NB Politics Potpourri 2-All the little dirty secrets revealed.

559 posts / 0 new
Last post
NB Politics Potpourri 2-All the little dirty secrets revealed.

Grand Manan residents have voted in favour of having the new village council ask the Alward government to live up to its election promise and remove fares on the island's ferry.

A plebiscite on the issue was held during Monday's municipal election; the only plebiscite in the province.

Of the 1,169 ballots cast, 556 people said council should ask the Department of Transportation to remove fares on travel to and from the mainland, while 511 people said no.

Under the Referendum Act, "if more than 50 per cent of the ballots validly cast in a referendum are cast for the same response to the referendum question and at least 50 per cent of all qualified electors cast votes in the referendum, the result is binding on the government that initiated the referendum."

There are 1,741 eligible voters on the island. Voter turnout was 67.14 per cent.



Outgoing Saint John mayor Ivan Court has alleged a group of undisclosed donors bought Mel Norton's mayoral victory in Monday's municipal election.

But there are currently no limits on municipal campaign spending in New Brunswick and no requirements to report where campaign donations come from, said chief electoral officer Mike Quinn.



That is an incredibly safe Tory seat. I'm not sure running Cardy there would be a good idea unless it is solely designed to raise his profile. That's the second MLA appointed to head Effeciency NB. Seems to be becoming a retirement pasture.


New Brunswick firearms dealers will no longer be required to record purchase information on long-guns, Public Safety Minister Robert Trevors announced on Wednesday.

And the provincial government's chief firearms officer and inspectors will no longer inspect such records, he said.

"Our government is aligning our approach on firearms, to be consistent with the spirit and intent of federal Bill C-19, which eliminated the long-gun registry," Trevors said during ministers' statements.

Firearms dealers will be instructed to start new ledgers, which include information only on prohibited and restricted firearms, he said.

The changes take effect immediately, he said.



Caissa wrote:

That is an incredibly safe Tory seat. I'm not sure running Cardy there would be a good idea unless it is solely designed to raise his profile. That's the second MLA appointed to head Effeciency NB. Seems to be becoming a retirement pasture.

NDP support was about 8% there in the last election. It could make sense to run there and try to raise the popular vote and come in second and generate some publicity/profile.


I'm sure Dom is considering his options. This might be the most affluent riding in NB. The Libs are still leaderless so a 2nd place finish is not out of the question. Alward's Finance Minister is in an adjoining riding.


The New Brunswick government is proposing 116 different changes to the regulatory framework that oversees the oil and gas industry and in particular the controversial process of hydraulic fracturing.

Natural Resources Minister Bruce Northrup and Environment Minister Bruce Fitch unveiled the changes to the rules governing the oil and gas industry in the legislative assembly on Thursday.

The new changes include overhauling the royalty framework that would ensure more money flows into the provincial coffers and is sent to property owners and communities where mining activity is taking place.

The new provincial regulations will set out strict rules on protecting the environment.



Federal Fisheries Minister Keith Ashfield says the Harper government's planned reforms to the Employment Insurance program are not intended to force people to leave their communities to find work.

Ashfield was clarifying the federal government's planned changes to the Employment Insurance program and what they will mean for New Brunswickers.

Ashfield said people will no longer be able to turn down job opportunities within an hour's drive if they expect to collect benefits.



Ashfield represents Fredericton.


The New Brunswick government is spending $38 million to improve the province's early childhood system by boosting the number of daycare spaces and the amount workers are paid.

"We are making history in our province by changing the system as we know it into an innovative model for early childhood services that is unique in Canada," Education and Early Childhood Development Minister Jody Carr said in a statement on Thursday.

The provincial government will add 10,000 new childcare spaces at a cost of $16.7 million.

Under the plan, the provincial government is setting aside $4.1 million to increase wages subsidies for childcare workers.

The wage top-up for trained staff will go to $5 per hour from $4.50. As well, Carr announced the $2.75 per hour wage subsidy for untrained staff will be re-established.

