UPDATE: Plan B gets green light

Teresa Wright
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Islanders opposed to the Churchill highway realignment known as Plan B are vowing to continue their fight to stop the project.

Environment Minister Janice Sherry, together with the federal government, gave the green light to the so-called Plan B project Monday afternoon. This was the last step in the approvals process, which means government can now move ahead with construction.

But a group of concerned citizens that has been very vocal in opposition to the project, is now saying it plans to get a court injunction to stop Plan B.

“The legal case, the court injunction, will be prepared as soon as possible,” said Tony Reddin, a spokesperson for the ‘Stop Plan B’ group.

“I just hope they put release clauses into (contracts) that don’t penalize (the province) too much when this gets reversed.”

Reddin said there are also people willing to physically block construction, should legal proceedings fail.

“There are a lot of people who are intending to do whatever they can to stop this by holding whatever sort of blockade it takes, and that’s not surprising given the bull-headedness of the officials involved,” Reddin said.

Reddin and many others have been raising concerns about the proposed highway realignment and potential harm to waterways, trees and wildlife in the area.

But Sherry said Monday she is satisfied the project can be carried out without major environmental damage to the area.

“After the length of time and the amount of work that has gone into this process, I feel very comfortable with my final decision,” Sherry told reporters Monday.

“When I went through the process with my staff page by page and line by line, the issue, of course, was the environmental impact and I feel confident today with all of the mitigations that have been put in place.”’

The project proposes to realign a section of the Trans Canada Highway in Churchill to make hills less steep and curves less sharp.

It had been awaiting approval from Sherry on the environmental impact assessment, performed in the spring by Stantec Consulting Ltd., which she approved Monday with a few amendments.

One of these requires the Department of Transportation to fund a dedicated employee to oversee all environmental aspects of the project on a full-time basis until it is completed.

Transportation also must develop and implement long-term protection plans for five parcels of land identified by the department as environmentally sensitive. These parcels contain much of the hemlock and old growth trees environment protection groups have been concerned about. Transportation officials will be asking for input from other government departments as well as non-governmental organizations on how best to preserve these areas.

Sherry said she also requested extra precautions be put in place to ensure sediment runoff into a nearby stream is not an issue in the future. That’s why she is requiring the project’s environmental protection plan to include erosion control measures designed to withstand a one-in-25-year rainfall event.

This was added to the plan later to address concerns raised by the public in many of the 300 pieces of correspondence submitted on Plan B.

“It’s a very sad day in Prince Edward Island with regards to democracy,” Opposition Leader Olive Crane

“It was obvious from the public input we received that was one of the most important areas to them,” Sherry said.

If any problems are identified during the construction process, work will be halted immediately, she added.

“You have to move forward with a positive nature in a project of this size and we’re very optimistic that we’ve done the due diligence to make sure these issues are going to be well watched, well protected, well run,” Sherry said.

“I’m moving forward feeling very good about it.”

Opposition Leader Olive Crane says she is disappointed government plans to go ahead with this realignment.

“It’s a very sad day in Prince Edward Island with regards to democracy,” Crane said.

She has been calling for the province to scrap the project.

“They never did look at alternatives to this project, they’re spending money that we do not have and the list goes on and on,” she said.

“The big issue of spending dollars we do not have will haunt Robert Ghiz and his government until the election of 2015.”

The provincial and federal governments are sharing the costs of the $16-million construction, with P.E.I. adding another $4 million to buy 23 properties in the area.

No timelines have yet been set for when work on the highway realignment will begin.

 

 

PLAN B QUICK FACTS

Environment Minister Janice Sherry released a list of conditions that must be met by the Department of Transportation and Infrastructure Renewal (TIR) for Plan B to go ahead. Here are some of those conditions:

-      TIR must construct the project as documented in the environmental assessment, including the minister’s amendments and conditions.

