Peacemaker was set to dock in Summerside today
© Photo from www.peacemakermarine.com/
Transport Canada conditions that call for costly security in P.E.I. have scuttled a plan by tall ship Peacemaker to make a stop in Summerside today.
SUMMERSIDE — The tall ship Peacemaker will not be docking in Summerside.
The Brunswick, Georgia-based ship was scheduled to arrive later today and be open for public tours later in the week.
Ron Casey, executive director of Downtown Summerside Inc., said the vessel would need security 24 hours a day at a cost of $15,000. He said this is a requirement laid down by Transport Canada – but only on P.E.I.
Casey complained that neither Nova Scotia nor New Brunswick are subjected to this restriction.
"They have security in Nova Scotia," he said. "There's no security in New Brunswick but when they come to P.E.I. you have to have security."
Casey said he has contacted Revenue Minister Gail Shea's office and couldn't get an explanation as to why the Island needs security for visiting tall ships.
Casey said the ship was coming in at no cost.
"It was coming in for free," he said. "It has to be in Montreal on Sept. 2 so they were trying to kill some time in the Maritimes because they finished over in Pugwash, N.S. yesterday. It's a wood vessel and has 18 passengers on board. Actually, they're not passengers, they're the owners of the ship. It's a religious ship. It's a church ship and they own the church."
The word regarding the security issue came from Andre Firlotte, marine safety inspector, marine safety and security operations, Transport Canada, Atlantic Region.
Calls to Firlotte were not returned.
Arnold Croken, president of the Summerside Port Corporation also could not be reached for comment.