The Day Care Assistance Program will have an injection of $4.4 million, which will help make daycare more affordable.

The new cash will mean people earning $55,000 can qualify for some childcare funding, up from $30,000. The cutoff for full childcare funding is increasing to $30,000 from $20,000.

And the daily maximum subsidy will increase to $4 per day for infants and $1.75 per day for pre-school children.



Seems like the PCs under Alward are actually quite a bit more progressive than the Liberals were under Graham...not that that's saying much.


Premier David Alward is continuing to hold a wide lead in party support, according to the latest political poll.

Corporate Research Associates released its quarterly political poll on Thursday showing 44 per cent support Alward's Progressive Conservatives.

The Liberals are in second place with 32 per cent support and the NDP remain in third spot with 19 per cent.

The Greens have five per cent and the People's Alliance of New Brunswick registered zero per cent support for the second consecutive month.



Stockholm wrote:

Seems like the PCs under Alward are actually quite a bit more progressive than the Liberals were under Graham...not that that's saying much.

Most definitely. Some highlights of the Graham Liberals:

- Flat taxes

- An attempt to eliminate French immersion

- The elimination of rural snow removal services and ferries

- Charging for ambulance rides

- Large increase in user fees

- No consultation announcement of the sale of NB Power

- No strings attached leases to hydraulic fracking companies

- Point Lepreau $1 billion cost over-run boondoggle

- A massive (over 100%) bipartisan salary and pension increase to all MLAs

- Secret, exceptioonal, severance packages for political appointees worth hundreds of thousands of dollars

- Massive deficits, $1 billion+ in new debt

and the beat goes on...


More from the New Brunswick Liberals' anti-progressive highlight reel link


A provincial consultation tour asking for feedback on proposed shale gas regulations ran into stiff opposition to the controversial mining practice of hydro-fracking during a meeting in Durham Bridge on Monday.

A steady stream of opponents walked to the microphone and explained to Louis LaPierre, a professor emeritus in biology at the University of Moncton, who is leading the shale gas panel, why they opposed shale gas exploration.

The opposition also came from a former Progressive Conservative cabinet minister.

Tony Huntjens, who retired from politics instead of running in the 2010 election, said he was "flabbergasted" by his former colleagues' decision to move forward with shale gas exploration and, in particular, hydraulic fracturing.

"I belonged to the party that is now in power and I was always of the opinion that they listened to the people before they acted," Huntjens said.



Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency Minister Bernard Valcourt has been banned from practising law in the province for failing to meet specific criteria laid out by the province's law society.

Valcourt did not meet the Law Society of New Brunswick's minimum requirements for continuing education and professional development in 2011, said Marc Richard, executive director of the society.



New Brunswick's unemployment rate rose to 9.5 per cent in June as the provincial economy shed 1,900 jobs, according to Statistics Canada.

The jobless rate edged up marginally from 9.4 per cent in May, according to the latest labour force survey that was released on Friday.

There were 354,800 people employed in the province in June, a reduction of 1,900 from the previous month.



A New Brunswick entrepreneur is setting up the province's first 3T magnetic resonance imaging unit in a private clinic in Moncton.

The Department of Health faced a controversy earlier this year over its decision not to fund a 3T MRI in Saint John.


Pierre C yr

The federal riding redistricting proposal has pretty much failed to address the northern depopulation and communities of interests in New Brunswick. There seems to be a concerted effort to protect Madawaska Restigouche from needed changes. I think its either to try and save Valcourts weak majority from either being lost to the Libs or to the NDP that are strong along the entire border there with Quebec.

Something that might happen if Grand Falls was returned to the northern riding it used to be a part of. Whats telling is that the provincial tour of the commisssion will not come to the northwest for its consultations (2nd link).





IMO this is shameful. Ive written my complaints to the commission as former NDP candidate for Tobique Mactaquac in the 2011 Federal election and invite anyone concerned to do so.


[email protected]







The union representing about 120 Acadian Lines employees says it is willing to work with the company to keep the bus service running in the Maritimes.

