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Saturday, July 31, 2010

Nature Trust Cleans Beaches

The Nature Trust of New Brunswick is making an effort to clean up the beaches in Bocabec Bay near St. Andrews today.

The stretch of shoreline was chosen for this year's Charlotte Isles clean-up and Executive Director Renata Woodward tells CHSJ they normally collect just over one ton of garbage.

Woodward says they see a lot of commercial bins, plastic containers and oil containers that get washed in from the ocean.

She says the goal is to get people involved in land conservation and land stewardship.

Bay Of Fundy At Risk

(Marine biologist Jamie Steele)
(Photo by Gary MacDonald)

A St. Andrews marine biologist says the Bay of Fundy remains a resource at risk.
Jamie Steele tells CHSJ News the bay's fragile ecosystem is linked to influences around it.

Steele says even though we strive for a balance between uses such as shipping or tourism -- we usually go too far the other way and have to backtrack to repair any damage to the ecosystem.

But -- Steele says talk of tidal power generators in the bay is miles ahead of past suggestions of large damns to harness the tides which would have a significant impact on the bay's marine life.

He says we have to become more aware of our own backyard and how we influence what happens in it.

Candidate "Runs" For Election

(Liberal candidate Gary Keating)
(File Photo)

Saint John Fundy Liberal candidate Gary Keating has plenty to do this Long Weekend.

He is strapping on his sneakers and will run from Simonds High to the caves in St. Martins which is just shy of 50 kilometers.

The question on your mind I'm sure is why?

Keating tells CHSJ News, it is a play on his campaign slogan of "Running for You" but goes further than that.

He believes it is a great way to promote the election, physical fitness and let the voters get a look at him.

Camping Season In Full Swing

As the Long Weekend rolls along, one campground owner is loving what the season has produced to this point.

Howard Haines is the owner of Harding's Point and tells CHSJ News, the Victoria Day Weekend set the tone with good numbers.

Haines says the wonderful warm weather no question is a big reason for the large numbers but a turn-around in the economy is also playing a part.

Haines adds he rarely hears complaints about the price of gas but is very pleased to see caravans from the United States making a return this summer after a dip due to the recession last year.

Friday, July 30, 2010

Moose Light Blackberry Doing Well

Something that certainly goes well with a sunny long weekend is a cold beer.

Joel Levesque is Vice President of Communications with Moosehead Breweries and tells CHSJ News since launching their newest summer flavour -Moose Light Blackberry- at the end of June, sales have been great. 

He says they've achieved their sales objectives and they're getting great feedback about it.

Levesque says the Moose Light Blackberry might be back next summer, or they might have a new flavour because consumers seem to be really interested in experimenting and product innovation.

Port Authority Gets New CEO

The Saint John Port Authority will have a new President and Chief Executive Officer come September.

James Quinn is taking over the role from Captain Soppitt on September 20th.

Soppitt will remain with the Port Authority to help during the transition period and then plans to retire in June of 2011.

Quinn brings over 30 years of experience in the marine and public sectors, 23 of which were with the Coast Guard.

Traffic Snags For The Long Weekend

Watch out for traffic delays in your travels this long weekend.

Construction crews will be working in the area of Bayside Drive and the Courtney Bay Causeway on Saturday, Sunday and Monday.

The work in the intersection will involve a lot of rock excavation and will cause traffic delays.

Arson Update

City Police have confirmed a fire early this morning in the North End was deliberately set.

An arson investigation has been launched by the Major Crime Unit.

There was no one living in the 2 and a half storey wooden building on Douglas Avenue at Main Street and no one was injured.

Soldiers Set To Invade Sussex Area

If you live in the Sussex area, don't be suprised if you see plenty of activity involving the Canadian military next week.

Soldiers from CFB Gagetown will be training in the area beginning next Tuesday until Friday.
This area has been chosen because base officials tell us it is the best setting to duplicate the complexities of the contemporary operating environment.
Soldiers will be carrying weapons but only blank ammunition will be used.

Base officials say the exercise will not cause a problem to anyone or the town as a whole.

Pressure Growing To Commercialise Westmorland Road

(Costco At Eastpoint Shopping Off Westmorland Road)
                           (File Photo)

Westmorland Road between Kane's Corner and Eastpoint shopping is under tremendous commercial pressure. That admission from the chief city planner Ken Forrest and he is concerned.

There are an estimated 200 homes along that stretch of road. Forrest says the commercialisation of Westmorland Road is not contemplated under the municipal plan now in effect and the new one, being drawn up, will emphasize smart growth which maintains the integrity of residential neighbourhoods.

