News Release Archive

Following are highlights and the complete text of the Speech from
the Throne read today by Lieutenant Governor Hon. J. James Kinley
at the opening of the fourth session of the 56th General Assembly
of the Province of Nova Scotia.

Highlights of the Speech from the Throne

In this session the government will lay the foundation for a new
era of economic growth.

Signs for economic optimism:

Since the present government took office in June 1993, there have
been 26,000 more Nova Scotians who have found work.

In January of this year the province had the lowest unemployment
record of any province in the Atlantic region.

In the last 12 month period, ending in January this year, 12,000
new  jobs were created in Nova Scotia.

A comparison of projected job growth in eight major Canadian
urban centres in the March issue of Canadian Business Magazine
had Halifax in the top spot, tied with Greater Vancouver for
forecasted job gains of 6,000 this year.

Foreign exports of Nova Scotia goods were up 14.5 per cent last
year over the previous year's figure.

Manufacturing shipments for 1995 in Nova Scotia were valued at
$6.2 billion, an increase of nine per cent over the previous
year, following an annual gain of 8.1 per cent in 1994.

Tourism, a $925 million industry is expected to crack the $1
billion mark by the year 2000.

Main legislation to facilitate economic growth: 

Nova Scotia's first fully balanced budget in 25 years will be
introduced in this session. This milestone will signal a return
to self-sufficiency, an end to escalating debt. Most importantly
it will mark Nova Scotia's debut as a province newly repositioned
for more and diversified economic growth.

Measures will be introduced to ensure these hard won gains are
not lost. They will provide for expansion of the most popular
core government services, as the province's finances allow.
Principles of debt reduction will also be presented to permit the
government to gradually recover the $1 billion lost annually to
debt service charges and reduce taxation.

Region Development Authorities will be entrenched in legislation.

Financial incentives will be presented to encourage more Nova
Scotians to invest in community development.

A plan will be presented to reduce the burden of Securities
Commission regulations as they affect community development

Other key pieces of legislation:

A new Occupational Health and Safety Act will be presented in
this session. New regulations related to violence in the
workplace, indoor air quality and other issues will follow later
this year.

An Interprovincial Subpoena Act will be introduced to give
subpoenas issued by courts, inquiries and other tribunals force
and effect in other jurisdictions where reciprocal agreements

Amendments will be made to the Children and Family Services Act
to improve the protection of children in need.

A new Adoption Act will be introduced to make it easier for
adoptive children to find their natural parents.

Government initiatives:

A new comprehensive strategy is being developed to deal with
future public-private partnerships.

A new Economic Development Agreement will soon be signed with the
federal government. Initiatives will also be taken to encourage
development in the environmental and health industries, tourism,
higher education and other economic sectors with strong growth
potential. Special emphasis will be given to high areas of
unemployment, including Cape Breton and Southwestern Nova Scotia.

A new mine policy is being prepared.

The Coalition of Nova Scotia Forest Interests will soon present
its work toward a long term sustainable forest management
strategy for public comment.

A Memorandum of Understanding as the basis of future
stabilization programs in the farm community is being negotiated
with the federal government.

Results of more than two years of unprecedented partnership
between the government and the province's universities will be
unveiled during this session of the legislature.

An aggressive international marketing campaign is under way to
promote and export the province's educational expertise.

The Centre for Entrepreneurship Education and Development, which
encourages youth to become more business-minded, will open
regional Venture Centres around the province, starting in


Complete Text of the Speech from the Throne

In the name of our Sovereign, I welcome you today to this, the
opening of the Fourth Session of the Fifty-Sixth General Assembly
of the Province of Nova Scotia.

Mindful that death has recently taken a number of distinguished
Nova Scotians from our midst, My Government would like to
gratefully acknowledge their lives of dedicated service to this
province and mention by name:

Benoit Comeau, a former Leader of the Opposition and a past
Member of the Legislative Assembly for Clare.

