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Thursday, November 21, 2013

Busy Lunch Hour for SJFD

A busy lunch hour for City fire crews with back to back calls on opposite side of the City.

Crews had just responded to an issue with a water sprinkler when another call came in on the east side. 

Platoon chief Kevin Forrest tells CHSJ News the first call was at a home on Brigadoon Court in Millidgeville.

He says on arrival crews found it was an activated sprinkler system in the house that caused some water damage.

At the same time, Fire crews were called to a possible structure fire on Simpson Drive in East Saint John. 

It turned out the release valve on the home's water heater went causing steam to fill the home.    Firefighters shut down power to the area and turned the house back over to the homeowner.

Clean Drinking Water May Be Closer

A federal funding announcement regarding water is expected tomorrow afternoon at City hall.

Saint John MP Rodney Weston is hosting a news conference at 3pm tomorrow in the Ludlow Room at City hall.

He has confirmed to CHSJ News that it does have something to do with water.

In March, Mayor Mel Norton said council is committed to delivering clean drinking water because the community wants it.

An application to P3 Canada was made by the City earlier this year looking for the funding to build a new water treatment system.

Boudreau: Pensioners Being "Forced" To Accept Shared Risk

A heated exchange in Question Period today between Shediac—Cap-PelĂ© MLA Victor Boudreau and Finance Minister Blaine Higgs over whether the Shared Risk model is the only option for the public service pension plan.

Higgs responded that there have been actuarial reports done from the get-go and they've done their due diligence--but Boudreau argues there's been a lack of transparency and the model has been "forced" on the retirees and current pensioners.

Boudreau says if there is an actuarial plan on the Shared Risk model, the finance minister should table it in the legislature.

Party Leaders Butt Heads Over Shale Gas

Premier David Alward and Provincial Liberal leader Brian Gallant clashing over shale gas.

 Gallant says the Conservatives are jumping ahead too fast without giving enoough consideration to the effect on human health and the environment. 

He points to a document from the Environmental Protection Agency in the U.S. which talks about the potential hazards to human health of fracking. He charges the Alward Government decided to press ahead without giving due consideration to human health, the environment and royalties.

The Premier dismisses the Liberals as "the moratorium party", accusing them of having no plan for growing the provincial economy.

The Y Is $260,000 Closer To A New Home

The Saint John Y is $260,000 closer to its fundraising goal of 7 million dollars for a new facility thanks to the generosity of some local donors. 

The Greater Saint John Community Foundation which normally does not support corporate campaigns donating $60,000 and Dale and Wendy Knox will donate $100,000 for a room in memory of Pat Davis a longtime Y employee.

The Y's President and CEO Shilo Boucher tells CHSJ News the Y family was touched by that.

She tells us he surprised her with that  adding she knows Dale Knox worked very closely with Pat and she did as well so it definitely brought tears to her eyes.

Another anonymous donation of $100,000 was announced.

Boucher tells us we can expect more announcements in the new year and if all the funding is in place they hope to break ground on the new Y on Churchill Boulevard in the new year.

Lights Out For 6000 Today

6000 home and businesses in the KV will be without electricity for a few hours today because of some work that NB Power needs to do.

The outage beginning at 1pm today will impact Quispamsis, Gondola Point, Kingston Peninsula and Meenans Cove.

The repairs are expected to be completed by late this afternoon.

Demolition Starting On Simm's Factory

 The Simm's brush factory announced back in the summer it would be closing down its Saint John operations and laying off 35 employees--and now JDI has confirmed the iconic glass building itself will be demolished in the new year. 

Mary Keith of JDI explains demolition has already begun on the wooden building that is behind the iconic glass-fronted factory on Simm's Corner--and by the new year, the factory itself will be levelled and the site used for heavy industrial purposes.

Keith says they're looking at all the options when it comes to traffic calming on Simm's Corner, but the solution won't necessarily involve a divestiture of any of that land.

Simms has been a family business since it was founded in 1866. 

The glass building was built in 1912.

Gas Prices Rise

If you have to fill up with self serve regular, you will have to pay more with a three cent a litre rise in the maximum price after the weekly setting. 

The maximum price for diesel also going up by a cent and a half a litre. 

Heating oil is also more expensive by just over 1 and a half cents. Propane also rising by just over a cent a litre.

Shared Risk Pension Model Called "Irresponsible"

" Policy development on the fly".........That's what provincial government retirees are calling the shared risk pension model and have their own expert criticising what's being proposed. 

The Pension Coalition calls Bernard Dussault one of the original architects who reformed the Canada Pension Plan as well as being actuary for the Professional Institute of the Public Service of Canada. 

Dussault is denouncing the shared risk model as irresponsible because it lacks the standard actuarial projections on how much it will wind up costing along with what the short, medium and long term financial effects will be on the provincial pension plan itself.

Fitz-Randolph's Legacy Is Fighting To Protect Land

A celebration of the life of Mabel Fitz-Randolph is coming up this afternoon on the west side.     

The 100 year old woman recently passed away.

She spearhead the move to make the Musquash estuary a marine protected area and even spurred on other landowners by giving more than 700 acres of her own land to the cause.

Andrew Holland of the Nature Conservancy of Canada tells CHSJ News her efforts did not go unnoticed.

He says because of her work she was given an environmental lifetime achievment award from the Province which he says is a testament to her personal contribution to this area west of Saint John on the lower Bay of Fundy.

A funeral for Fitz-Randolph will be held at 1pm today at the Castle Funeral home on Lancaster Avenue.