The city has moved to ease some of the traffic pressures with left turn only lanes at the traffic lights leading to Costco and further on down into Home Depot.

Port Of Saint John Sees Upswing In Amount Of Cargo Handled

(Saint John Cruise Ship Terminal)
              (File Photo)

The Port of Saint John calls it a sign of economic recovery from the downturn which began in late 2008 through last year.

Mid year reports indicate overall tonnage of 15.9 million metric tons of cargo being handled at the port which is up 17 per cent over the same period last year.

The Port Authority also expects 210 thousand cruise ship passengers this year. Cruise ships are now the second largest generator of revenue for the port.

There was a dramatic reduction in the tonnage of forest products that moved through the port which dropped from 110 thousand for the same time frame last year to only 39 thousand tons this year.

Power Outages Reported Outside City

NB Power is reporting a couple of power outages in the Rothesay area this morning affecting something like 867 customers.

Suspicious Fire In North End

An early call out for city fire crews to the north end. They responded around 3:30 this morning to a fire in a two and a half storey wooden building at Douglas Avenue and Main Street. It appears as if it was deliberately set.

Meanwhile, two pedestrians were struck by cars in separate mishaps yesterday afternoon. The first one happened at Wellington Row and Union Street where a woman suffered minor injuries. A short time after that, a man was taken to hospital after being struck on Lansdowne Avenue.

Saint John Speakers Focus On Renewable Energy As The Way To Move Forward

(John Simon Of Seaforth Energy)
      (Photo by Sherry Aske)

Renewable energy was a key theme brought up by people at the Conservative's energy forum. John Simon is Vice President of Seaforth Energy and tells CHSJ News Ontario and Nova Scotia have adopted programs where people essentially get paid to use renewable energy.

He adds the province could benefit from a concept used in Europe where communities and businesses set up solar power installations or wind turbines and then get paid for any excess power they generate that goes back to the grid.

Simon says New Brunswick has opportunities for renewable energy when it comes to wind and solar power that would keep the jobs and money in the province.

The future of NB Power was also talked about. Mike MacDonald is an electrical engineer and tells CHSJ News there are a lot of great technical people in the province who know what they're doing, and the province should consult them as they moving forward.
In MacDonald's view, NB Power needs to be run as a business without political interference.

Conservatives Hear Ideas From Saint Johnners On Energy In The Future

   (Saint John Portland M-L-A Trevor Holder)
                      (File Photo)

There was no David Alward at last night's energy forum at the Fort Howe Hotel. Instead two political staff members were running the show. The Conservatives were in town to get the public's input on a new energy policy.

Saint John Portland MLA Trevor Holder tells CHSJ News the province has a government in place for the past four years that has not engaged New Brunswickers.

He maintains the Conservatives want an energy policy that's owned and designed by the people of the province. Holder says that doesn't mean they'll say yes to everything, but it does mean they'll have an energy policy people have been engaged in and consulted on.

He also argues New Brunswickers almost lost their public utility because it was being sold and they, as shareholders, didn't have any say in the matter.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Iggy's Liberal Express Due In Town

The Liberal Express will be rolling through our area over the holiday weekend - the summer bus tour is designed to get federal leader Michael Ignatieff mixing with average Canadians.

Ignatieff will be making hour long stops on Sunday at a coffee shop in Grand Falls - the Kings Landing historical settlement - a country market in Maugerville throughout the day on Sunday.

The day draws to a close with a barbecue in Rothesay hosted by former Saint John M-P Paul Zed.

Ignatieff moves on to Moncton and the Miramichi area on New Brunswick day.

New Bridge In St. Martins

It's last major upgrade was in 1996 and by late this fall, the Gardner Creek Number Four Bridge in St. Martins will have a brand new look.
The 65-year old concrete and wood span is being replaced with a new state of the art structure.
Transportation Minister Denis Landry tells CHSJ News, there is some concern about speeding from home-owners in the area where the detour is set-up but the limit is being dropped to sixty from seventy until the work is finished in mid-November.
Total cost of the project is $2.6 million dollars.

Meeting Next Week In Quispamsis

(Health Minister Mary Schryer)
          (File Photo)

Health Minister Mary Schryer is playing host to an Atlantic regional meeting of ministers responsible for the status of women in Quispamsis next week.
It is to discuss issues of common concern and explore areas for regional co-operation.

Schryer, who also holds the portfolio of minister responsible for the status of women says the issue of human trafficking will be foremost on the agenda.

This is the first time a meeting of Atlantic ministers responsible for the status of women is being held.

The conference runs Tuesday and Wednesday.

