Top : News and Views : Page 3

PEIBlogs.com: the definitive Prince Edward Island blogroll since 2004.: News and Views

Home | Add Site | Change Site | New | Cool | Top Rated | Random | Email Updates | Search

DotServing dotServing, the number 1 choice for Islanders looking for web hosting. Setup your presence today with web design and development plans available. Rates starting at $5 a month. Or take advantage of our affilate program available with payouts as high as $100!! Visit us at www.dotserving.pe.ca.

Links:

Contract All | Expand All

Not a Plastic Blog - An online petition aiming to drastically reduce to use of plastic bags on PEI. Please sign the site and show your support!
(Added: 25-Sep-2008 Hits: 3 Rating: 0 Votes: 0) Rate It

  • Mon., September 22nd, A Petition for Islanders
    We, the undersigned, agree with the need to drastically reduce the use of plastic shopping bags on P.E.I. Because they are non-biodegradable, plastic bags are either recycled or end up in landfills, consuming both valuable land and provincial resources.  In the interest of maintaining P.E.I.’s natural landscape by reducing waste and pollution, we agree to […]

P.E.I. Political Homepage - Political views. "Liberal" actually appears to be anti-Liberal and anti-Guardian.
(Added: 4-Nov-2006 Hits: 97 Rating: 10.00 Votes: 2) Rate It

Parents for Choice and Quality - Parents for Choice and Quality is a non-profit organization that brings parental voice to Island discussions.
(Added: 5-Nov-2008 Hits: 2 Rating: 0 Votes: 0) Rate It

  • Fri., May 28th, Province unveils plan to revitalize early childhood sector today
    By TERESA WRIGHT The Guardian – May 28, 2010 The province?s long-awaited plan to revitalize the early childhood sector will finally be released to the public today. The Early Years Report will reveal government?s plan to help the struggling sector and detail how $7 million dedicated to the sector in the recent provincial budget will […]
  • Thu., May 27th, Release of Early Years Report
    Parents for Choice & Quality have obtained the following information regarding the release of The Early Years Report. Child care centres began to receive invitations in the mail this morning. May 25th, 2010 To Whom It May Concern: In my initial letter to you, I indicated that soon we would be releasing The Early Years […]
  • Wed., May 26th, Note to PCQ friends
    Dear PCQ Friends, Remember two years ago when Parents for Choice and Quality was born? Parents and concerned Islanders came together to speak out about the proposed legislative changes to the Child Care Facilities Act because of limited parent consultation. April will be on Compass tonight discussing the fact that last week, our elected Government […]
  • Wed., May 26th, PCQ voices concerns in Guardian article re Bill 47
    Parents upset about P.E.I. childcare law changes BY TERESA WRIGHT The Guardian A group of parents is upset over changes made to the law governing childcare centres on P.E.I. ? changes parents worry may limit access to new, quality daycares. The Child Care Facilities Act was amended during the recent spring session of the legislature, […]
  • Fri., May 21st, Bill 47 passes ? giving Child Care Facilities Board power to refuse child care licenses

PEI 2007 Election Results - Results for the May 28 2007 PEI Provincial Election
(Added: 28-May-2007 Hits: 67 Rating: 0 Votes: 0) Rate It

PEI Campaign - Islander follows the PEI campaign--has all the gossip.
(Added: 10-May-2007 Hits: 86 Rating: 0 Votes: 0) Rate It

  • Rumours for the Readers

    Doug Currie was promised a cabinet post by Robert Ghiz--he also worked as a poll chairman for Chester Gillan in the last election and is now finding it difficult to get volunteers for his campaign. Apparently, Islanders dislike traitors. Who knew?


    Richard Brown is telling voters to fill out government applications and take them to his campaign office, perhaps the most illegal act yet. Quite foolish too seeing as how they're not expected to win the election.


    Carolyn Bertram openly admits that she made a mistake (to her campaign workers) that she should have ran in District 17, and that she will most likely be defeated in 18.
    Sean Casey (Liberal Party president) is under harsh criticism for writing American-style attack ads--and may be turfed as president before May 28.


    District 13 Liberal assocition, Ghiz's home district, is running on empty with a skeleton crew of volunteers. According to one of his EDA members, 9 of his poll chairs are "rookies" who don't actually know the people in the area.


    The Tories are expecting John Abbott to take down Ghiz.


    The Liberals' cover has been blown wide open by peipolitics.blogspot.com. The local blogger has identified several fake letters to the editor hitting the Guardian this week. All of which were written by the Liberal party itself and signed off by partisan followers. The opposition party has also attempted to suppress public disapproval of Ghiz on websites such as peiinfo.com and others.


    The Young Liberals have also been caught pressuring undecided voters to join a Facebook group that is pro-Ghiz. The group, which indicates support for Ghiz in the election, is filled with people who openly admit to having no affiliation to Ghiz whatsoever--many of which dislike his 'leader'ship qualities. These youth are heckled if they attempt to leave the group, and others are bombarded with demands to join the group until they finally cave in. The perpetrators are Cory Stevenson, Julie Mutch and other blind followers of Ghiz. Their goal, is to inflate the group with false numbers and then bring the group to the attention of local media outlets--attempting to make Ghiz appear youthful, and the choice of the next generation.


    Incidentally, some Young PC members had created a group for Premier Pat Binns months prior to the Liberal group. But they don't appear to be actively recruiting for it--leaving it only for the actual supporters of Pat Binns to join up. (Premier Pat Binns joined Facebook months ago after a group of students invited him to do so--he now has about 700 Island youth on his "friends" list. Robert Ghiz joined a few weeks after the Premier, but he blocks his profile out including the numbers of his friends list. Probably because he is so far behind the premier).


    More to come...

PEI Google News Search - Search of Google News for current news stories about PEI.
(Added: 11-Aug-2006 Hits: 99 Rating: 0 Votes: 0) Rate It

PEI Preschool Autism Services - This blog was created to educate the Island about what is going on in the Preschool Autism Community and how it impacts our family.
(Added: 16-Sep-2008 Hits: 6 Rating: 0 Votes: 0) Rate It

PEI Resource Loft - Another PEI message board. Island gossip, politics,and more. No RSS feed.
(Added: 19-Oct-2006 Hits: 113 Rating: 0 Votes: 0) Rate It

PEI Talk - Chit Chat for all Islanders, from PEIInfo.com
(Added: 27-Aug-2004 Hits: 345 Rating: 8.19 Votes: 33) Rate It

  • Point Deroche pond Trout? (30 Words)
    I've been to PEI a few times and looked at the beautiful Point Deroche pond but I've never seen anyone fishing in it. Are there any trout in the pond?...
  • Wow such emptiness (25 Words)
    I think this place needs a reckoning, bring it back to its former glory. Who is still around from years ago? What’s happened to everyone?...
  • Currie's Shoe Repair (32 Words)
    does anyone know if they are still open? i noticed a sign for them on Kent Street pointing in a gangway across from City Hall, but they're not listed in phone book....
  • How many KW hours did you use last month? (55 Words)
    We used 2365 Kilowatt Hours to heat 1500 sf last month. How much did you use?


    Service Charge - $24.57 per month24.57
    Energy Charge - 1st Block 2000 @ 13.96 cents per kwh279.20
    - 2nd Block 365 @ 11.08 cents per kwh 40.44
    Sub total 344.21
    HST = $344.21 X 15.0% 51.63
    395.84...
  • Use HDMI ARC as just HDMI (196 Words)
    As I understand it, HDMI ARC was an added feature to allow newer audio formats to travel along the same HDMI cable to whatever audio receiver set up you have.

    Does anyone know if I can just use the HDMI ARC output to send video to a regular HDMI input on my TV?

    I am looking at a Vizio 5.1 soundbar system that has a TOSlink input, and HDMI input and an HDMI ARC output.

    I would like to connect my DVR via HDMI to the TV and TOSLINK to the soundbar.

    Also (and really the main reason for the soundbar if it works) I would like to connect my Roku to the HDMI input of the soundbar and then the HDMI ARC output to my TV.

    Netflix uses either just stereo audio or Dolby Digital Plus. Right now I have my Roku connected to HDMI on the TV, my DVR on another HDMI input on the TV and then the TV TOSlink output to my receiver. However, the TV does not seem to allow the audio to passthrough so I basically just have stereo or "faux surround".

    Any thoughts?...

PEI, Canada - Welcome to PEICanada.com! This is a new kind of community website that joins with the Island Press newspapers in a mission of helping our readers come together as a community. This is a place where you take the lead in telling your own story. If you wish to have you own voice you can contact us and we will set you up with your own blog where you can post your own news and items.
(Added: 16-Jun-2008 Hits: 10 Rating: 0 Votes: 0) Rate It

  • Wed., July 22nd, Resident opposes spray, not farmers
    By Stephen Brun stephen.brun@peicanada.com A Murray Harbour North woman wants better communication between farmers and the public when it comes to spraying fields near homes after chemicals used near her residence caused her health problems that have lasted almost a month. Gail Creed, 62, noticed vapors from a chemical spray hanging in the air over a neighbouring potato field, roughly 70 feet from her home while she was mowing her lawn about three weeks ago. Ms Creed, who is asthmatic, woke up the...(read more)
  • Wed., July 22nd, Beach tradition proves costly
    By Jean Kenny jean.kenny@westprince.com Just because you don?t know you?re breaking the law in PEI is no excuse for committing the offense. A Christopher?s Cross family found that out the hard way last summer while enjoying a visit to Phee Shore. ?I have never in my life seen a sign saying you couldn?t drive on the beach at Phee Shore or on any other beach,? said Paula Gavin. ?It?s a fourth generation family tradition. I have been going to that area of the beach for more than 50 years and that?s what we were doing the day we were fined. ?We weren?t damaging the beach. There are no sand dunes or piping plovers. The bank gradually ends and then you drive along on the rocks a little way to the stream where we always go. We had no food or liquor and we weren?t doing any harm.? Paula and her husband Kenny, their daughter, son and grandchildren had driven to the exact same spot on the beach the family has used for generations. A small streams running to the salt water from an inland pool offers warm and safe swimming for toddlers. ?That is what we were doing. Carrying on a family tradition with our grandchildren.? While they were sitting watching their children play in the stream, two Dept of Environment trucks drove up behind them and three conservation officers got out of the trucks. ?We didn?t know what was going on. They told us we were not allowed to drive our vehicles on the beach and wrote out three fines without any warning at all.? recalled Ms Gavin. ?I was totally dumbfounded.? Kenny, his son and daughter each received a $200 fine for driving a motorized vehicle on the beach without a permit. With court costs the total of $660 was owed to the provincial treasury for the fines. ?That?s just unbelievable,? said Ms Gavin. ?We couldn?t believe it. We were stunned.? She said at the time they explained to the officers that they were unaware that they were breaking the law. They had no previous records and had no prior tickets. ?We have always driven down here. The bank stops and then we just follow along here on the rocks. My father used to bring us here in the tractor and wagon and then the truck. I took my own children and now they bring their children. When did we start breaking the law?? she asks. According to John Clements, PEI?s chief conservation officer the law prohibiting driving on Island beaches came into effect in the 1980s with the Environmental Protection Act. He said you cannot get a permit to drive on the beach. That has the Gavin?s wondering how they can be fined for not having a permit to drive their vehicle on the beach when there is no such thing as a permit. Mr Clements contends that it is a well known fact that you can?t drive your vehicle on any Island beaches and there are signs posted. ?The law applies to everyone,? he said. ?Vehicles driving on the beach is a massive problem in West Prince,? said Mr Clements. ?More problems are reported there than anywhere else on the Island. When we post signs they are torn down almost as fast as they go up.? He said conservation officers can make allowances and first time offenders are often given warnings. He agreed that three fines in the same family, at the same time, was a bit excessive. ?We have travelled the beaches all our lives and we make a living on the beach,? said Ms Gavin. Mr Clements said the law allows for people driving on the beach to collect moss and he believes most Islanders are aware of the rules and follow them. Ms Gavin said she and her family never for a minute thought they were breaking the law and asked the conservation officers where they were allowed to park their vehicles, but they were not given any information. ?How can we be breaking the law. My father used to drive down to this spot to get cleaned up when he?d be finished taking in the hay. We have been driving here for more than 50 years.? ?Our family tradition has now been ruined,? she said. ?I don?t even feel like coming here any more because the whole thing has made me so upset.? She said people using the beach along the Phee Shore area are very respectful. They have been on the beach all their lives and she has never seen a problem. ?If the department of environment says people are breaking the law then they should be educating people as to what they can and cannot do. ?I?m sure 90 per cent of the people in the community don?t know what they can or cannot do on the beach. I still can?t believe we were fined for sitting on the beach with our children,? she said. ?If we had known the rules and regulations we would not have driven on the beach and gotten $660 in fines. I want other people to know so it won?t happen to them.? Mr Clements said more education might be a good idea and he would check to see what might be done.
  • Wed., July 22nd, Turnout for first Seaglass Fest overwhelms organizers
    By Stephen Brun stephen.brun@peicanada.com Organizers of the Seaglass festival in Wood Islands say they were overwhelmed with the turnout last weekend and are already looking ahead to next year because of the success of the inaugural event. Members of the Keepers of the Light committee, who organized the festival, estimated about 2,500 people visited the grounds at the Wood Islands lighthouse from July 17-18 to see artisans who turn pieces of seaglass into jewelry or incorporate them into paintings...(read more)
  • Wed., July 22nd, West Prince woman still missing
    The investigation into missing person, Nicole Lee Gallant of Tyne Valley is continuing, according to RCMP spokesperson Sgt Dennis Morin. A missing person?s alert was issued Thursday, July 16, by Prince District RCMP. Police are seeking the public?s assistance in locating the 29-year-old woman who has not been in contact with her family since July 4, 2009. She is believed to be travelling with Michael Scott, 38 years of age. The two are believed to be driving a black 2009 Pontiac G-5 rental vehicle, bearing PEI licence plate RZ781. The car was rented on June 30 and is overdue for return to the rental company. Ms Gallant was scheduled to return to her place of employment on July 13 but she has yet to return. The young woman, who is formally from Fortune Cove is described as 5?10? tall, weighing approximately 175 pounds. She has brown eyes and brown shoulder length hair. Anyone with information on the whereabouts of Ms Gallant is asked to contact the nearest RCMP detachment.
  • Wed., July 22nd, Details of settlement are secret
    By David MacDonald david.macdonald@peicanada.com The Town of Georgetown and the Eastern School Board have reached a settlement in the legal challenge related to the school closure report, but the public may never know the details. Town council voted 5-0 to approve a motion authorizing acting Mayor Lewis Lavandier to reach a settlement between the town and the school district. The town lost its challenge over the legality of Superintendent Sandy MacDonald?s school closure report, which recommended...(read more)