-      TIR must authorize funding to the environment department for a full-time employee to oversee environmental aspects of the project

-      Within 12 months, TIR must develop a long-term protection plan for sensitive parcels of land in this area which have been identified by the department

-      TIR must comply with the revised environmental protection plan, which includes erosion control measures designed to withstand a one-in-25-year rain event

-      If sediment from construction enters a watercourse, TIR must cease working immediately and implement diversion measures

-      TIR must report all contaminant spills to the department and complete any necessary clean-up

-      TIR must obtain proper permits for work conducted within 15 metres of a waterway

 

Organizations: Trans Canada Highway, Stantec Consulting, Department of Transportation

Geographic location: Churchill

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Recent comments

  • voter
    October 03, 2012 - 06:48

    w. wilkins -- your definition of " necessity " is very , very shallow -- Over the years, politicians have used paving a road, driveway or some other area to garner votes, to pay off supporters, to line their own pockets,to gather federal money ,to shift social benefits from province to the EI program, to heed the men with the money and win their much needed continues support , to quieten pothole complaints etc,. etc Better open your mind to reality on this one !!!!to whom is this a necessity and for what reasons !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! you seem to think safety is the only reason for highway construction !!!How shallow of you !!

  • W. Wilkins - Disillusioned Liberal.
    October 02, 2012 - 15:58

    Most of the objections about Plan B are grounded on the question of alternatives. As in all matters of this nature, until the issue of necessity has been settled almost all further discussion is moot. That said, regardless of the unresolved fundamental question, the project lunges forward. While there is no reasonable debate about the need for that small section of the Trans Canada Highway to be altered, it's the degree of the intervention that remains a serious question. By way of metaphor, of course one can attend to an ulcer via radical gastronomic surgery. In doing so, many tax dollars would be paid to doctors, nurses and medical support staff. And, if nothing went wrong during the procedure, the end result may well be a cure. But the prior question is always: Is surgery necessary? Leaping over the question of necessity to matters of how the surgery may be mitigated would be more than absurd. It would be considered unethical, perhaps criminal and certainly subject to litigation. This would be so even if the tax payer had to pay only fifty cents on the dollar to cover the cost of the operation.

    • well said
      October 02, 2012 - 21:14

      Thank you, W. Wilkins - very eloquently argued - the whole concept is so fundamentally flawed it should never have even come out of the back room.

  • David
    October 02, 2012 - 10:47

    Well the 200(at the most) Tree Huggers can now go find some other cause to be opposed to and they have lost yet another protest. Maybe the Green Party can offer some parenthood courses to it's future leaders now that it should have some free time. I wonder what the next cause will be that will taken up by these 200 tree huggers maybe they will be opposed to cars or commerce in general.

  • mike
    October 02, 2012 - 10:01

    the government knew full well plan A would fail. and moved to plan B, How many people in government bought land where plan B is going through. I think we should have a list off all sales in that area over the last few years and an investigation into the relationship of those people to people in the government. and people are saying 200 people are opposed to plan B I know that is not right. I see signs everywhere. I myself am opposed to it. mainly due to the fact that the province is broke and in 2 billion in debt. we should be saving every penny we can to pay down our debt. not doing more projects. and the fact that there are so many people are opposed and were told to leave PEI by government officials if we don't like it.

    • johnny come lately
      October 03, 2012 - 10:21

      That young Gass fellow in New Haven who owned the orchard across from the family store must have made a mint. So did that Miller fellow who owned Fairyland. Wonder how many others are coming out of the woodwork?

  • rachel
    October 02, 2012 - 09:58

    I'm pretty excited about this actually........there will be lots of work for workers out there needing it and it will make a better highway...........however when they re-did the other highway there was no big fuss about it?!?!?!?!

    • to rachel
      October 02, 2012 - 21:08

      Rachel - where have you been all these months? We don't need a whole new highway through a beautiful area, we need to give people work fixing up all the other terrible roads on the Island. We don't have the money for a ridiculous project like this. When they did the other highway they didn't forcibly buy property from people.

