Blog Archives

A Few Snaps of “the Beauty Spot of the North”

DSC_0347

Conche is tagged as “The Beauty Spot of the North”. It is nestled at the edge of the Great Northern Peninsula East and is home to 181 residents, but there are hundreds more ‘Die hard Conchers’ out there and many are home to celebrate Come Home Year of 2013. It truly is a magical place.

This fishing community has a beacon of activity from an extremely active fish plant, that employs people throughout the region. The fish must be trucked in and trucked out of a dusty gravel road. There is constant commuting and significant economic benefits that Conche has contributed to the economy over the years. There must be serious consideration given to Government to pave the remaining 17.4 KM of gravel road.

Conche has also transitioned to be a sought after tourism destination. It is at the heart of the French Shore, with an interpretation centre, 222-ft tapestry depicting the history of the French Shore, textile exhibits, WWII memorial, archaeology digs, cafe, writer’s retreat, B&B, playground, walking trails, icebergs, bird and whale watching, as well as much more activity from talented artists, writers, singers, dancers, crafters and more.

The community understands it must add new economic opportunities by working to establish a fully functional RV site,  beach volleyball and other recreational services. It has carefully placed yellow chairs around viewing areas of the Town. This is similar to an initiative that Gros Morne National Park has done for its 35th Anniversary. These are important and relatively low-cost initiatives that make a community more inviting and tourist friendly. There are storyboards and panels and certainly more room for murals.

I am encouraged  by the economic drive of such a small community. There is much room for growth. It is persevering, despite continuous neglect and inaction from Government that treats residents and road users of Route 434  as second-class citizens. It is unacceptable in 2013 to be driving over a gravel road with no calcium chloride program. Government has invested $6M a few years ago to re-build and re-align this road. Each year there is no pavement,  this investment is being eroded to the bedrock and will cost more to complete. We need better, multi-year planning to protect our investments. Conche road should have been paved years ago.

Please contact Hon. Paul Davis, Minister of Transportation & Works at padavis@gov.nl.ca asking him to take the necessary action to pave Route 434.

It’s Time!

Christopher Mitchelmore, MHA
The Straits-White Bay North
Advertisements

Mitchelmore questions commitment to rural job creation

NDP critic for Innovation, Business and Rural Development Christopher Mitchelmore (MHA, The Straits-White Bay North) says government’s approach to job creation in rural Newfoundland and Labrador is sadly lacking in vision.

“Government is dropping the ‘rural’ from the Department of Innovation, Business and Rural Development with cuts to RED Boards, Employment Assistance Services, and no real plan for creating jobs from the ground up,” Mitchelmore said in the House of Assembly today. “Megaprojects create boom and bust economies and forced migration, and tear away at the social fabric of our economy.

“When will the minister of IBRD get serious about rural job creation and prevent further mass outmigration from decimating the rural landscape?”

Mitchelmore says encouraging job creation in rural Newfoundland is a vital part of ensuring economic health for the province. He pointed to wharf development as one possible option that has worked in parts of the province and could work in others.

“Government has invested $23 million since 2003 into aquaculture, including six biosecure wharves,” he said in the House. “Without this investment some 1000 jobs and $400 million dollars would have been lost.

“The forest industry on the Great Northern Peninsula impacts more than 150 workers and can prove to provide significant returns.

“When will the minister of Natural Resources commit to providing a needed wharf to Roddickton port to sustain an industry, jobs, and rural communities as well as putting needed money back in the provincial treasury?”

Community Recreation Development Grant Program Open for Applications

Applications are currently being accepted for the Community Recreation Development Grant Program. The Department of Tourism, Culture and Recreation is encouraging communities and recreation committees to submit an application. Funding will be used to help provide recreation programming and services to residents across the province.

 “The Community Recreation Development Grant Program is designed to offset the cost of recreation, sport, and active-living programs available to communities with less than 6,000 people,” said Minister Dalley. “Support from this program gives citizens of all ages the opportunity to become more physically active by participating in local recreation programs and services offered in their respective communities.”

The deadline to submit applications is April 30, 2012.

Applications are considered based on their alignment with the priorities outlined in the province’s recreation and sport strategy, Active, Healthy Newfoundland and Labrador (2007). These priorities include providing increased access to programming for all residents; making the best use of community facilities; building community capacities, and promoting the inclusion of traditionally under-represented groups, especially Aboriginal groups, women, seniors, youth, and persons with disabilities.

For program guidelines and applications:

Abandoned Englee Fish Plant, Abandoned by Government

On September 12, 2011, I issued a press release calling on the immediate removal and environmental clean-up of the abandoned Englee Fish Plant. It is now October 6, 2011 and no action has been taken by Government. They continue to ignore the issue, claiming there is an ownership issue. There was no ownership issue when the Government accidentally expropriated an asset (Abitibi Mill) in Grand Falls Windsor, only to leave us the taxpayer footing the bill for the clean-up and remediation of upwards of $200 million. This is a very serious matter, one only has to look at the image below to see this property is being pulled into the mighty sea, causing dangers and matters of public safety.

Since the issue of the press release, there has been an online petition created (http://www.petitiononline.com/Englee/petition.html), additional coverage in the media from Northern Pen, CBC Here & Now and St Anthony News. It is quite evident that this demolition can not wait any longer. It is self-destructing and imploding each day.

This matter is long overdue for removal. Englee wants to move on and move forward. It’s Time…

Christopher Mitchelmore
NDP Candidate
The Straits-White Bay North

Mitchelmore calls on Government to overturn decision to decline local development organization funding.

Christopher Mitchelmore, NDP candidate for the Straits – White Bay North calls on Government to overturn a decision to decline local development organization funding.

White Bay Central Development Association made an application for funding under the Job Creation Partnerships (JCP) Program to hire 12 workers to provide access to a facility, which is a Town asset, operated as Main Brook Research and Development under the local development organization. There are safety concerns with access to the facility that will close operations if not addressed. Therefore, a proposal written to improve access to the community asset and provide necessary skills training to unemployed, would have meaningful long-term economic impacts for the Town of Main Brook and surrounding region.

The proposal had the support of partners and a significant financial commitment from the Department of Innovation, Trade & Rural Development, Tenant, Town and Department of Fisheries and Oceans in excess of $100,000. Yet, was informed the proposal had been denied funding.

“I am calling on Government to re-assess the application” states Mitchelmore.

The facility is leased and the current tenant provides more than 44 full-time seasonal positions to residents of the Town and people from neighbouring communities and regions. A number of small boat fishers depend on this tenant to purchase their raw material for secondary or value-added processing. As well, there are a number of spin-off jobs and benefits to local businesses from the tenant leasing this asset and being a good employer.

“The loss of this employer would be catastrophic to employment for the Town and the region. I would like to know the reasoning behind the decline of this application by the Department of Human Resources, Labour and Employment, as the decision has major implications, and does not address the need to provide work experience to those currently unemployed in the region?”

-30-

Christopher Mitchelmore
NDP Candidate
The Straits-White Bay North
T. 709-456-2094 C. 709-660-0775
E. christophermitchelmore@nl.ndp
%d bloggers like this: