Monday, April 1, 2013

PROVINCE'S NEW FERRY POLICY KICKS IN TODAY


The price for getting on and off the island is going to cost more today.

Provincial and Gulf Ferry rates jumped today.

Marine Atlantic rates are up by four per cent and Provincial ferries are up ten percent.

Coastal communities are fighting for survival, as all rural communities.  The government’s real long term ferry policy is a combination of increasing fairs and resettlement incentives. Transportation is not only fundamental to economic development, it’s also fundamental to health care, education and every other aspect of public life.

In last weeks budget the Province increased  the maximum payout per household in it’s Relocation Policy from the current $100,000 to $270,000.

The increase is expected to generate considerable discussion in a half dozen remote communities in the province currently served by ferries. The population of these communities have been in rapid decline for decades. The increase reflects the realistic cost of housing, should residents wish to resettle.

Under the new policy, there will not need to be a unanimous decision in a community to relocate. Instead, at least 90 per cent of residents will have to vote in favour of the decision.

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