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Monday, August 23, 2010

RCMP Release Year In Review Report

The provincial RCMP's 2009-2010 Year in Review Report shows the province's crime reduction strategy is yielding results.

RCMP tell us property crime has dropped by 5.6 per cent and drug enforcement efforts have gone up by 14 per cent since 2007.

The province's commanding officer, Wayne Lang says they want to make New Brunswick the safest province in Canada, but need to improve on highway safety and diverting at-risk youth away from criminal behaviour to make that happen.

Cupe Rallies For Hours

(Protestors Greet Mary Schryer at Ferry Landing)
          (Photo by Jim Hennessy)

After a year and a half with-out a contract, members of Cupe Local 2745 continue their fight for a new deal.

Spokes-person Tanya McLaughlin tells CHSJ News, teachers assistants need more hours. 

She says right now no one is working full time hours and if that changed they would have more time to work with the students.

With school set to start in just over two weeks, McLaughlin adds they don't want to go on strike, but if they have to, they will.

Murray Driscoll Happy With The Work

(Quispamsis Mayor Murray Driscoll)
(File Photo)

Quispamsis Mayor Murray Driscoll is very pleased with all the projects going on in his municipality.

He says safety is the biggest issue as well as increasing traffic.

Driscoll adds the Gondola Point Ferry work not only benefits residents of Quispamsis but also those living on the Kingston Peninsula.

Work Projects In Quispamsis

The drive down the hill to the Gondola Point Ferry is going to be much smoother.

Work on a second lane is close to being finished and MLA and Health Minister Mary Schryer says this will provide better access and address any safety concerns. 

She says now the crossing will have what is refered to as a slip lane because it's seen increased traffic and back-ups.

Two bridge culverts in Rothesay have also been awarded some Provincial cash for work but no word on when that will get started or be finished.

Woman Dies In Crash

47-year old Annette Cormier of Sussex is dead after a crash in the Dairy Town last night.

A truck was making its way down Stewart Avenue just after eight o'clock when the driver lost control, went off the road and rolled.

The driver of the truck is 48 years old, also from Sussex and was taken to the Regional to be checked out.

RCMP believe alcohol may have been a factor in the crash and Cormier wasn't wearing a seatbelt.

Whale Crashes Into Boat

It looks like a boat got a little too close to a whale over the weekend.

RCMP were called to Passamaquoddy Bay near Campobello Island Saturday night after a boat capsized when the mammal swam underneath it.

Officers tell us the boat was out observing a pod of the creatures at the time of the accident.

All five people on board were thrown into the water but were picked up by a sardine fishing vessel.

RCMP also point out that life jackets were in the vessel but nobody had one one.

Province Launches New Program For Mothers And Newborns

New Brunswick is joining other provinces by adopting a care program to improve the health of mothers and their newborns.

The program is meant to provide quality care, education, information and consultation.

President of the province's Medical Society, Dr. Chris Losier, says it will also give health care workers the opportunity to sit down together on a regular basis and share the best practices.

The province is putting together an advisory committee to help implement the program with representatives from the Horizon Health Network, the Midwifery Council, and the Department of Health.

District 8 Launching Discovery Education This Fall

District 8 is introducing a new program this fall to teachers and students from the Discovery channel.
Discovery Education is a companion resource is available for students and teachers from Kindergarten through to Grade 12.
Superintendent Susan Tipper tells CHSJ News it can help a grade three class learn about growing tomatoes.

She says the program will allow teachers and students in a grade 3 classroom to create a lab that will show them how to grow them.
Tipper says the Discovery education should be easy for teachers to navigate to help them reach certain goals for their students.

RCMP Investigate Internet Scam

Hampton RCMP are warning the public to be careful when dealing with companies over the Internet.

Officers received a complaint over the weekend from a woman who was dealing with a Satellite company named TOTALFTA.

She paid by credit card to get a satellite and receiver but never saw either.

RCMP tells us the company is a fraud run out of Quebec and has used similar names in the past.

People are reminded to do research before giving out any personal info or credit card information over the Internet.