Power in Prince Edward Island - Maritime Electric, a subsidiary of the international power company Fortis, has put up high-voltage power lines through what may very well be the most beautiful place in all of Prince Edward Island (PEI), Canada. 1. Here is the story of how we tried to keep them out. 2. Here are the many reasons why this is a poor location for a transmission line. 3. Here are the reasons why the PEI Government needs to step in to see that the promised community bypass is finally built...
(Added: 24-Sep-2007 Hits: 48 Rating: 0 Votes: 0) Rate It

  • New Government, New Hope?
    Prince Edward Islanders find ourselves with a new slate of government players after the May 28, 2007 election. There is therefore some reason to be hopeful that we will yet have our concerns addressed. The problem of how high-voltage transmission lines compromise not only community welfare, but possibly community health as well, will not go away, much as the previous administration had hoped it might. Therefore, any smart new MLA or intelligent new policymaker would be well advised to make the construction of transmission corridors a priority for any real energy plans in the future.

    Options and Solutions

    There are many options available to address our concerns. The private landowner option we were working toward, at the behest of Maritime Electric, has been secured. But even if this were to fall through there are two other routes around our community, and they use provincial land.

    1. The first is the decommissioned railroad bed (the ?rails to trails?). This was tabled at the public information meeting at the end of March 2006. There is nothing, I repeat, nothing, wrong with using this public right of way for this transmission line. Transmission lines run on the rails to trails through Charlottetown, and the public uses these trails more than any other in the province. And, there are no property values to compromise along this infrastructure.

    2. The government of Prince Edward Island owns three contiguous pieces of woodland that could easily serve the purpose. (I invite PEI government officials to do as I did, and get down to the land registry office and consult the orthomaps a little more closely.) These are NOT part of a protected old growth stand of Acadian forest in the area (known locally as the ?Townsend woodlot?). These options are also available as a viable bypass.

    It is so frustrating, given all of these solutions, that there has been such a failure of leadership thus far in our efforts to seek equitable redress and good representation for Grant Road/Gowan Brae.

    Moving the Poles

    And how exactly does one ?move the poles?? According to Maritime Electric employees, the same ones who provided me with the two statements of purpose and goodwill posted here on May 27 (Post on "Power Plays"), moving the transmission line can be accomplished with minimal cost in three steps. The new transmission line is constructed, the utility schedules a ?blackout? so that the new connection can be rerouted, and then they convert the old transmission line into regular residential electrical service infrastructure, by cutting the large poles down to size.

    These solutions are well known among policy-makers and decision-makers in this province. One wonders, therefore, why they left us to the whim of Maritime Electric/Fortis over the past year to broker a deal with private landowners? To reiterate a point made earlier: we need a government that is going to protect all communities on Prince Edward Island.

    The utility and the province lob the blame for the transmission line back and forth between them, each pointing to the other as the party responsible for our dilemma. This is no way to pursue an energy policy, and it is no way to run a province. Instead of requiring small rural communities to bear the cost and suffer the harm of these transmission lines, I believe it is more appropriate that the ?partners? in any new energy installation should bear the cost of creating a safe corridor away from residential areas. We must do so if this province wishes to be a true ?leader? in wind energy development in this country. We must do this if we want to remain a province which values community engagement, believes in pursuing development ethically.

    The Bottom Line

    If the province will not require Maritime Electric to pay the $100,000 to move the transmission line, then as the other partner in the Eastern Kings wind energy project, the province must pay for the transmission line bypass itself.

    There was a lot of debate about ?leadership? in the course of the provincial election. Many aspects of good leadership were discussed, mainly focusing on how leadership was about making ?the tough choices.? Well, that may be so, but the right choice depends on how widely and actively any given leader searches for possible solutions. I will leave new government leaders with this thought on the subject, which I hope they will consider in the weeks and months ahead:

    Sometimes, leadership is about leaving things better then how you found them.
  • Abandoning a Community
    When we last left this blog narrative, we were closing in on an explanation for a dramatic change in attitude on the part of Maritime Electric.

    In the fall of 2006, they acknowledged the seriousness of the problem they created for the residents of Grant Road/Gowan Brae. The previous post documented how the utility promised to move the transmission line in November 2006, but when a new route was secured, they claimed that they could not ?rationalize? the extra $75,000 it might cost.

    However, despite all their correspondence indicating a willingness to ethically conduct themselves, despite their stated desire to mitigate the harm brought by their transmission line, and despite the fact that their route was determined via a deeply flawed public ?engagement? process, ultimately, Maritime Electric?s profit margin proved to be of paramount importance. In their eyes, it was more important than our collective community loss.

    What were some of the reasons for this shift? The previous post promised to outline some reasons for this change in tune, and they are listed below. Readers should consider this a foray into decoding the ?Fortis Ethic? of corporate conduct, and form their opinions accordingly.


    ?Cost Containment? Explanations

    If one gives Maritime Electric management the benefit of the doubt, and assume that they were committed to pursuing a bypass last fall, then something must have happened within the corporation which changed this commitment. On this premise, two reasons spring to mind explaining their about-face on this issue.

    1. The month of March likely marks the utility?s financial year-end. There seem to have been cost-overruns for the transmission line. Last summer, the estimate for construction of the transmission line was 3.575 million (see post 2, on April 29), whereas their cost now is calculated at about 3.75 million (see post 1 on April 22). This indicates they overspent on the project by about $175,000. Given how we?ve seen them balk at spending $75, 000 on us (see post 1 on April 22), even this proportionally small overrun would provide sufficient economic incentive for them to drop the bypass. They?d already gone over their budget, and so someone in senior management decided made this decision.

