Province begins expropriation of land for Plan B

Ryan Ross
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Loring and Judy Rayner of the Riverdale Road join hundreds of protesters at Province House who demanded the government put a stop to "Plan B", the realignment project for the TransCanada Highway in Churchill in this Guardian file photo.

The last few holdouts in the Trans Canada Highway re-alignment will soon be getting expropriation notices after the deadline passed to sell the government their land.

Transportation Department spokesman Leo Creamer said as of the noon deadline Wednesday, there were still five landowners who hadn’t come to an agreement with the government.

The government will expropriate those properties, Creamer said.

“We can start the process and still talk to them right up to the date that the documents are registered.”

The land purchases are necessary for the province to start construction on the so-called Plan B highway re-alignment in Churchill.

That work is supposed to start in September.

Government expects to pay $4 million to buy the properties it needs for the project.

The provincial and federal governments will cost share the other $16 million needed to build the highway.

Of the properties the government is buying, 10 have houses on them and eight are occupied, although only one of the houses is in the re-alignment’s direct path.

Owners of the expropriated properties will still be paid for their land.

The expropriation process involves a legal survey identified as an expropriation plan to show what the province is buying.

It also requires a notice of expropriation, which lays out why the government is buying the land.

Finally, the government has to advertise for three consecutive weeks after the expropriation to notify the public that anyone who wants to file a claim for compensation related to the property must file it within six months after the registration date.

Creamer said most of the survey work is finished so it’s a matter of physically producing the survey plan.

“It’s a little bit of paperwork, basically,” he said.

Despite the expropriation process moving forward, Creamer said the government will continue to talk to the affected landowners.

“We’re not shutting off the process at this point,” he said.

Meanwhile, opposition environment critic Hal Perry has called for the fisheries, transportation and rural development committee to hold public hearings to discuss the project’s environmental assessment.

In a news release, Perry said the government plans to hold a public meeting Monday about the environmental impact assessment, but it should go further.

“I have been to this government’s public meetings before and they are nothing more than an opportunity to sell their ideas,” he said.

Perry said public hearings are needed immediately because the government is planning to start work in September.

“If there are findings in the report that could potentially stop this project, Islanders need to have a say and it is the committee’s responsibility to give them an avenue to do so,” he said.

Organizations: Trans Canada Highway, Transportation Department

Geographic location: Churchill

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Recent comments

  • Enough
    August 24, 2012 - 08:16

    Gentle Island ... Unless you get in the way of this Government ! They'll take your property for a road Put a wind farm in a community were the community doesn't want them promise new schools but refuse to build it take local health care from those who need it most PNP,Holman Grand, ... Enough

  • HMR
    August 23, 2012 - 21:52

    I see that Robert Vessey is again getting someone else to do the speaking for him; so that he does not have to rehearse and rehearse the same answers to different questions.What an incompetent Minister!!!!!!

  • i.sargent
    August 23, 2012 - 16:47

    The Government of P.E.I. has the power to expropriate private property for highway purposes. As noted by the Reporter, "The expropriation process involves a legal survey identified as an expropriation plan to show what the province is buying. It also requires a notice of expropriation, which lays out why the government is buying the land. Finally, the government has to advertise for three consecutive weeks after the expropriation to notify the public that anyone who wants to file a claim for compensation related to the property must file it within six months after the registration date." So, if that's the expropriation process, what's this? The owners of all coastal properties between Naufrage and Hermanville have yet to be informed by Mr. Creamer that , in 2005, a public highway was created out of thin air by an obscure Executive Order Ec2005-677. The highway was then named "Old Queens Road" and designated as a "non-essential highway". Strangely enough, the roadbed is still deeded to private landowners who would like to know when compensation will be offered.

  • SAP
    August 23, 2012 - 15:58

    "The gentle island" Well, unless you need to be kicked out of your home for a make work project. They must have made a pretty big promise to go to such lengths to get this done.