Funding For City Water and Pavement Projects

Thanks to $2.3 million from Ottawa and Fredericton, clean drinking water is another step closer to reality for Saint John. Work is underway on two projects including a water-main installation for the Spruce Lake Industrial Park along with work on the Cottage Hill and Rockwood water storage resevoirs. The cash comes from the Infrastructure Stimulus Fund which stipulates the work must be finished by the end of March and Mayor Court says that shouldn't be an issue:

Court says the good weather is on their side and he thinks they will be able to get them finished along with work on Howes Lake.
The remainder of the cash will go toward paving projects in and around Greater Saint John totalling just over 40 kilometers including work on Campbell Drive, Marr Road and Golden Grove areas.

Keir Says They Want Share Bridge Costs With Ottawa

With both Ottawa and Fredericton saying the file is active, it doesn't appear a resolution to the tolls and future maintenance on the Harbour Bridge is any closer to reality. Energy Minister Jack Keir tells CHSJ News, his government wants to get rid of the tolls and has no problem making the bridge part of Highway One but it belongs to Ottawa.

He says the Harper government can't pass the responsibility of the entire bridge on to the province without sharing the cost of maintainence.

Provincial Green Leader Aiming To Change Voter's Minds

The Leader of the Province's Green Party says they are out to change voter's minds about politicians.
Jack MacDougall tells CHSJ News between the province's huge debt and MLA's doubling their own pensions, voters are fed up.

He says voters are disgusted and turned off by politicans and that includes the green party.
MacDougall says the Greens are not a one issue party because the environment itself is not one issue but, many with sustainability being the top issue.

911 Dispatch Centre Moving Next Year

Quispamsis and Rothesay are moving their 911 dispatch centre to Saint John starting next year. Mike Brennan is the Town Administrator for Quispamsis and says the province is passing new legislation that would make keeping the centre in the Valley extremely expensive.

Brennan says 911 calls from the Valley go directly to Saint John as it is, and then are sent to the Valley centre after the fact. He says by using one centre it will eliminate that extra step.

Quispamsis Candidate Says Campaign Going Well

(Conservative Candidate Blaine Higgs)

The Conservative candidate in Quispamsis is a rookie to the political scene but is enthusiatic about what he can achieve. Blaine Higgs is looking to knock off Health Minister Mary Schryer and tells CHSJ News, the door to door campaign is encouraging:

Higgs adds he supports what the Conservative Party stands for and admires Leader David Alward's willingness to listen to people and putting those ideas together for the best end result.

Conservatives Releasing Energy Policy This Week

After hearing plenty of talk about it and a session of open houses have been completed, The Conservative Party is set to roll out it's energy policy this week. Leader David Alward says it is a comprehensive piece of work by Pierre Marcelle DesJardin and Darryl Stevens:

He says they have taken on exstensive reviews and he thinks it will form the base as they move forward.

Alward says the Liberal Party, over the past several weeks, have tried to distance itself from a decision to sell NB Power by coming forward with last minutes decisions like changes to the Energy and Utilities Board.

Motorcycles Can't Jump The Ferry Line

Motorcyclists using the Gondola Point Ferry aren't allowed to jump the line anymore. Alan Kerr with the Department of Transportation tells CHSJ News the older ferries had un-used space on the deck that the motorcycles could squeeze into.

Kerr says the new larger ferries have a more efficient use of the deck space, so motorcyclists will have to stay in line and wait their turn along with any other vehicle.
Kerr says now motorcycles will take up the same space a car would, but says both ferries can now hold 24 cars so there is still plenty of room for everyone.

Former Mayor Keeping Busy

CHSJ News caught up with former Saint John Mayor Norm McFarlane recently who tells us he has been keeping busy since he lost the last municipal election in 2008.
He says he's been working on a number of board and behind the scenes with a construction company to make sure some of the projects approved under his term are moving along.
McFarlane says he isn't trying to steal the spotlight but a lot of the projects he started when he was in office are now coming to fruition including the City Police/Justice Complex.