    2. Last winter, after we had secured this renewed commitment from the utility, another community in western Prince Edward Island heard of our efforts, and decided to try and move a transmission line being built to serve the Ventus wind energy installation at the western tip of the province. Between November 2006 and April 2007, the utility considered that the real cost of helping us would potentially set a precedent they would have to apply to this case, and they broke their commitment to us to avoid this.


    ?Media Manipulation? Explanations

    It is possible, on the other hand, that they had no real intention of reopening the bypass as an option at all. Given the shift in tone and the ultimate outcome of our efforts, it seems quite possible that Maritime Electric simply engaged in a public relations process for political reasons.

    1. Keeping residents at Grant Road/Gowan Brae occupied with the process of finding a ?reasonable? bypass route ensured that the opening of the Eastern Kings industrial wind installation in January 2007 would pass without our protest, without our criticism, and without incident. It is not unreasonable to think, given their about-face in recent weeks, that they engaged with us for a few months simply to ensure that the opening of the wind energy installation would not be compromised.

    2. A final consideration is that the provincial election, which came to a close on May 28, provided them with a perfect opportunity to walk away. The utility erased all ambiguity about their intentions, and how they defined bypass ?rationalization,? on April 20, 2007. This was only a few days before the provincial election was called, which everyone in the province knew was coming. Perhaps utility management knew that our community?s ability to get media or government attention in such a context would be difficult, if not impossible. They were, unfortunately, quite correct.

    So, this is what happened at Grant Road/Gowan Brae, a small and close little community on the outskirts of Souris, Prince Edward Island, over 2006-2007.

    All of us at Grant Road/Gowan Brae continue to hope for a solution to our problem and we really do not consider this episode in our history closed. We are still resolved to hold Maritime Electric and the provincial government of Prince Edward Island accountable for what happened to our once beautiful and safe community. I hope the utility and the government officials involved have thought long and hard about what it means to radicalize a whole community of new critics of their poorly-considered energy policies.

    Certainly, I have been both radicalized and deeply angered by what unfolded in Grant Road/Gowan Brae over the past year and half.

    Stay posted for some thoughts on good government and power policy.
  • News - Letter to the Editor
    The narrative of this blog is interrupted again to post community action news-- a recent Letter to the Editor.

    This was published in the The Charlottetown Guardian on June 2, 2007. It comes on the heels of a dramatic change in government on Prince Edward Island following the election on May 28. It is our hope this new administration will address the issue of the power lines in Grant Road/Gowan Brae, require the utility to move the line away from our residential area, and help and protect rural communities on Prince Edward Island.

    It is our intention to resubmit the community petition to the new premier, Robert Ghiz.

    * * *


    The Weakening Rural Voice

    Editor,

    I applaud the fortitude and foresight of the Charlottetown City Council, who recently decided to block a proposed Mount Edward Road cellphone tower. In the city, we take it for granted that residential community needs take precedent over development.

    But a similar battle which took place in my home community of Gowan Brae (near Souris), turned out very differently.

    The provincial government has worked with Maritime Electric to establish the power grid for high-profile Elmira Wind Test site. The grid is serviced by large poles (30 per cent higher than average), with significant voltage coursing through them. Unfortunately, the ?planned? transmission route cuts through the beautiful and safe community where I grew up.

    For one year, Gowan Brae residents voiced concerns over the link between cancer and electromagnetic radiation and the depreciation of land values in the community. The latter is significant, as land is the main financial asset for most. We have brought these issues to Kings County MLA Andy Mooney, Environment, Energy, and Forestry Minister Jamie Ballem, Premier Pat Binns, and other government representatives. These individuals have merely left us to work with Maritime Electric and find a bypass for the transmission line.

    In recent weeks, the company has decided changes to this line can not fall outside their project budget. They, too, have walked, leaving a rural community to pay a collective price so that they may meet their projected profit target.

    Islanders might well question the monopoly privilege enjoyed by Maritime Electric, who are ostensibly willing to put profit over community welfare. But more alarming, is how residents of this community were left without benefit of protective policy or government representation in this process.

    I am a current resident of Stratford. I know that no-one would ?plan? a transmission line through here, or the City of Charlottetown. But there is no protection for my mother and her neighbours in Gowan Brae, who are left feeling frustrated, manipulated, disempowered, and abandoned.

    We need a government that is going to protect all communities on Prince Edward Island.

    Signed,

    Dylan Mullally
    Stratford

  • Power Plays: Between "Reasonable" and "Rational"

    Back on November 17, 2006, when my brother Dylan and I met with Maritime Electric, the utility employees described how they approached several landowners in the process of securing a bypass route. At this meeting they identified weak landowner cooperation as the most significant challenge they faced. However, they also, to our surprise, reaffirmed their commitment to finding a bypass. We discussed the idea of burying the lines, with the idea this would mitigate the visual impact. It would make my mother and others who were more worried about the EMR health risks happy by ?burying? their concerns as well. The utility representatives at this meeting were open to discussing all possibilities. After getting their verbal agreement to make greater efforts to mitigate the harm the transmission lines would bring to our community, I asked for and received a written statement confirming this intent.

    It is posted here:

    Dear Sasha:

    "As we discussed at our Friday meeting Maritime Electric is most certainly willing to explore alternative transmission line routing around the Mullally and O'keefe residences [[subsequent correspondence on November 21 amended this statement to include "the residential areas on the Grant Road Hill"] and, yes, if the land under discussion is suitable for an alternative route then we are willing to consider compensation up to $3000\acre. Hopefully our opportunity to speak with you on Friday and take you through all of the steps that we've taken to date to attempt to deal with the concerns of residents in the area has demonstrated that we have, indeed, acted in good faith to date and we will continue to act in good faith. let me know if you'd like to proceed with a meeting with the parties involved [these are landowners who might be willing to an easement].

    "I've attached a picture of a "cable to overhead structure" and as we indicated at the meeting this type of structure is unsightly and would run counter to the objectives of keeping the viewscape as unencumbered as possible. Two of these type of structures would be required: one for overhead wire to cable transition on one end and one for cable to overhead wire transition on the other end. A wooden structure would have to be heavily guyed and would not look any better.

    [here, in the original, they provided a picture of this structure]

    "Further this type of construction is very expensive relative to overhead construction and therefore it is very difficult for us to rationalize the cost of this alternative.

    "So we'd prefer to work with you on the "short cut" alternative above. I'll await to hear back from you on the next steps."

    Regards,

    [Signed, Manager, Engineering]

    I then went up home and met with several landowners, taking significant time away from my work to address this important issue. At the end of November, I had another meeting with the utility, a meeting that included senior management. This meeting provided an opportunity to specifically discuss other options for the bypass not considered by Maritime Electric, and identify other landowners who might be amenable to allowing easements. In particular, I pointed out that one landowner, one whom the utility had approached in the spring of 2006, was not given due time to consider the option, and should be approached again.