New Stats On Seatbelts

New stats from RCMP prove what some have been preaching for a long time.....seatbelts save lives.
Officers tell us 90% of drivers in the Province buckle up before starting their vehicle but the 10% who don't account for 44% of those killed on Provincial Highways.

No matter what you have planned for this Long Weekend, if it involves driving, RCMP remind everyone to buckle up as they will be conducting check-stops all weekend.

Update On New Discovery Center

The fund-raising campaign for the new Discovery Center at the Huntsman Marine Science Center is on a roll.

After eight months of collecting cash, there is just over one million of the two million dollar goal locked up.
The Seal the Deal campaign kicked off in October with the pouring of concrete set to get started tomorrow.

The new Discovery Center will have several features including an aquarium, 226 seat theater, wet lab and will be open year round.
It is scheduled to be open in June of next year.

People's Alliance Leader Blasts Conservatives And Leader David Alward

(People's Alliance of New Brunswick Leader Kris Austin)
                           (File Photo)

The leader of the People's Alliance, the newest political party in the province says he used to be a Conservative.

Kris Austin tells CHSJ News he decided to abandon the party after it voted to raise M-L-A salaries, pensions and severance followed by its leader David Alward attempting to back track in the face of public anger.

Austin argues Alward only did that because he got caught. He also charges the Conservatives may talk about the grassroots but, in his view, remain closed door and elitist.

Austin is equally critical of the Liberals accusing them of being too secretive when they were trying to sell NB Power to Hydro Quebec in the winter. He maintains people in the province, by and large, are fed up with both of the mainstream parties.

Police Car Rearended In Valley

Two Rothesay Regional Police officers were uninjured after the car they were in was rear ended. They were waiting for the light to change at the intersection of Hampton Road and Route 119 when the collision happened.

The two were taken to the hospital to be checked out and were later released.

It's not known yet if the other driver will be charged.

A Mixed Bag With Gas Prices After The Weekly Setting

If you fill up with self serve regular, you'll be paying a bit more for gas this morning after the weekly setting but if you use diesel, it is a bit less expensive. Self serve is up by one cent a litre in the city to 99.3 cents while diesel is down by under a cent to $1.00.6. There is no change with propane. It's still at 99.6 a litre.

Liberals Scoff At Conservative Party's Theme For Provincial Election Campaign

(Deputy Premier Donald Arsenault)
           (File Photo)

The provincial Liberals say they're not threatened by the Conservative Party's theme for the upcoming election.

This, after Conservative Leader David Alward announced yesterday that the party would be campaigning under the slogan "Putting New Brunswickers First...For a Change".

Deputy Premier Donald Arseneault says Alward sat in government for seven years and never put New Brunswick first. Arseneault points to the Conservative government under then Premier Bernard Lord closing hospitals, allowing car insurance rates to go through the roof, and making massive cuts to agriculture programs, when it was in power from 1999 to 2006.

Conservatives In City Tonight To Talk About Energy

(Provincial Conservative Leader David Alward)
                    (File Photo)

The Conservatives continue to criss-cross the Province to discuss energy and the stop-over tonight is in Saint John. The party is looking for feedback from rate-payers with Leader David Alward committed to setting up an Energy Commission that would report back to government within six months if his party wins the September vote. 

Tonight's Session gets started at 7:00 runs until 9 at the Fort Howe Hotel.
The Liberals have been challenging Alward to spell out what he would do with NB Power and other energy issues.

Union Warns Of Cuts In Mail Delivery

Is rural home mail delivery in jeopardy? That is the question being asked by the Fundy Local of Canadian Postal Workers. It says Canada Post is removing delivery to homes in favor of community mail boxes.

 Union Vice President Don Watson tells CHSJ News, it's not just convenience at risk, it is jobs as well.
Watson also wonders what seniors and the handicapped, who have been used to home delivery will do, when they have to start using a community mailbox three or four miles from their front door. Canada Post is offering to deliver their mail to the door once a week.
Watson predicts the cuts in service may eventually extend into the city itself.

Second World War Vets From Saint John Talk About Their Experiences

Veterans from the Greater Saint John Area are sharing their stories from the Second World War. The Memory Project from the Historica Dominion Institute was in town yesterday so veterans could archive their memories from war. Project coordinator Jenna Meisner tells CHSJ News the project got a great turnout. Meisner says the material recorded at yesterday's session will be on their website in about six weeks.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

DOT Begins Negotiations For Ferry Deal

(Fisheries Minister Rick Doucet)
(File Photo)

The Department of Transportation has begun negotiations with Coastal Transport Ltd. of Saint John to finalize a deal under the Fundy Islands Ferry Services Project.

