CBRM Responds To Railway Act Changes

By Andrew Rutherford. Last updated: 2014-10-31 11:42:49

The Cape Breton Regional Municipality is pleased with the provincial government's legislation today to change the Railway Act. Mayor Cecil Clarke said, "The government moved today to protect the future of rail service in Cape Breton and we support their efforts fully. The rail line is a critical piece of infrastructure that is part of the full package of highway, air, rail and port intermodal services." The provincial government's legislation redefines the process for discontinuance and abandonment and the removal of the rails. The removal of the rails would be an irreversible blow to the economic value of the Port of Sydney and would harm the prospects of existing businesses. Clarke further stated that the only way to ensure continuance of rail in the long term is the development of new industry in Cape Breton Regional Municipality. That remains the municipality's top priority.

Message for Halloween From CBRPS

By Andrew Rutherford. Last updated: 2014-10-31 11:15:58

Cape Breton Regional Police Service is reminding everyone that hours for Halloween trick-or-treating is between 5pm and 7pm in the CBRM.
Police ask motorists to use caution and be alert to extra pedestrian traffic, particularly in residential areas; excited kids can move in unpredictable ways. Slow down, avoid distractions and allow extra time to reach your destination. Also, residents are to pay attention in and around their own properties and neighbourhoods and contact police should they notice anything suspicious or require assistance. Cape Breton Regional Police will have extra resources in place tonight; in addition to regular Patrols, members of the Community Safety Enforcement Unit, Traffic Safety Unit and K-9 Unit will be out in all communities, on foot and in vehicles, with assistance from the Canadian Coast Guard Cadets.

Railway Act Changes To Protect Lines in Cape Breton

By Andrew Rutherford. Last updated: 2014-10-31 11:15:31

Changes to the Railways Act will protect the rail link and future economic opportunities in Cape Breton and across the province. Genesee & Wyoming runs the Cape Breton rail line. The company can continue its hearings at the NSUARB to stop running the rail service. But it cannot pull up the tracks without applying to government. The rail company cannot apply to government until at least six months after the NSUARB process is complete. Transportation Minister Geoff MacLellan says these amendments ensure the full implications of pulling up rail lines are well understood before drastic action is taken. Nova Scotians have invested 23-million dollars in subsidies to help keep the Cape Breton rail line running. An advisory committee is working on ways to increase rail traffic on the line. Their preliminary report is expected in December.

Glace Bay Man Sentenced For Trafficking Marijuana

By Andrew Rutherford. Last updated: 2014-10-31 11:14:41

A Glace Bay man pleaded guilty to trafficking in marijuana after coming to the attention of police in an unrelated investigation.
23-year-old, father of two, Scott Ralph Martell, is to serve a 6 month conditional sentence where the first 3 months will be a strict 24/7 curfew with the exceptions of transporting his children to daycare and once a week tending to a 4 hour personal matter. The last 3 months will be a 9pm to 7am curfew. Any breach of curfew will result in jail time.
Martell was confronted by police after his name came up while police were investigating another individual. He admitted to police at that time to selling pot.

Weekly Gas Prices Update

By Andrew Rutherford. Last updated: 2014-10-31 06:45:57

The price at the pumps continue to drop. The NSUARB set the new minimum price of regular, self-serve gasoline at $1.22, a decrease of 1.9 cents per liter. Diesel prices are unchanged, staying at $1.275.

Sydney Man Sentenced To Federal Prison Term

By Andrew Rutherford. Last updated: 2014-10-31 06:45:28

A 30-year-old Sydney man has been sentenced to 4 years in federal prison after pleading guilty to two counts of break and enter.
Colan Foster Lohnes was charged for the break-ins that occured on May 9 and May 14. In both instances, the homeowners were away, but the second property had security cameras in place which caught Lohnes and co-accused, 27-year-old, Jason Christopher Turner, stealing items from the home.
Turner, who is also facing two counts of break and enter, is scheduled to have a preliminary hearing March 23.

Bell Aliant Members Ratified Labour Deal

By The Canadian Press. Last updated: 2014-10-31 06:45:09

Union members at Bell Aliant have ratified a labour deal that gives them a six per cent wage hike over three years. Rick Rose of Unifor says 74 per cent of workers who voted ratified the agreement. The union local represents 2,800 workers at the Atlantic Canada telecommunications firm. The agreement takes effect on Jan. 1 and will cover the workers once they become employees of Bell Canada Enterprises. Bell Canada Enterprises is preparing to finalize the privatization of Bell Aliant _ a deal announced in July. Wage increases are for two per cent in each of the three years of the agreement along with a $1,000 signing bonus, an increase in hardship allowances and improved boot and safety shoe entitlements. The deal also offers provisions for up to 450 workers to be offered enhanced retirement incentives.

Education Review Calls For Sweeping Changes

By The Canadian Press. Last updated: 2014-10-31 06:44:44

A review of Nova Scotia's education system makes 30 recommendations calling for sweeping improvements in seven key areas including curriculum, teaching and the structure of the school system. Former lieutenant-governor Myra Freeman, who led a six-member panel, says half the 19-thousand people who took online surveys as part of a public consultation process were dissatisfied. Among a list of things, the report recommends better alignment between a teacher's qualifications and what they teach as well as mandatory performance appraisals. As part of that appraisal system school boards should also be given the power to dismiss teachers who under-perform. Education Minister Karen Casey says some of the changes will likely clash with the collective agreement with the teachers' union. She says she plans to meet with the union's leadership next week to discuss the report. Union president Shelley Morse says any changes concerning seniority provisions would have to be negotiated and won't be given up voluntarily. Casey says further consultations will be held with teachers, parents and school boards before issuing the formal response to the report in January.

Decision on Moncton Shooter To Be Heard Today

By The Canadian Press. Last updated: 2014-10-31 06:44:17

Justin Bourque will hear today how long he will spend in jail for killing three Mounties and wounding two others on June 4th. Both Crown and defence lawyers have described the murders in Moncton as one of the worst crimes in Canadian history. The lawyers are asking Judge David Smith to impose the harshest sentence Canada has seen in more than 50 years. The Crown is calling for a mandatory life sentence with no chance of parole for 75 years, while Bourque's own lawyer has said his client should serve at least 50 years.

News stories from 2014-10-30.

News stories from 2014-11-01.