    The Maritime Electric officials and senior management at this meeting were responsive, and after reviewing these options, they confirmed the utility?s willingness to move the poles and revisit the bypass. Again, they provided me, upon my request, with a second statement confirming their intent. It is posted here:

    Dear Sasha:

    ?We appreciated the opportunity to sit down this morning and review new options to have our transmission line bypass the Grant Road area where your family, and other residents, have concerns about their view scape and diminished property values because of the presence of our transmission line.

    ?You brought two new potential overhead bypass routes to our attention that could be negotiated with landowners on the north side of the Grant Road. We also discussed an underground cable option which we both had some reservations with respect to. We really appreciated the extent of your preparation you had for the meeting--both with respect to the extent of conversations you?ve had with community members and your mapping of potential routes in the area.

    ?You?ve agreed to share with us the contact information for these new land holders and also to act as a facilitator, if necessary, in the negotiation process and we are appreciative of this.

    ?As soon as you provide the contact information we will pursue the agreed upon #1 option by contacting the two new landholders and asking for a meeting at their earliest convenience to secure their intention to provide an easement for the transmission line. If this should fail we will then pursue option #2. We will also go to Grant Road as soon as possible to inspect the proposed routes to ensure there are no issues with the topography of the land that would interfere with our construction or future maintenance\emergency access to the line. We commit to keeping you posted on our progress (when meetings are scheduled, what the outcome was, and what our next steps and related timing will be). When you feel it necessary we can meet again to review the new information.

    ?Sasha, at the beginning of this process Maritime Electric said it would consider any reasonable proposal to address the concerns of residents in the area. We meant it then and we mean it now. We have acted in good faith from the outset and we certainly will continue to do so moving forward and will make a sincere attempt to make one of the above two options work.

    ?We look forward to receiving the contact information from you and working with you toward a bypass solution for the residents of the Grant Road.?

    [Signed, Vice-president, Customer Service]

    Please note that in both statements provided above, the focus is on demonstrating ?good faith? and establishing goodwill. Goodwill is the word that came up most often in our correspondence and in person at meetings. In the face of government stonewalling, the responsiveness of the utility was very heartening. We decided to work in ?good faith? with them, take their statements at face value, and put our trust in them.

    So let us see if this trust was well-placed. In the above correspondence, you can see that the utility committed to consider ?reasonable? routes and that any process of ?rationalization? was very much in the background. What any ?rationalization? might mean was, moreover, rather obscure at this juncture, overshadowed as it was by references to ?good faith.?

    By April 2007, ?rationalization? would come to mean this: that the bypass must cost the utility no more than the cost of going along the highway which cuts through our community. But this convenient qualification is absent from the above two statements provided at the end of last November. The term only features above once, with reference to the utility?s consideration of the underground cable. And even in this case, they did not rule out this option last fall, even though it would have definitely cost more than following the route above ground! I am sure careful readers will agree that it is extremely telling how, in the fall of 2006, the utility only said they had a ?preference? for working to find an above-ground route.

    Their position would harden considerably over the months which followed.

    Fiscal considerations were a secondary consideration in our joint attempts over December, January and February, to identify willing landowners for the bypass route. The utility found it convenient to point to community uncooperativeness as the real barrier to a successful bypass, as if money were not the problem at all. Reviewing the statements above, you will see there is some reference to topography, and concerns as to the suitability of the terrain. However, a mid-December email I received from Maritime Electric?s Manager of Operations stated that, after viewing the area suggested for a bypass, that the terrain involved in the two routes under consideration above was suitable for their purposes; it was, in fact, ?one they could use.?

    Fiscal considerations and difficulty with the terrain featured nowhere in our subsequent debates over using other public-land options. When, in early 2007, I questioned senior management about the possibility of routing the transmission line on three contiguous pieces of government woodland that would enable a transmission line bypass, the objection was not that it would be too expensive, or too difficult to clear, or that government itself was unwilling, but that management ?wanted to pursue one route at a time.?

    My correspondence with Maritime Electric officials, collected since the end of November 2006, is voluminous. In a previous post I have indicated how carefully I have re-read and gone through this material to see when things started to fall apart?to see when a seemingly cooperative and caring corporation apparently decided to unilaterally drop a stated commitment to bypass Grant Road/Gowan Brae with their high-voltage wires. Having sifted through this archive, I have located the point where their tune shifted. It happened in March. To be exact, the first time that it was intimated that ?rationalization? must take place, and that this process of ?rationalization? was defined as a zero differential cost re-routing, was on March 13, 2007. This is approximately one week after we finally, successfully, identified landowners who would allow the poles to cross their land to complete the bypass. This perfectly reasonable route was negotiated and brokered in full cooperation with utility employees assigned to this project.

    I am a fairly alert and careful person, and I noticed the inclusion of ?rationalization? by senior management in email correspondence on March 13, and I questioned use of this new term as soon as I opened the message. Senior management then tried to claim consistency by referring back to the first, original statement given above. But, can any readers see any requirement of a revenue-neutral bypass option in either of the statements?

    No, neither can I find one.

    So, having established this inconsistency on the part of the utility, and having shown how they again wasted a considerable amount of community time, and my personal time, it still remains for one to explain this frustrating shift. What happened between November and March? What happened to shift the discourse from one which emphasized goodwill, good faith and commitment to one which put money and profit before all else?

    Some reasons were given to me on April 20. Having had a number of weeks to think about this, a few other explanations come to mind as well. This post is lengthy enough, so I?ll discuss them all next week. And following from and rising out of these explanations, we will see the beginnings of a clear blueprint for working around such problems, and avoiding these conflicts, in the future. Those individuals who find themselves with new office at that time (there is currently a provincial election in Prince Edward Island) might give them due consideration.

  • News -- A Community Petition
    We interrupt the narrative of this blog to post some community action news.

    One of my neighbours recently confirmed that the following petition, sent to the office of the Premier, and copied to the Minister of the Environment, Energy and Forestry, the CEO of the PEI Energy Corporation, the President (Customer Service) of Maritime Electric and the CEO of Fortis, has been received and signed for by all parties.

    Three community members, one of whom was my brother Conor, secured signatures from 100% of permanent residents in the area (two renters abstained).

    It cannot be said that this is not a concern for everyone in our community.

    Our petition is below.


    * * *


    Community of:

    Grant Road / Souris River Road / New Zealand / Gowan Brae

    Objection Registry

    to the Maritime Electric High Voltage Transmission Line

    We, the undersigned, hereby register our objection to the route of the Maritime Electric high voltage power transmission lines, erected through our community in the Fall 2006. Our concerns are summarized:

    1. Our community, a longstanding residential area, is one of the more scenic areas on Prince Edward Island, with a spectacular view of the bay, ocean, and rural countrysides. Many of the residents in our community have purchased properties and homes with this attraction in mind; many have chosen to live raise families in the area because of the peace, quiet and safety the locale affords. A small rural subdivision is currently being developed for these reasons. Transmission lines which were routed through our community in the Fall 2006 dramatically detract from the desirability that this location offers.