Buddy Daye, a champion boxer who outside the ring fought racial
injustice and served this legislature as Sergeant-At-Arms.

Howard Fuller, a life-long leader in the farming community and a
former President of the Nova Scotia Federation of Agriculture.

Frank Daniels, a legendary figure in Maritime harness horse

The Rev. John Angus Rankin, a zealous Gael who revived the
Glendale Fiddlers and gave 39 years of priestly service to the
Mi'kmaq people.

Ira Settle, the well known former Warden of the Municipality of
Halifax County.

Joan MacLellan, a former Deputy Warden and long-time Councillor
of the Municipality of East Hants.

The Rev. Ed Aitken, the former President of Atlantic School of

In every age devoted men and women in this province have made
notable contributions to our collective social and economic
well-being. In their ranks are many worthy contemporaries. Three
of them were recently admitted to membership in the Order of
Canada: heritage preservationist Cora Jane Greenaway; a Past
President of the Halifax Cerebral Palsy Association, Donald
Oliver Mills, both of Dartmouth; and David Sobey, Chairman of
Sobeys Incorporated.

Josephine Peck, of the Wagmatcook First Nation, was made the
recipient of the Stephen Hamilton Outstanding Achievement Award
in Education for Aboriginal Peoples.

Bedford Constable Richard Derek Lane received the St. John
Ambulance International Lifesaving Silver Medal, the highest
award ever given to a Nova Scotian by the Order of St. John.

Undecorated, workaday Nova Scotians are to be commended too. Not
unlike My Government, they have been coping in difficult
times - making ends meet while resolutely shouldering
undiminished social responsibilities. In their fortitude and
determination, Nova Scotians have shown resilience, pluck and
ingenuity, characteristics which will serve our province well as
we prepare to seize new commercial prosperity from an economy
ripe for expansion. Indeed it is already under way.

Doubters need only examine the economic signs to know that what
My Government says is true. The indicators show bold leadership
and rigorous adherence to a carefully crafted fiscal regimen are
starting to yield dividends. Payment is being made in the hard
currency of increased jobs and foreign exports.

Since My Government took office in June 1993, 26,000 more Nova
Scotians have found work. In January Nova Scotia had the lowest
unemployment rate of any province in the Atlantic region. And in
the last 12-month period, ending in January this year, 12,000 new
jobs were created in our province. They came from major new
investments from companies like Michelin, Greenbrier, SHL
Systemhouse, ECI and Efamol. Their actions are eloquent testimony
to confidence in our future.

This month, even Canadian Business Magazine has taken note.
Halifax is predicted to gain 6,000 new jobs this year, the same
number forecast for Greater Vancouver. The two cities tied for
first place standing in projected job growth, ahead of six other
major Canadian urban centres. The Atlantic Provinces Economic
Council also recognizes Halifax as one of the best labor markets
in the region.

Exports and tourism are sources of optimism, too. Foreign exports
of Nova Scotia goods were up 14.5 per cent last year over the
previous year's figure. Seafood, valued at $798-million in 1995,
continued to lead all other Nova Scotia export commodities. The
province's 1995 manufacturing shipments were valued at $6.2
billion, an increase of 9 per cent over the previous year,
following an annual gain of 8.1 per cent in 1994. Tourism is
experiencing sustained growth too. A $925-million industry in
Nova Scotia, tourism is expected to crack the $1 billion mark by
the year 2000.

These trends mark a new beginning.

Until now, My Government's energies have been consumed largely by
efforts to clear away the financial and bureaucratic cobwebs that
were suffocating growth and stifling individual initiative. These
labors have made room for citizen participation in important
endeavours such as education, through school councils, and 
health care through regional and community health boards. Space
has also been made for business and community groups, through
partnerships with government, to bring fresh ideas to matters of
public policy. All this activity has been undertaken with one
goal in mind - to give Nova Scotians a comfortable and secure
economic future with opportunities for their children to stay
here and earn a good living.

