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Friday, August 17, 2012

West Side Church Comes Down

A long vacant west side church that was standing this morning was gone by the afternoon.

City fire crews got the call to Church Avenue West about 4:30am and building inspectors later determined the structure was unsafe.

The road was closed and demolition equipment was brought in and the church was knocked down.

The cause of the fire is unknown and no one was hurt.

Governments Give Cash To Upgrade St. Andrews Wharf

Get ready for the Cruise Lines!
New upgrades for the wharf being announced today in St. Andrews in order to bring in more traffic from cruise ships.
Charlotte-Campobello MLA Curtis Malloch tells CHSJ News when he took on the responsibility of MLA he wanted to see our communities become closer.

He says it's very exciting to see it take off and he expects to see big things from it.

A combined federal, provincial, and municipal investment of approximately $900,000 will be used for improvements and upgrades to the wharf.

Oland Hearing Continues

With several heavily-censored search warrants and related documents released yesterday in the Richard Oland murder investigation, the hearing continues this afternoon.

The media lawyer, David Coles made the argument to open up the warrants, pointing out the last of them was executed in November 2011 and no physical evidence remains to be seized.

Under cross examination, Constable Stephen Davidson testified while the police force has zeroed in on a single suspect which they believe to be the right one, new evidence is being received all the time.

Davidson further testified his opinion on the case differs from that of his chief, Bill Reid.
The constable stated while he respects Reid's opinion, he does not see charges being laid in a short period of time as Reid has said.

The cross examination of Davidson and the arguments will conclude today; however Provincial court judge R. Leslie Jackson will decide how much more can be revealed at a later date.

Chief Says Church Will Come Down

Because its a danger, a church on the west side damaged by fire, will have to come down. 

Fire Chief Kevin Clifford tells CHSJ News no one was hurt in the blaze on Church Avenue early this morning.

He says after an examination, it was determined that the building needs to come down and demolition equipment will be brought in.

The cause of the fire in the old Pentecostal church is under investigation.
The building had been vacant for some time.

LBR Won't Suffer With The Vito's Departure

The LBR is losing the Major Midget Vitos hockey team to the qplex but they don't expect feel it financially.
General Manager David Nicholson tells CHSJ News it will depend on what Saint John Youth Hockey, who pay for the ice time, decide to do with the Vito's old Saturday afternoon slot.

He says the triple A bantams might use it or the minor midgets and the canteen shouldn't suffer too much.

Nicholson says it wasn't a big surprise that the Vito's left as there were rumours they might go to the valley back when the qplex was in the early stages.

He adds a lot of the players are from the KV.

Taxpayers Federation Targets Government's Private Plane

The Canadian Taxpayers Federation is calling on the Alward government to sell its private plane which is used to take the Premier and cabinet ministers around the province. 

The Federation's Atlantic Director Kevin Lacey calls it the "gravy plane" because of the cost involved at 15 hundred dollars an hour. 

Lacey tells CHSJ News the plane could likely fetch something like three million dollars if sold. He points out both Nova Scotia and B-C got rid of their private planes.

The provincial government's private plane has been a source of controversy for years but Lacey maintains times have changed because of the 200 million dollar plus deficit and debt of 10 billion dollars.

Saint John Native Wants Leadership Of The Greens

There will be an actual race for the leadership of the Provincial Green Party next month. Roy MacMullin, who was born in Saint John and raised in Fredericton is running to be leader after being the party's candidate in Moncton East.

 MacMullin tells CHSJ News there should be some sort of alliance with the provincial NDP when the next provincial election rolls around so they don't split the vote.
MacMullin doesn't believe the status quo is sustainable and he doesn't see a dime's worth of difference between the Liberals and Conservatives both of whom, he charges, represent that status quo. 

David Coon of the Conservation Council is also running for the Green leadership. Ironically, MacMullin is President of the Southeast chapter of the Conservation Council.   

City Police Officer Cross Examined At Oland Hearing

More arguments are being made today that additional information from search warrants in the Richard OIand murder investigation should be released.

Under cross examination by media lawyer David Coles, Constable Stephen Davidson says while the police force is confident they have the right suspect in mind, new evidence is coming in all the time.

Coles points out the most recent warrant was issued in November 2011 and there is nothing further to be seized in connection with the murder.

Davidson says they wish to keep hallmark evidence under wraps because it could result in false confessions.

New Cruise Ship Terminal Is On Time And On Budget

Some local politicians and others getting a sneak peak of the new Diamond Jubilee Cruise Ship Terminal going up at lightning speed on Water street.

Saint John Port Authority President and CEO Jim Quinn says the project is on time and on budget.

He says they budgeted up to 18.5 million and now they are sitting at about 16.5 million so they are on time and on the low end of the budget range.

The new Cruise ship terminal which can accommodate the new 340 metre ships is due to welcome it's first vessel on September 5th.

Fire Department To Unveil New Vehicle

The City fire department will be showing off a new toy later this morning.

They will be demonstrating the Argo, the department's new special operations off-road vehicle.

Fire staff along with the City's Recreation and Neighborhood Support Service are joining forces to clear brush in the Emera Trail.

It's happening at 10 this morning on the Emera Trail at Lou Murphy park next to the baseball park.

Fire At West Side Church

City fire crews called out to a church fire early this morning. 

It was reported shortly before 4:30 at the old Pentacostal church on Church Avenue West. That building has been vacant for a number of years.

There was already heavy smoke in the area and flames coming 
from inside the building  through the roof when firefighters arrived.

 There are street closures to tell you about because of the fire.......Main Street West at Walnut and Main at Orange along with Church Avenue from Main Street to McKeil.

(Photo courtesy of Andrew Sanojca)