  • voter
    October 02, 2012 - 09:47

    please join in "all change is good !!!" "all change is good!!"" "all change is good!! repeat ! repeat !! REPEAT !!! TIME TO GET INTO THE TWENTY FIRST JUST LIKE WE DID WITH THE HOLMAN GRAND HOTEL --ETC ETC ETC - Just be quiet and obey the money -- it tells you what to do and there is nothing you can do about it ---that's how ghiz and his puppet gallery feel and i am proud to say "I DID NOT VOTE FOR GHIZ """but i wonder who did !!!!!

  • Living the dream
    October 02, 2012 - 09:27

    It is hard to beleive anything coming from this Government, so many announcements on changes only to flip flop,dialysis, child dental care ect,the plead poor and lay off 1000 people,say we can't afford this or that, seems anything to do with children or the elderly or sick they cannot afford but they have no problem finding the money for dirt and ashphalt, no problem for new schools in areas where the premiers kid will go to school but no schools for the the rest of the Island just open the windows to let the radon gas out or so a few days missed because of mould no big deal, it is funny all the flip flop announcements come before anotherannouncement they know the people won''t like.The Highway may need to be fixed but not at this time anyone else believe it will come in on or under budget,the feds will not kick in anything for cost overruns so at days end those 50 cent dollers will cost a lot more, I can see a final price tag of 30 million or more.

  • Donnie
    October 02, 2012 - 08:52

    I wonder if they budgeted for security to watch the heavy equipment on evenings and week-ends? I've had first hand experience with construction companies that are nervous about leaving their equipment unguarded on "hot topic" projects....will the taxpayers be picking up the bill on that one too?

  • judy alvorson
    October 02, 2012 - 08:42

    TO JOE MACDONALD---- now the true colors comes out, - people from away should not have a say, - I hope all the immigrants the government is out there searching for get the drift, -- all you want is their money and brains, while the 'natives' have sole ownership of making the stupid decisions. Tread carefully, Joe, your beloved Premier is only a couple of generations from being "from away". Anyway, I will remember top conseal my origin next time I see you, - before I get to heel out of here, ---

  • Fin
    October 02, 2012 - 08:35

    "Sherry said Monday she is satisfied the project can be carried out without major environmental damage to the area." These are the words of the same person who "wasn't worried" about watersheds having 0 water this summer...some environment minister indeed.

  • sick of it
    October 02, 2012 - 08:29

    mr yeo. weres the money comeing from for the bridges? out of next years capital budget right! wonder how meany tax payers no that.so the rest of roads will be put on hold right. not only QUB has corruption in construction . maybe we should look in our own back yards. and whats so wrong with moveing the CBC tower ? o ya that belongs to the fedral govt.

  • JAMAC
    October 02, 2012 - 07:57

    The kids are happy they will see the big smoke billowing in those big diesel machines as they push and shove that big red dirt and move mountains as the big highway forms in the hills of New Haven....when will the conductor call the symphony to order....

  • JUSTA?
    October 02, 2012 - 07:54

    Just wondering... Some of the comments on this story are very, very nasty. Yes, we have free speech but a lot of these comments are bordering on slander. Doesn't sound like "The Gentle Island" to me. By the way reading the above article, it is stated that the Government did not look at any alternatives. When I went to school, "B" came after "A".

