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The Shoreline Journal is a monthly community newspaper based in Bass River, Nova Scotia, and serving the Fundy Shore/Glooscap Trail from Truro to Parrsboro.   See submission deadlines...

Established in 1994, the paper was originally published as the West Colchester Free Press by Ken Kennedy Publications, and later renamed to The Shoreline Journal.  In January 2008 The Journal changed hands and is now under the management of  the husband and wife team of Maurice & Dorothy Rees.  They initiated a redesign of the paper, with the addition of several colour pages in each issue. Each monthly issue concentrates on the many community events which involve residents of all ages, from the elderly to the very young, and those young at heart.  A primary focus is those activities which involve students, whether it be school or 4-H club activities.

Maurice has extensive experience in the community newspaper & advertising field, and has been running several businesses in Maitland for the past few years.  Dorothy is a lady of many interests who added new features to the Journal in particular her Kitchen Korner.  Since November 2008 she has operated her own business, Dorothy’s T-shirt Factory, later renamed to “tshirtsrus.ca”.  The energetic couple have a busy schedule as they are also sales agents for Nelson Monuments and also travel frequently to annual Nova Scotian festivals selling t-shirts.

On-line issues:       This Month            Issue Archives - April 2009 to last month


Interested in advertising? Click here to view all the details on our adAtlantic Classified Network Program or email the publisher for more details at maurice@theshorelinejournal.com

The Shoreline Journal is proud to be a member of The Atlantic Community Newspaper Association; let us book your ads for you and customize your campaign!

Click on the image at right to view the Shoreline's advertising rates & deadlines in pdf...


The Shoreline Journal understands that rural communities want to know about news and events in their communities, so that's our focus, the things that directly affect our subscribers, sponsors and customers.  Watch for regular items: 

Rees' Pieces (Publishers) Letters to the Editor Community Calendar
Heritage Notes Sports Events Classified Ads
Senior Affairs Nature Notes Credit Union News
MLA Activity Report Community Centres Fire Brigade
Favourite Pet Photo Parish News 4-H Clubs
Dorothy's Kitchen Korner Poems & Photos Obituaries
Front Page Briefs    

plus notes from many communities and organizations such as:

Bass River, CCJS Student Council, Chiganois, Debert Elementary, Debert Legion, Great Village, Londonderry Council, MacCarell Villa, Masstown, Onslow Belmont, skating clubs & other groups

The Shoreline Journal

February 2020 Issue follows:

February 2010 - A new decade, A new era

When I originally sat down to write this column I intended my opening question to be, "Are we entering a new Era? After a few words appeared on the screen, I changed it to "We have entered a new era!

Not only has Premier McNeil set the framework to transition the forest sector, he has changed politics. Who would have thought a politician would stand by their word and fulfill a five year old promise? McNeil’s announcement on December 20, 2019 surprised and devastated many people, but it is proof he placed more importance on integrity than making a political decision.

For decades people have been of the opinion, multi-national forestry companies were dictating to the government of the day; massive clear cutting was not appropriate; jobs mattered more than the economy and although things should change, no leader had the guts to make a tough decision.

On December 20th, Premier McNeil proved them wrong on all counts.

Read the full editorial...

DFNS Board

The 2020 DFNS Board of Directors- Front (l to r): Hans Vermeulen, Gerrit Damsteegt, Byron Lamb, Andrew McCurdy, Elizabeth Crouse; Back (l to r): David Bekkers, Dustin Swinkels, Tony Versteeg, Greg Archibald, Brian Cameron. (Harrington Photo)


Broadband by January 31?

By Maurice Rees

The long awaited multi-Million dollar announcement for Cumberland-Colchester is expected by end of January. (That is one of the problems with being a monthly. Important announcements can come a day or so after publication and it is almost a month before you have opportunity t put anything in print).

Sources indicate to the Shoreline Journal for over two weeks, Develop Nova Scotia (DNS), has been indicating an announcement is "moments away". Projects such as this one have to get in line in the political priority list and for sure the premier and other elected officials have had their hands full with issues surrounding the January 31st deadline on Boat Harbour.

It is slightly over two years since Bill Casey and Shoreline Journal publisher, Maurice Rees hosted a joint meeting between Colchester and Cumberland, which evolved into "kick-starting" the joint application for broadband for the two counties.

If the announcement evolves as expected, Casey & Rees will be able to claim total success, because their selection of Xplornet as the presenter to the joint meeting held at The Peg, Masstown, of the required Broadband, ISP provider will have evolved into Xplornet successfully meeting Develop Nova Scotia’s stringent requirements.

During the joint meeting, Xplornet provided a rough approximate guesstimate of $40+/- Million. It is not known, at this time, the financial arrangements with DNS. Those details will form part of the announcement expected to be by the end of January. It is known that last fall, when it reviewed it’s 5-year capital projections, Colchester budgeted an amount up to 4-Million. That was an outside figure with actual cost to the municipality expected to be much less.

