News Release Archive

Amalgamation will address many of the challenges faced by the six
municipal units in Pictou County says a municipal government
report. The study conducted by KPMG Management Consulting
concludes that the status quo is not an option to effectively
address the daunting financial and operational challenges facing
Pictou County municipalities.

The study indicates that amalgamation would yield annual savings
of $1.7 million or seven per cent of the annual tax revenue of
the six municipalities while providing for more effective and
efficient regional decision making. This increased flexibility is
essential in setting priorities in the areas of planning,
development and infrastructure utilization. The report states "an
amalgamated municipality can manage growth, infrastructure
utilization and the competition for development more efficiently
than six individual municipalities."

The study was commissioned by the provincial government at the
request of the six municipal councils in Pictou County. The
consultants presented their report to Municipal Affairs Minister
Sandy Jolly and the six councils Tuesday.

"The councils now have the information and framework upon which
to move forward in developing a regional government for Pictou
County," said the minister.

The objective of the study was to evaluate the advantages and
disadvantages, financial and non-financial, of adopting a single
regional municipality for Pictou County. The study also involved
reviewing the current financial status of the six municipalities
and their ability to sustain increasing costs within current

The report says that the Pictou County municipalities are faced
with reductions in revenues, increasing expenditures and
deteriorating infrastructure. Significant service level
reductions and continued deterioration of their infrastructure
will result if structural change is not initiated.

The consultants held extensive public consultation throughout the
county in addition to working closely with the elected and
appointed officials for all existing local government units
within the county.

"The report clearly states that change is necessary for local
government in Pictou County," said Ms. Jolly. "I urge councils to
carefully review this report. I am prepared to work with them to
begin the process of implementing regional government in Pictou

The municipal units included in the study were the Municipality
of the County of Pictou and the towns of New Glasgow, Pictou,
Stellarton, Trenton and Westville.

Copies of the report will be made available in libraries in
Pictou County.


NOTE TO EDITORS: A backgrounder on the study can be obtained by
calling 902-424-4492 or 1-800-670-4357 (toll-free).

Contact: Michelle Whelan  902-424-6336

trp                     Mar. 27, 1996 - 8:30 a.m.