  • Everyone knows.
    August 23, 2012 - 12:15

    OK.Lets cut the B.S..The roads need work-nobody would argue that..The Island is in hard money times like we have not seen since the 30,s-most would agree.There are MANY reasons,presented by MANY groups,At MANY meetings as to why this is NOT THE RIGHT WAY to addess the improvement of this section of road. We all should send a letter to the feds thanking them first for the money and then secondly telling them how DISAPOINTED we are in the way it is being used by Island ministers.May-be then the money would be used properly???Come on folks ,its only 10 min to jot down and send an e-mail.Or better still when is the last time you took a minute and spoke to your federal minister to talk about how things are going??DO IT NOW

  • d. conway
    August 23, 2012 - 12:12

    The government is now going to take the properties that home owners have not already agreed to sell. If I took property from the government , it would be called stealing and I would go to jail. When the government does it , it's called progress and it's okay. I pass by these homes and see the love and care that has gone into the gardens and think how sad and unfair. I have never been so ashamed to be an Islander.

  • Part-time Islander
    August 23, 2012 - 11:08

    Waste, waste, waste - I drive this road 3 to 4 times per week and it is fine like it is - just needs a few more patches of pavement to smooth out some of the bumps. The GENTLY winding road is not only beautiful but is very easy to drive. I am puzzled about the information provided about this section of the road being unsafe. As someone mentioned, maybe we should send Ghiz and his "road crew" for a drive along Highway 1 through the Rocky Mountains so they could understand what real twists and hills look like. This is a serious WASTE of federal and provincial tax payers money - what a shame when there is so much REAL need.

  • Thinking of moving
    August 23, 2012 - 10:55

    I just can't believe this is happening. I can't believe half of what is happening here in PEI. Like so many others, i''m seriously considering heading west.

    • Robert Ghiz
      August 23, 2012 - 15:14

      How will that help?

    • Jason
      August 23, 2012 - 15:54

      Build the road. No wonder PEI is so far behind the rest of the country. Nowhere else would anyone try and stop infrastructure improvements. You should feel privileged, and find a new hobby, because surprising there are people on this Island who are sick and tired of complaining pessimistic whiners. How are we supposed to improve our economy if we can't even get support to improve our only major highway in the Province. A highway that transports 99% of the goods shipped that you all take for granted every day. The current stretch of highway is an embarrassment for these statistics. Why wouldn't you want this highway to be efficient as possible. It is not a scenic road, it is the TRANS CANADA HIGHWAY. Number 1. Please build the road.

  • rosieredrose
    August 23, 2012 - 10:11

    Seems as if all has been decided - case closed. The cart was put before the horse. Slow down on your driving and get there two minutes later. Too much money to be spent on this unneeded project.

  • XComa
    August 23, 2012 - 09:40

    It is not suppose to be this way. Governments of the Day in Canada are Autocratic. They just do what ever they want. ... Autocratic - adjective 1. (Government, Politics & Diplomacy) of or relating to an absolute and unrestricted ruler 2. domineering or dictatorial. Seems like an accurate description. ... Canadians involvement stops at the ballot box. After that Canadian Citizens are 'Out of the Loop' and the Government goes on 'Autocratic Pilot'.

  • joy saunders
    August 23, 2012 - 09:32

    So true, this is not what so many died for, - this is tyrany. We should all be fighting it in which ever way we can. I applaud the people holding on to their land and detest the strong arm tatic of Ghiz, - expropriation is a dirty way of bullying this through. Let us all go to the meeting August 27th at the Dutch Inn in North River at 7 p.m. This will be our one and only chance to voice our opinion. Come one come all, and spread the word.

  • ken
    August 23, 2012 - 09:09

    there must be a way to kick ghiz and his crooks out of office now beforethet steal more money from this road work that does not need to be done .this isjust a way to give his lib friends a payoff and fill his bankaccount.

  • Lest We Forget - Plan B
    August 23, 2012 - 08:53

    Democracy is serving the majority; to do that, the government has to invite the majority to speak. Then, they have to listen - and obey. This is what so many Islanders died for; this is what we remember on November 11. Islanders did not die horrible deaths to allow bullies to misuse our tax dollars, disregard public input, needlessly destroy our land and erode democracy. Plan B represents the opposite of what Islanders sacrificed their lives for - and that's why Plan B is a problem for all of us. To allow this to happen brings shame on us all.

  • disgusted
    August 23, 2012 - 07:52

    It absolutely blows my mind that our incompetent government is going to boot people out of their houses and off their land to proceed with a project that the majority of Islanders are opposed to. Do they even read to newspaper? There are so many other issues that need to be addressed on this island and require our investment of tax dollars. Charlottetown is running out of water, our rivers are dying, ground water is contaminated, the fisheries are flopping and we are basically bankrupt as a province. I'm sick to death of "tightening my belt" while the fatcats and their buddies keep gaining weight at our expense. Just who are they working for?