In this session My Government will take another step toward this
goal by laying the foundation for a new era of economic growth
and diversification. Its cornerstone will be a fully balanced
budget - the province's first in 25 years. It heralds a return to
self-sufficiency - an end to the crippling cycle of borrowing and
escalating indebtedness. Most importantly, it signals Nova
Scotia's debut as a province smartly repositioned for new and
varied commercial activity.

To ensure these hard-won gains are not lost, measures will be
introduced in this session to prevent any future government from
taking our province back to the brink of financial ruin. These
measures will also provide for expansion of Nova Scotia's most
popular core services, as our finances allow. Principles of debt
reduction will also be submitted to you. They will permit My
Government to gradually recoup the $1 billion lost annually to
debt service charges and reduce the tax burden on our citizens.

This watershed in our economic history has not been reached by
chance. Fiscal stability, social responsibility, and the redesign
of government have steadily directed My Government's activities,
but always with a fourth priority in sight - economic renewal.

For instance, the centrepiece of My Government's recently
announced restructuring plan is the new Department of Business
and Consumer Services. Not only will it make many of the
government's most frequently used services more accessible, it
will do it in a way that will improve prospects for development
in rural Nova Scotia. Store front offices in communities across
this province will provide the public with everything from birth
certificates to drivers licences, tax information and business
registrations. Doing business in rural communities, not just
urban centres, will become easier.

Steps will be taken by this new department to streamline the
business approval process. Some permits will be eliminated; for
others, processing time will be reduced. My Government expects
these measures to reduce the cost of doing business in the
province. Other actions along this line are contemplated with 
the co-operation of every department in My Government and 
partnerships with the private sector. Issues such as property
taxation, regulations and other business costs will be examined.

In the same vein, new Environment Department offices were opened
in Amherst and Antigonish and another was expanded in Port
Hawkesbury this year. Today, 90 per cent of all environmental
approvals can be obtained from local offices. It all means faster
service and less red tape.

The climate for more community development will also improve with
the entrenchment in legislation, this session, of Regional
Development Authorities. Financial incentives will be unveiled,
too, to encourage more Nova Scotians to invest in community
development initiatives. And there will be a plan presented to
reduce the burden of Securities Commission regulations as they
affect these projects.

As an added incentive for business, My Government has brought in
the fairest and clearest procurement policy ever adopted in this
province. It has also worked with our sister Atlantic Provinces
to break down purchasing barriers in the region. These actions
mean better value for taxpayers' dollars and equal opportunity
for commercial enterprises that want to do business with My
Government and its public institutions.

Future public-private partnerships will be guided by a new
comprehensive strategy, now in the development stage. This
forward-sighted initiative will allow Nova Scotia to take
advantage of this new brand of service provision, assured of its
efficiency and effectiveness.

My Government will shortly sign a new economic development
agreement with Ottawa. Initiatives will also be developed for
environmental and health industries, tourism, higher education
and other sectors with strong growth potential.

Special emphasis will be placed on areas of the province with
high unemployment, including Cape Breton and Southwestern Nova

Aware of technology's pre-eminent role in economic development
today, My Government recently announced the formation of the
Technology and Science Secretariat. It will give leadership and
co-ordination to more than $60 million worth of information
technology initiatives launched by My Government.

To get the technological word out on Nova Scotia, My Government
recently placed a home page on the Internet. International
business people and travellers can get information about this
province as fast as they can turn on their computers.

Efforts to maximize our traditional economic advantages through
careful management and responsible exploitation of our primary
resources have not been overlooked either.

Notably this year, we mark the seventy-fifth anniversary of the
launching of the Bluenose from the Rhuland Shipyard in Lunenburg,
and celebrate the Year of the Wooden Boat. These vessels were not
just the objects of nostalgia we know now, but sturdy commercial
enterprises that brought wealth from the sea to our shore.

Today, efforts to capitalize on the commercial potential of
non-traditional species such as shrimp, crabs, sea urchins and
billfish are showing promise. Nova Scotia's fishing industry, 
still in transition, has elements of surprising strength which My
Government is doing its best to encourage.