Acadian Lines announced Tuesday that it would cease operations in the region by the end of November. The company said it has been losing money on the operations for several years.

Scott Webber, president of CAW local 725, said the company might be able to survive if provincial governments will allow it to modify the service it provides.

"Our biggest problems that we know of is they're not letting the company change some of the runs that they wish to change, which is costing them money," he said.

"We've got runs that we're running two and three people on the road. You can't afford to keep a bus on the road when you've only go two or thee passengers."



The Alward government's ability to reduce departmental spending for the first time in more than a decade allowed the deficit to come in below expectations, Finance Minister Blaine Higgs said on Tuesday.

Higgs released the audited financial statement for 2011-12 on Tuesday, which showed the deficit came in at $260 million, which is $188 million lower than expected.



The Progressive Conservatives dropped six percentage points in the last three months, meanwhile the New Democratic Party saw its support rise by five percentage points to 24 per cent.

Despite the increase in the NDP's popularity, the Liberals remained in second place with 32 per cent support, according to the CRA poll.

New Brunswick's three main political parties are now separated by 14 percentage points in a province that has not always been kind to third parties. The NDP has not had a seat in the legislative assembly since 2005.



Being at 24% provincewide for the NDP seems consistent with getting 27% in a so-so riding like Rothesay in the byelection...if the NDP actually gets in to the mid-20s in popular vote in 2014 - we would be looking at least half a dozen seats.


A legislative committee is studying the Official Languages Act away from the glare of the public.

The Select Committee on the Revision of the Official Languages Act, which is made up of Progressive Conservative and Liberal MLAs, has agreed to hold the meetings in secret.


Despicable! I anm not sure what Cardy is going to have to say about this situation.


Opponents of shale gas development in New Brunswick say they're confused by the Alward government's recent cabinet shuffle, which involves Craig Leonard overseeing the industry again, despite his sister's role as a lobbyist.

Leonard had been Premier David Alward's first energy minister, but was sent to the Department of Government Services earlier this year after his sister, Angie Leonard, became a senior natural gas advisor for the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers.



The financial challenges being faced by New Brunswick, Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island should revive the concept of Maritime Union, according to a public administration expert.

Donald Savoie, the Canada research chair in public administration at the University of Moncton, said the three Maritime provinces are each confronting immense financial pressures and unification may make sense.

“What I mean by it is — full union — is to have one government for the three Maritime provinces,” Savoie said on Thursday.


When hell freezes over. Last time we discussed Maritime Union those Canadian twits crashed the party.Wink


The newly-elected mayor of the Village of Charlo has resigned over a disagreement with councillors regarding the consumption of alcohol while discussing village business.

Jason Carter claims some council members and the village administrator regularly consume alcohol at the village office after public meetings — all on the taxpayers' dime.


Sandy Dillon

I read a recent article where N.B. was the most in debt of the three provinces and had the second highest unemployment rate out done by PEI by .01 percentage point.

HINT::: New Brunswick government the ONLY Conservative government out of the three.


The article:::


New Brunswick is currently grappling with a $10-billion debt, a $356-million deficit and an unemployment rate of 11.6 per cent -- the province's highest in nearly a decade.
In P.E.I., the 2012-13 deficit is projected to come in at $79.6 million, while the Nova Scotia government has promised to balance the books by next spring, despite a deficit forecast of $211.2 million.

New Brunswick Conservative government!!! A huge oil deposit discovery in N.B. would help it helps most Conservative governments EXAMPLE Alberta and N.F.


A late report on the April 15th Kent by-election where the NDP did well, beating the PCs by a substantial margin and increasing their vote by 11.6% to 26.9% of voters. 

"NDP vote growing

Liberal Leader Brian Gallant may have won the Kent byelection but his victory may be foreshadowing problems for the province’s two traditional parties.

The Progressive Conservatives lost 985 votes compared to the 2010 general election and the Liberals lost 274 votes. By contrast, the NDP saw the party’s vote total increase by 575.

