Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Money Pre-Approved For Bridgewater Mapping Project

Bridgewater council has approved funding to help establish a three-dimensional profile of the LaHave River. Members pre-approved $14,492.75 from the 2012-13 capital budget Monday night to help the town receive Light Detection and Ranging Mapping. The mapping can also be flown in a matter of days before vegetation along the river becomes too full. Deputy Mayor David Walker says the timing worked out to acquire the mapping.
''Our Director of Planning, Eric Shaw, had an opportunity partnering with the Nova Scotia Community College, to take advantage of some aerial photography that would not only prove beneficial for the Climate Change project but also for the Downtown Revitalization plan and for other things we have on our agenda as well."
Walker says the mapping is needed to provide flood projection analysis including sea-level rise projections, storm surge projections and erosion projections. The mapping project is part of Bridgewater's Municipal Climate Change Action Plan.

SchoolsPlus Expands Along South Shore

The South Shore Regional School Board's plea for another SchoolsPlus site has been answered. The province has expanded the program to 12 additional schools following an announcement Tuesday morning in Liverpool. Student Services coordinator, Jeff DeWolfe, says the program should go a long way to helping schools.
"We know some of those struggles, you know, in those schools communities' and some of the families that need our support and the students that need our support, so this allows us to give a different level of support coordinated with other agencies that will hopefully make a big difference."
Over 100 services and activities will be introduced into schools like anger management, employment support and art and sport programs. The board will receive $125,000 from the province to provide leadership and community outreach. In total, the province is investing $2.5-million in SchoolsPlus province-wide, bringing together teachers, students, families and community volunteers to design and deliver programs that meet the specific needs of the community. The program will be introduced into the following 12 schools, beginning in 2012-13:
  1. Liverpool Regional High School
  2. North Queens Community School
  3. Greenfield Elementary School
  4. Dr. John C. Wickwire Academy
  5. South Queens Junior High School
  6. Milton Centennial School
  7. Mill Village Consolidated School
  8. New Germany Rural High School
  9. New Germany Elementary School
  10. West Northfield Elementary School
  11. Bridgewater Elementary School
  12. Bridgewater Junior/Senior High School

UPDATE: Robertson's Body Wrapped In Blanket, Covered With Debris

A forensic expert believes 47 year-old Laura Lee Robertson was killed by some form of asphyxiation. Dr. Eric Mont of Halifax was called to the scene when Robertson's body was found in a secluded area in Greenfield, Queens County last April. Mont testified this morning her body was found wrapped in a blanket and covered in debris which included branches and sticks. Thirty-three year-old James James Leroy Leopold of Liverpool is facing a charge of second degree murder in relation to her death. The case will centre on the circumstances surrounding Robertson's death and whether Leopold intended to kill her or if the death was accidental. A jury of six men and six women has been selected for the trial.

Chester School Ready To Move On

Forest Heights Community School is ready to move forward from the t-shirt issue. Students and teachers took part in discussions yesterday about balancing freedom of expression and religious beliefs. The talks were sparked after grade 12 student William Swinimer was suspended last week for wearing a shirt expressing his religious beliefs, despite being repeatedly asked not to. The consultation involved guidance councillors, the Human Rights Commission and members of the Department of Education and Justice. Board member Judith Sullivan-Corney says it was a success despite Swinimer's absence.

"Our focus was on making sure that we created an opportunity for the students yesterday to continue to express their personal areas of interest, their beliefs, and any concerns that they had about the conflict that we've had over the past week."

Sullivan-Corney adds students feel positive things about the school have been overshadowed by the suspension. Facilitators will meet on Friday to discuss the feedback from students and how to best move forward.

Leopold Trial Into Day Two At Bridgewater Supreme Court

Its Day-2 of a second degree murder trial in Bridgewater Supreme Court.  33 year-old James Leroy Leopold of Liverpool is accused of killing his fiance, 47 year old Laura Lee Robertson.  Her remains were found off Highway 208 near Greenfield in April 2011.  The trial is expected to centre on the circumstances surrounding Robertson's death, whether Leopold intended to kill her or if the death was accidental.  The six men and six women on the jury will heard testimony today from a Halifax forensic expert.  Dr. Eric Mont is an expert at determining cause of death. He testified this morning that Robertson was killed by some form of asphyxiation. Her body was found face down, wrapped in a blanket and covered with debris. Leopold is present for the trial, which is expected to last eight days.