On campus
In the harbour


1. VG Flood

The Nova Scotia Health Authority has posted a video of the flood of the Victoria General Hospital:

QEII VG Flood Recap from Nova Scotia Health Authority on Vimeo.

2. Kyley Harris

Kyley Harris was Premier Stephen McNeil’s communications director. Last year, McNeil fired Harris because Harris did not disclose that he was charged with the assault of his girlfriend. Subsequently, Harris pleaded guilty to the charge, and was given a conditional sentence with probation.

All is forgiven, apparently. Harris has been hired back as a researcher for the Liberals, reports the CBC:

Premier Stephen McNeil said the job was offered to Harris recently.

“We needed a researcher at the office and they reached out to Kyley and offered him the position.”

McNeil says his former advisor was chosen because of his prior experience. 

“We know his skill set. We know that he’s worked both in the premier’s office and the caucus office. We knew his capabilities and we had the vacancy so they offered it to him and it’s a contract that runs out at the end of December.”

When Harris was initially fired, Graham Steele thought the Liberals would not be affected:

Has the McNeil government been damaged by all this? Kyley Harris was a high-level player. He would have attended every cabinet meeting, and had more access to the premier than any backbench MLA or cabinet minister. When somebody like that is fired, it rattles everybody inside the government.

They are rattled, yes, but they will settle down and move on. They dealt with it quickly. They slipped a bit by first putting Harris on paid leave, but within a few days they moved decisively. There was no attempt at a cover-up. Politically, they’ll be fine.

I’m all for people, even people convicted of assault, getting on with their lives and becoming productive citizens. But gee golly, there are a gazillion communications jobs out there — in advertising, PR, media, whatever — so I’m not sure why it necessary for the Liberals, the governing party, to hire Harris back. The optics are all wrong.

3. The beatings will continue until morale improves

Stephen McNeil. Photo: Halifax Examiner
Stephen McNeil. Photo: Halifax Examiner

“Nova Scotia’s premier says it’s time for the province’s film and television industry to get back to work and stop complaining about the controversial changes his government made to the film tax credit in its spring budget,” reports Dave Stephens of Lunenburg’s LighthouseNOW:

“I would argue that the negative press that the industry has been putting on themselves has been more detrimental to the sector than any change we made,” said [Premier Stephen] McNeil. “If you’re somebody looking to invest in this province and all you hear is negativity about a very good subsidy, what are you going to do? You’re going to think long and hard before you decide to come this way.

“I believe people shoot films here for more than just that subsidy,” the premier continued, “and the sooner that sector recognizes that and starts promoting it, we’ll see it grow.”

4. Grandeur Estates

City and provincial officials are going to let the Grandeur Estates senior home in Hammonds Plains stay open, despite being completely unlicensed and being in violation of fire and safety codes and provincial rules for assisted living facilities.

Grandeur Estates wasn’t even registered with the province as a business until June of this year, even though it has been in operation since at least January. Its owner, Jillian Peterson, had previously owned Golden Age Home Care in Halifax, which had its registry status revoked for non-payment in 2013.

If a business owner can’t take care of the mundane details of registering the business and applying for and obtaining the necessary licences, it’s probably not a good idea to entrust her with the care of vulnerable people.

5. Pedestrian struck

From police Staff Sergeant Barb Saunders’ end-of-shift email to reporters:

At 8:00 pm a 25 year old male pedestrian was walking in the street near Victoria RD and Primrose St in Dartmouth when he was struck by a car. One car swerved to avoid the man and when the second car approached, the man ran in front of the car, the driver could not avoid the man, he was struck. He was transported to the hospital by ambulance, with what was believed to be minor injuries. The driver of the car was a 35 year old woman. At the time of the accident it was raining, the roads were very wet and it was dark. 

6. Setting the stage for the next snow clearing disaster

The rumour mill at City Hall has it that Darren Natolino, the head of winter operations, resigned yesterday. And I’m told that there are “at least a dozen” unfilled positions in the department.


1. Apple barrel labels

Photo: Stephen Archibald
Photo: Stephen Archibald

Stephen Archibald breaks out his collection of paper labels that once adorned apple barrels, including the one above:

The most exceptional label I’ve seen was for Eden Brand apples from Canning, depicting Eve accepting the apple from the serpent. Both she and Adam have their naughty bits concealed by blanks where the variety and size of the apples would have been printed or rubber stamped. The packers must have enjoyed stamping  Adam: “2 ½ inches.”

2. Junior High dances

Lezlie Lowe thinks they’re great.

3. Cranky letter of the day

To the Chronicle Herald:

I see the controversy about the Mother Canada statue’s unwelcome future abode is in the news again. I have no issue over what should or shouldn’t go in a national park, but the Cape Breton Highlands park certainly isn’t the place for it.

As I understand it, Mother Canada is to represent all the mothers who had the heartache of watching their loved ones either going to war or who awaited their return. So I ask, why should she be stuck in the backwoods of Nova Scotia? Most of the folks going to war left from Halifax Harbour on the convoys. That is the only logical place for the statue, somewhere in the outer harbour, where everyone can see and appreciate it — say either Georges or McNabs island. You don’t see the Statue of Liberty stuck in the backwoods of Maine.

Nick Colp, Prospect Bay


No public meetings.


