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Thursday, January 12, 2012

Layoffs Not Expected At Canaport LNG Despite Sluggish Natural Gas Industry

The amount of liquefied natural gas going through the Canaport LNG terminal this year will match or be slightly below 2011 levels.

General Manager of Canaport LNG Adolfo Azc√°rraga says the terminal will operate at about 40 percent capacity but employment levels will not be affected.  He says most receiving terminals operate at about 60 percent capacity.

Meanwhile, the Director of LNG North America for Repsol Phillip Ribbeck says demand for natural gas has been low recently due to the warm weather and high supplies.

He says his company is focused on making money over time and in any scenario.

About 100 people work at Canaport LNG.

We May Get 15 Centimetres Of Snow

The first significant snowfall of the new year may bring 15 centimetres.
Environment Canada Meterologist Linda Libby tells CHSJ News in the changeover from snow to rain after midnight we may see ice pellets or freezing rain.

Libby says we're looking at up to 15 centimetres by midnight with blowing snow.

Some flights are cancelled in and out of the Saint John airport, so before you make the trek out you should call ahead and check on your flight.

To see our list of cancellations, click here

Ambassador Of Qatar Visits New Brunswick

The Ambassador of Qatar for Canada paying his first visit to New Brunswick today.

Salem Murbarak Al-Shafi visiting the Canaport LNG terminal -- the State of Qatar signed a multi-year agreement to supply liquefied natural gas to Repsol Energy Canada back in 2010.

Al-Shafi says it was great to be at the terminal during the arrival of a vessel from Qatar.

He adds he is impressed with the facility's focus on the environment and involvement in the community.

Student Numbers In City Will Drop For Years Ahead

Future enrollment numbers in School District 8 don't look good. According to provincial estimates, the student numbers at high schools in the city will continue declining over the next 12 years.
Bob McDevitt of the District 8 Education Council has been doing some number crunching and even though the school district would like to maintain 4 viable high schools in the city, he concedes that may not be possible over the long term but the big question would be which of the high schools would close.
The school district meantime is forecasting a deficit of almost 466 thousand dollars with principals told to be careful with their spending. Minor repairs are being deferred and professional development cut back.

Public Consultation On School Closures Was Not Just Lip Service

The recommendation from the District 8 Education Council to keep Morna Heights school from closing shows public consultation is not a waste of time. So says Rob Fowler who chairs the District Education Council. 

He tells CHSJ News they listened to what the parents had to say and they made a strong case to keep their local school open. 

The recommendation, which also includes building a new school in Grand Bay-Westfield, goes to Provincial Education Jody Carr. Fowler says nothing is going to happen for a few years yet so he doesn't expect a decision anytime soon.

Homeless City Men Can Get "Out Of The Cold"

If there was ever a night to have shelter from the storm, it's tonight and one City church will be providing just that.
The "Out of the Cold" shelter operates out of the Grace Presbyterian Church on Coburg street.
Co-ordinator Jillian Driscoll tells CHSJ News they reopened for the winter on January 1st and have the capacity for 15 men a night.

She says they always need volunteers, money to provide the men who come to stay with their basic needs and she adds they also feed them.

Driscoll adds volunteers are always needed along with donations of gift cards for coffee shops and grocery stores, food donations, cash and men's socks.
The shelter opens at 9pm and closes at 8am the next morning.

For more information on volunteering call Fern Bennett at 645-9208.
To make a cash donation, call the church at 634-7765 or to donate gift cards, food or men's socks call 672-4952.

Gas Prices Are Up Again

You'll be paying more for gas after the weekly setting if you have to fill up.

The maximum price for self serve regular has gone up by 1.7 cents a litre but there has been a far greater increase if you use diesel with the maximum price rising by just over 5 cents a litre. 

The price of heating oil also rising by over five cents to $1.21.4 a litre while propane is a cent a litre more expensive at $1.11.2.

Recommendation Made On Fate Of Morna Heights School

The announcement coming as a surprise as the District 8 Education Council votes to recommend a new school be built in Grand Bay-Westfield but that Morna Heights School stay open. 

Lori Nason of the Parents Association at Morna Heights didn't expect the decision this soon but says the parents are ecstatic. She adds they were optimistic because the case they made was strong. 

In making the recommendation, the District Education Council cited Morna Heights as being a community school with the area having the potential for future residential growth which means more young families moving there.

The final decision on the fate of Morna Heights will rest with Provincial Education Minister Jody Carr.

Larger School District Gets Support

Under the reorganisation plan, School Districts 6, 8 and 10 will merge into one stretching from St. Stephen all the way to Sussex. 

Rob Fowler, who chairs the District 8 Education Council, supports the move. He doesn't believe the merged school district will be too large to be managed. 

Fowler points out there are some school districts around the country that are larger with more students than the entire province of New Brunswick.

Reduction In School Districts Will Not Affect Quality Of Education

The Chair of the District 6 education council is confident that the quality of education for students will not be affected by the slashing of seven school districts.

Roger Nesbitt tells CHSJ News putting the plan in place for the 2012-2013 school year will be tough but he thinks it can happen.

He says everyone working in the districts will rise to the occasion and keep everything running smoothly.

He adds he is not surprised with the province's decision as it is looking at any and all avenues to save money.

Dogs To Celebrate Before The Game Tonight

Hearts and eyes may be full with pride and tears when 7 players are honoured tonight before the Sea Dogs game for their recent international play including the World Junior Hockey Tournament.

Four Sea Dogs players including bronze medalists Jonathan Huberdeau and Nathan Beaulieu of Canada will be recognized before the game against Shawinigan.

American Charlie Coyle, a recent acquisition by the Dogs, who played for his country is also making his Sea Dogs debut tonight.

All seven players get a plaque from the Sea Dogs while Jonathan Huberdeau and Nathan Beaulieu will be presented with official Team Canada jerseys at centre ice.

The puck drops at 7 at Harbour Station.