Vanguard Year in Review: January 2013

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We look back at the events and stories that shaped the news in 2013. Here's a look back at January 2013.

 

 

No more free parking at hospital

The days of free parking anywhere at the Yarmouth Regional Hospital were almost over. Construction was underway on gating and fencing in free parking areas at the health complex, including the Grove Road parking lot. It was the next phase in the hospital’s parking redevelopment and would also see additional staff parking fees implemented. Said South West Health spokesperson Fraser Mooney, “In order to more consistently, equitably and safely enforce our parking policy we are converting additional parking areas to gated lots.” The Canadian Medical Association Journal had called for an end to parking fees at health-care facilities, calling them a user fee in disguise that constitutes a barrier to health care.

Housing prices had plummeted

The average selling price of a house in Yarmouth County had fallen 16 per cent in one year. According to statistics from the Nova Scotia Association of Realtors, between September and November 2012 the average sale price of a single-family home was $107,892, down from around $128,500 a year earlier.

Clearing the air at YCMHS

Staff at Yarmouth Consolidated Memorial High School said they were being made sick in the school. Concerns persisted over air quality at YCMHS, given symptoms much of the staff had been experiencing, including headaches, burning eyes, sore throat, raspy voice, difficulty breathing and fatigue. The Vanguard had been told that almost 50 of the school’s staff had reported symptoms. It was unclear how the students were being affected, if at all. The Tri-County Regional School Board said testing over the past few weeks had determined that the air in the school was within normal limits. The focus now was shifting to the school’s mechanical systems. It had been found that one of the school’s air-handling units had been shutting off intermittently.

Dexter on offence after ferry comments caused stir

Premier Darrell Dexter said a new ferry alone would not fix the problems facing the southwestern Nova Scotia economy. In an interview with the Vanguard the day after a CBC radio interview in which he had used the word “mythology” to describe the common perception about the impact on the region of losing the Yarmouth ferry, Dexter stood by his remarks, noting that the tourism industry had been in decline before the cancellation of the ferry service.

Yarmouth County native named president/CEO of Nova Scotia Power

Bob Hanf, a Yarmouth County native, was the new president and chief executive officer of Nova Scotia Power, succeeding Rob Bennett. Hanf had spent a decade in various senior roles with the Emera group of companies.

Lobster-fishing trip ends in heartbreak

What should have been a normal day of lobster fishing ended in tragedy when 20-year-old Mike Doucette of Wedgeport was lost after falling overboard from the fishing vessel Row Row. An hour had passed before the boat’s crew noticed Doucette was missing. They had presumed he was in his bunk for the steam home. The Joint Rescue Coordination Centre said about 20 fishing vessels tried to find him, although others said there might have been twice that many. The decision was made the next day to call off the search. You can read a link to the original story here.

Fur farm regulations fell short, groups said

The province had released new regulations for the fur industry, but representatives of environmental groups said the regulations fell short. “They provide no assurance toward protecting the environment,” said Mil Nickerson of TREPA. Julia Bancroft, a spokesperson for the Tri-County Watershed Protection Association, said, “The most positive thing about these regulations is at least there is something written down and we can start our fight to change them.”

Ferry proposals submitted

Two companies had submitted proposals for a ferry service between Yarmouth and Maine. The companies were said to be from the United States, although the province offered little information on them. A committee consisting of representatives of various government departments and the private sector was to evaluate the proposals.

 

 

 

Organizations: Yarmouth Consolidated Memorial High School, Yarmouth Regional Hospital, Canadian Medical Association Journal Nova Scotia Association of Realtors Nova Scotia Power Tri-County Regional School Board CBC Tri-County Watershed Protection Association

Geographic location: Yarmouth County, Grove Road, Southwestern Nova Scotia Wedgeport Maine United States

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