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Friday, May 22, 2009

Major Infusion Of Cash For Grand Bay-Westfield



A major infrastructure announcement is being made this morning in Grand Bay-Westfield -- it involves federal Veterans Affairs Minister Greg Thompson and provincial Energy Minister Jack Keir.
The funding is in the multi-million dollar range and speculation is it will be money for a new sewerage system for the town.
The announcement is being made at the Brundage Point River Center at 9.

Premier Says City Making A Big Splash



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(Premier Graham addressing at Board of Trade Big Splash event - photo by Deborah Stevens)

Premier Shawn Graham says he's confident the province is on the road to self sufficiency -- and -- he says this region's growing energy hub is playing a significant role.
Graham says it means more opportunities for the people of not only greater Saint John -- but -- the province.
Graham was speaking to the Board of Trade's annual Big Splash event tonight at the new cruise terminal on Water Street.

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(Part of the crowd at Big Splash in the new Water Street cruise terminal - photo by Deborah Stevens)

City Begins Planning for Industrial Expansion



Mayor Ivan Court says the city will need to find new residential areas to build upon as the industrial sector out East continues to expand. Court says eventually more and more city residents will be displaced and he wants to ensure they remain in Saint John.

Court says they aren't just planning for the next 3 or four years--city staff are planning for the next 50 years. He says now is the time to begin searching out provincially and municipally owned lands that can developed.

Province Gets Federal Funding for Employment Programs



The province is getting $43 million dollars in federal funding for employment and training programs. The agreement between the two governments was signed today  and is in addition to the $207 million that will be provided to the province over the next two years under existing agreements.

The funds will go toward increasing workplace literacy, and developing employment action plans. $14 million dollars over two years will help support provincial initiatives that help workers, whether or not they are eligible for employment insurance---and create programs to help retain jobs or make the transition to new ones.

Digby Ferry Adds New Day Trip Service



A new part of the Digby Ferry schedule is expecting to bring more tourists into the city.
Tourism Saint John spokesperson Sean Payne tells CHSJ News, a new day trip service will be introduced.

Payne says adding new services will benefit the city, because more services means more money being spent. Payne says due to the uncertainty of the service, two motor coach clients have dropped out.

Tannery Court Update



Tannery Court is still playing the waiting game before starting construction. Spokesperson Mark Higgins tells CHSJ News, they are still waiting to hear back about the environmental assessment, and once it is taken care off a public announcement will be made.

Higgins says the plan for constructing the 50 unit low income apartment building is slated for early summer.


Grand Manan Missing Person



Grand Manan RCMP are looking for the publics  help in finding a missing man.
52 year old Ritchie Wilson left Grand Manan in his Nissan X-Terra at the beginning of the month and has not been heard from since.
Wilson did not tell his family where he was going, but made preparations at home that were consistent with leaving for a trip.
He is described as 6 feet tall, 275 pounds with light brown hair.
Anyone with any information on his whereabouts is asked to call 755-1130.

Mayor Delivers State of the City Address



Mayor Ivan Court is still advocating for tri-level emergency response. During his State of the City address today, Court said city fire fighters had to respond to 22 emergencies in one weekend earlier this year because an ambulance wasn't available.  Court says funding is key to ensuring the Saint John Fire Department can continue responding to emergencies in situations such as that.

Court says there is a shortage of about 100 paramedics in the province and while Medavie-Blue Cross, which took over ambulance service late 2007, is doing it's best, Saint John and Mirimachi are not getting adequate service.

Saint John To Re-Ask for Federal Water Funding



The city will continue work on water system improvements--with or without federal and provincial help. But Mayor Ivan Court says he hopes to hear they will be giving Saint John funding by the end of the year. The city is re-submitted a formal request for federal funding for six water-related projects. Mayor Ivan Court says the items will be sent individually to MP Rodney Weston.

The city is planning to build one or two water treatment plants at a cost of up to 214 million dollars. Court says they are already doing work to upgrade the necessary pipes and water mains.  Earlier this month Court had said millions of dollars are on the way from the federal and provincial governments for water related projects. He says length of time to complete the project will depend on whether they do contribute funding.

St. Stephen GM Dealership Avoids Chopping Block



Many General Motors dealerships in the country are closing the doors, but another provincial dealer has avoided the axe.
Charlotte County GM  in St. Stephen is keeping its doors open, just after GM announced over 200 dealers will be closing up shop across the country.
In the city, Brett's Chevrolet-Cadillac also avoided cut, as did Centennial-Pontiac.

Opposition Claims Government Will Scuttle Doctors' Deal




(Murphy and Blaney lock horns in Legislature - file photos)

The Conservative opposition is questioning the Graham government's motives in dealing with negotiations for doctors' fees.
Rothesay M-L-A Margaret Ann Blaney says she understands a tentative agreement has been in place but the government has been dragging its feet -- and -- may be on the verge of scrapping it altogether.
Health Minister Mike Murphy says no deal is in place and negotiations are continuing -- meantime -- the Conservatives are also hammering the Graham Liberals over pending cuts to various education programs -- both Districts 6 and 8 say programs will be slashed thanks to a cut in their 2009 - 2010 budgets.

Another Scam is Making the Rounds



RCMP are letting residents know about a scam that has surfaced and seems to show up with the good weather every year. A paving contractor or company, operating in the Charlotte County area is targeting seniors and they may not be licensed.

Officers ask that anyone who is approached about someone paving your driveway to give them a call at 466-7030 or 755-1130.

Valedictorians are Chosen



Make sure you congratulate Edith Rose Cairns of Saint John, Brian Beaudette of Ontario, Keely Wallace of Truro and Katie RoeBothan of Newfoundland when you see them. They will be working on their speeches in the coming days after being named valedictorians of their respective classes at UNB Saint John and UNB.

Cairns will deliver her speech next Friday here in Saint John while Beaudette, Wallace and RoeBothan will speak to their classmates in Fredericton on Wednesday and Thursday. Premier Shawn Graham will also be on hand for the ceremony in Fredericton on Wednesday when he receives an honary degree that some of the faculty have protested against.  


Charges Laid Against Man from Montreal



A date with a judge is on the schedule for a 40-year old man from Montreal today. This after RCMP arrested a man at a bank on Broad Street in Sussex yesterday. Officer's tell us a man was trying to obtain a credit card by using a false name.

When he realized it wasn't going to work he made a run for it but was caught a short time after. No word on specific charges. 

More calls to Leave Fundy National Alone



First, it was Fundy Royal MP Rob Moore and now the New Brunswick All Terrain Vehicle Federation is speaking out. Both are concerned about any possible expansion of Fundy National Park and the Federation says if the talks move ahead, they want to be involved. 

Federation President Daniel Boucher says they agree with the importance of National Parks and Protected Areas, but feels it must also be recognized that people in this Province need access to land for outdoor activities.

Funding Announcement in Grand Bay-Westfield



Politicians from all levels are expected to be in Grand Bay-Westfield tomorrow. A news conference has been scheduled by the Premier's office to speak about what they are describing as a significant announcement.

We called Mayor Grace Losier to see if she had anything to say about what might be headed their way and she will only echo what the Premier's office has told us..........the announcement is significant. Things get started at nine at the River Center.

Latest on Uptown Shooting



No word yet on when City Police will get a chance to speak with a 26-year old Mandarin man who was shot during a robbery at an uptown bar last weekend. A bullet grazed his skull and he remains at the Regional under-going treatment.

It happened at the Sunstar Lounge just after 1:30 in the morning last Sunday morning. No arrests have been made.

West Side Man will Remain Locked Up



A 30-year old west side man has been sent for a further psychiatric evaluation in Restigouche. Jeremy O'Hearn has been charged with various weapons offenses -- possession of stolen property -- and -- assaulting a police officer following a stand-off on the west-side on Tuesday of last week. He just underwent a five day psychiatric examination while awaiting his next court appearance.

O'Hearn was arrested after police were held at bay for over four hours by a man inside a Fundy Drive home -- it started when police tried to serve a warrant.

Busy Construction Season Along Highway 7



Work is well underway on a new section of highway 7 which will bypass the Welsford area.
Most of the clearing work has been completed and the Transportation Department is getting ready to call tenders for grading work and two bridges.
Meantime -- grading work for the Highland Road overpass access ramps is expected to begin next month.
And some repaving work is also underway on sections of highway 7 through the Base Gagetown training area.

Big Splash Hits the Boardwalk Tonight



The new cruise terminal will provide the back-drop for the 4th annual Big Splash event tonight. Things get started at 6:30pm with Premier Graham the guest speaker. Hosted by the Board of Trade, President Imelda Gilman tells CHSJ News, this is a great chance to celebrate the communities achievements in the past year.

Other speakers include developer John Rocca and chair of the Saint John Port Authority Stephen Campbell. 

City Police Report



No word on specific charges but two men are due in court today. This after a routine traffic stop by City Police last night on Winslow Street West uncovered a gun in the vehicle.

Also, officer's are investigating a report of a man being robbed in the uptown. He was standing at the bus stop near King Square just before 7:30pm when he was approached by two or three men. He was hit and they grabbed some of stuff and made a run for it. He wasn't seriously injured.

Armed Robbery in French Village



The normal quiet of a neighborhood in Rothesay was shattered last night after an armed robbery. Rothesay Regional Police tell us a man with a weapon walked into the Petro-Canada station just before closing at eleven o'clock.

He demanded cash from the clerk, grabbed a handful and made a run into the darkness. No one was hurt.