This is the second byelection in the province where the NDP failed to win a seat, but improved on its vote total.

NDP Leader Dominic Cardy finished third in 2012’s Rothesay byelectionwith 1,158 votes, an increase of 623 votes. The Tories held the seat but saw their vote total drop by 1,749 votes and the Liberals finished second but lost 366 votes.

While the NDP has performed well in the two byelections, it still trails the two main parties in recent public opinion polls.

Corporate Research Associates issued a poll in March that showed a three-way race with the Liberals at 35 per cent, Tories at 32 per cent and the NDP at 26 per cent."





The Finance Minister and the health Minister seem to be teaming up to guarantee they will be members of the second consecutive one term government.  I'm not sure the last time NB had back to back one term governments.


Talk about fluff.


Oil and gas blueprint released


The case of a former City Councillor has been prominent in Saint John. Now facing charges in NL.

A former New Brunswick politician who pleaded guilty to child sexual exploitation charges this week has now been charged with similar offences in Newfoundland and Labrador.

Donnie Snook, 41, is scheduled to appear in provincial court in Corner Brook on June 11 on two charges of sexual interference and two counts of sexual assault.



New Brunswick's doctors have won their legal dispute with the Alward government over billing fees.

A Court of Queen's Bench judge has ruled the New Brunswick Medical Society's 2009 fee agreement with the provincial government remains in effect and binding until 2014.



12 more opposed to shale gas arrested as RCMP turn violent on National Aboriginal Day

Did this get any MSM coverage in NB?

Not a peep I have heard in NS so far.


My understanding is that the fracking company SWN plans on doing seismic all summer. They have options on a large area. How much it includes I do not know, but it includes Hillsboro and area in Albert County.

And folks there are planning an extensive reception for them.


Where does the NB NDP stand on the fracking issue?


Firmly opposed.

And all the visits of Mulcair I know of, he comments and that is reported... which means he had to have empahsised his concern.


12 More Opposed To Shale Gas Arrested as RCMP Turn Violent on National Aboriginal Day


"12 more people were arrested today in their attempts to stop SWN Resources Canada from conducting seismic testing along highway 126, in Kent County, New Brunswick. (Recent Reporting from the Halifax Media Co-op.)"


Former Saint John councillor Donnie Snook, who pleaded guilty last month to 46 child exploitation charges, could be facing even more charges, says his defence lawyer.

Dennis Boyle told reporters on Tuesday the police investigation against his client is complete.



Double post removed


NDP Leader Dominic Cardy will run in the riding of Fredericton West-Hanwell in the 2014 provincial election.

Cardy used a Wednesday morning news conference to announce he would run in the Fredericton riding.

"Fredericton West-Hanwell is a great cross-section of New Brunswick. You have urban, suburban, and rural areas, people working for government, struggling to make a go of their own business, students, a good size francophone community and the First Nation of Kingsclear," Cardy said in a statement.


Pierre C yr

David Alward's Tory gov via Facilicorp is contracting out all dietary and EVS (environmental services) affecting upwards of ~1500 jobs in the hospital and health sector. Id link to the Gov web page that is asking for bids but you need an account. Dropping wages on that many jobs out of a population of about 730 000 will have serious effects in communities throughout NB. Its expected that wages will drop from about 20$ an hour with benefits to 10-12$ with few if any benefits for most of the union jobs being privatized. While the hospital unions signed a new contract lately the 'no contracting out' article has an 'Except in case of Emergency' clause that the prov gov is claiming over its deficit. Thus allowing it to cut even fulltime permanent positions if it sees fit... 


Blood that matches the DNA profile of slain New Brunswick businessman
Richard Oland was found on his son's jacket, newly released documents
related to the homicide investigation reveal.

Oland, 69, a member of one of the best-known families in Atlantic
Canada, was found dead in his uptown Saint John office on July 7, 2011.

Police seized a brown Hugo Boss sports jacket with blood on it from
the bedroom closet of Dennis Oland, 45, one week after his father's body
was discovered.



