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Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Refinery Recovering From A Brief Power Outage

Did you find the extra smoke and flames at the Refinery a wee bit scary? We can tell you what happened.

The Refinery had a brief power outage this afternoon about 330pm.

It impacted part of the facility but not production.

The outage did result in additional flaring.

Relations Between Provincial Retirees & The Province Thaw Slightly

The Alward Government will not be moving ahead with the shared risk model for provincial government retirees, at least until the fall.

 The Pension Coalition is calling that a move in the right direction while discussions continue. The Pension Coalition's Clifford Kennedy tells CHSJ News the retirees are not inflexible.

He says the pensioners understand that changes are required but believe it should be on a go forward basis and should not impact negatively on the retirees.

Coalition Co-Chair Bonny Hoyt Hallett says the retirees feel somewhat positive after their initial discussions with Provincial Finance Minister Blaine Higgs.

Oil Spill Response Exercise Underway

The Trade and Convention Centre has been turned a command post as hundreds respond to a simulated oil spill in the Bay of Fundy. 

The Canadian Coastguard, the U.S. Coastguard and Shell oil are conducting a three-day pollution-response exercise. The scenario is that an oil tanker and a boat have collided outside the harbour. 

Joe LeClair of the nation's Coastguard tells CHSJ News they're conducting it here because Saint John is one of the major oil terminals for the country and they like to exercise where there's the highest level of risk.

Organizing A Fundraiser For A Woman They Never Met

The idea to fundraise for a little girl who lost her mom last month has huge local support.

Deanna King and Terri Kingston started a Facebook group in memory of 33 year old Tanya Shand and within 48 hours it had 5000 people.

Co-organizer Terri Kingston tells CHSJ News she identifies with Tanya as a mom and she wants to spread awareness about domestic violence.

Kingston says in the end Cheyenne lost both of her parents because of it adding she wants to see an end to domestic violence and she hopes her community would do the same for her and her kids if it happened to her.

The fundraiser for Cheyenne Shand is coming up on Sunday at the qplex from 11am to 3pm.  Donations can be made in her name at any TD Canada Trust branch.

Work To Stop Oakville Acres Flooding Has Begun

It's been months in the making, but work to stop the flooding issue at Oakville Acres is underway.

Quispamsis Mayor Murray Driscoll says negotiations between Quispamsis and Rothesay involved maximum water levels in the detention pond, which was resolved when Rothesay agreed to lower levels to a maximum of 26.5 metres.

Work on the force main has started, they're in the process of getting a new lift station installed and getting rid of the wastewater management station. Driscoll says the force main and the new lift station will cost well over a million dollars each. The old lift station is over 38 years old.

Driscoll says the project could be done by next Spring.

Further Search To Identify Human Bones

A further search has been conducted to find out the identity of bones discovered near Spruce Lake last spring.

The human bones were originally uncovered last April, and since then the Saint John Police,Forensic Identification unit and the Major Crime Unit, and a forensic anthropologist have been working on the case.

This week, a thorough follow-up search was conducted in this area with help from the River Valley Ground search & Rescue and York Sunbury Search & Rescue. More items were uncovered and are being analyzed.

Firefighters Lend A Hand To Kids

Kids at Saint John the Baptist's lunch program are going to get a neat surprise tomorrow.

Some big-hearted local firefighters are coming in to serve and prepare food to the kids. Saint John Firefighter's Association president Paul Stackhouse tells CHSJ News the fire department stepped up when the program fell short this week.

The Firefighters have made a small donation to buy the food, and 16 off-duty firefighters will be helping out. 240 kids attend the lunch program.

New Time To Catch Council On TV

If you're a dedicated follower of municipal politics, your Monday night schedule is going to change.

Common council has voted to start televising their meetings live rather as opposed to the 3 hour delay they currently have. Common Councillor Shirley McAlary says there are arguments for and against both options: although some people dislike staying up late to watch the meetings, others may find the new time conflicts with their supper.

In the end, all voted to try broadcasting the meetings live starting at 6pm instead of 9pm on Monday nights and see how it goes. That means the meetings will now have to start precisely on time, and any breaks will need to be scheduled. In two weeks, meetings will also switch to a biweekly schedule

Winning Lottery Ticket Was Almost Tossed Out

A Sussex area man almost threw out a lottery ticket that turned out to be worth nearly 300 thousand dollars.

Randy McElroy of Campbell Settlement bought a Lotto Max ticket for the May 10th draw which sat in his truck for weeks.

He considered throwing it away after hearing gossip that someone had already claimed the prize but is glad he didn't.

He may now take the summer off after collecting a cheque for more than 297 thousand dollars from the Lottery Corporation.

Mock Exercise Today

The Saint John Emergency Management Organization is taking part in a mock exercise with Maritimes and Northeast Pipelines.

It will simulate a possible natural gas pipeline rupture on Fort LaTour Drive from now until noon.

Some emergency vehicles and a command post are expected to be in the area. There should not be any interruptions to traffic.

Forensic Evidence Needed In Rooming House Death

There's another delay in the case of a Saint John man charged in the death of 66 year old Duncan MacDonald.

35 year old Nicholas Logan and MacDonald both lived at a rooming house on the corner of Duke and Prince William, where the older man was seriously injured in a March 16th incident. MacDonald died in hospital on April 10. Since then, Logan has undergone a number of mental assessments in Restigouche and has received a diagnosis of paranoid schizophrenia, which suggests he will not be held criminally responsible for his actions.

Now, the court is awaiting forensic evidence from the hospital before it can proceed with the case. Logan will appear in court again on July 21rst.

Traffic Notes For Drivers

The Saint John Emergency Management Organization (EMO) will be participating in a mock exercise led by Maritimes and Northeast Pipelines.

It will simulate a possible natural gas pipeline rupture, and will take place on Fort LaTour Drive from 10 a.m. to noon. Some emergency vehicles and a command post are expected to be in the area. There should not be any interruptions to traffic.

Millidge Avenue will be reduced to one lane for 2 to 3 days starting today from Somerset to University Avenue while crews do some repaving.

Full Ferry Service At Gondola Point

The Department of Transportation letting us know both ferries are up and running for the morning rush hour at Gondola Point.

Promise Made On Catastrophic Drug Program

A complete prescription and catastrophic drug program will be in place before the next provincial election in September of 2014. 

That promise being made by Provincial Health Minister Ted Flemming who says he expects to begin rolling out parts of a catastrophic drug program as early as this fall.

Liberal health critic Donald Arseneault is accusing the Alward government of delaying the program in order to buy votes ahead of the next election.     

Flemming denies that, claiming time is needed to make sure it's done right because of the program's complexity.

Quispamsis Not Interested In More Regional Policing

While the city throws its support behind the idea to increase regional policing, an outlying town isn't as keen on the concept.

Quispamsis Mayor Murray Driscoll tells CHSJ News they already work with the city on a slew of projects, and they'll continue to collaborate. But beyond that, the town has no desire to combine forces.

 Driscoll says their crime rate is down, at a cost that's affordable. He says amalgamation  would only increase their costs.

He says they've already found efficiencies, they're not duplicating services and bringing up police regionalization time and time again achieves very little.