(From Globe and Mail.. Saturday, April 17, 2021)
The governments of Canada's four easternmost provinces have spent the past year enrolled in the COVID-19 gifted program. Their early, aggressive action to suppress the virus and keep it down, allowing their economies to largely reopen, puts them on a par with the world's most successful curve crushers, from Austrialia and New Zealand to Japan and South Korea.
Karen Casey quote.. "Our thanks for the leadership of former Premier Stephen McNeil and Chief Medical Officer Dr. Robert Strang. This leadership began 12 months ago, and has protected us from COVID-19, and has allowed us to become the envy of the country. Congratulations to both."
The Nova Scotia COVID Relief (NSCR) Fund was established by the Government of Nova Scotia from the Federal Safe Restart Agreement in April 2021. The $3.5 million fund supports low-income Nova Scotians who are struggling to pay their home heating or electric bill as a result of income loss due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This program is administered by The Salvation Army.
The Fund provides one-time assistance to help Nova Scotians with their home heating costs or electricity bills. Each household may be eligible for up to $400 in support.
For more information CLICK HERE
For the NSCR Fund Application CLICK HERE
Our government is on track to give every person who wants a COVID-19 vaccine in Nova Scotia their first dose by the end of June. Health-care workers, staff and residents of licensed long-term care facilities will be fully vaccinated by the end of April.
We are implementing a flexible model of vaccine delivery, using community clinics, pharmacy clinics, primary care clinics, outreach clinics and mobile clinics. By May, we will be able to administer about 86,000 doses per week. Most Nova Scotians will continue to receive their vaccine when they become eligible by age and based on anticipated vaccine supply.
Residents in Northern Nova Scotia will have more ways to walk or cycle to key areas in their communities with support from the province's Sustainable Transportation grant program, Connect2. Sustainable transportation is about driving less and moving more. It means providing more mobility options to more people, and greater connectivity between the places we need to go.
Convenient, safe, clean, and attractive modes for sustainable transportation are key to building vibrant, livable, and low-carbon communities that are suitable for aging populations, young people, newcomers, and small businesses.
As your MLA, I am pleased to provide information regarding an expanded Energy Efficient Program. This program will help more Nova Scotia homeowners with their energy bills, as well as reduce greenhouse gases. This reduction in greenhouse gases will help fight climate change by installing energy efficient upgrades in our homes.
Just recently, Nova Scotia Energy & Mines Minister, Derek Mombourquette, announced energy efficient programs that will now be available for homeowners who heat their homes from oil and other non-electrical sources. Nova Scotia is a national leader in energy efficiency and expanding these programs provides cleaner energy for all Nova Scotians.
Webster describes destination as “a place to which a person is going”. In the Tourism sector, a destination is a location to which people are attracted and which offers many opportunities and experiences.
Tatamagouche and area has quickly become a destination. Many attractions along the North Shore provide those opportunities for visitors, whether they are from within our province, from other provinces in Canada, or from beyond our borders. From beaches to parks, to markets and museums, to small open farms, there is much to do and learn in the area.
With spring turning into summer, the focus on agriculture in Colchester North is obvious. Newly cultivated fields, crops planted and growing, and first cuts of silage remind us that one of the primary resources and industries in our province is making a comeback. It is so encouraging and positive to see farm lands that have been lying fallow for many years are now in active production. I commend those young farmers who see a future in the agriculture sector.
Although blueberry producers have had a recent difficult season, I am also encouraged by those growers who are staying with the product through difficult times. Hundreds of acres are yielding thousands of tons of blueberries. The challenge is to find new markets and our Minister of Agriculture continues to promote the product, both markets locally and in foreign markets, including China. With the uncertainty facing trade with the United States, it is important that we diversify our export markets.
The month of June is graduation time for students all across the province. It is the time for students, parents and teachers to celebrate the accomplishments as another school year draws to a close. It is also the time for the academic and athletic achievements of students in all grades to be acknowledged and celebrated.
For the students in Tatamagouche Elementary and North Colchester High, it marks another significant milestone. In September 2018, Tatamagouche Regional Academy will open for students grade primary – 12. This community has waited many years for this building to become a reality. Students and teachers alike will be filled with both apprehension and excitement when they come together under the administrative leadership of Brian Holmes.
Protecting personal and public property is one of the great services provided by volunteer fire brigades throughout the province. Communities feel safe knowing that these volunteers are only a phone call away. Sometimes that service is provided as first responders to attend to motor vehicle accidents, to rescue people and animals in distress, to provide emergency medical aid, and of course for fire related incidents. Whatever the call, we are comforted to know there are men and women in our brigades who respond.
It was recently brought to my attention by Eric Moore from the Economy Fire Brigade that access to both motive and diesel fuel was a challenge, not only for Economy, but also for brigades in Five Islands and Bass River. None of these communities have a local service station or gas bar and travelling to their nearest service centre includes time and distance to Parrsboro or Great Village. Time is of the essence no matter what the call to the brigade.
We can all be comfortable in our home…..Winter and Summer!