The department is looking for a company to take over the operation and maintenance of the Grand Manan, White Head, and Deer Island vessels and associated wharves for the next 16 years.

Fisheries Minister Rick Doucet tells CHSJ News the transition should be smooth. 

He says he hopes when an agreement is made it satisfies the people living on the islands and the taxpayers.

The current contract with Coastal as operator of the Grand Manan and White Head services, expires in March.

Saint John I.T. Company Developing New Technology

(Encore Interactive Chairman John Swan)
        (Photo by Jim Hennessy)

A Saint John based I.T. company on the receiving end of some federal cash today.

Encore Interactive has received $247,000 to help bring it's IPTV software to homes and businesses around Atlantic Canada and the world.
Chairman John Swan says this cash will help their project move to the next stage of development.
Swan adds the new technology is so simple and easy, everyone can use it.
Encore Interactive has been in Saint John since 2007.

Energy Minister Still Looking For Cheque

(Energy Minister Jack Keir At Recent News Conference)
               (Photo By JIm Hennessy)

The Energy Minister isn't ready to celebrate just yet with a report stating Ottawa will pick up cost over-runs for the Point Lepreau refit.
The contract states any cost over-runs associated with the refurbishment doesn't specifically mention anything about replacement power.
Jack Keir says the beans in the jar changed when the head of Atomic of Energy of Canada came to the Province and said the original schedule had no chance for success.
Keir admits there has been movement on the file but he has yet to see a cheque to cover replacement costs from Ottawa.

Saint John MP Not Clear On Status

(Saint John MP Rodney Weston)
            (File Photo)

Whether there is or isn't a deal in place for Ottawa to cover cost over-runs for the refit at Point Lepreau, the MP for Saint John isn't confirming or denying it.
Rodney Weston tells CHSJ News, in his opinion, getting the reactor back on-line is the biggest hurdle left to clear.
Weston like everyone else, knows that Premier Graham and Prime Minister Harper met last week in Moncton but says anything the two spoke about is confidential.

Former Uptown Theater Getting Some Work

(Former Paramount Theater Being Worked On)
          (Photo By Jim Hennessy)

If you've taken a walk or drive by the old Paramount Theater, don't worry it is not coming down.

A construction crew is removing some of the old facade which includes the glass from the front of the building for safety reasons.

The building has been in the spotlight of late as the drive is on to find a buyer and make use of the former movie theaters.
Peter Asimaskos is the General Manager of Uptown Saint John and tells CHSJ News, the building is structurally in good shape and his group will have an annoucement next week on the search for a buyer and new use for the building.

New Technology From Saint John Company

(Shift Energy's Energy Management Dashboard)
            (Photo by Jim Hennessy)

The timing for this couldn't be better with all the talk of electricity rates.

Shift Energy in Saint John has unveiled it's Energy Management Dashboard.

It's an efficiency tool that among other things, will measure energy consumption and provide recommendations to commercial customers on how to efficiently consume energy.

President and CEO is Richard Jones who tells CHSJ News, they currently have six clients under contract with more in the coming weeks.

Saint John MP Rodney Weston presented Shift Energy with a cheque for just over $285,000 dollars to go toward develop and further promote it's Energy Management Dashboard.

City Police Warn Drivers

City Police are warning drivers to obey the signs you see while making your way about town. A truck plunged nose down into a large hole early morning along the Dever Road which is closed to allow for construction of a pipeline.

A charge will be laid against the driver under the Motor Vehicle Act. Police say there are signs posted alerting drivers about the road closure.

 There were no injuries.

Man Saved From Drowning

Already this summer more people have died on the province's waterways than in motorcycle fatalities, but in this case someone got lucky. Randy Salvages tells CHSJ News he pulled a man from the Saint John River this weekend after he got caught by the current and was being carried down the river.

Randy camps in Long Reach and says he was out on his boat when he thought he saw a dead head in the water.

Salvage says he asked the man if he needed a lift and helped him into the boat. He says he's seen people out that far before but normally they're with a boat.

Communities In Bloom Judges Are In Town

Saint John is in the spotlight today as the Communities in Bloom judging gets started. Saint John is in the category of National Edition Circle of Excellence.

The winners will be announced at the National Awards Ceremonies in Halifax between October 27th and 30th.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Holder Reacts To Keir's Announcement

(Saint John Portland MLA Trevor Holder)
(File Photo)

It didn't take long for the Conservative Party to react to Minister Keir's announcement.