On this date in 1758, the Nova Scotia House of Assembly met for the first time in a modest wooden building at the corner of Argyle and Buckingham Streets in Halifax.

Remember how just seven years ago we spent $9 million on D-250 and got young people involved in politics and destroyed political cynicism forever and gave John Hamm and Russell MacLellan something to do in their twilight years? Good times.

And all I got was this lousy T-shirt.

On campus


Fografiddle and Giltarump (noon, Cobequid Room in MacRae Library, Agricultural Campus, Truro) — Andrew Jennings, from the University of The Highlands and Islands, will talk on “Fografiddle and Giltarump – An interesting exploration of Shetland’s unusual place names.”

LGBTQ health (noon, 2017 Marion McCain Building) — Jacqueline Gahagan will speak.

Black History Activism in World War II Chicago (3:30pm, Marion McCain Building, room 1170) — Ian Rocksborough-Smith, from the University of Toronto and St. Francis Xavier University, will be speaking.

Gesa Mackenthun
Gesa Mackenthun

Embattled Antiquity (3:45pm, McCain 1198) — Gesa Mackenthun, from Universite-Rostock, will speak on “Embattled Antiquity: Colonial and Postcolonial Inventions of the American Ancient Past.” Mackenthun has an impressive list of publications.

Veterans’ health (4:30pm) — Alice Aiken, the Scientific Director of the Canadian Institute of Military and Veterans Health Research, will speak on “Advancing the health of Canada’s military and veterans: How can clinicians, researchers and universities contribute?”

In the harbour

The seas around Nova Scotia, 8:30am Friday. Map:
The seas around Nova Scotia, 8:30am Friday. Map:

Star I, oil tanker, arrived at Imperial Oil this morning from Beaumont, Texas
Hoegh Delhi, car carrier, Emden, Germany to Auotport

Lion sails to Willemstad, Denmark
Dinkeldiep sails to sea
Oceanex Sanderling sails to St. John’s

The cruise ships Brilliance of the Seas (up to 2,501 passengers), Summit (up to 2,450 passengers), and Seven Seas Navigator (up to 500 passengers) are in port today.


The latest Examineradio podcast will be published this morning.

Tim Bousquet is the editor and publisher of the Halifax Examiner. Twitter @Tim_Bousquet Mastodon

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  1. Three plus (depending how you count) Faculties of Education in this province, all of them staffed with folks with broad teaching experience and PhDs and most of whom are active educators, researchers, writers and the Cape Breton Board of Education pays to bring in an American consultant?? Seriously??

    Apparently the board hasn’t had its budget cut enough yet….most people who work in a faculty of education here in Nova Scotia would come and participate in a Professional Development session just for having their travel and food expenses covered (we already work FOR the taxpayer, remember?). Hey, toss in a small honorarium too for dragging us away from other work and we’d be there in a flash. But those Americans that boards of ed spend thousands bringing in? Sometimes TENS of thousands?? Like I said, their budgets aren’t cut enough yet if they can afford that.
    I’d like to know *exactly* what expertise that Dru Tomlin has that couldn’t be found locally in the university system here that the taxpayers have already paid for….I’ve looked at the available info on his background, and I’ve not found anything.

      1. Yeah, I saw her commentary….was happy to see it, but she didn’t really question why a local expert wasn’t brought up to CB. Given that you posted a link to Lezlie’s column I thought I’d drop in further commentary.
        For a province with a surplus of universities we sure seem to pay to import an awful lot of commentary from people external to the province in all areas (not just education).

  2. Re Kyley Harris:
    Any attempt by McNeil to explain what has changed, so that the person who deserved to be fired last year deserves to be hired this year? I’m also ok with people convicted of offenses “getting on with their lives and becoming productive citizens.” But Harris was fired before he was convicted. The problem seems not to have been offense itself, but the fact that he didn’t disclose that he was charged. Someone should ask why McNeil thinks Harris can be trusted now.

  3. Re: Grandeur Estates

    This really bugs me, especially the fire safety. Imagine a fire marshal showing up at an overcrowded event to enforce an occupancy limit, only to be told `were all comfortable here and do not need to be concerned about that stuff`. That`s not how it works.

    1. I fear the beginning of the heating season. They’ve probably already turned the heat on, if those old people are anything like my parents.

  4. I agree (partially) with Nick Colp that ««Mother Canada»» would be totally mis-placed in the Highlands National Park. However, who would wish that ersatz monstrosity on even the already-blighted Halifax Waterfront? Perhaps it could be combined with the preservation of the Sambro Island Light — altho I suspect Sambro-ites wouldn’t appreciate its ugliness either.

  5. RE the «FLOOD»…
    This only ONE of MANY «disasters» at the Centennial which could easily have been avoided! Where are the SHUTOFF VALVES???? Where was the Facilities Maintenance Emergency Response Unit??? Last Spring I witnessed (and reported!) a burst pipe which cascaded water into the Main Entrance for almost THREE HOURS before someone finally appeared to shut it off. Though the pipe, exposed to a freezing environment, should never have contained water in the first place, that it took 3 hours for someone to shut it off speaks volumes (ptp!) about the QE-II’s administrative efficiency.

  6. Whatever local enterprise can make merch with the “Eden Brand” label is invited to take all of my money. It is magnificent.

  7. RE: D257

    Congratulations Nova Scotia, on 257 years of government D spearing your collective behinds