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Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Clean Air Coalition Says It's A Good Start

Gordon Dalzell with the Clean Air Coalition tells CHSJ News, the funding from the Environmental Trust Fund is a good start, but there is still more to be done.Dalzell says advocacy groups need to start seeing some funding, because there is only so much that can be done on a volunteer basis.
Dalzell says he thinks the funding is great news, especially the projects that relate to renewable resources.

Citys Image Becoming Greener

[Mayor Ivan Court---Photo by Dave Briggs]

Mayor Ivan Court says this funding for environmentally friendly projects is helping change the citys image.
Court says the image of city continues to change each day, and says the last two generations of residents recognize mistakes made in the past, and it's time to learn from those errors.He says the funding from the Environmental Trust Fund will greatly help the greater Saint John area become more green.

24 Environmentally Friendly Saint John Projects Getting Funding

[Environment Minister Rick Miles----Photo by Dave Briggs]

The provincial government is taking over half a million dollars from the Environmental Trust Fund for 24 projects in the greater Saint John region.Environment Minister Rick Miles says the projects not only benefit the environment, but will boost the economy.
Miles says the projects being funded will create jobs throughout the Saint John region.
$54 thousand dollars will be going to the Fundy Region Solid Waste Commission for it's waste reduction projects in schools, and $40 thousand is going to the restoration of the Kennebcasis River.

Money for the City market

Ottawa and City Hall are each putting in $25,000 dollars for a study on the City Market. This is phase one of a multi-tiered project to look into some renovation work needed. Amy Poffenroth is Deputy Commissioner of Buildings and Inspections Services and tells CHSJ News, this will give them some expert advice on work needed on several projects in the building including the exterior and tower portion.

Poffenroth says a final report should be in place by the winter.

Cash for St. Andrews

St. Andrews has received Federal and Provincial cash to make upgrades to it's waste-water treatment plant. It's just over $976,000 each towards the total eligible cost of the project with the town contributing the balance. The plant, located on Prince of Wales Street, is over 25 years old with outdated equipment and reaching capacity.

Improvements will create a modern plant capable of meeting the Town’s current and future treatment needs. No word on what the total cost of the project is or when work will get started.

Landfill Making Hay With Gas

(Provincial Environment Minister Rick Miles announcing provincial funds for landfill gas project - photo by Gary MacDonald)
The Crane Mountain Landfill is making some history -- officials say it's the first in North America to capture methane gas - produced by decomposing garbage - and use it to generate electricity to power the site. General Manager Marc MacLeod tells CHSJ News excess electricity will be sold to Saint John Energy to help generate revenue which in turn will eventually reduce tipping fees and help with expansion of various programs.Saint John Energy president Eric Marr says the electricity purchased from the landfill will power between 300 and 400 homes per year.The provincial government is contributing 1.75-million dollars to help with the five million dollar total cost of the project.

South Central Peninsula Parking Changes a Success

The results are in ----- residents in the South Central Peninsula like the changes made to parking.Dave Hardy with Hardy Stevenson and Associates says the general feedback received from public forums was people like the opposite side of the street parking.Hardy says emergency vehicles are finding streets easier to manoeuvre now compared to the study done in 2001.
Hardy says residents concerns remain on snow removal. He says people are still confused by snow bans, and think the snow will be removed rather than pushed aside.

Where is the Ferries Report

Residents who use the Gagetown, Hampstead and Bellisle ferries are asking the question....""What does the Future Hold for the Vessels?"" Former MLA Eric Allaby is leading a committee working on a final report with recommendations for the Department of Transportation. The report was supposed to be finalized by the end of last month, but still no word on when it will surface. Our news-room has left messages for Allaby and have yet to hear back.

A call to the Department of Transportation and it's spokes-person says they like residents, continue to wait to get a look at the document before any final decisions are made about the future of the vessels. Residents in the affected area's of the ferries held rallies and protested the Legislature to have the decision to scrap the vessels reversed back in the spring.

Update on Construction of Shannex Complex

The look at the end of Millenium Drive continues to take on a new shape. Construction of phase one of the Shannex Complex continues to make steady progress with a completion date set for next summer. How-ever, the retirement living building and nursing home is on target for completion this winter. Site General Manager John Campbell tells CHSJ News, with construction of this size, timing is always a tough thing to predict.