Saint John Portland MLA Trevor Holder tells CHSJ News, the Liberal Party continues to make announcements concerning energy with no policy. 

He says there no is no energy policy in this province, and the Liberal Government has no intention on putting one in place.

On the announcement itself, Holder says he doesn't have any problem with giving the EUB more teeth but is concerned on what that will mean for Saint John Energy.

Woman Drives Jeep Into Store

(Hole In The Wall Where Jeep Went Through)
         (Photo by Jim Hennessy)

Kennebecasis Drugs on the Marr Road has some un-wanted renovations.

A 74-year old woman driving a Jeep Grand Cherokee drove it right through the brick wall in the back parking lot.

Rothesay Regional Police tell us it happened at one o'clock and after the jeep cleared the wall it pushed through two rows of shelves.

Sergeant Evan Scott is head of the Traffic Division and tells CHSJ News, it is nothing short of a miracle that someone wasn't hurt or killed.

There is quite a bit of structural damage to the store so it is closed for the rest of the day. No word yet on whether human or mechanical error is to blame and charges are not expected.

Impaired Driver Causes Oil Spill

The man whose truck spilled gasoline into a Saint John waterway is being charged with impaired driving.

Sergeant Pat Cole with the Hampton RCMP tells CHSJ News when the man's truck flipped over on Otter Lake Road on Saturday night and spilled gas into Ratcliffe Brook he fled the scene.

Police arrested the man a few minutes later at his house.

City officials are now monitoring the waterways to prevent contamination.

Liberals Make Energy Changes

(Energy Minister Jack Keir speaks at today's energy announcement)
(Photo by Jim Hennessy)

The Liberal government has unveiled a number of improvements it says will protect electricity ratepayers.

There are five key changes including all rate increases regardless of size must be approved by the EUB and cabinet will no longer be able to reverse or modify any decision from the EUB that deals with rates.

Energy Minister Jack Keir says all of these changes will strengthen the regulatory framework of the Energy and Utilities Board.

The changes still need to be approved in the legislature when it resumes this fall.

Mayor Dismisses Fears Of Too Much Land In South End Being Used For Parking

(Saint John Mayor Ivan Court)
           (File Photo)

The housing stock in the south end is being increased despite fears that too much precious land in that part of town is being used for parking.

So says Mayor Ivan Court who points to Leinster Court, the Abbey and the Rocca condos across from the cruise ship terminal to make his case.

Councillor Patty Higgins says there's a very good reason why there's a need for more people to make the south-central peninsula their home. She wants to see a grocery store established.
There has been an effort underway to get a Co-op in the south end and we have been told progress, slow as it may seem, is being made.

 The new municipal plan is expected to make residential development closer to the city core a priority as part of smart growth. Common Councillor Peter McGuire maintains city planners are being hamstrung by what he calls an outdated and dilapidated municipal plan.

Mischief Along The Saint John River

The RCMP are investigating a complaint of theft and mischief on two sailboats that were anchored along the Saint John River on the evening of July 6th between Irvin Lane and Beach Road.

One of the sailboats was cast adrift. A diver's watch and TV were among the items stolen.

Police are also looking for your help in catching who was responsible for causing mischief to South Beach on Long Island along the Kennebecasis River sometime between the last week of June and first week of July.

 Several trees were uprooted, beer bottles were broken and a sign for the Nature Trust was burned.

Any information can be called in to the Mounties at 757-10-20 or Crimestoppers at 1-800-222-tips.

Duguay On The EUB

(NDP Leader Roger Duguay)
(File Photo)

The Energy and Utilities Board should have more clout.

That's one of the recommendations from the Provincial N-D-P to reform the E-U-B and better protect middle class families from what party leader Roger Duguay calls unfair power rate increases.

He tells CHSJ News any rate proposal from NB Power should be examined, no matter how small it might be, and the E-U-B should have the authority to stop an increase from taking effect.

The New Democrats are also calling for the creation of a new job, an efficiency officer, who would oversee every aspect of NB Power's operation and present a report to the Provincial Cabinet within six months.

Motorcycle Crash

A Rothesay man is dead after his motorcycle collided with another vehicle on Highway 126 in the eastern part of the province.

The RCMP say it appears the motorcycle collided with a passenger vehicle that was in the passing lane in Kent Junction.

The name of the 56-year-old victim has not been released. Police say charges are possible.

The Millrats Have A Name

(The Millrats reveal their logo)
(Photo by Jim Hennessy)

Saint John's basketball team has a name.

The Millrats logo has been unveiled to represent the city's entry in the Premier Basketball League.