    2. Many in our community are concerned by the health hazards of electromagnetic radiation; all are affected by public perception of the effects of EMR (regardless of interpretation of the research), which significantly compromise property values.

    3. We believe that alternative options were not adequately addressed logistically or from a cost-benefit perspective. We petition that resources be allocated for an alternative route for this section of the transmission line, and the problem immediately rectified.

    [Signed by all residents of Grant Road/Souris River Road/Gowan Brae/New Zealand]

Prince Edward Island Political Observer - "This site has been created to stimulate discussion about political issues that impact Prince Edward Island."
(Added: 5-Apr-2007 Hits: 156 Rating: 3.00 Votes: 1) Rate It

  • Is it a myth that minority goernments are better?
    Are minority governments really effective? Yes, they facilitate legislation that represents a broader base of voters but decisions tend to be based on compromise which result in mediocrity and in many cases detract form the true vision of the incumbents. The Cretien predecessors were able to pay down the debt under majority governments however minority governments can be much more restrictive in this manner. Minority oppositions tend to want the purse strings loosened for their priorities. In this age of global competitiveness it is important for governments to reflect a long term vision for the country however this can be difficult for a minority government that constantly makes concessions to remain in power. An N.D.P. or Green party member's perspective is likely to favor power sharing since the likelihood of their party forming a government is slim. So, yes people are more likely to get want they want under a minority government but do they get what they need? Since the ability of a government to charter a new course is severely restricted under such circumstances they can be forced to be architects of their own defeat. In essence as we have seen with some foreign countries, in particular those with many parties, minority governments tend to be less stable and have shorter terms. Calling elections prematurely can lead to instability; elections are not cheap and continuity of direction can be lost when governments are constantly in upheaval.
    So, I for one hope that the trend in public opinion dissipates somewhat from favor of minority governments which are focused on staying in power to majority governments which will be more capable of reacting to global impacts and offer more direction and stability. If in four years time we are not happy with the result we can boot a party out. It has worked in the past and it will work in the future. Is it a myth that minority governments are better? I guess it depends on what scale of measurement you are using and what is measurable. From this person's perspective I believe that the benefits of decisive leadership and clear direction are immeasurable but are attributes to which most all aspire and will serve us well in majority governments of the future.
    The Observer
  • Judges garner greater trust than politicians, survey finds
    How do you feel about legislators right to use the notwithstanding clause when public values are at odds with judicial decisions? Express your point of view in the comments section.
    The Observer

    When these limitations on courtroom evidence lead to a ruling that is truly at odds with public values, he said, "legislatures must have the legal and political means to override such a ruling . . . But unfortunately, the use of the notwithstanding clause has become politically taboo."

     powered by clipmarksblog it
  • Two-thirds back electing judges
    The election of judges would be an improvement in our justice system. However the success of such a transition would really depend on the election process.
    The Observer


    Sixty-three per cent of 1,000 respondents questioned in the Strategic Counsel survey supported the idea of elected judges, compared to 30 per cent who opposed the notion. The results may come as a surprise to the legal community, where it has long been assumed that Canadians see the election of judges as a major drawback of the U.S. justice system.

    powered by clipmarksblog it
  • Conservatives strength is in rural canada
    In the last federal election the tories won the majority of seats in rural Canada however they came up short in urban areas. Canadians have softened somewhat to Steven Harper with recently announced initiatives to tackle global warming and tax breaks for families with children which could lead to gains in urban Canada in the next election. He is also enabling Quebecers to feel more comfortable with their place in Canada. Here in Prince Edward Island the capital gains exemption for fishermen and farmers of $750,000 should be a winner. While these type of conservative intiatives will appeal to a greater cross-section of Canadians it remains to be seen if the liberals can break out of their centralist shell and make the in-roads that are desperately needed in rural parts of the country. Though the seats of power and influence are mainly located in urban centers the importance of rural voters cannot be overlooked since the majority of seats are still rural based.

Satisfied Liberals - I'm quite happy with the leadership that we have under Robert Ghiz and nobody has paid me or convinced me or promised me anything to say that... This is a site for anyone who wants to stand up and be counted.
(Added: 31-Mar-2007 Hits: 94 Rating: 3.00 Votes: 1) Rate It

  • Bedava Seks Sohbet
    Source: http://tr.live-porn-sex-cam.com/
    Bedava Seks Sohbet et! Canl? Porno seks
    Bedava Seks Sohbet et! Canl? Porno seks için bir daha asla ödeme yapmay?n! Ücretsiz seks sohbetine kat?l ve canl? ?ovlar?n tad?n? ç?kart. ?imdi Ankara'dan canl? k?zlar izleyin! Türkçe Altyaz?l? Porno Ücretsiz canl? seks ve yeti?kin canl? porno cams XXX. Ho?geldiniz! Dünyan?n her yerinden çekici web cam k?z binlerce ücretsiz canl? seks sohbet. Yeti?kin porno için kullan?labilir Webcam seks modelleri en geni? seçim keyfini ç?kar?n-Teens, olgunla??r, MILFS, abanoz k?z, gerçek Amatör, babes ve di?erleri-tüm bu muhte?em kam k?zlar sizinle ya?amak için haz?r?z! Seçti?iniz bir model seçin ve ücretsiz seks ve canl? XXX Porno gösterileri keyfini ç?kar?n ya da tüm rüyalar gerçek olacak tam özel odaya gidin!

    Fikrinizi bedavaya patlatacak!
    Biz s?cak erkek ve tüm hayallerinizi gerçek hale gelecek kad?nlar?n en geni? bölümü ile size sunuyoruz. Daha fazla zaman israf etmeyin, seks-cam-show hayat?n?n en iyi canl? porno gösterileri için kat?lmak ve 700 + Yeti?kin Webcam Girls online ba?lar!

    Source: http://tr.live-porn-sex-cam.com/

Save Our Sundays - Sunday shopping is a issue for our group,to which we are opposed to Sunday shopping in every province in our country. It's time retail workers in PEI stand up for their rights. Say no to Sunday shopping!
(Added: 7-Nov-2006 Hits: 100 Rating: 10.00 Votes: 1) Rate It

  • Let's keep all stores closed on Holidays
    Let's keep all stores closed on Holidays I'll tell you why?
  • Majority of Nova Scotians support a tainted government?
    Can you imagine the power of the media? Over and over they kept telling us that we were the last place to have Sunday shopping and how good it would be for us to have it? Our government lied to the people of this province and the media misled Nova Scotians into believing that the courts struck down the ban on Sunday shopping.
  • Sunday shopping has hurt us more than just shopping
    After the killings in Connecticut, I have been really thinking. What's wrong with our society? What are we lacking? I cannot imagine killing my mother, let alone even thinking about it. It's sad so many innocent kids, were killed that never had a chance in life to live and grow and prosper. Mothers and fathers will never get over this loss and my heart goes out to each and every one of those families. It seems like we are headed down a road of a society that's heading for a collapse!
  • Save Our Sundays launches petition to stop Sunday shopping in Nova Scotia