According to the initial presentation the Xplornet construction process would ensure it was 5G ready, which the Federal Government has mandated it all ISP providers, must supply early in the 20’s. The project, to all reports, is very unique for the following reasons:

  • It is the first time two Nova Scotia counties have jointly volunteered to work together to develop a service which would apply to all residents and businesses within their governance areas.
  • The speed at which it happened.
  • A joint proposal for a two county-wide program, but each retaining control of their respective areas.
  • Elimination of municipal competitiveness, which may pave the way to other similar initiatives, when appropriate.
  • History making that in all of Canada, Cumberland-Colchester is the first federal constituency which will receive broadband services, in some ways that are more comprehensive, better, more economical and faster than some of Canada’s largest Metropolitan areas.

Not mentioned in any of the above what the economic on the two counties would be. It is definitely a tool to make businesses more competitive. The anticipated UNESCO Geo-Park approval will bolster tourism activity and permit hospitality businesses to market the area as having wide broadband throughout the entire UNESCO approved area.

As Tom Taggart has reported, the Federation Canadian Municipalities (FCM) to which he is a board member, in a study which it commissioned have concluded populations of rural municipalities will increase by at least 7% over the next decade.

Professionals who have the ability to work from home and prefer a county lifestyle will gravitate to relocations in their chosen area of Cumberland-Colchester. The construction build-up is expected to take upwards of two years, as long as approval is received early in the non-construction season.

With heavy promotion by the two municipalities that broadband will be available, it won’t take long before realty brokers and individual agents will extensively market the broadband asset.

Some commercial real estate transactions of businesses relocating to Debert Business Park have evolved slower than anticipated because of the lack of broadband services.

Economic development specialists are excited about the potential possibilities for Cumberland and Colchester to recruit new businesses. However, they have a major concern there might not be the trained labour force.

In order to be totally successful the municipalities need to be diligent to orchestrate a "buy-in" from realtors to find trained professionals to relocate here and ensure training is available for the skills the new businesses will require.

Code of Conduct to be Adopted

By Maurice Rees

Colchester Council will adopt a Code of Conduct at its January meeting on the 30th. Various discussions have been held since 2017 and the Minister of Municipal Affairs requested all municipalities were required to adopt a code of conduct.

At council’s committee meeting on adopting a code of conduct, municipal solicitor, Dennis James, pointed out to council the provincial act requiring a code of conduct has not been given royal assent and adopted.

When discussions on a code first surface, council requested staff formulate and submit a draft. Staff did as requested and presented to council. Several councillors, including Councillor Cooper, felt the submission was not appropriate and he would oppose.

On at the other end of the spectrum, Councillor Wade Parker has been advocating for a detailed and comprehensive code. Throughout all the discussions, council were advised the Nova Scotia Federation of Municipalities had been asked by the provincial government to develop a code to be considered by NSFM members.

NSFM submitted their version in April 2018, but the Minister of Municipal Affairs during the NSFM AGM in fall of 2019 expressed disappointment his department had not made a submission. During council’s committee meeting in December and again on January 16th, Councillor Taggart expressed disappointment no one challenged the minister and he reminded council agreed in December to adopt a code in January.

At December’s 12th committee meeting, council was advised by Rob Simonds, CAO his office had received the NSFM version earlier, but some minor changes were being made. On January 16th the revised version was received and presented to council. Because information was circulated on table an electronic version was not available to the media.

A review of both NSFM versions reveal only slight variations, perhaps a couple of paragraphs. Discussion on what to adopt on January 16th was intense. Councillor Wade Parker, who spoke several times on the matter said the version of code slated for adoption was useless and perhaps more dangerous that if non existed. It ended his input by saying the current version is not something he could support, because it needs to be more comprehensive and needs a lot of work.

Other’s are saying they need to adopt a code by the end of January as along as they can update and make changes at a later date.

When asked about a code of conduct, business owners, not anyone who has relatives working for the municipality, nor been a council member are shaking their heads. Their comments range from a number of different perspectives including: are council members afraid their activities would be restricted by a code; are they rushing to adopt simply because it is an election year and they wish to say, "we now have a code of conduct"; are they serving their self interests, or interests of staff and the taxpayer.

One prominent business lady suggested a poorly constructed code of conduct could be expensive, if not clearly written with precise regulations, as it would open itself up to several legal battles.

When asked in Tim Horton’s of their view, a coffee group involving several business owners offered: Are they sure they know what they are doing? I don’t think so. Already on staff is Mark Austin, who has a Master’s degree in Human Resources and similar matters. Why did they wait? Why not get him to prepare one, which would stand the test of time?

