Premier hints at pending election call

MABOU: Although he did not say when an election will be called, the Premier did say he will be spending the coming weeks letting Nova Scotians know how he is spending their money.

Premier Iain Rankin told The Reporter that his main focus is currently on public health and safety, but he also plans to spend “the next number of weeks” detailing “the investments from our budget.”

“We’ve reached our four-year mark, I’m still focused more on managing the pandemic,” Rankin said. “We’ve just come down from a third wave. The re-opening plan is going well… The announcements will continue to let Nova Scotians know where we are prioritizing provincial funding.”

After participating in the Active Transportation announcement in Port Hawkesbury on June 18, the Premier took a tour of the restored riding of Richmond, then travelled to Mabou to announce $454,000 in funding for paving projects at Dalbrae Academy ($400,000) and the Strait Regional Centre for Education’s bus maintenance facility ($175,000).

According to a press release from the provincial government, Dalbrae Academy has had a partially paved parking lot that is used by the school, as well as visitors to community facilities located in the school.

“I care a lot about Cape Breton and having roots in Mabou, it’s always nice to be able to deliver the news that we’re investing in communities,” he said. “We’ve significantly invested in school capital this year and it’s increased this year as well, thanks to some partnerships. I think that it shouldn’t just be about the typical, shiny infrastructure projects; that it’s important to support paving and things like municipally-run wastewater systems that we supported in Inverness County, and things like that too.”

Carol Smith, principal at Dalbrae Academy, said the parking lot was partially paved for some time, and as a result of the funding, the entire parking lot has recently been resurfaced.

“It increased the safety level in the parking lot, and the accessibility level, for sure,” Smith told The Reporter. “It’s improved the overall school property and the aesthetics of the school.”

The province said both projects were completed over two years, with $121,000 in funding last year.

“We want our schools to be welcoming places for students, staff and everyone else who uses these important community hubs,” said Derek Mombourquette, Minister of Education and Early Childhood Development. “By improving accessibility, we are making our schools more inclusive spaces.”