Aquaculture, a steady growth area, ended the year with a 37 per
cent increase in production. By the turn of the century fish
farming in Nova Scotia is expected to be a $45-million industry,
employing 950 people. My Government is supporting this new
industry by providing training through the Nova Scotia Fisheries
School and the Nova Scotia Agriculture College.

Meanwhile, a new mineral policy is in development. Also the work
of the Coalition of Nova Scotia Forest Interests in producing a
long term sustainable forest management strategy will soon be
ready for public comment.

The future for Nova Scotia's resource-based industries is bright,
judging from the scale of recent investments. Stora Forest
Industries recently injected $650 million into a new plant.
Kimberly-Clark Corporation is spending $22 million to upgrade
equipment at its newly acquired mill in Abercrombie. A consortium
of Mobil, Shell and Imperial have put up an $86 million work
expenditure bid for exploration, west of Sable Island. The recent
discovery of kaolin clay deposits in the Musquodoboit and
Shubenacadie valley areas of Halifax County is also attracting
widespread interest.

To help the farm community, My Government is seeking a Memorandum
of Understanding with the federal government. Now in the final
stages of negotiation, this memorandum will form the basis of
future industry stabilization programs and encourage more farm

Worker safety will not be sacrificed for economic growth. This
spring My Government will bring forward a bill for a New
Occupational Health and Safety Act. Three years of public
consultation and labour-management discussion by the Occupational
Health and Safety Advisory Council have gone into its production.
New regulations concerning violence in the workplace, indoor air
quality and other issues will follow later this year. To
underline My Government's commitment to occupational health and
safety, new positions will soon be advertised in these areas of

As an aid to litigation, My Government will introduce an
Interprovincial Subpoena Act to give subpoenas issued by courts,
inquiries and other tribunals force and effect in other
jurisdictions, where reciprocal agreements exist.

Our road to new economic prosperity begins with education. Aware
of this truism, The Nova Scotia Community College and College de
l'Acadie have fast become leaders in matching training with the
demands of the marketplace. Their customized training, which
generated record revenues of $9 million last year, is being
snapped up by companies like Pure Energy, Pictou Shipyards and
Fisherman's Wharf.

Also this session, you will see the results of more than two
years of unprecedented partnership between My Government and Nova
Scotia's universities. A plan to rejuvenate our university system
by focusing on excellence tied to My Government's economic
priorities will soon be released. This plan will solidify Nova
Scotia's position as an international leader in education and
research, with the capability of attracting business and

An aggressive marketing campaign from Boston to the United Arab
Emirates has begun to promote and export our educational
expertise. This is a collaborative enterprise involving our 
universities and the Nova Scotia Community College in partnership
with the Department of Education and Culture, the Economic
Renewal Agency and the Nova Scotia Council on Higher Education.

Our international reputation as a leader in educational and
technological expertise is on the rise. My Government and a Nova
Scotia consortium recently signed a Memorandum of Understanding
to design, construct and manage an international school in Wuhan,
China. More partnerships of this kind are expected.

In the last year, the potential of our educational facilities 
began to be harnessed for community economic development. In more
than 50 branches of our public libraries last year the public
gained access to the Internet, and its unbounded storehouse of
world-wide research and communications. Also, about 1,500 Nova
Scotia learners upgraded their academic qualifications through 
My Government's Community Learning Initiative.

To help our youth become more business-minded, the Centre for
Entrepreneurship Education and Development will open regional
Venture Centres around the province, starting in Antigonish.
These centres will bring entrepreneurs together with young
people, in and out-of-school, to help them start their own
business or gain the skills required to do so.

The growing role of arts and culture in our economy has not been
lost on My Government. The Nova Scotia Arts Council will offer
research and development assistance. This help is expected to
lead to improved products and expansion of this diversified
multi-million dollar industry.

