Thursday, November 24, 2011

SSRSB Member Reinhardt states her case

Karen Reinhardt
A South Shore Regional School Board member who allegedly breached 11 sections of the code of ethics is telling her side of the story. In an exclusive interview with CKBW/HANK-FM News, Reinhardt says the Board had planned a special meeting for November 15, but it wasn't supposed to be about her being censured. Reinhardt says the Board didn't inform her about being censured until after she was volunteering overseas.
"I think that it's a bit unfair. To let me go away and believe one thing, I don't know why they didn't let me know that. They weren't fair enough to let me know that before I left, because I think they were aware of it before I left."
Reinhardt says she wouldn't have made the trip to Liberia if she had known before-hand that the Board planned on making a censure motion. She also wanted to clear the air over allegations she interfered in the school review process. Reinhardt says members exchanged emails and phone calls because they felt they had no time or opportunity to discuss school review before the March 30 meeting. Reinhardt says she doesn't feel she's done anything wrong.
"I don't think there's anything wrong, I can't see anything wrong with board members talking with each other and exchanging information. I don't think that subverts, not only, democracy, but it doesn't subvert board authority at all, especially when 10 board members voted for the motion not to review any schools at this time."
She says School Board Chair Elliott Payzant should also shoulder some of the blame.

"I mean, I do blame the Chair a little bit, because knowing that there was initiative from more than one board member to have a discussion about this, he could've called a special meeting and then we could've done it within the perameters of bylaws and regulations, but that didn't happen."
Reinhardt says final reports, with significant changes, were given to the board just before the March 30 meeting began, giving them no time for careful review or deliberation. Reinhardt also reacted to recent comments by the Education Minister. Ramona Jennex criticized the Board's decision Monday evening, for not making a responsible decision to censure Reinhardt. The vote failed to pass by a 7-4 margin. Reinhardt says she's not sure how to take the Minister's comments.
"She does have a couple of options open to her, neither one of which, in my mind, is terribly pleasant for anybody including her. But, I don't know what to think about what part of that she was dissatisfied with."
Jennex can still decide to overrule the Board's decision and vacate Reinhardt's seat, or the Minister can choose to disband the entire Board. To hear Reinhardt's full interview, tune into this weekend's South Shore Sunday Morning program from 8-9am on HANK-FM and 9-10am on CKBW.

No Serious Injuries After School Bus Veers of the 103

No serious injuries after a school bus went off the road outside of Chester this afternoon. The incident occurred around 1 o'clock on Highway 103 near Exit 7. No children were on board the bus at the time of the incident.  EMS and RCMP are on the scene to check on the status of the bus driver. No word on what caused the bus to veer off the road.

Webber: Pleased Eastlink will Relocate Cell Tower

The Warden of the District of Chester says he's pleased Eastlink has backed down from their proposal to construct a cell phone tower near Demone Road. Allen Webber says it was a poor choice for a telecommunications tower given it's proximately to homes in the area. He says numerous residents had expressed concerns. "It's sort of like you're putting an industrial structure in a entirely residential neighbourhood, so people just don't like that - even if its good or bad or indifferent. There are all kinds of concerns - is it too close to property lines and what if it falls down - those are legitimate concerns," Eastlink still wants to construct a tower in the municipality and is hoping to work with council and the community on selecting an alternate site. Council will send a letter of thanks to the company for removing the Demone Road site from its initial plans.

GasPrices May Fall Again

This may bode well for drivers on the South Shore.
The price of gasoline is down today in New Brunswick and Newfoundland.
In New Brunswick, the Energy and Utilities Board has reduced the maximum price of regular self-serve to a dollar-22-point-2 a litre.
That's lower by almost two-and-a-half cents from last week's posting.
In Newfoundland, the regulator there has dropped the price by three cents.
Here in this province, the utility and review board will set the weekly price at midnight tonight.

MLA Conrad Pleased with South Queens Site Selection

Queens MLA Vicki Conrad
The new South Queens Junior High will be built at the same address as the current school. The province made the site selection announcement Thursday morning in Liverpool. Queens MLA Vicki Conrad says she expects the old school will be demolished, but not right away.
"The students will be able to remain in the current school while the rebuild is taking place. So it's going to be an easy transition, you know, we won't see students being moved to other locations, teachers will be on site, as the rebuild is happening."
Conrad says she's excited to see the new South Queens remain at the same address because it will keep students in the heart of Queens County. The new South Queens is expected to be built in 2013. It will house grade six to eight students, with grade nines going to Liverpool Regional High.

2011: A Tough Year for Tourism

It's been another tough year for tourism in Nova Scotia and that includes the South Shore. Locally, tourism operators are dealing with a 3 percent dip in occupancy rates while campgrounds and hotels are also facing a 5 percent reduction in total nights sold. Officials are blaming the downward trend on increasing global competition, a difficult economic climate and poor weather. Director of Marketing for the province Kristi Wenous isn't surprised by the latest numbers. "As we understand the pressures and the economic climate - it's understandable discretionary spending such as travel would be down," Meanwhile, road travel and cruise ship passengers into Halifax are also down, while visits to Sydney are on the rise. Air travel did see a positive spike of 9 percent compared to the same time period in 2010. Tourism statistics vary across the province. Details at

Two Cars Damaged in Bridgewater Parking Areas

Police in Bridgewater are looking for information on a couple of hit & runs. Two separate incidents were reported Monday night. The first, occurred in the Superstore parking lot where a Honda Accord was struck causing damage to the drivers side door and rear door. The other incident took place on Glen Allen Drive. Police say a Honda CRV sustained serious damage while parked near the South Shore Regional Hospital entrance. The Bridgewater Police Service is hoping to get some tips.

Centre Jail Demolition Expected to start Nov. 24

Photo Courtesy of CP Harmon
The former Centre jail is expected to be demolished over the next week. The jail is expected to start being torn down Thursday morning, depending on weather conditions. Chris Gallivan with Strum Environmental says East Coast Demolition will start by removing old fuel tanks, fuel lines and furnaces. He says, once that is finished, they will start structural demolition by knocking supports down and crushing the building into itself. The jail is located along Highway 3 in Centre. Municipality of the District of Lunenburg Engineer, Satu Peori, says Council doesn't have any immediate plans for the land. The jail opened in 1950 and has been empty since 2001.