The mill rat represents the city's industrial history and the logo also features a number three which pays respect to local hoops legend Rip Seely.

The preseason for the Millrats gets started in December with the regular season to tip off in January.

City Police Say They Won't Tolerate Mischief Makers Inside Rockwood Park

         (Entrance To Rockwood Park)
                      (File Photo)

City Police are cracking down on those people who are in Rockwood Park after hours.

According to the beach bylaw, it is illegal to be in the park after 10:00 at night. Six people were arrested early this morning at Fisher Lakes.

Police say there have been thefts, damage and mischief. Someone cut the ropes at the swimming area which indicate the deepness of the water.

Trees were damaged for firewood. A porta potty was overturned. Picnic tables were thrown the water and there was a breakin reported.

A consultant has told the city the park is too isolated after dark and that's one reason why the city is looking at some residential development along Sandy Point Road adjacent to the park.

Parolee Charged After High Speed Chase

A 19 year old parolee is back behind bars facing a charge of dangerous driving after a chase with police at one of the busiest times of the weekend in what arguably is the busiest shopping area of the city on the east side.

Sergeant Pat Bonner of City Police says the pursuit began on Ellerdale Street Saturday afternoon around 1:00 and then went down Westmorland Road eventually ending with a collision in the vicinity of Retail Drive.

One police car was also damaged. The car the accused was in had fictitious plates.

Gasoline Spill In Waterway Which Leads To City's Supply Of Drinking Water

A gasoline spill off Otter Lake Road has city officials monitoring the waterways. Brent McGovern with Saint John water says a truck went off the road Saturday night and spilt gas into Ratcliffe Brook which eventually provides drinking water to the city.

McGovern tells CHSJ News they're not sure how much gas was actually spilled.

McGovern says it takes forty days for the water to make it's way to the intake so they've got lots of time to collect samples and develop a plan to counter the situation.
Several preventative measures were taken over the weekend to try and reduce the risk of contamination including the deployment of booms and a vacuum truck to clean up what they could.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Energy Minister On Point Lepreau

(Energy Minister Jack Keir)
         (File Photo)

The Energy Minister is going right to the source in his search for answers on the refit at Point Lepreau.

Jack Keir has written a letter to the Minister of Natural Resources asking for a straight answer on how much longer the work is going to take telling CHSJ News, in the letter he says rumour and innuendo is no way to operate this project.
Keir says the latest "rumor" he has heard is that NB Power will take over the reactor in October and begin generating electricity by February.
Just last week, NB Power released a refurbishment update saying the project is 75% complete and the problem is with a seal to stop leaks with the calandria tubes.

Calais LNG Project

  (South-West MP Greg Thompson)
              (File Photo)

Depending on what side of the issue you sit on, this is either good or bad news.

The sole financial backer of the controversial Calais LNG proposal has pulled out and now the question is out the proposal dead?

South-West MP Greg Thompson tells CHSJ News, Ottawa's stance on this project has been quite clear so this is good news.

Calais LNG told state regulators last week that if Goldman Sachs can't sell its ownership interest by August 11th, all permit applications will be withdrawn.
They only other application left is Downeast LNG which wants to build its project at the mouth of the St. Croix River.

New Homes In Grand Bay Westfield

(Lions Club Member Harriet Hutchinson)
          (Photo by Jim Hennessy)

The ribbon has been cut on Inglewood Manor in Grand Bay Westfield.

It is a seven unit housing project, six of which are designated affordable housing. Harriet Hutchinson with the River Valley Lions Club says this may not be the end of the project with between 10 and 14 people on a waiting list for this style of home.
The original design for the building called for eleven units and was completed at a cost for one million dollars.

The project received just over $400,000 dollars from the Province and Ottawa.

Cocaine Seized On Queen Street South

(File Photo)

A search of Queen Street South has resulted in a major drug haul for the police.

Sergeant Pat Bonner says at a search Friday night police seized 32 grams of crack Cocaine with a street value of over $6000 dollars.

Bonner says a 19-year-old man has been charged with Possession of Crack Cocaine for the Purpose of Trafficking and also faces violation of parole.
He will appear in court on Monday afternoon to answer to the charge.

Marco Polo Organiser Hears From Erin Brockovich At Conference In Boston

           (Barry Ogden)
             (File Photo)

Erin Brockovich was the guest speaker at a conference on community leadership in Boston attended by Barry Ogden who chairs the city's recreation committee along with his involvement in seeing the Marco Polo tall ship constructed.

The conference dealt with how the grassroots in cities and towns can mobilise to get things done for the better in their communities.