My Government wants to bring Nova Scotians marginalized by
unemployment back into the economic mainstream so they can share
in the benefits that come only with full participation. Compass
Nova Scotia has had inspiring success in this regard,
transforming lives once reliant upon social assistance.
Sixty-seven per cent of the people who took part in the program's
on-the-job training are now fully employed.

On April 1, My Government will assume responsibility for the
delivery of municipal social services in the new regional
municipalities of Halifax and Queens. By that date, 65 per cent
of Nova Scotians who rely on short-term emergency help, will
obtain their benefits through the Department of Community
Services. Last year My Government took over the emergency
assistance previously provided through the founding partners of
the new regional government in the Cape Breton industrial area.
Eventually, Nova Scotia will have a uniform one-tier system of
social services.

This year, My Government will be looking for better ways to put
more in the hands of those who need it most and to help the
able-bodied become active participants in our economy again. To
speed this process along My Government will be providing 50 new
child care spaces for children from low income families. This
will bring the number of child care spaces My Government has
established in the last three years to 250.

In this session, My Government will introduce amendments to the
Children and Family Services Act to improve the protection of
children in need. Also a new Adoption Act will be brought forward
to make it easier for adoptive children to find their natural

While the welfare of children is of great concern to My
Government, so too is the well-being of our adult population.
Tragic incidents of family violence, racial and sexual
discrimination, and other unacceptable behaviours add to our
social deficit. They hamper members of our society from realizing
their potential.

To combat family violence, more than 2,200 justice workers are
learning how to respond to these domestic crises. The workers
will carry out the new pro-arrest and pro-prosecution policies
under the Framework for Action Against Family Violence. In
addition, community organizations have been given $500,000 to
support victim services. The money pays for transition
house-based advocacy and police-based crisis intervention.

A healthy workforce expectant of productive retirement, freed of
the financial tyranny of debilitating drug and medical bills,
gives Nova Scotia a competitive edge. It makes our province a
desirable place to live and work.

Senior citizens have begun to recognize that My Government's
stewardship has ensured Pharmacare will remain the best program
of its kind in the country. Decisive action rescued the drug
plan, last year, from looming financial collapse. As extra
insurance that Pharmacare will be here when our elderly need it,
My Government has put senior citizens in charge of the program's

Similarly, the wisdom of My Government's health measures is
proving itself in better care. The Home Care program, launched
last June, has helped more than 13,000 people in communities from
Cape North to Cape Sable. In the last six months more than 50 new
state-of-the-art ambulances have gone into service across the
province as part of a complete overhaul of emergency health
services. These new initiatives are proceeding as preparation
continues for full activation of regional and community health

My Government has put the weight of the public treasury behind 
its commitment to health care and education. Seventy per cent of
expenditures this year, excluding debt payments, are going to
provide programs in these two areas of responsibility.

In its determination to create the climate for growth, My
Government will not shrink from using its influence to protect
our province's interests when they are threatened by unreasonable
or unfair treatment. Most recently, My Government's vigorous
representation against a fee regime to pay for federal marine
services succeeded in obtaining modifications that go some
distance to preserve the competitive edge of our ports.

To the world, Nova Scotians have a more fundamental identity. We
are Canadians. Residents of this province showed how profound and
deep this attachment, forged in 1867, has become. At home and in
Montreal, last October, Nova Scotians rallied in large numbers to
show Quebecers, and each other, the strength of our national
bonds. Afterward Nova Scotians doggedly watched the returns of
the Quebec referendum see-saw to a victory for our confederation.
Having stepped back from the precipice, Nova Scotians have no
desire to return for a second view. My Government concurs in this
sentiment and is committed to supporting the federal government
in its efforts to keep this nation united.

God Save the Queen.
God Bless Nova Scotia.
God Bless Canada.



NOTE TO EDITORS: There is an accent grave on the first "e" in
College (College de l'Acadie).

trp                      Mar. 28, 1996 - 2:10 p.m.