    Petition to Stop Sunday Shopping in Nova Scotia
    Media, business, and tourism had a very good campaign to convince Nova Scotians that Sunday shopping would be good for Nova Scotians. The retail sector, that was normally closed on Sundays, were often compared to other occupations who work on Sundays such as restaurants, call centers, police, hospitals etc. It was unfair then to expect retail workers to work on Sundays because others chose to do so. We do not expect our government to work on Sundays because church ministers do. We certainly don't expect Tom to buy a new car because Susan bought one. Morally, it was wrong to expect retail workers to give up their Sundays. In 2004, Nova Scotians went to the polls in a binding plebiscite to decide on the issue.
    http://novascotia.ca/news/release/?id=20041017001

    Nova Scotians have said no to more Sunday shopping. In a binding, provincewide plebiscite held on Saturday, Oct. 16, with 49 of 55 municipalities reporting, the unofficial total provincial vote opposed to Sunday shopping was 55 per cent.

    Unofficial results on the ballot's first question -- should there be Sunday shopping (in retail businesses not now permitted to be open on Sunday) -- are: 98,726 No (55 per cent) 81,110 Yes (45 per cent)

    "I want to thank Nova Scotians for voting on this important public policy issue," said Justice Minister Michael Baker. "Our government made the commitment to let Nova Scotians decide the Sunday shopping issue, and today the majority made its collective choice clear. Sunday shopping will remain as it is now -- governed by the Retail Business Uniform Closing Day Act."

    Two local grocery chains decide to take the government to court over the issue, as they did not have a level playing field. Pete's Frootique a local grocer subdivided his stores so he could open up on Sundays, while the two chains also subdivided their stores to open on Sundays. Rodney MacDonald premier at that time, said it was ok for Pete Frootique to subdivide , while the grocery chains were not. The issue went to the courts. The general public was under the impression , that the courts struck down the Sunday shopping ban. This isn't what the courts ruled on. The courts ruled on discrimination, not the Retail Business Uniform Closing Day Act.

    http://decisions.courts.ns.ca/nsc/nssc/en/item/10101/index.do?r=AAAAAQAPU3VuZGF5IHNob3BwaW5nAQ
    - on the courts web site it clearly states, "Well, what this application is about is not about social or political considerations. It’s not about the appropriateness of Sunday shopping, nor is it about the power of the legislature to pass an Act dealing with Sunday shopping. This case, this application is about one fact and it is about the scope of the Cabinet’s power to pass Regulations pursuant to the Act."
    http://nslegislature.ca/index.php/proceedings/hansard/C48/60_1_house_06nov01/

    MS. MAUREEN MACDONALD spoke at the Legislature on WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 1, 2006 "Mr. Speaker, but certainly their position added to the confusion and perpetuated the idea that somehow the courts had struck down Sunday shopping in our province. That simply did not occur."
  • Sunday shopping hours in Manitoba are going to be relaxed
    Another province in Canada is going to relax Sunday shopping hours?? Reading this article has me fuming. I thought Nova Scotia was the last place in Canada to have wide open Sunday shopping. http://www.winnipegfreepress.com/opinion/editorials/sunday-shopping-for-votes-148055965.html. Apparently Manitoba has limited hours that you can shop on Sundays. http://www.winnipegfreepress.com/opinion/editorials/sunday-shopping-for-votes-148055965.html " Eight months ago, Premier Greg Selinger said the NDP had no plans to change the province's Sunday shopping laws. The premier said he believed the existing law struck the right balance between access to shopping and providing opportunities for families to spend time together."

Save Parkdale School - A project by friends of Parkdale Elementary and the quality education it provides to its students.
(Added: 19-Feb-2009 Hits: 0 Rating: 0 Votes: 0) Rate It

  • Respectfully Standing Up
    LETTERS TO THE EDITOR
    Last updated at 9:26 AM on 06/03/09  

    Stop the disrespect but don't stop fighting for our school 
    Guest Opinion

    COMMENTARY
    LAWRENCE MCKNIGHT 

    As a Parkdale School parent, I first off want to acknowledge recent media coverage of comments made by some parents trying to save our Parkdale School, reactionary comments made by some at Prince Street School, then more derogatory comments by parents on public websites and elsewhere.

    Reports from some other presentations made outside the Charlottetown area even speak of name-calling and periodic verbal attacks.

    I think we all need to take a deep breath, slow down and be really careful of letting disrespect take over while losing sight of the flawed and inherently divisive process driving this whole debate. When parents get thrown into the middle of a process that is already well underway and its pre-made conclusions directly threaten their children's well-being, defensive and reactionary positioning can easily take over.

    Furthermore, when the report that set this whole uproar into action in the first place is now widely acknowledged as having numerous limitations, internal contradictions, inaccuracies, legal questions and that it makes some unfounded conclusions, emotions run high.

    Nevertheless, I fully believe that parents on all sides of this debate, who are understandably emotionally charged in defending the well-being of their children, sometimes need to be more cautious and respectful when directing outwardly their sense of powerlessness and anger.

    It's easy for parents to get sidetracked when feeling disempowered and threatened and even slip into disrespectful attacks. We don't need this. Our children don't need this.

    And yet, at least in our case, the core issues originally identified by parents at Parkdale School remain. The predicted population decline figures for our area are highly questionable and evidence that our area's population may well increase has been cited.

    Eastern School District superintendent Sandy MacDonald admitted at the last public presentations in Charlottetown that he had made a mistake in the report in concluding that the Parkdale site would have a problem handling more students and a potential expansion.

    But this central "fact" was one key reason cited to close our school. He later commented that building onto the Parkdale School, "would certainly turn Parkdale into a very, very valuable site, even more so as compared to Prince Street." Then he concludes that we should close down our Parkdale School and send all our children to Prince Street School.

    Digesting contradictions like this one does push our parents into a real pressure cooker.

    But in the end, if we parents simply allow this flawed and divisive process to shut down the Parkdale School, all children in Charlottetown and surrounding area will lose.

    Charlottetown children will lose forever the use of four full acres of incredibly valuable inner city green space, an incredible, new, million-dollar gymnasium, various gym programs that require this space to continue, a full onsite ball field, a unique safe area for boarding buses and the only inner city school site that can safely handle significant future expansions and developments. Let's really think ahead this time when we make these next big adjustments.

    MacDonald called the Parkdale site, "one of the best elementary school sites in the city of Charlottetown - these sites have characteristics in common that are essential in terms of elementary schools (the same characteristics we cited). Over the next decade these sites should be fully utilized." We agree.

    The property services manager for our school district, and MacDonald, actually noted that Parkdale School has an ideal location on which to extend more classroom space as needed, while still preserving all the valuable outdoor space for children's activities and making even better use of our new, million-dollar gymnasium.