  • shirley
    October 02, 2012 - 07:42

    This is so wrong I cannot believe what I am reading that this highway is unsafe. Our gov. needs to get their ass's of airplanes and drive accross Canada and see the real dangerous highways .I have driven this highway in all weather and if you drive safely there is no problems but speeding and drunk drivers will not make a safe highway for us to drive no matter how much they spend. ROADS DO NOT KILL IT IS THE DRIVERS WHO DRIVE THE HIGHWAYS AND DO NOT FOLLOW THE LAW that causes accidents and sometimes death.Change the peoples way of thinking not the highway because it will not matter how much they spend to change this highway if these type of drivers are still driving drunk or without care to the speed limit . A complete waste of our taxpayers money so enjoy driving it Janice Sherry because when we drive it we will all certainly remember you and your cronies who wasted our tax money for something that will no safer for those who know how to drive . And I am SO SICK of looking at the pictures of this Gov. after they get their way with their big pie eating smiles on like they have done something wonderful for us islanders they should be ashamed even to have their pictures taken.

  • Joe McDonald
    October 02, 2012 - 07:25

    Let's hope that our Government pulls the trigger and gets this approved project going asap so we can move on with positive progress on PEI which sure beats listening to a bunch of come from aways telling us what they think is right.

    • joe blow
      October 02, 2012 - 07:52

      Keep smoking that good stuff man. You sound like a real good ol' boy winner.

    • Kmac
      October 02, 2012 - 09:12

      Actually there is a huge group of born and raised islanders who are in support of trashing this project including myself!

    • not you again
      October 02, 2012 - 10:52

      Folks, there's only one person "in favour" of Plan B on here - he posts as "we're so spineless", etc - and you can tell it's him because he's always on about 140,000 not against Plan B (what about the fact that nearly half of that number are kids who didn't have any kind say in the matter, yet will have to pay for it down the road?) and "only 200 against". I suspect even he really isn't that much in favour, he just wants to upset us all - he's a troll.

    • Jmc
      October 02, 2012 - 11:19

      Hey Joe MacDonald, I understand that you aren't interested in what people "from away" think. I assume that means you also don't want their money?

  • Buzzy
    October 02, 2012 - 06:46

    Why should anyone be surprised at the decision? We should know by now that ministers and back benchers are all puppets for the premier. It is no secret that Janice Sherry and most of her cabinet colleagues do NOT have the credentials to do the work they are paid to do. I am still astonished that she is the attorney general of this province. Does she have the education and experience to carry out this portfolio. I suspect not. Most of our MLAs were back room supporters or as is common on the Island their parents and grand parents were as well and that is what gets them elected. I am sure she does her best but just like all the other ministers she only does what she is told..........Like all the legislature members she had the right connections to run and she was just at the right place at the right time. Education or experience do not matter much . You just have to know the right people here on PEI.

  • debted indebtor
    October 02, 2012 - 04:58

    Our province needs to stop spending on unnecessary projects. That highway as currently aligned was fine for 50 years and, given PEI's projected population decline, will be fine for another 100 years and more. This is a patronage project, pure and simple. And to spend another $20 million of our money to reward Ghiz's friends is criminal.

  • PEI boy
    October 02, 2012 - 03:20

    The mindless incompetence of these Liberals has reached a new high with the green light to Plan B. Janice Sherry should be ashamed to call herself Environment Minister; without a cogent argument in favor of the highway she is sanctioning an environmental disaster and the destruction of what the Ancient Greeks would have called a sacred grove. Why do we let such small minded people waste OUR TAX DOLLARS?

  • Joe Blow
    October 02, 2012 - 00:58

    The main reason I oppose this whole Plan B project is the simple fact that PEI cannot afford to be spending money on a project of this nature!! There are not enough problems with that stretch of road to warrant over 20 million dollars in changes at a time our province has a 78 million deficit and a 2 billion dollar debt. YES...there have been accidents on that highway over the last 20 years but how many accidents were the actual fault of the road and not the fault of an errant driver, speeding above the speed limit or driving wrecklessly or even drunk? YES...there needs to be SOME work done to the current highway to make things a little safer, smoother and wider in some areas but I have a hard time believing that re-routing this stretch of road is the ONLY way to make the highway so-called SAFER. We cannot afford to spend more money that we don't have for a project that isn't completely needed. What would be wrong with spending 1/3 or half the amount of money to fix some of the more difficult areas on the current highway? I'm sure there are ways to fix the current highway without spending huge amounts of money and still eliminate some of the problem areas of the current highway, not destroy some delicate environmental areas for no reason and come to a plan that everybody can support. Instead of forcing a dumb idea down the taxpayers throats without listening to their concerns and ideas first and wasting a lot of money, try listening to the people that pay taxes on this island! We all understand that money has to be spent sometimes....but being a little more careful with taxpayers money and still improving this highway can be done. I just feel that this is an unnecessary project for these current fiscal times and that the government should know better than to waste so much more money when we simply don't have the money to spend in the first place!!