The head of the Canadian Association of University Teachers does not expect the strike by University of New Brunswick faculty to have long-term consequences for students.


James Turk, executive director of the group that represents staff at more than 120 universities and colleges across Canada, says while there are immediate concerns, once an agreement is eventually reached, things return to normal.

"As far as I know, no student in Canada has ever lost a semester or a year because of a faculty strike," Turk told CBC News on Monday after more than 1,000 professors, teaching staff and librarians at UNB hit the picket lines over pay and working conditions.



The Mount Allison Faculty Association has set a strike deadline of 12:01 a.m. on Jan. 27.

The association set the deadline "in a continuing effort to resolve its dispute with the administration over the terms of the next collective agreement," according to a statement issued on Tuesday morning.



The University of New Brunswick's Law Students' Society is calling on the provincial government to intervene in the faculty strike, now into its second week.

The government could work with the university administration and the Association of University of New Brunswick Teachers to explore alternatives, such as binding arbitration or a third party mediator, a letter sent to Minister of Post-Secondary Education, Training and Labour Jody Carr on Thursday suggests.




Striking faculty members at the University of New Brunswick will vote on tentative agreement that calls for salary increases of 2.5 per cent in the first two years of the contract, with any increase in the third year to be determined through arbitration, says the president of the Association of University of New Brunswick Teachers.

The tentative agreement to end the strike that started Jan. 13 was reached Thursday.

University president Eddy Campbell announced Friday that classes and courses will resume on Monday.

Pierre C yr

Wow! Mike Allen in what was one of the safest Conservative seats in Eastern Canada will not re-offer in 2015. As the guy who ran against him and came in a distant second Im curious to see what reasons he will give for this. He will talk with Terry Seguin about his decision on the CBC radio show Info Am Fredercicton at 7:40 tomorrow morning.

David Young

Pierre C yr wrote:

Wow! Mike Allen in what was one of the safest Conservative seats in Eastern Canada will not re-offer in 2015. As the guy who ran against him and came in a distant second Im curious to see what reasons he will give for this. He will talk with Terry Seguin about his decision on the CBC radio show Info Am Fredercicton at 7:40 tomorrow morning.

Pierre, you got 19% of the vote in 2011 as a first-time candidate and was the first-ever New Democrat to finish second in the riding of Tobique-Mactaquac (thanks Alice Funke over at Pundit's Guide!)

Are you thinking of re-offering next time, given that recent polling shows the NDP in New Brunswick at higher levels of support than 2011?


Pierre C yr

David Young wrote:

Pierre C yr wrote:

Wow! Mike Allen in what was one of the safest Conservative seats in Eastern Canada will not re-offer in 2015. As the guy who ran against him and came in a distant second Im curious to see what reasons he will give for this. He will talk with Terry Seguin about his decision on the CBC radio show Info Am Fredercicton at 7:40 tomorrow morning.

Pierre, you got 19% of the vote in 2011 as a first-time candidate and was the first-ever New Democrat to finish second in the riding of Tobique-Mactaquac (thanks Alice Funke over at Pundit's Guide!)

Are you thinking of re-offering next time, given that recent polling shows the NDP in New Brunswick at higher levels of support than 2011?



Though its early to say at this time I dont think so. Im not a good fit for this riding which is deeply conservative. Also very religious. Im not a 'right wing' NDPer if you can call it that. Im borderline socialist and getting moreso by the year as I age. I know running only once isnt a good thing for us unlike Liberals who kill their losers after one shot (Chuck Chiasson who ran against me as the Liberal nod in 2011 is himself going for the provincial Liberal nomination for Grand Falls in this fall's NB provincial election). I also got the lowest result for the province which was 30% of the vote average in 2011. I was at the low end.

At this point I think you can expect a new slate all throughout for the riding in 2015. I dont see the tories lose even with Mike leaving unless the Liberals name a very well known and very right wing candidate.

Andy Savoy who was the liberal MP here before Mike, was known as one of the most right wing blue liberals in the country just to give you an idea.