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Friday, September 3, 2010

City E-M-O Briefing

Liberals Promising To Double Population Growth

Premier Graham is promising to double our population growth over the next four years if re-elected in this month's provincial election.
Graham made the pledge during a quick stop in the city -- he says our population has grown by about six thousand in the last four years and he wants to double that number.
Among other things he's promising to set up a pilot program for community based sponsorship of economic immigrants - press the Feds for a faster immigration process - and - use technology to link former New Brunswickers to employment opportunities here.
As far as a cost -- he would only say the price tag would be included when the full Liberal platform is rolled out.

City Crews Are Ready for Earl

(Director of Municipal Operations Paul Groody)
            (Photo By Jim Hennessy)

Flood prone area's especially Glen Falls are on the radar for City Works Crews.

They have been busy over the past 36 hours cleaning out sanitary and storm drains to make any impact the heavy rain might heve on certain areas not as harsh.
Director of Municipal Operations Paul Groody says the perfect storm to cause trouble in the Glen and other areas is heavy rain and high tide.

Groody says he understands there are people who will head for the beach to get a look at the kicked up surf but is advising everyone to stay where it is safe and ride out the storm. 

Provincial Emergency Measures Prepared

(Cart Corral Near Empty At Rothesay Avenue Superstore)
               (Photo By Jim Hennessy)

Are you ready for what-ever Hurricane Earl may bring to the area?

That question from the Provincial EMO today as they continue to track the path of the storm.

Director Andy Morton says there are a lot of thing you will need to hold you over if power is lost for an extended period.

Morton adds with 75mm's of rain expected to come hard and fast, anyone living in a low lying area could be susceptable to flooding.

Earl Is Still On Track To Hit The Bay of Fundy Tomorrow

The path of Hurricane Earl has not changed much from yesterday and is still heading for the Bay of Fundy tomorrow morning.
The Canadian Hurricane Centre is warning of top wind speeds up to 130 kilometres per hour.

Program Supervisor Chris Fogarty says Earl is likely to maintain its wind speed because of it's track over warm waters and in tropical air mass.
He says they are still following a track that has it hitting the Bay of Fundy north of the Annapolis Valley and into the Gulf of St. Lawrence.

Fogarty estimates rainfall of about an inch of rain an hour across Nova Scotia, Cape Breton and Prince Edward Island and he adds those wind speeds will cause tree branches to break, roofing materials to blow away and damage signs.

Kennebecasis Valley Preparing For Earl

          (Satellite Shot Of Hurricane Earl)

The Kennebecasis Valley Emergency Measures Organization, like it's counter-part here in Saint John, is spreading the word to prepare for what Earl may bring to the area.
Spokes-person Brian Shanks tells CHSJ News, with a lot of homes close to the river, there is a concern about flooding but with all of this hot weather over the summer, the river is low so there is a capacity for a lot of rain.
Shanks says it also is a good idea to take a walk around your property and stack away any objects that may act as a projectile.
It also will serve you well to fill up your bath-tub to make sure you can flush your toilet if the power should go out if your hooked up to well and septic.

Hampton Community Center Vandalized

The search is on by RCMP for whom-ever vandalized the Hampton Community Center.
Officers say there is a large amount of graffiti on the building and the parking lot.
Oil was also dumped into the holding tank for the center's plant and watering system which is hooked into the back of a pick-up truck.
No word on what it will cost to fix the damage.

Hooking Up A New Piece Of Equipment at the Refinery

A new piece of equipment is just over a month away from being installed at the Irving Oil Refinery.

Pre-dressing of the dehexanizer column, which includes among other things, the installation of heat tracing, insulation & cladding continues.
It's expected the unit will be installed by early October with it scheduled to go on line by the middle of next year.

The new piece of equipment is expected to reduce benzene content in gasoline produced by the refinery by approximately 30 per cent and cost $99 million dollars.

Paving Projects Making Great Strides

Thanks to the sunny stretch of weather around the Province, the Department of Transportation is making great strides on several projects around the Province.
Asphalt is being laid in record time with over 500 thousand tonnes spread out to this point which means close to 70% of planned projects are completed.

Paving work is expected to continue until the third week of October.
As far as chip-seal programs are concerned, upgrades to 704 kms of road out of 815 have been finished to this point.

On the flip side, several concrete pours, including one at the One Mile Interchange had to be re-scheduled because of quality concerns due to the temperature.

More Record Temperatures For Greater Saint John

This won't come as a shock to anyone.

We set another temperature record yesterday, the fourth day in a row maxing out at 31.3.

Meteorologist Linda Libby with Environment Canada tells CHSJ News, she isn't ready to attribute the warm temperatures to global warming as records show it was this warm in the area back in the 30's and 40's.

The record temperature for today is 31 degree's.

Libby says our humidex value maxed out at 39.1 on the first day of the month, shattering the previous mark of 36.5 set back in 1969.

Update On Stolen Fishing Boat

A major theft last night is being investigated by City Police who have released more information.

Someone made off last night with a large scallop boat, valued at half a million dollars, from Long Wharf.

It had been unloading scallops and Sergeant Pat Bonner says the Captain went ashore and when he got back around 11, it was gone.

According to police, the vessel did not sustain any damage.

City Planning Fees On The Rise

                (Saint John City Hall)
                      (File Photo)

The City is increasing what it charges to process planning applications, the first such increase since 1998.

Chief City Planner Ken Forrest says, on average, over 180 planning applications are filed each year and it costs the taxpayer money each time.

Forrest points out, even with the increases, the city will only be recovering 15 per cent of the cost.

Fishing Boat Taken For Joy Ride

It's not everyday City Police get a call about a fishing boat being stolen but that's what happened last night. The owner of a big scallop boat left it at Long Wharf while he got something to eat. Whe he returned, it was gone. The vessel was later discovered beached at Partridge Island. No word on who did it and why.

Elections NB To Make It Easier For Students To Vote

The UNB Saint John Student Center is home to a returning office for the Provincial Vote. It's part of Elections NB's out-reach program to get younger people interested in casting a ballot.

Elections Officer Barton Claus tells CHSJ News, the beauty of the set-up is it doesn't matter where a student calls home, they can vote.

It's been well documented that people between the ages of 18-25 typically don't vote and Claus is hoping this program can change that.

Saint Johnners Urged To Prepare For Earl

Be prepared with a 72-hour emergency kit, that is the message for the Saint John Emergency Measures Organization.

Deputy Fire Chief Mark Gillan tells CHSJ News as the storm gets closer they will offer frequent updates for residents.

Gillan says they will be sending current information to their media partners and he says Saint Johners are good are being prepared.

He adds they are hoping for the best but preparing for the worst.

For more information on how to prepare your home or business for Hurricane Earl:

go to

Precautions To Be Taken At East Side Construction Site

No work is planned but the Provincial Department of Transportation is preparing to protect the One Mile Interchange construction site.

DOT's Andrew Holland tells CHSJ news they are mostly concerned with the impact of Hurriane Earl's strong winds on their equipment rather than the rain.

Extra bracing will be put on the wooden forms crews are using for concrete pours to make sure they don't blow away and the large cranes will taken down out of concern over the high winds.