    • Joe Blow's full of hot air
      October 02, 2012 - 06:57

      This is federal infrastructure money, which was plentiful a few years ago in the roundabout era but is slowly depleting.. Why not take advantage of it? Honestly, a mainlander friend of mine joked the other day about there being a demographic on PEI who just want things to stay the way they are... starting back in the 40s and 50s. I laughed, but he had a point! Get out from that rock you're living under! Things will, and need to, move forward.

    • joe blow's full of hot air??
      October 02, 2012 - 10:17

      It's less than half that will come from the feds and still originated from us - the taxpayers of Canada! I

  • Gary Busey JR
    October 01, 2012 - 23:59

    None of you guys could make these big decisions so are stuck to the guardian comments to try and get a couple of extra people to agree with you. Pay your taxes and let the government do their effin job. you can vote them out next election if you want.

    • Justin
      October 02, 2012 - 02:32

      Excellent comment Garey Busey Jr. You hit the nail on the head. The Government is elected to a do job and if the people oppsoed to Plan B don't like it then they can vote against in the next election. All the posting and name calling on The Guardian website won't make any difference. If any of them still remember this in 3 years then go vote against the Government because of it.

  • WERESOSPINELESS
    October 01, 2012 - 22:55

    Such irrational paranoia and anger. Listen to yourselves. A simple decision to go ahead with a plan the great majority of islanders want to improve a section of highway, and the claws come out: Corruption! Lies! Bullies! Cronyism! What was once a valiant effort by a small crowd of concerned but outnumbered citizens has become the crux of a giant struggle of David vs Goliath. The ridiculous accusations leveled against this government sure do come out of the woodwork when idealistic islanders' pride is under fire. For those with their megaphones turned up to 11: We're all very impressed with the disillusioned voter routine, but consider for a moment that it's not a big conspiracy, the government was actually transparent when dealing with tenders, that the numbers opposing the plan weren't actually as great as even a fraction of those who weren't. Imagine for a second that everything that happened was legal and fair - and that as involved and relevant as it makes you feel to sportively throw words like 'corruption' around, you might have no idea what you're talking about? When some protesters don't get their way, they can be likened to a screaming child in a department store - passionately irrational. Step aside, let the highway go in, and like they say, the world will continue to spin with pretty little PEI nestled gently in Canada's embrace, as it has been for thousands of years. With all due respect, grow up and stop whining.

  • David
    October 01, 2012 - 22:24

    Just when does 200 people represent the Majority of all people living in PEI. Does the Green Party believe that 200 who never been elected to anything should be telling 140,000 people that they represent the majority. In what world does 200 people represent the majority of 140,000. Just because these 200 tree huggers writes letters over and over and post on all the websites the simple fact they are still only 200 people or less. It is pretty aggrogant for the 200 people to believe they represent the majority of the 140,00 people. It is now over and common sense has prevailed and the Government has shown they believe in the majoirty not in 200 people who don't even understand basic math when figuring out the majority.

    • tired of this
      October 01, 2012 - 23:08

      There are more than 200 people opposed to Plan B. 140,000 people may live on PEI but there are only about 70,000 voters (the rest are kids or ineligible), Please stop calling us tree huggers, we're not. If you're going to keep writing insulting comments, please learn how to spell "arrogant" correctly. A plebiscite would have shown how many people really oppose or support this project. Bye the way, I think you're "We're so spineless" doing your troll posting again, or one of his/her buddies. Plan B is a strabger to common sense.

