News Release Archive

  Changes being considered by the Coast Guard to the
  principles on charges for navigational aids confirm that
  Commissioner John Thomas has not heard and does not
  understand the concerns of Atlantic ports, Transportation
  and Communications Minister Richie Mann said today.
  In a letter to Commissioner Thomas, the minister criticized
  the Coast Guard for apparently reaching a decision on the
  necessary compromises before he comes to Atlantic Canada for
  "consultation" scheduled for next week.
  "If the decision has been made on what changes will be
  considered by the commissioner, his consultation is nothing
  but a patronizing sham, with no intent to listen or adjust
  to the needs of this region," the minister said.
  "These principles will do irreparable damage to the one of
  Canada's, and the world's, finest ports, as well as to
  business and industry throughout the Atlantic region," Mr.
  Mann said.
  The minister reiterated his support for fair and equitable
  user fees for navigational aids, but "any accommodation or
  compromise solution, that does not include some type of
  distance component that relates services used with charges
  imposed, is completely fruitless and not worthy of further
  discussion or debate. With proper principles, the Province
  of Nova Scotia stands willing to look at options, but we
  insist that the end policy must be based on fair and
  reasonable principles."
  Mr. Mann has also requested an early meeting with Fisheries
  Minister Fred Mifflin to discuss the issue of Coast Guard
  charges for navigational aids. Today's letter was in
  response to a Coast Guard release indicating that a
  compromise could be based on a fee for cargo, rather than
  gross registered tonnes which was their earlier position.
  Nova Scotian port operators and users contend that their
  coastal location requires far less use of navigational aids,
  and, therefore, distance would form part of any fair fee
  Contact: Donna McCready  902-424-8687
  trp                      Feb. 02, 1996 - 4:27 p.m.