Funding for pasture co-op approved despite objections

PORT HOOD: Although it received approval, two councillors voted against financial assistance for the Cape Mabou Community Pasture Co-operative.

Council approved $15,000 in funding to the group during the regular monthly meeting of Inverness Municipal Council on Feb. 4. The co-op will receive $3,750 each from the districts 2, 3, 5, and 6 community grant programs.

Unless other jurisdictions offer their financial assistance, District 4 Councillor John MacLennan will not support funding.

“I know different farms had to go and buy property to put their animals on them for feed,” he told the virtual session. “They weren’t invited up to Cape Mabou. And at the same time, apparently there’s animals coming from the mainland, and there’s animals coming from PEI. If we can get money from these other areas, I’d support it, but other than that, I’m not going to support this.”

District 1 Councillor Alfred Poirier also voted nay, noting that he needs “more information.”

“I know there’s always been issues with this grant coming along,” he said. “I don’t know exactly what’s happening there. I feel we should have a better review.”

Warden Laurie Cranton said the co-op does rely on animals from outside the municipality “to fill the place up.”

“But I think if the local people want in there first, and they follow the policies and procedures, they should be,” he said.

Cranton said it’s not the municipality’s responsibility, but that of the pasture, to solicit money from other jurisdictions.

“Last year, or the year before, they also got money from the province and (the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency), I believe as well. So there is other monies coming in for various projects and reasons.”

Despite the nay votes, the motion was carried by a vote of 4-2.