Campbell adds they have increased the crews on the site to get the buildings ""groove tight"" before the colder weather hits.

Rock Thrown at Vehicle

A close call for one driver on Highway One last night. Sussex RCMP were called to an over-pass near Penobsquis just before midnight to find a vehicle had been hit with a boulder.

The driver wasn't hurt and officer's continue to search for who threw the rock.

Missing Boat Found

If you own a boat and can't find might want to give RCMP in Grand Bay Westfield a call. Officers found a 12' aluminum boat abandoned 100 meters south of the Brundage Point ferry landing yesterday morning.

Sargeant Gary Fournier tells CHSJ News, they are not dealing a with a missing person and just want to get the boat back to it's rightful owner. You can get in touch with them at 757-1020.

Quispamsis Town Council Meets Tonight

Work on the Quispamsis water system will be up for discussion during tonight's town council meeting. More residents will be getting town water if the next phase of an expansion plan is approved. The expansion would include homes on Autumn Avenue and Summer Court. If the third phase of the project is approved, Dillon Consulting LTD will compile information needed to put the job to tender.

Also on tonight's agenda is a request by Shannex New Brunswick for a land rezoning. The retirement facility needs land rezoned for parking, pedestrian access and landscaped areas. The meeting gets started tonight at 7pm.

Education Critic Accuses Minister of Glossing Over Truth

The province's Education Opposition Critic is accusing the Minister of Education of glossing over the fact hundreds of teacher's assistants, intervention workers and librarians won't be getting their jobs back. Minister Roland Haché was quoted last week as saying the provincial government has fulfilled its commitment to restore 2.9 million dollars to school districts--- allowing them to reinstate intervention programs and services to school libraries.

Opposition critic, Claude Landry says that statement is misleading. Landry says the minister makes it seem as though all laid-off intervention workers and school librarians will be reinstated when that's not the case. The jobs were lost during the spring budget cuts to the Department of Education.

Police Look for Four Attackers

City police are looking for four men in connection with an assault on a man believed to be in his 40's last night around 11:30pm. Staff Sgt. Steve Patterson tells CHSJ news the man was running to catch a bus, when someone yelled at him from behind and he stopped. Police say the man said something back then continued to run toward the bus. That's when a car with two men in it stopped and attacked him. Sgt. Patterson says another vehicle then pulled up and two more men got out and beat him up.

The man was taken to hospital with non-serious injuries and has since been released.

Stadium Funding On the Way

Federal money is on the way for the proposed upgrade of the Canada Games Stadium. Saint John M-P Rodney Weston will announce 1.4-million dollars in federal funding for the project during a news conference tomorrow morning. So far -- the Graham government hasn't committed any funds to the project -- but -- local government M-L-A's are still pushing to get some money. The city -- U-N-B-S-J and the private sector have all pledged funds to help with the six million dollar project which needs to be finished before next summer's Acadien Games scheduled to be held here

Sandy Point Road Development

The city is looking into ways to develop on land located on Sandy Point Road, adjacent to Rockwood Park.Mayor Ivan Court says a study needs to be conducted to determine the property lines of the park and the city owned property.Councilor Peter McGuire says he can support this study, if it helps move things along, and the lots can start bringing in revenue.
The motion to have a study conducted barely passed with 5 councilors and the mayor out voting the opposing 5 councilors by one vote.

Fire Services Review May Go Back to Fire Chief

The city's fire department may be back on the hook for conducting a review of their services and providing council with ways they can save money.Councilor Chris Titus originally brought forward a motion in May for the fire chief to conduct a study, and was the first to say he couldn't support the idea of having a third party consultant carry out the review.Titus says the review being complete by May 2010 is too late---there needs to be something on the table before the upcoming budget.
Titus says there needs to be a way to have this review done before the budget goes in to prevent an increase in taxes.He says there is going to have to be some hard decisions made, and the fire chief will need to make some recommendations.Acting city manager Pat Woods will report back to council at their next meeting if the consultants can have a review complete before budget time.