Ogden says he was impressed with what Brockovich had to say as she stressed the importance of being tenacious because bureaucracies are always resistent to change.

More Parking For South End

      (Common Councillor Patty Higgins)
                   (File Photo)

A rezoning application has been approved to allow for more parking in the south end on Ross and St. James Street for the students attending a dental assistant's school. Not everyone is pleased about this. Common Councillor Patty Higgins remembers there was a planning study report which determined there wasn't a need for more parking in that part of the city.

She also points out it's also close to Rainbow Park which will see alot of money spent on it and where Harbour Passage is being extended to. Common Councillor Donnie Snook doesn't like to see parking where there could be multiple housing units.

Reunion 2010 Just Days Away

One of the biggest concert events to hit Saint John is just ten days from getting started.

The Reunion 2010 Music Festival as part of Saint John 225 get started on August 5 and runs til the 8th.

Spokes-person Lisa Hrabluk tells CHSJ News, she is hearing from a lot of people who can't wait to check out Harbour Country and Rocks shows at Fort LaTour.

Hrabluk adds there is something for everyone's musical taste including Jazz on Princess, Harbour Rocks and Country at Fort LaTour and classical Saint John at the Imperial Theater.
Tickets are available at the Imperial, on it's web-site or by calling 674-4100.

New Color For the Tops Of Fire Hydrants

(New Look Hydrant on King Street)
        (Photo By Jim Hennessy)

No doubt you have noticed the fire hydrants in the South Central Peninsula are sporting a new color.

The tops are blue and Acting District Chief Richard Marks tells CHSJ News, this is a new regulation from the National Fire Protection Association.

Marks says the light blue hydrants let fire-fighters know they can expect over 5600 litres a minute when battling a blaze.

The other colors in order of water pressure are green, orange, and red.

Sunwing Is Coming Back To Saint John

       (Saint John Airport)
            (File Photo)

Sunwing Vacation is already making plans for it's fifth year at the Saint John Airport after another successful spring.

Starting next spring, there will be two weekly flights to Varadero beginning March.18th til May.10th.
There is also a weekly departure to Cancun beginning March.27th until May.15th.
No word at this point on the passenger volumes Sunwing had over the spring.

New Radio Station For Nova Scotia

Country music and up to date news is being enjoyed on the south shore of Nova Scotia at 100.7 CJHK Hank FM.

The new radio station is up and running and is owned and operated by Acadia Broadcasting which also owns Country 94 and sister station 97.3 the Wave.

Company Vice-President Jim MacMullin says it is exciting to launch our new station after two years of planning, approvals and construction.

Hank Fm is sharing broadcasting space with it's sister station, CKBW.

The launch of the new station coincides with another exciting event for the Bridgewater stations a move into new state of the art studios and offices.

City Manager Optimistic About City Pension Plan Being Straightened Out

             (City Manager Pat Woods)
                        (File Photo)

A solution to the long term financial problems facing the city's pension plan should be ready by early September. That, according to City Manager Pat Woods who warns this is no time to panic and make rash spending cuts.

According to Woods, the pension fund has more than 325 million dollars to meet its obligations for years to come. The solution he's talking about will deal with what's going to happen 30 or 40 years down the road.


MADD Stepping Up Efforts To Nail Drunk Drivers

There's a new billboard on McAllister Drive asking people to call 911 if they see an impaired driver. The sign was put up thanks to Mothers Against Drunk Driving and the Saint John Police Force.

Rick McNulty is President of MADD Saint John and tells CHSJ News it's a very successful program with 30 per cent of impaired driving cases brought before the courts being the result of 911 calls.

McNulty says Saint John is the second jurisdiction in the country to adopt the 911 program against impaired drivers.

Film Production In Maritimes Appears To Be Coming Back After Slump

Film and television production appears to be on the rebound in some Canadian provinces, including this one, thanks to enhanced tax credit regimes and a strong stable of domestic producers. Ghislain Labbe, who handles financial services for New Brunswick Film, says there is optimism in many areas of the country despite the high value of the loonie and increased competition from U-S states.

Labbe says the bulk of New Brunswick's film production is French, which is thriving in part, because of assistance of federal funding for French language projects shot outside the province of Quebec.

Tim Hogan, of Fredericton-based Dream Street Pictures, says extra help from federal and provincial funding sources is key in an increasingly competitive landscape but he doesn't see much potential for growth for New Brunswick's English language companies who currently aren't getting enough business from Canada's large private broadcasters.

Halifax-based independent filmmaker John Wesley Chisholm believes the challenge is to produce interesting stories. His company, Arcadia Entertainment, specializes in ocean-related documentaries and specials. Chisholm looks at the proliferation of specialty channels as more opportunities than ever existed before.

