Christopher Mitchelmore, NDP candidate for the Straits – White Bay North calls on Government to take immediate action to help the Town of Englee by removing the old fish plant, which has now become a matter of public safety.
“Large parts of debris have fallen from the fish plant and into the major shipping lane. This poses a significant safety concern to fishers, recreational boaters and the public-at-large” states Mitchelmore, “The plant was condemned more than 7 years ago. It is only a matter of time before more debris falls into the harbour. The Provincial Government should take a larger role in this process to ensure public safety.”
For the past seven years, the Town has been trying to find solutions for the idle plant. It has been pressing the issue with the Provincial Government and other stakeholders. The Town has a commitment from the Federal Government, under Small Crafts Harbours Program to develop a new wharf. This could lead to additional harbour front developments and economic spin-offs, such as a fish market, waterfront shops and seating as the Town transitions to a budding tourism market in the region.
The Town of Englee has been without a major employer since May 2004, when safety inspectors forced the closure of a dilapidated plant. In December 2005, the province determined a crab processing license for the Canada Bay region would be located in Englee. The Newfoundland and Labrador government approved an application from NFL Fishery in 2006 to open a processing plant. However, the new processing plant or license did not materialize for the Town as Government allocated these licenses elsewhere. In a Government News Release from July 2009, it was evident that the fish plant was designated as permanently closed as supports were offered to respond to community and individual assistance under the Integrated Transition Strategy for Displaced Plant Workers.
“Englee will continue to face economic hardships and safety concerns with the presence of the vacated fish plant. The Provincial Government should take responsibility and have the property removed from site to help the Town become more sustainable, enabling developments that have been delayed for five years. ”
-30-Christopher Mitchelmore NDP Candidate The Straits-White Bay North T. 709-456-2094 C. 709-660-0775 E. firstname.lastname@example.org Twitter/LiveRuralNL
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