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The Government of Canada Supports Coastal Communities in Prince Edward Island

June 27, 2008

NORTH RUSTICO, PRINCE EDWARD ISLAND–(Marketwire – June 27, 2008) – The Government of Canada continues to invest in harbour infrastructure, moving forward today with projects that will benefit fish harvesters and other harbour users across Prince Edward Island. The Honourable Diane Ablonczy, Secretary of State (Small Business and Tourism), made the announcement today on behalf of the Honourable Loyola Hearn, Minister of Fisheries and Oceans.

“The commercial fishery is key to the economic well-being of Island communities and the province as a whole. These projects will help ensure the safety of fish harvesters and provide the harbour facilities they need,” Ablonczy said. “I’m pleased to say it is through our partnership with local harbour authorities that we are able to provide this support.”

The $3.3 million in funding will go to projects at 11 harbours, including wharf repairs, dredging, breakwater and marginal wharf repairs, and the preparation of plans and specifications for future projects.

These projects are being undertaken by Fisheries and Oceans Canada’s Small Craft Harbours Program, in close collaboration with the harbour authorities that manage and operate the facilities for local users. Such close co-operation with clients allows the federal government to provide an operable system of harbours and facilities throughout Canada, in support of commercial fish harvesters.

The Government of Canada understands the importance of small craft harbours to communities across the country. Since February 2006, the permanent annual funding for the Small Craft Harbours Program has been increased by $20 million, with a further $10 million commitment made in Budget 2008 over two years for repairs and environmental cleanup at recreational and non-core fishing harbours to permit the transfer of these harbours to interested parties.

BACKGROUNDER

Details of Projects at Fishing Harbours in Prince Edward Island

Projects at the following 11 fishing harbours in Prince Edward Island total $3,317,800:

Alberton – Work continues on a major capital harbour improvement project. This year construction will be completed on a new breakwater and marginal wharf. As well, the new harbour basin will be dredged.

Covehead – Storm damage and a shifting channel combined to make a section of the marginal wharf unserviceable and barricaded. This project will involve rebuilding the damaged section and returning it to full and safe service.

Georgetown – A wharf repair project continues this year with reconstruction of the east and south faces of the main wharf. The work will enable the wharf to handle heavier loads more safely.

Howards Cove – Engineering and design will take place this year on a future project for replacement of a deteriorated wharf. The work will include environmental, geotechnical, structural, and survey services.

Miminegash – A basin dredging project will be completed this fall. Work will start after the fishing season and involve removal of infill from the harbour basin. Also at Miminegash, a two-year wharf construction project will be getting under way with environmental, geotechnical, structural and survey work planned for this year. Actual construction will take place next year and involves replacing existing deteriorated wharf structures.

North Rustico – North Rustico relies on its marginal wharf for service and berthage. A portion has deteriorated over time and is now barricaded. Planning and advance preparation for wharf reconstruction has been completed recently and will allow actual project work to start soon.

Skinners Pond – Annual redredging is planned to clear the entrance run and make harbour access safer for fish harvesters.

Tignish – Advanced planning and engineering will be taking place for a future harbour development project. Work this year will include environmental, geotechnical, structural, and survey services.

Tracadie – The main wharf was seriously damaged by a storm last year. Repairs to the timber pile work, fenders and wales will bring this important facility back into full service.

Victoria – Dredging is planned this year to ensure safe access to the fishing grounds. This work will be completed by floating plant equipment and will improve safety and efficiency for fish harvesters.

Wood Islands – The protective steel sheet plating on the main service wharf is seriously corroded and in need of repair. Wharf repairs will extend the life of the main service pier and allow an area of the pier that is presently unsafe to be serviceable once again.

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