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Thursday, August 18, 2011

ONE Change Gets Provincial Dollars For Arts Program

The ONE Change program getting a financial boost in the arm to the tune of 25-hundred dollars.

Minister of Culture, Wellness and Sport Trevor Holder tells CHSJ News revitalizing the North End is a slow and steady process.
The money will be used towards the Summer Arts in the Park program, which features music, movies, and live performances.

Mixed Reaction To Removal Of Grand Manan Ferry Tolls

With Premier David Alward recently reiterating his campaign promise to remove the tolls off the Grand Manan Ferry, it's a mixed response coming from some prominent members of the island communities.

Mayor of Blacks Harbour Terry James says she's in support of the removal of the tolls as it will increase the number of visitors to the community.

But Liberal MLA for Charlotte-The Isles Rick Doucet says it may not be the best move as it will cost the province 1.5 million dollars a year to support the ferry.  He wonders how the Alward government will pay for the costs.

Premier Alward says the tolls will not come off this year but plans to remove them during his mandate.

Tenders Close Today On Demolition of Toll Plaza

The toll plaza at the Harbour Bridge is getting closer to being removed as tenders close today on the demolition of the structure.

Department of Transportation spokesperson Valerie Kilfoil tells CHSJ News there were 5 bids and a choice will be made within 3 weeks.

The traffic lanes will also be redesigned in the area.

New Stairs For Mispec Beach

Canaport LNG celebrating the installation of new stairs leading down to Mispec Beach.

The stairs were damaged last winter which resulted in the closure of the beach.

Spokesperson Kate Shannon tells CHSJ News since the company is now a fixture in the Red Head area, they were glad to it and support their neighbours.

Canaport LNG holding a BBQ today to celebrate the occasion.

Further Cuts To Education Not Possible

Some questions being raised about what form further cuts will take in education after the first two per cent reduction caused such an outcry. 

Education Minister Jody Carr is speaking about cost containment. Rob Fowler, who chairs the District 8 Education Council, believes Carr has recognized that further 2 per cent cuts in the years ahead are not possible.

Fowler thinks there could be some innovative ways to save money such as amalgamations and the idea of sharing services between school districts. He doesn't think you'll be seeing further cuts in any of the front line operations.

Gas Prices In City Increase

You'll be paying a bit more for gas if you have to fill up today.

The price rise for self serve regular was significant at 3 cents a litre to $1.25.1 around town.

Diesel increased by the slightest of margins to $1.26.9.

There was no change in the listed price of propane. It's still at $1.12.8 a litre while heating oil has gone down a bit to $1.10.6 a litre.

Almost Half Of Students In Saint John Area Smoke Pot

Alcohol is the drug of choice among District 6 students according to a 2010 survey.

Joyce Melvin with PASAGE Saint John presenting the results of the survey to District 8 Education Council to raise awareness on the drug situation among students.

Melvin says marijuana follows alcohol in popularity but she's also seen an increase in the use of crack cocaine. The survey shows 45 per cent of students use marijuana.

She says it would be helpful to her work if District 8 did a similar survey with its students. Acting superintendent Robert Johnson says it's something they would consider but there is the cost to consider at a time of spending cutbacks.

Melvin says it will be another two years before she has the information from the provincial student drug use survey in her hands.

Three Vehicles Collide West Of City

Only one person needing first aid treatment after a three vehicle crash on Route 790 in Little Lepreau.

Captain Andrew Sanojca says the Musquash Fire Department responded to the call just before 4 o'clock yesterday afternoon near Basin Road. He says a car was rear ended by another vehicle before it was forced into the oncoming lane of traffic.

Sanojca says all three drivers were already out of their cars when paramedics arrived.

Traffic was reduced to one lane for almost two hours while crews cleaned up some fluids that had spilled onto the road during the crash.

Anti-Bullying Group Gets Boost

A national anti-bullying organization launched in the province has hit an important miletone...... Bullying Canada has offically become a national charity which means any donations to the organisation are tax deductable.

Co-Founder Rob Frenette tells CHSJ News it will let them offer more services and be more effective.

He's hoping the scholarships will be available next September. Other new opportunities include offering an anti-bullying speaking program for schools and being able offer tax receipts on donations.