“Police investigators on Monday morning were dealing with the aftermath of a house fire at 25 MacKay Lane in Eastern Passage,” reports Local Xpress. “RCMP were called to the scene overnight after a report shots were fired. A body has reportedly been found at the gutted home and officers were awaiting the arrival of the medical examiner early Monday.”
2. Examineradio, episode #73
This week we feature a roundtable between myself and Halifax Needham candidates Lisa Roberts and Andy Arsenault. We discuss seniors’ issues, housing, the Film Tax Credit and the future of the Bloomfield site.
Also in the news, a lawyer representing Westlock County, AB, has detailed no fewer than 12 breaches of contract and/or breaches of county rules during Peter Kelly’s brief tenure there as CAO. It still seems apparent that the taxpayers in Westlock will be left holding the bag while Kelly counts down the weeks until his probationary period in Charlottetown expires. Plus, Unique Solutions ceases operations after wrapping itself in $5.6-million in provincial funding.
Also, rats. Halifax has ’em.
“A Halifax man who captured a shark attack on video while on a boat trip Sunday in St. Margarets Bay with friends said the encounter was a first for him,” reports JoAnn Alberstat for Local Xpress:
Sean Potter said Friday evening he has seen sharks in the area before but hadn’t previously witnessed one striking prey. The Halifax man, along with friends Abbey LeFrank and Christin Lane, shot footage of the shark attacking a pod of about six harbour porpoises.
The video, above, shows the awesome strength of the shark as it explosively chomps at a porpoise.
Then, over the weekend, Bill Flower of Lunenburg Ocean Adventures says he saw a giant shark repeatedly jumping out of the water, reports the Canadian Press:
Flower says he’s been seeing more sharp-toothed predators on his near-daily shark charters, a slight increase he attributes to warming waters related to climate change.
“Everything is environmentally changing,” Flower said Sunday. “I’m seeing more (sharks). Not a lot, but … I’ve never seen a mako breach unless it’s on a hook before, and I saw one yesterday on a rough day and that was very unusual.”
Other sightings in Atlantic Canada this summer include a great white that was caught on camera cruising in the Bay of Fundy near St. Andrews, N.B., last week, and a shark that caused a stir in Liverpool in July after gobbling mackerel straight off fishers’ hooks.
On the other hand, the article continues:
[Oceanographer Warren] Joyce said the DFO is notified of shark sightings about 12 to 20 times every summer and there has not been a significant hike this year.
The researcher reckons about half of these reports may be false alarms inspired by the cultural fascination with the dead-eyed, primeval fish.
Joyce thinks those porpoises in the video were “rattled,” but probably unharmed.
1. Unique Solutions
To my surprise, Peter Moreira acknowledges the demise of Unique Solutions, albeit he doesn’t mention his past columns plugging the company.
Also, the Chronicle Herald reported on the closure, again without reviewing the paper’s own abysmal past reporting.
2. Sexual assault at university
Judy Haiven recounts the experiences of two women attending east coast universities who unknowingly had drinks spiked with a date-rape drug. In both cases, there appear to have been people who either who knew what was going on at the time or could have investigated afterwards but did nothing.
3. Linden Lea
The proposed apartment building on Linden Lea in downtown Dartmouth violates the spirit of the upcoming Centre Plan, argues Dartmouth city council candidate Sam Austin in Spacings.
I wrote about Linden Lea, its semi-secret duck pond, and the apartment building project here.
4. Manning MacDonald
Manning MacDonald, a former MLA and cabinet minister in the Liberal governments of John Savage and Russell MacLellan, has an occasional column in the Cape Breton Post. Today, MacDonald explains:
I want to revisit some of the issues that I had to deal with while a member of the Liberal government caucus and cabinet of Premier John Savage and later the government of MacLellan.
There were a number of issues that I found put me at odds with some of my cabinet and caucus members and in some cases the premier. Issues that had me thinking about my future in caucus and in cabinet.
However, I decided that it was important for me to have a seat at the table to argue my concerns inside the room and not in public. There were some interesting discussions in caucus and cabinet during my years as a member of both, and some were related to Cape Breton issues that were very important to me.
In some cases my opinions were not shared by my friends in caucus or cabinet. I feel it is time to share these discussions with readers and leave it to you to determine the importance of the subject matter.
MacDonald seems to be saying that he will soon break the lifetime requirement for cabinet confidentiality.
Graham Steele, who was likewise a cabinet minister (in the Dexter government), has never broken cabinet confidentiality — not in his CBC column, nor when I’ve pressed him privately for off-the-record background information. Steele did, however, write a column in which he said cabinet confidentiality is being abused.
At cabinet, MacDonald was at various times minister of the Department of Labour and the Department of Economic Development and Tourism, and was as well given lesser portfolios. His most notable assignment was probably as the minister in charge of the Sysco clean-up.
He continued to win his Cape Breton South seat even as the Liberals were in opposition, only retiring in 2013, when scandal erupted because he took a month-long vacation in Florida while the legislature was sitting in Halifax.
5. Mental health
Dorothy Grant recalls her three-month training program at the Nova Scotia Hospital in 1955, during which she witnessed electroshock therapy and insulin shock therapy.
6. Cranky letter of the day
I am very upset about the unfair deal Islanders are getting in regards to Confederation Bridge tolls. It is annoying to think about paying money to cross a bridge inside the same country. I am shocked that the Champlain Bridge in Montreal, which costs more than our bridge here on the Island, is toll free.
Prince Edward Island has a very high unemployment rate — third highest rate in the country at 11.0 per cent. This illustrates that Islanders are having a jobs deficit; thus, less income. Above all of that, they have to pay to go for a trip or for a treatment in a hospital away. This fee is very hard to pay by a family with low or limited income.
The bridge toll is acting as a barrier to tourism. I think the $46 toll is an obstacle for businesses and tourists. Since most of the commodities are coming to the Island by big trucks, they might have to think again about the bridge toll. Many people from Canada and U.S. might be able to visit the Island more than once but they feel unwilling or reluctant to pay for the bridge, especially when they can visit other provinces for free or low tolls. For instance Nova Scotia has a toll but is $4 only. Another example is Montreal, where the Champlain Bridge is totally free.
Ultimately, I think islanders should have the Confederation Bridge toll waived soon.
Mohammed AlMukhtar, Charlottetown, UPEI Student
Olympic medal-winning canoeist Thomas Hall provides a much-needed critique of the Own The Podium initiative.
Northwest Community Council (7pm, Acadia Hall, Sackville) — the Sobeys want to build a hotel and a drive-thru restaurant where the Staples and Dollarama once sat at the Downsview complex lands, southeast corner of Sackville and Beaver Bank Roads.
No public meetings.
There’s nothing much happening at local universities all week.
In the harbour
Scheduled as of 7am:
8am: Veendam, cruise ship, arrives at Pier 22 from Bar Harbor with up to 1,350 passengers
11am: Fritz Reuter, container ship, arrives at Pier 42 from Leixoes, Portugal
4:30pm: CSCL Africa, container ship, sails from Pier 41 for sea
6pm: Veendam, cruise ship, sails from Pier 22 for the Giant Fiddle
9pm: Helga, general cargo, sails from Pier 31 for Rotterdam
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