    • troll in the house
      October 01, 2012 - 23:21

      Have just realized that all these postings from "We're so spineless", "Dave", et al all mention 140,000 people for Plan B and only 40 or 200 or whatever against, along with a load of gloating, irritating, insulting nonsense. Get your math right and go away - and stop posting as Rick J MacDonald on the Plan B Atlantic Gateway Highway Facebook page as well.

    • go away
      October 01, 2012 - 23:46

      Dave, David, Rick J MacDonald or "We're so spineless", you''re the same person - a troll - just go away and get your facts right before you start gloating and insulting people who freally care about this Island and its future

  • my comment is
    October 01, 2012 - 22:00

    surprise

  • Bill Kays
    October 01, 2012 - 21:20

    The only issue here is how do you stop an out of control government that is not willing to do the will of the people? How can we legally get rid of the bums now? The same government that stated it was against bullying is itself the monster of bullies.

  • Thoreau
    October 01, 2012 - 21:14

    They paved paradise and put up a parking lot...

  • Taxpayers concerns
    October 01, 2012 - 21:06

    Some people blame tree huggers and so on for those being the ones who oppose this project. The environment is vital concern considering the mistakes and damages we constantly see on the island. But there are other concerns for voters outside the concern of the environmental issues; such as: 1. It is a waste of money, ghiz is in deficit spending, money going to patronage and successful bids to brother of minister for example. 2. It was done undemocratically. 3. A typical example of the gov't not listening to the people 4. Putting through projects for money for friends and those close to gov't 5. an unfair and undemocratic process where the gov't constantly lied- it was a done deal before the assessments were completed It has to do with damages to the environment (treehugars as some refer to people who value the need of the enviroment), and many more issues. Some of which have been listed above. There was no victory by this patronage project to be pushed through to help the rich get richer and the poor and middle class will be left to deal with the messes of such a corrupt government.

  • Bonshaw Resident
    October 01, 2012 - 21:02

    How can reasonable people assert that a highway engineered in 1952 is wonderful and needs to be saved? Would you like your kids going to school in one that was built and engineered in 1952? Perhaps we should turn our back on all advances in science, engineering and technology relive the great post-war days.

    • not a bonshaw resident
      October 01, 2012 - 22:56

      Bonshaw resident? Really? Very few of all the roads in PEI have been upgraded since they were first built, so yes, my kids do go to school along a road that was built in the 50's, like many other kids do. And anyway, it's only 6.2km that's getting done, so aren't you going to get all upset about the remainder of the road that your kids travel on?? The government in all its wisdom hasn't given you a time frame or a plan for the rest of the TCH, has it??

  • alana
    October 01, 2012 - 21:01

    WERESOSPINELESS should consider that the tender process would be looked at the same way the whole project was developed, --- in the shadows--- there has not been one single straight forward part of this excercise, - half truths and whole lies. So what ever would let the masses think that the tender process would be anything but more of the same. --- Friends of the party have bought up land in anticipation of this project, leeks? no, never. Stop trying to white wash this debacle , it is an out and out abomination, - don't be a sucker

  • Heather
    October 01, 2012 - 20:59

    Congrats to all of you who voted for Ghiz. Your complete lack of common sense is now readily apparent.

  • Upset Island Taxpayer
    October 01, 2012 - 20:54

    Janice Sherry has spoken on this Plan B, NOW, lets not forget she is the Attorney General of this Privince, she should shift her focus to the scandal in Summerside, where we have Lawyers and Chartered Accountants, bound by Ethics,involved in a massive loss of $2 million dollars over a failed Concert Fiasco. Many glaring questions lurking here, again taxpayers are getting shafted. Minister Sherry and the Auditor General should have looked into this corruption long ago. And please give us the latest update on the PNP scandal including when we can expect Justice Cheveries decision on the names being release for the ones who got PNP units.