  • corrupt
    August 23, 2012 - 07:20

    Corruption at its best.

  • Andy Adams
    Andy Adams
    August 23, 2012 - 07:03

    Close down "Island Waste-of-money And You, the Tax-Payer, Must-Bring-Your- Garbage-Electronics-To-Us" and use the money from that source to pay for the properties and road construction. The Island Government expropriated our money to create the worst mess in waste disposal in North America and now they will expropriate the Islander's right to own land, for the machinations of those party-favourite-few. How far can Islanders be pushed I wonder?

  • David
    August 23, 2012 - 06:51

    This is thug action at work...never mind if you actually DON'T want to sell, we are just going to take your land from you. The most basic personal freedom and property rights are being sold out in favour of a highway. Ghiz, you should be ashamed of yourself.

  • ShameOnGov
    August 23, 2012 - 06:38

    Nobody is going to forget this one. Now the liberals can say goodbye forever. One would think they should have learned when Islanders never forgot the 7% cut in wages. They have even less support for this ridiculous plan and it will never be forgotten by Islanders. They seem to be under the impression that it's their money they're spending.

  • Andy Dibling
    August 23, 2012 - 06:10

    So, what was wrong with flashing warning signs and those "your speed" radar signs.....oh yeah...common sense. There are better places to spend that money.

  • Upperdunker
    August 23, 2012 - 05:55

    Good question, Al Fredo! Where is Gail Shea and the Feds? They could stop this fiasco based on all the questionable procedures of this crooked government.

  • Stewart
    August 23, 2012 - 03:33

    FINALLY the end is near and this project will start and the tin foil hat brigade will go find something else to compalin about. I have never in all my life seen so much follishness and misinformation be given by people who know basically nothing about traffic or highway designs. PEI is well known as the land of complainers but now it can be known as the land of armchair expert highway designers who actually are experts in nothing. The sooner this project starts and finishes and people are driving on the new highway wondering what all the silliness was about the better. The vast majority of Islanders support this project and the opposers couldn''t even hold a plebscite that was not rigged. Imagine people being able to vote twice and yet they called the results accurate. This is the kind of people who are oppsoed to this project.

    • Almost right Stewart
      August 23, 2012 - 19:17

      Stewart, How close we are to agreeing. I too hope the end is near, but not for the project, but for this government - the one for whom I so foolishly voted. And by the way, if you want to personally shell out the 10 million plus dollars - go for it big guy.

  • David R Macleod
    August 23, 2012 - 02:59

    This is for the pei goverment the end is near' you have no right pushing the people out of there home as they haved lived there for years ;so your going to try to be the big dog 'not so you and all the libs thing you no how it;s done , well if your father was living what would your father do he would say no to that' if you only new he had said that our island should not be touched its one of a kind' ther's no place like prince edward island 'so i see how it is our tax dollar gones to friends like mla friends and so on 'you guys must not like our tax dollar giving you guys a very good living 'well if this go's through your all done bening our premier and this go.s for all of the lib's David R Macleod

  • Mitch
    August 23, 2012 - 00:08

    Where are our precious Island Senators at on this mess??? Gail Shea needs to step in here and say something for sure, but where is Mike Duffy at?? How about Catherine Callbeck?? How come the Ghiz Liberals are able to do all these things that are ruining our great little province and that are largely opposed by Islanders and get away with it??? The People who pay the taxes need to have the final approval of every major decision these days because it is very very clear that the Ghiz Liberals have no idea what they are doing. Spending money we don't have, changing roads that don't need to change, bringing in HST to make it even harder for people to make ends meet, neglecting healthcare, loaning money to Tim Banks that he doesn't need for a building he can renovate on his own dime, laying people off from their jobs, building a new building for politicians to are we supposed to pay for all this stuff when we don't have a cent for any of it??? The Liberals can't be allowed to do all this garbage against the word of the tax payers!! They aren't taking our opinion into consideration and our opinion is the only one that should matter!!! The Ghiz Liberals have lied and cheated too much lately...its time they were stopped!!

  • bye the way
    August 22, 2012 - 23:19

    Forget the Environment.....When is the Financial Carnage going to end? Ghiz and his safety Twerps should go straighten out those damn Rocky Mountain roads..

  • al fredd
    August 22, 2012 - 22:21


  • Notproudtobeanuslandertoday
    August 22, 2012 - 21:30

    So very wrong.