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Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Moosehead Breweries makes distribution deal with the Boston Beer Company

Moosehead Breweries has announced a distribution with the Boston Beer Company.
It begins immediately and means that Moosehead and its subsidiary the
the Premium Beer Company will take over Canadian distribution of Boston Beer’s flagship brand Samuel Adams Boston Lager.
Megan Parsons of Moosehead Breweries tells CHSJ News that Moosehead's president
Andrew Oland has a direct connection with Jim Kochafter he met him while living in Boston a few years ago.

North End Building Suffers Damage

          (Home on Barker Street Gutted by Flames)
                     (Photo by Jim Hennessy)

The quiet calm of a spring like afternoon was shattered in the North End with a fire call. Crews arrived at the corner of Barker and Somerset Street to find smoke and flames rolling out of the three-storey structure. Divisional Chief Kevin Clifford says the battle was watering down the flames running through the roof.

While the front end of the home suffered extensive damage, the back end is in good shape. No one was living in the building and Chief Clifford says it is way to early to say how the fire started.

Unplanned Power Outage for Saint John Energy Customers

Saint John Energy is currently experiencing an unplanned outage in the area of Bayside Drive and Westmorland Road.

Crews are on scene working to get the lights back on, and are investigating what caused the outage.
No word on when work will finish up.

Fundraising Campaign for UNBSJ Commons Building

[Commons Building Plan----Photo courtesy of Dan Tanaka of UNBSJ]
The University of New Brunswick Saint John is embarking on a fundraising campaign to come up with the remaining money for it's Commons Building.

The $25 million dollar project already has 80 per cent of it's capital raised, and Vice President Dr. Robert McKinnon tells CHSJ News, the last 20 per cent is always the hardest to raise, but is confident the fundraising team can do it.
McKinnon says the new commons building will be LEEDS Silver certified, and while it's more expensive to construct, it will pay off in the long run.
Planning for construction is ongoing right now, and McKinnon says the plan is to have students in the building next year.

Mayor Says Renovations at UNBSJ Will Provide Positive Spinoffs

[Mayor Ivan Court----File Photo]
Mayor Ivan Court tells CHSJ News, the economic spinoff of this project is massive.

Court says the 25 million dollar project will give people in the city jobs, and will allow them to earn money to send their children to university.
Court says it was an easy decision for city hall to invest $2 million dollars into the project.

The federal government came up to the plate with $8 million, and the province invested $10 million. The faculty, staff and friends of UNBSJ invested an additional $400 thousand for a grand total of $20.4 million dollars.

Tory M-L-A Says The Deal Still Needs to be Put to the People

[Saint John Portland M-L-A Trevor Holder---File Photo]

Saint John Portland Tory M-L-A Trevor Holder tells CHSJ News, the whole argument was the deal had to be done before March 31st to prevent a rate increase.

Holder says since the Energy Minister took the rate increase off the table, the deal doesn't have to be pushed through.
Holder says in stands behind the notion a general election, or referendum needs to be called so the people can have a chance to voice their opinions.
Holder says the Conservatives have been clear that the status quo has to change in regards to NB Power, and that's all M-L-A Jeannot Volpe meant by saying any deal is better than no deal.

Energy Minister Suggests Tories Can't Make Up Their Mind Over NB Power Deal

[Energy Minister Jack Keir----File Photo]
Energy Minister Jack Keir is suggesting the Conservative government is scrambling on it's attitude towards the proposed sale of NB Power.

Just last week, Conservative M-L-A Jeannot Volpe said any deal is better than no deal, and Keir says Volpe said the comment was a mistake.
Keir says the fact of the matter is this opportunity will benefit every New Brunswick for generations to come.
Keir announced Tuesday that a planned three per cent rate hike on April 1st is on hold while the province finished negotiations.

Landmark uptown restaurant closes

(Reggie's Restaurant on Germain Street)
(photo by Tamara Steele)

Reggies restaurant on Germain Street, a fixture in the uptown since 1969, is closed.
Reggie Belliveau started the business way back when but sold it in 2001 to Philip Brewer.

The store front has brown paper on the windows and the for lease and closed signs are up on the windows.

Atlantica Centre For Energy Weighs In On NB Power Deal

The Atlantica Centre for Energy likes what it sees in the revised agreement for bits and pieces of NB Power to be sold to Hydro Quebec. The Centre's Vice-President John Herron tells CHSJ News they do have a concern about getting a commitment from Hydro Quebec about growing the energy hub in Saint John. Another concern is future price increases being tied to the consumer price index. Herron says Atlantica would like to have any future price rise tied to the increases paid by Quebecers.
Herron says the centre believes all electricity users in the province will benefit from lower rates and industry will be more competitive.

Appeal Made To Remove Ice Fishing Shacks From River

If you still have an ice fishing shack on the river, You better get it to shore sooner rather than later. So says Gary Gower, President of the Renforth Ice Fishing Association. He tells CHSJ News the mild weather and rain that's on the way could make for quite a mess if you don't act now.
The deadline for removing the ice fishing shacks isn't until mid March but Gower says there's no way they can wait that long.

Housing Market In Saint John Described As Strong

Remax has released an optimistic report on the Saint John housing market with January starting out strong. Gordon Breau of Remax tells CHSJ News prices were 13.5 per cent higher than in January of last year with the average price of a home rising to almost 176 thousand dollars. Breau believes those price rises will moderate and wind up the year with an increase from 6 to 8 per cent. The number of listings in the Saint John market is up by 9 per cent which, Breau claims, will moderate price increases.
The Remax report calls the economic prospects in Saint John good with the concept of the energy hub driving sales and prices.

Vote Overwhelmingly In Favour Of Liquor Store For Peninsula

A dominant yes vote for moving ahead on finding a location for an agency liquor store in the Kingston Peninsula.
Over 200 residents showed up for a vote on whether or not NB Liquor should look into establishing a store in the area.
The Chair of the Chamber of Commerce Linda Dupuis tells CHSJ News she's not surprised by the large turnout for the vote. She concedes there was a bit of controversy over who was eligible to vote for the agency store with NB Liquor stating specific boundaries for people who lived in the proximity of another store.
195 people voted yes for the store while 36 voted no. The next step is for NB Liquor to issue public tenders to shop owners.

Provincial Energy Minister Wants Rate Increase Delayed

(Provincial Energy Minister Jack Keir)
(File Photo)

Provincial Energy Minister Jack Keir says more details about how the government plans to proceed with the N-B Power deal will be announced on Friday.
In the meantime, Keir is asking N-B Power to delay a three per cent rate hike on April 1st if he's unable to finalize the deal with Hydro-Quebec by the end of next month.
Keir says the 3.2 (b) billion dollar plan to sell 10 power plants is a complicated agreement and there's a chance it may not be finalized by March 31st.
Opposition energy critic Bruce Fitch says Keir's request just shows the government is flying by the seat of its pants with the power deal.

Ambulance New Brunswick Changes Policy On Speed

Ambulance New Brunswick has announced a change to its policies so paramedics can decide for themselves when they may exceed speed limits. This follows questions that arose in the Legislature last week over the death of a 56 year old woman in Norton. Concerns have been raised about response times being slower than they could be.
Paramedics, using their own discretion and judgement, can now deviate from the code 1 policy which stipulated they could exceed the speed limit along the highway by 10 kilometers an hour but they can't  go any faster than 130 kilometres an hour on the highway.