If councillor Cooper is right, we don’t need one, or a strong one. If Councillor Parker is correct, the Municipality of Colchester could be headed for some legal battles.

Thursday night will determine the outcome and test of time will reveal the accuracy of council’s decision on January 30th

Cyclist Travels Shore on 55,000 Km Journey

By Linda Harrington

Cyclist - Arie and Kim

Kim Hillier reached out to a complete stranger, Arie Hoogerbrugge and offered him a warm place to stay for the night after she heard about his cycling journey which would take him through Great Village. (Submitted photo)

Some of us have problems navigating our Canadian winter on four snow tires, imagine doing it on two narrow bicycle wheels?

Arie Hoogerbrugge has been gaining a bit of local attention throughout our Nova Scotia communities as he continues cycling not only across Canada but eventually, he plans to travel 55,000 kilometers to the tip of Argentina, with a few side excursions including Tuktoyaktuk, NWT.

His journey began back in November in St. Johns. On his website Arie says, "Part of the motivation behind my November 11th start date is to pedal a bike across Canada in the middle of a Canadian winter. In my world this is perhaps the greatest challenge that I can come up with that would possibly push me to the point of failure." Over two months later, Arie is succeeding in pedalling forward and in making friends along the way!

Kim Hillier of Great Village heard about Arie’s adventure and when she saw he was going through Great Village on Friday, January 17th she offered him her spare room. "He did take me up on the offer. Got here around 6 p.m. and we sat up till almost 1 a.m. talking," says Kim, who posted pics on her Facebook page, wishing him well on his journey. "He is an incredible person to be doing what he's doing, and I would love to be at the end of his journey to hear the rest of the story in person," says Kim. She says he has some inspiring poetry on his webpage, and he spent some time explaining the meaning behind some of the writings. "There is a meaning behind them all and once you heard the meaning it made a lot more sense," she said, adding she encourages people to go to his website and read the posts.

Nancy Jennings encountered Arie as he made his way through Glenholme and they exchanged a wave and a smile. She had also heard of his adventure and knew immediately who he was. "To encounter the cyclist, you’ve only just read about on social media that very morning is rather intriguing when you reflect on all of the positive Maritime interactions with strangers & friends this winter cyclist has experienced along his personal trek to date." Nancy says she will be following Arie’s blog daily to keep up with his experiences throughout this three-year journey.

As of his January 18th online blog, Arie says he had spent 56 days on the road, cycled 2,355 kilometers and slept 29 nights in a tent. He has greatly appreciated the invitations to sleep in a nice warm bed after some gruelling days in sub zero temperatures.

Arie feels the weather has been better than expected. "I was expecting the worst but at the same time I didn't really "think" about the weather at all. I felt if I thought about the weather, I may never attempt this ride during the winter at all," he says adding, "But I am aware I have been very very lucky with the weather so far."

People Arie has met along the route have been very generous, in true spirit of the Maritimes! He didn’t set a budget for the journey, noting back in 2011 when he did his first bike tour, he spent a fair amount on camp sites, so he had access to a shower. "Obviously I have spent no money on camp sites at this time of year," he laughs. "But I have found I eat out more than ever expected, which adds up financially. Some restaurants have given me my meal on the house, such as the Rite Stop in Advocate and people have given me meals in their homes, which has been greatly appreciated but I never expected." He has also been very appreciative of people handing him a few dollars along the way, which again he says he never expected.

Arie has been planning this journey extensively since 2011, mostly planning the route. The opportunity to start this ride came up very suddenly. "I only started purchasing my bike and gear and working on my website since the beginning of June 2019, in addition to working an 80-hour week as a long haul truck driver." He considers what was accomplished in the short 5.5 months leading up to the ride is in his opinion "nothing short of a miracle".

As for sticking to the planned route, the journey through Atlantic Canada has evolved quickly into something much bigger than Arie had ever expected. "I have probably added at least 1000 extra kilometers to Atlantic Canada just to see who I can meet along the way. Atlantic Canada has been awesome!" he says. "So, at this point I simply go with the flow." Arie has been taking advice from the local people and enjoying whatever is offered or suggested.

Arie has known from the start the 55,000 km journey cannot be completed without challenges and his career for 6.5 years as a long haul truck driver for Voortman Cookies, driving 1.2 million km across North America he certainly got to know the lay of the land. "Physically, the toughest day was my first day in Newfoundland, pedalling to Cape Spear and back to St John's. Newfoundland was tough getting into physical shape for the ride." But biking from Joggins to Advocate to Great Village were also tough. "From Joggins to Advocate my gear shifter froze so I did not have my bottom 6 gears. I had to push my bike over every hill. From Advocate towards Parrsboro I had some pretty hilly areas. Once again I had to push my bike over virtually every hill due to snow and slippery roads." This is not an ordinary bike to "push" up hills. The bike and gear weigh about 185lbs. He says Parrsboro to Great Village was probably the worst weather he had to travel through so far, but he enjoyed every day of it.