  • john baseley
    October 01, 2012 - 20:50

    I can tell you, SPINELESS, OR WHATEVER YOU CALL YOURSELF, the conspiracy theme is a natural reaction to a project that is totally off the wall, - where no proper rational explanations has been offered, but only concocted statements from officials whose jobs are on the line if they don't comply, or Ghiz appointed officials (Coroner). The Premier has never held a public meeting and explained why it is imparative that this particular stretch be chosen over all the others. Then we learn that party supporters stand sell their land (the whole amusement park, $ 600.000, when only a sliver is needed) and shale pits are approved with various degrees of accuracy, I could go on---. To top it off, the Minister at the beginning of the whole thing states publicly, that this is a DONE DEAL, ---- so much for the environmental assessment validity. ---- Now you tell me, that we should not be suspicions of this whole rotten mess, and I will tell you that what you are getting paid for supporting this, is not enough, because your reputation is at stake, and you are coming off as a fool. . Greetings and all the best.

  • billy
    October 01, 2012 - 20:36

    "NOT WILLING TO DO THE WILL OF THE PEOPLE" So 250 people is the WILL of the people...............hahahah............please STOP it!............stop it!! my sides are KILLING me.......... Lets get this ship back on course here people! Just because the neocons are not in power,everything that we do is wrong!!!!!!! Well I for one speak for the majority of islanders by saying;Well done Janice!! Well done!!!Sort of like the conservative's whom have an extinct bird(a dodo) for a leader whom would not know a spine if it came up behind her! Keep her in power boys as no matter WHAT we do,WE ARE IN POWER NEXT ELECTION AGAIN!!!

    • to billy
      October 01, 2012 - 22:47

      I think you must be that "We're so spineless" troll again posting under a different name because you are fixated on the idea of only 250 people being against Plan B - 4000 people signed a petition against it in Spring and many, many more are now against it, now that they've seen the huge deception unfold.

    • Timy
      October 02, 2012 - 06:55

      Timmy timmy timmy

  • nina bryll
    October 01, 2012 - 20:31

    Oh big whoop, - there are smiles all around, - we just rubberstamped a plan to ruin the most beautiful part of the Island, - and are forcing people into higher taxes on generations to come---is that what inspires Sherry's big smile?

  • louis macnamera
    October 01, 2012 - 20:22

    If someone is sick, they seek help. If someone see somebody is sick and not seeking help, they help that person to get help. Somebody is sick here and should get help. This is not rational.

  • S.A.M
    October 01, 2012 - 20:20

    Finally! Get it over with already! There are both pro's and con's to this, but new has been approved, get over it, and in my mind if your stupid enough to stand in front of a bulldozer you deserve to get run over! The operator's of the equipment to be used out their are just going to be doing their job, I very much doubt they go to your work and stand in your way! If you have a problem with the approval continue it in the courts, not in the workplace of others!

  • bob maceven
    October 01, 2012 - 20:17

    What can you say? ------ Mr. Ghiz has shown his disregard for the people that elected him. Not once did he attempt to hear an other side to this government proposal. He went into hiding, travelled all over the place to make us impressed. We have here a leader that has shown he is not fit for the job. Please resign Mr. Ghiz, don't let this diaster of a road be your legacy, your children deserve better, show yourself to be a man and stop this attack on our beautiful lsland.

  • Miss Passing Lane
    October 01, 2012 - 20:12

    I support Plan B. It's time we live in the present and stop yearning for pre-industrial PEI!

    • futurist
      October 02, 2012 - 09:34

      Instead of trying to jump on board the waning industrial revolution, maybe we should be thinking about jumping on board with the post-industrial, post-petroleum future. We could be innovators, but instead we continue to be band-wagon jumping federal money chasing laggards.

