Friday, May 9, 2014

Former South Shore MLA Helping Bridgetown Through Dissolution

A former cabinet minister and South Shore MLA will lead a town in the Annapolis Valley through dissolution. Council in Bridgetown voted in March to drop its town status and join the Municipality of Annapolis County. A declining population and loss of jobs were cited as reasons for the move. Allister Surette has been appointed to transition Bridgetown through the process. Surette was the MLA for Argyle from 1993 to 1998 and served a Minister of Human Resources. He is now the president of Sainte-Anne's University. Municipal Affairs Minister and Lunenburg West MLA Mark Furey made the appointment official earlier today. The dissolution process is expected to be complete by April 1, 2015.

NS: Teenager, 14, Charged With Impaired Driving

A 14 year old has been charged with impaired driving after a crash in Antigonish County. The teenager was caught after he put the car in a ditch on Highway 245 in Clydesdale. Mounties say the boy was not injured and was the only person in the vehicle. He's facing charges of impaired driving and taking a vehicle without consent. Mounties are still gathering details on the matter. The teen will appear in youth court in July.

The Legacy of Westray

Today is the anniversary of the Westray mine disaster in Pictou County. On May 9th, 1992, 26 coal miners died in the worst mining incident in the country since Springhill in 1958. Years later with the passing of Bill C-45 - known as the Westray Bill - in 2004, Canada has some of the strongest health and safety laws in the world. However, Nova Scotia Federation of Labour President Rick Clarke says they're not used enough nor fully embraced.

Clarke says its time to send a strong message to employers that the health and safety of their workers is their top priority. To date, there has not been a single prosecution under the legislation.

Baillie Calls For Marketing Bowater Land Wood

Nearly two years since the Bowater Mersey paper mill in Nova Scotia's Queens County closed, there is still no word on what will become of all the forest land aquired by the province. With the US housing market on the comeback and the demand for cut lumber rising, Nova Scotia's Progressive Conservative Opposition Leader Jamie Baillie is urging the government to aggressively market the wood.

Baillie says everyone accepts the decline of the world newsprint market but he says there's no excuse to pursuing markets for other wood products such as lumber. He says it would boost the economy of the area and create jobs.

Day To Remember Canadian Veterans Of Afghanistan

Today is a National Day of Honor, recognizing Canadian Forces men and women who served in Afghanistan. On the South Shore, Legion branches and the 14 Construction Engineering Squadron will hold a service this afternoon at the cenotaph at Veterans Memorial Park in Bridgewater. Captain Norm Clancy of the Engineers says its important to recognize the service and sacrifices of Canadians in Afghanistan, even though it was a small war compared to others in the past.

Today's service in Bridgewater begins at 1:45pm. It'll be held at the same time as the National service in Ottawa.

International & Aboriginal Students To Benefit From Universities Projects

A series of new projects will launch at Nova Scotia universities designed to attract international and aboriginal students. Education Minister Kelly Regan has announced $5 million in funding for nine different projects that will help recruit and support new students. The money will also help create an easier application process for students through an online application portal and electronic transcript system. Cape Breton, Saint Mary's and Acadia will study ways to create a Nova Scotia-China learning campus to offer local academic programs in China. Meanwhile, Kings College will pilot a new approach gear toward students from the United Stated. The money for the projects is funneled through the Excellence and Innovation Fund.

Fishermen's ER Closed Most Of The Weekend

The emergency department at the hospital in Lunenburg will be closed for most of the weekend. The ER will not be staffed beginning tonight at 7:30pm. South Shore Health says it's due to the unavailability of a doctor. It will reopen on Sunday morning at 7:30am. Residents that live near the hospital and need urgent medical attention should dial 9-1-1 or go to the South Shore Regional Hospital in Bridgewater.

Gas Prices Substantially Lower

As predicted, gas prices are lower this morning at South Shore pumps and even lower than expected. Regular self serve is down 5 cents to $1.38.1 per litre. High test is down the same to $1.47.1. Diesel has fallen by 2.5 cents a litre and is selling at many locations for $1.35.1.

Softball: Season Kicks Off Tonight

The summer softball season in Lunenburg County kicks off tonight. The popular co-ed league gets underway tonight in Dayspring. The "BMI Freaks" will be looking to defend their title in the mixed league. The women's league will begin Monday. Eight teams make up the league which is set to enter its third season. Last season, the Pitch Slappers won the league championship over the Lady Alers. The men's season begins on Tuesday. There are seven teams in the league this year. The Apple Auto Glass Impact will be looking to defend their title after winning the league in October last season over the Assassins. The opening of the season was delayed because of poor weather.