Looking to the future, Arie has a passion for reforestation of rainforest and jungle he will be dreaming and planning for during three years on a bicycle. "I have some land in Belize and I would like to convert some of the land into a nursery that raises millions of seedling trees for replanting purposes."

After leaving Great Village, Arie headed to Truro where a snowstorm gave him a welcome rest stop for a day before he pedalled off to Windsor, then Halifax and onward to Digby, taking the ferry to Saint John, New Brunswick.

We wish him well on his journey and hope to follow him along the way!

Visit Arie’s website at https://safariarie.ca

Page One Briefs - February 2020

The Truro Sports Heritage Society will hold its 36th annual banquet and awards ceremony at the Glengarry on Sunday, March 1st.

A complaint against Councillor Bob Pash has been filed with Nova Scotia Human Rights Commission for what is alleged to be improper remarks make at the municipalities staff Christmas Party at the Debert Hospitality Centre.

Doug Ledwidge, president and CEO of Ledwidge Lumber, Enfield, has joined the Forestry Transition Team as a new member. He has expertise in sawmill operations and can provide this perspective as the team moves forward. He participated in the team meeting earlier the week of January 10th. He replaced Robin Wilber, Elmsdale Lumber, who was removed from the board after he made public comments he felt the mill should be placed on "hot idle".

Before the end of January, Develop Nova Scotia is expected to announce its decision on Xplornet’s application to provide broadband services to Cumberland-Colchester after the two counties choose the New Brunswick firm as its preferred ISP provider. Colchester has budgeted up to $4-Million in its capital budget for upgrade of services, although the municipal contribution is expect to be much less.

Credit Unions in Nova Scotia will offer short-term repayable financing for forestry contractors affected by the pending closure of the Northern Pulp mill. The program will be available to eligible forestry contractors with the intention of helping them with payments on their equipment loans on a short-term basis. The transition team endorsed the approach at its latest meeting on Jan. 21. Qualifying contractors can access a line of credit, up to $180,000, guaranteed by the province. Further details on eligibility are being finalized and will be made available soon. It is estimated $5 million will be allocated for this initiative from the $50-Million transition fund.

The Legislature will re-convene when the second session of the 63rd Nova Scotis general assembly will resume at 1 p.m., Thursday, Feb. 20.

During 2019 Nova Scotia experienced the fastest employment growth and labour force growth since 2004. The unemployment rate also averaged 7.2 per cent in 2019, the lowest unemployment rate since the early 1970s. Almost half of the annual job growth is attributable to improved employment for youth.

Nova Scotia has broken immigration records again in 2019 as the province finds new ways to target workers in sectors with the greatest need. The Office of Immigration approved 2,780 applications as of Dec. 27, up 21 per cent over 2018 and more than 300 per cent over 2013. As a result, the province's population is at an all-time high and getting younger, while filling persistent labour needs in key sectors, including health care.

Several film productions have been approved by (NSBI) including: Documentary TV Series, Maritime Museums Series 2, produced by Maritime Museums 2 Productions Limited (Winter Light Productions), has been approved for a funding commitment of $321,552 based on an eligible expenditure of $1,004,850; Variety TV series, Tout Simplement Country, Season Two, produced by 3286993 Nova Scotia Limited (Connections Productions), funding of $303,848 based on an eligible Nova Scotia expenditure of $1,104,901; Documentary TV Series, NSK9 Series 2, produced by NSK9 2 Productions Limited, for $227,200 based on an expenditure of $710,000; Feature film, Shush, produced by Shush It's a Movie Inc. for $68,743 based on expenditure of $221,752; Documentary TV series, Haunted Season V, produced by Winter Light Productions Limited, for $480,000 based on expenditure of $1,500,000; Dramatic TV mini-series, Cinema 902 Series 2, produced by Winter Light Productions Limited, for $307,200 based on expenditure of $960,000; Comedy TV series, Halifax Comedy Festival 2020, produced by ComedyTV 20 Inc., for $170,631 based on expenditure of $620,476; Documentary TV series, Jumping the Apex, produced by Jumping the Apex Productions Inc., for $27,749 based on expenditure of $100,905 and Documentary TV series, Champions, produced by Revolution Distribution Inc., for $229,856 based on expenditure of $718,300.



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 THE SOUTH CUMBERLAND  NEWS February 2020 issue

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  The Shoreline Journal

Maurice & Dorothy Rees, Publishers
The Shoreline Journal
Box 41, Bass River, NS B0M 1B0
PH: 902-647-2968; Cell: 902-890-9850
E-mail: maurice@theshorelinejournal.com