Affordable Housing To Be Announced In Grand Bay-Westfield

      (Provincial Energy Minister Jack Keir)
                   (File Photo)

Another affordable housing project opens today. Energy Minister Jack Keir and Greg Thompson, MP for New Brunswick Southwest, will both be in Grand Bay-Westfield for the of the project at Inglewood Manor. Things get started at 2pm.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Blow Up Dragon Stabbed

They'll be no inflatable dragon welcoming people at the entrance to the Busker's festival today.

City police say the giant blow up mascot was stabbed 20 times last night.

A nearby security guard saw the attacker, but they managed to get away.

Buskers Rap Up Today

(The Daredevil Chicken Club performs for a crowd in Loyalist Plaza)
(Photo By Sherry Aske)

The buskers rap up their four day visit to the Port City today.
The acrobats, stilt walkers, puppeteers and performers have been performing on the Boardwalk since Thursday as part of the festival's 20th Anniversary.
Every year the Busker's Festival attracts over 35,000 Saint Johners and tourists to the Boardwalk.

Illegal Dumping Still A Problem

Even with the focus of living greener, areas of the Saint John River are still having problems with illegal dumping.

Tom Benjamin is the Executive Director of the Hammond River Angling Association and tells CHSJ News it's an ongoing problem. 

He says while they're not seeing as much litter around, people are still dumping their things on back paths and wherever they can back a truck in. 

Benjamin says the big thing is education as people shouldn't be dumping this material to begin with.

New Bus Route For Valley

(File Photo)

Saint John Transit is launching a new bus route in the Valley starting August 3rd.

Mayor Murray Driscoll tells CHSJ News the new Quispamsis Comex 53 will stop 2 or 3 times along the Vincent Road, including at the site of the new Q-Plex.

Driscoll says the added route will help get more cars off the road and lower carbon emissions.

To see the bus schedule for the Comex 53 go to

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Funeral For John E Jack Irving

(Trinity Anglican Church On Charlotte Street)
              (Photo By Jim Hennessy)

Plenty of emotions on display as friends and family have said goodbye to John E Jack Irving.

The full house on hand at Trinity Anglican Church remembered a man who was a true professional, a father, a brother and a friend.

Premier Graham may have said it best that Irving was a true gentleman who not only employed thousand around the Province but always remembered where he came from and gave back to his community time and time again.

Irving passed away on Wednesday at the age of 78 following a short illness.

Another French Day-Care For Saint John

With demand for the service growing, Saint John has it's second licensed french immersion day-care.

Hawthorne Child care is now accepting registration and owner Michelle Deschenes tells CHSJ News, the reaction to this point has been very enthusiastic.

Deschenes says she has spoken with Samuel De Champlain, which operates the other french speaking day-care, and they support her business.

For more information you can call 696-0978.

Campus Station Recruits Youth

Have you ever thought you might have a career in radio? If the answer is yes, Saint John Youth Radio is looking for you.

With help from a federal grant, the campus radio station is developing a current affairs program and is looking for boys and girls ages 16 to 20.

Spokes-person Holly Johnson tells CHSJ News, this is a very hands on program.

Johnson says they are hosting an open house at the campus station this afternoon at one on the second floor of the student union building.

If you have any questions you can call 608-9129.

Funeral Today For Jack Irving

Family, friends and well-wishers will gather this morning to say goodbye to John E. (Jack) Irving.

He passed away on Wednesday of this week after a short illness at the age of 78.

Tributes have been rolling in all week from the municipal, provincial and federal levels speaking of the great things Irving accomplished both on a professional and personal level.

Today's public funeral service gets started at eleven at the Trinity Anglican Church on Charlotte Street.

Fishing For Research

It's part research, part tournament this weekend at the Hammond River Angling Association.

Tom Benjamin is the Association's Executive Director and says their Kayak Fishing Tournament starts early tomorrow morning, but it's not your average competition. 

He says says it's not how many fish you catch, or who catches the biggest fish, but who catches the most different species.

Benjamin says they'll be keeping a tally of what kinds of fish are caught, to learn more about what's in the river system.

He says says everything is catch and release so be sure to bring your digital camera.

For more information go to

Friday, July 23, 2010

Up, Up, And Away On The West Side

(Photo by Deborah MacDonald)

Residents in the Duke Street West area somewhat surprised this evening to see a hot air balloon in the park next to the Carleton Kirk complex.
The company was offering flights in the tethered balloon - an offer which proved highly popular with neighborhood kids.