The Dexter government has rejected a freedom of information request for details on the $300 million plus it's given the Irving-owned Halifax shipyard. Why? Well for one reason, the Irvings didn't want the information released and apparently that was the kiss of death for the Canadian Taxpayer Federation's effort to get answers to questions like why was $260 million of that a forgivable loan. Both Liberal Stephen McNeil and Tory Jamie Baillie are expressing concern about the lack of accountibility when it comes to how our tax dollars are spent. Baillie says a clear condition of spending public money is public scrutiny. The contract's been awarded, the Halifax yard will get the bulk of the federal government's shipbuilding program, so why then can't we know the ins and outs of the deal that gave the Irving yard over $300 million. What are they hiding?
University students here in Nova Scotia are expressing their support to their striking Quebec counterparts in a rather unusal way. They staged a poutine party to show their solidarity. So while the Quebec students marched, protested and at times confronted police, university students here gorged themselves on poutine in support. Only in Nova Scotia. Gotta love it.
Labour organizations in Ontario and Quebec are contributing cash to the Quebec university students cause which now seems not so much about increasing tuitions, but a demonstration against a draconian provincial law recently passed putting restrictions on their protests. The Nova Scotia Federation of Labour has no plans to follow suit, at least not at this point, but money could be on its way to Quebec from the Halifax-Dartmouth and District Labour Council. President Kyle Buott says it's on the agenda at their next get-together. The council's also behind a protest June 7th on the waterfront to protest Nova Scotia Power's proposed rate increases. Buott says they're calling for the de-privitization of the utility, even if it means the province expropriating the company.
There's talk this week about privitizing the harbour ferry service. Tim Olive of the Downtown Dartmouth Business Commission doesn't think Metro Transit's managing the ferry system adequately. He's especially concerned about the possibility the late night service might be cut. Low ridership levels are given as the reason, but Olive questions why Metro Transit isn't doing more to try to increase ridership on the ferries, why hasn't it begun promoting the service. He thinks a private company might better operate the ferries, something councillor Gloria McCluskey says she'd support if Metro Transit went ahead with the late night cuts.
A bit of a ruckus on a Metro Transit bus the other afternoon. Seems a pickup truck driver got caught in the bus lane between two buses. He says the bus driver behind him began honking at him. Kenny Smith says he pulled over, got on the bus and that's when the fun began. The two began duking it out. Witnesses tell CTV news the bus driver was only defending himself, that Smith was the aggressor. Police say neither man wanted them involved, so it's case closed as far as they're concerned. Metro Transit says it's reviewing the video from the surveillance camera equipped on all its buses. Just another day in the life of a bus driver.
Have a great day. Get involved. And if you're not outraged, you're not paying attention.