cities in the province with Moncton leading the country in growth while Fredericton also posted significant growth.
Melanson says the average age of Saint Johners is just over 40 slightly younger than the province as a whole while the average annual income in the city is just under 71-thousand dollars which is almost 13-percent higher than the provincial average.

Doctor Says Minister Murphys Ultimatum a Misunderstanding



Doctor Edouard Hendriks with Regional Health Authority B says the ultimatum from Health Minister Mike Murphy is a misunderstanding.

He says the letter from Murphy demanding problems in the Emergency Department at the Regional Hospital be fixed in 10 days says the Minister wants an update by that time.

Hendriks tells CHSJ News, there are 8 or 9 doctors staffed in the emergency department, and they also have doctors come down from Moncton and Fredericton to cover shifts.
He says the Regional is currently recruiting more doctors to help fill positions, but it will take a lot more than 10 days to fill any vacancies.
Hendriks says he would like to reassure everyone steps are being taken to ensure everyone who comes into the hospital will receive the care that they require.

New Rules for Daycares



Town Council in Quispamsis has enacted an amendment to it's utility bylaw following an inlfux of daycares popping up in the Town. When the original sewer utility bylaw was put in place, there were no daycares in the Municipality so there was no way to charge them for usage. Town Administrator Mike Brennan tells CHSJ News, this is just a house-keeping issue.

Brennan says they haven't heard from any of the daycare facilities about whether they are pleased or dis-pleased with the new set-up. The breakdown of how the numbers are added up can be found on the Town's website at  



Keeping an Eye on the Rivers



The Town of Quispamsis, like many municipalities around the Province are watching the weather today. With heavy rain in the forecast, there is a strong possibility for flooding along the Saint John and Kennebecasis Rivers. After last years heavy flooding, town officials they used G.P.S units to track where the high water marks are, so they know when damage might occur. Director of Engineering Gary Losier tells CHSJ News, this will help them keep home-owners up to date with the latest information.

Losier says the latest information shows the water levels shouldn't crest anywhere of concern.


A New Grocery Store for the South End



Representatives from Co-Op Atlantic will be in the South End tonight to discuss the possibility of setting up a grocery store in the South End. This has been a dream of many residents since a Save Easy store moved out of the area back in the 90's.  Jennifer Edison helped organize the meeting and tells CHSJ News, things are different and store officials know that.

Edison says this proposal came about when several of the community groups starting discussing the idea. Tonight's meeting gets under way at seven o'clock at the South End Community Center.


Sussex Mayor Has Questions



The Mayor of Sussex is not happy. The Region "B" Health Authority yanked the doctor out of the Sussex Emergency Department to cover off the shift last weekend at the Regional. This after a physician couldn't be found for here in Saint John. Ralph Carr tells CHSJ News, the teenage boy being hit by a train points out how vital their E.R. is.

Carr says he will be placing a call to the Region "B" Health Authority to voice his concern. We have also placed a call to the Authority looking for someone to speak on this issue. 

City Police Find Dope



A good portion of dope is off city streets thanks to a little bit of luck. City Police pulled over a vehicle on Waterloo Street at Midnight and found a good portion of marijuana in it.

Tow men were taken into custody but have been released. They will appear in court at a later date answering to the charge of possession for the purpose of trafficking.

Wish List from Conservation Council



It wouldn't be Earth Day if we didn't hear from the Conservation Council. The Saint John Chapter has issued a Earth Day Wish List dropping off copies to Mayor Ivan Court and Premier Shawn Graham. It's a list of five and includes a ban on the use of cosmetic lawn pesticides, improved air quality, more work towards the development of wind, solar and tidal power.

They would also like to see the effort of developing an energy hub to export power from non renewable and polluting energy sources and no further sale or transfers of parkland for commercial, industrial or residential development.

Earth Day Activities in Greater Saint John



There is plenty for you to get involved with on this Earth Day. In Quispamsis, over 1500 volunteers are expected to take to the streets and sidewalks to clean up some of the mess left-over from the winter months. This is the fifth year for the project a Cleaner, Greener Quispamsis. You can call the Town Hall if you need garbage bags at 849-5778 and there will be a barbeque to finish off the day starting at 4:30pm at the Town Hall.

Here in Saint John, city employees "Take on the Trash" as they will pick up litter at Harbor Passage and city facilities during their lunch hour. Officials are also encouraging everyone to car pool if you can, walk or take the bus to cut down on your carbon footprint.

New Rule at Grocery Stores



Superstore and Save Easy customers across the province better remember to bring their reusable bags starting today or you will be charged five cents for every plastic bag you need. Vice President of Operations for Loblaw Stores Mike Doucette tells CHSJ News, in collaboration with WWF Canada, the company wants to be more environmentally friendly, and this is a huge step.

The charge for the plastic bags is in conjunction with today being Earth Day.


Quispamsis Says No Thanks to Offer from the City



Quispamsis Mayor Murray Driscoll is not mincing words when it comes to a proposal from City Hall. Mayor Ivan Court has said he thinks it would be a good idea if the Valley Town and Rothesay contributed to the construction of the new Police headquarters and Justice Complex for an amalgamation of services. Murray Driscoll tells CHSJ News, he doesn't understand why this topic is on anyone's agenda.

Driscoll hopes this topic doesn't cause municipalities in Greater Saint John to lose focus of regional co-operation and recognize individual differences.