    Home and school volunteers with construction backgrounds are currently drawing up demonstration building plans to show just how various stages of expansion to our facility could be built within a very reasonable budget. Our trustees really need, and deserve to be given, adequate time and opportunity to more fully consider these new options being presented by our group to save the Parkdale School.

    This Parkdale School site really is an essential resource for Charlottetown's children. For this reason, perhaps you might begin to understand our shocked, angry and emotionally charged reactions to the current threat to close down this incredible resource for all city children.

    But let's go easier on each other and re-focus on logical thinking and above all, saving and building upon, this key resource that is clearly very valuable for all our city children.

    Lawrence McKnight is a social worker, active member of the Parkdale Home and School Association and his child currently attends Parkdale School.

  • In The News, Ctd

    'Students shouldn't settle for adequate,' school trustees told

    Last Updated: Wednesday, February 25, 2009 | 8:09 AM AT 

    Parents with children at urban schools threatened with closure had their turn to speak Tuesday night, as P.E.I.'s Eastern School District continued consultations on a plan to close 11 schools.

    'I would ask that you put the children first.'? Andrea MacNeil

    Two schools in Charlottetown would close under the plan, St Jean Elementary, near the downtown, and Parkdale elementary, in Parkdale.

    The gym at Colonel Gray High School was full for the meeting. Most of the dozen parents who made a presentation to the school board expressed their concern that Parkdale would close, when it was rated as one of the top elementary schools in the area.

    "Our students shouldn't settle for adequate when they're used to superior," said Kathy MacKenna.

    The students at Parkdale would be moved to Prince Street school, closer to the downtown, and parents felt they would receive a poorer quality education there. They argued the school has a large gymnasium, just built in 2002 and four acres of green space, which is not the case at Prince Street. They also pointed to the school's new playground.

    Andrea MacNeil was on the verge of tears during her slide presentation of Parkdale staff and students.

    "You've got a lot of things that you have to think about but I would ask that you put the children first," said MacNeil.

    Prince Street students could move

    Several parents suggested the students of Prince Street should be moved into Parkdale instead, if extra rooms were built to accommodate them.

    Even district superintendent Sandy Macdonald, author of the report, agreed that would be a good alternative to closing Parkdale.

    "That would certainly turn Parkdale into a very, very valuable site, even more so as compared to Prince Street," said MacDonald.

    The reason MacDonald recommended closing Parkdale in the first place is because it doesn't have enough room for any more students, but Prince Street does, he said, adding it will be up to the school board to take those arguments into consideration.

  • In The News
    Closing city school 'stupid' idea, meeting hears

    NIGEL ARMSTRONG 
    The Guardian

    Many words, sentences and documents were used by Parkdale School supporters Tuesday at a public meeting in Charlottetown but one presenter was blunt in summing up his view.
    Lawrence McKnight said that closing Parkdale and busing the children to Prince Street School ?would be stupid, to be quite blunt.?
    He was speaking at the third of six planned public consultations by the Eastern School District in response to a report recommending the closure of 11 schools now and possibly two more in the near future.
    Two of the closures are in the Colonel Gray family of schools and it was at Colonel Gray that close to 300 people packed into the meeting Tuesday night. They were told 17 people or groups wanted to make a public presentation but if time ran out, arrangements will be considered to hear them at later meetings.
    It was Parkdale that received the greatest attention. Parkdale staff showed up dressed like a team in identical blue athletic wear. Parents draped green fabric over the backs of all the chairs on which they also placed a green sheet of paper outlining the Save- Parkdale campaign.
    It is the green space around Parkdale school that is one key focus of the support group. Parkdale has plenty of space to build an addition to the school and still have safe play space outside, which cannot be said for the destination of Prince Street, said many supporters.
    Lisa MacLaren, vice-president of the Parkdale Home and School group emphasized safety at the meeting. 
    She said the space around Parkdale allowed for much better control and safety of students in the event of a fire or school evacuation. She also spoke about safe and secure bus loading in the paved parking lot on the grounds of Parkdale whereas Prince Street loads and unloads from a street.
    Other presenters railed against the push to close schools before the district undertakes a rezoning in 2010 and before the effect of kindergarten integration takes place, also proposed for 2010.
    Samantha Watts was at the meeting in support of Grand Tracadie School which is also slated to close. She asked who told Sandy MacDonald, superintendent of education for the district, to write the school closure report.
    ?A letter came from the minister of Education to the chair of the board,? said MacDonald. 
    The letter asked for a school closure report by Dec. 30 and the board gave the job to MacDonald.
    ?So the minister of Education, who wanted this report, is not coming to these meetings?? said Watts, to loud applause.
    Lori MacKay spoke in support of Parkdale, saying  the present zoning has ?buses zigzagging all over the city,? to cope with outdated zoning issues. She demanded the school closure project stop until rezoning can take place.
    ?Slow this process down, and only you can do that,? she said, speaking directly to the school trustees. ?Government will accept whatever decision you make.
    ?Why the rush? Put kindergarten in place in 2010. Rezone in 2010, then look at your options.?
    The next public meeting on the school closure issue is scheduled for Montague High School on March 3.


  • Parkdale Brings Strong Showing To Board Meeting
    The friends of Parkdale School came out in force for the latest meeting of the Eastern School Board's public consultations on school closures held at Colonel Gray with close to 300 people in attendance. 

    Led by the Parkdale Home and School Association they made themselves heard during the question and answer session with Superintendent Sandy MacDonald and during presentations to the school board trustees. Six presentations were made in support of keeping Parkdale open because of questions about student safety, access to green space, and loss of enhanced programming and support services. Many questions were asked on details about Parkdale that were left out of the report and mistakes about Parkdale that were in the report. New facts and new ideas were given to the board.  

    The message delivered was loud and clear that Parkdale School is a thriving school that gives students a quality learning environment with strong programs and should stay open.

    Thank you to all who made presentations, asked questions and showed their support. A special thank you to the school staff who came out and showed their support.








  • Meeting Tonight
    The next Eastern School Board Public Consultation Meeting on school closures will take place tonight at Colonel Gray High School. The meeting starts at 7 P.M.

    This meeting will focus on the Colonel Gray family of schools. Ther e are two schools recommended for closure in this family, Parkdale and St. Jean's.

    Please come out tonight and show your support for keeping Parkdale School open so that it can keep giving its students a quality education! Thanks.

Prev 15 Next 15

Search, Recommend

Search the site for something in particular
More search options
Search the Internet with Google

Click to recommend this site to a friend

Weather, Tides, Travel

PEI Gov't IslandCam

Blogstream of selected recently-updated blogs:

News

Listen Live to CBC Charlottetown Radio One    Watch the latest Canada Now PEI newscast

Photo of the day from Eastern Kings

Today's photo from Today in the Life of Eastern Kings:



Photo of the Month

Pages Updated On: 3-Apr-2009 - 19:56:02
Links Engine 2.0 By: Gossamer Threads Inc.