  • Opinion by a taxpayer
    October 01, 2012 - 20:09

    “You have to move forward with a positive nature in a project of this size and we’re very optimistic that we’ve done the due diligence to make sure these issues are going to be well watched, well protected, well run,” Sherry said. “I’m moving forward feeling very good about it.” Will you feel good about being unemployed after the next election, I wonder so have to ask.

  • WERESOSPINELESS
    October 01, 2012 - 19:57

    Incredible. Everyone involved has a huge conspiracy theory. Apparently Ghiz is going to give tenders to friends only, have millions in kickbacks, etc, etc? No, it couldn't possibly be that a legitimate, legal, democratic, viable decision was made, it has to be a huge, corrupt kick to the collective islander's face, just because you took to the streets and ended up not being the almighty social revolutionaries you seem to identify with. Rosa Parks and MLK were even mentioned in the same breath as the 250 who oppose Plan B, and I'm trying not to laugh, truly. Save your indignation for another day and accept your loss with some dignity. Screaming through a bullhorn does not make you right, nor does it make you the majority. Put your egos away and stop sulking.

    • hammike
      October 01, 2012 - 20:21

      I was not comparing the issues, I was simply giving you examples of civil disobedience which you seemed to think was egotistical or arrogant, perhaps even self-righteous. Also it seems I was not the only one that took issue with your post.

    • intobed
      October 01, 2012 - 21:02

      Spineless, you really should read and follow more news. I am sure the relationships between the construction industry and governments everywhere is sweet and innocent, just like in Quebec.

    • intobed
      October 01, 2012 - 22:09

      Islander, that is exactly what both the federal government and the PEI provincial government are trying to do - force as many Islanders to go to Alberta and work in the oil patch for Harper's friends, the oil corporations. Harper hates the Maritimes, and PEI in particular. Ghiz has given up on PEI, and is just out to financially reward as many of his friends / supporters as his government can. I think Ghiz has secretly worked out some sort of deal with the Feds, in return for selling PEI down the road.

    • intobed
      October 01, 2012 - 22:20

      The Guardian - my post that you put here was posted in the article "Ottawa won’t change EI program, but acknowledges not all will be better off" as a response to a poster called "bitter islander". How it got here was not my fault. Please put my post where it belongs.

  • al fredd
    October 01, 2012 - 19:54

    Wipe the smile off your face Ms. Sherry, - do you not realize that you have just insulted all the people that believe in democracy and decency from an elected member. We all know you have no clue here and just rubber stamped as per the Premier's demand. We all know this is going to be a total waste of money and will come in so much over cost that we will be borrowing more on our grandchildrens' future. Ms. Sherry you should show some respect and humility, you know the majority of Islanders suspect the motives for this project and they are disgraced by the bullying that is taking place here. As some sees this as a battle of two sides, I suggest this is a loss for all sides, - for our economy and for our environment, - for all fairminded people in this province. We are being disrepected by our government, - but worse, they seem to enjoy doing just that, ---just see the smile---.

  • Not a tree hugger
    October 01, 2012 - 19:53

    Talk about out of touch Minister! Posing for that picture is either complete arrogance or complete stupidity. The PEI Leberal party rocks!

  • WERESOSPINELESS
    October 01, 2012 - 19:49

    HAMMIKE, did you just compare the opposition to a highway improvement project to Rosa Parks and MLK? I certainly hope the delusions don't run this deep in the majority of the protesters. When some of you drink the Kool-Aid, you really drink every drop.

    • youre so spineless
      October 01, 2012 - 22:34

      We're so spineless - I'm getting really weary of your posturing and childlike derogatory comments towards us. I suspect you may be a troll.

  • smile at the camera now dumbo
    October 01, 2012 - 19:47

    The woman in the picture is so proud of herself. I thought Carolyn Bertram was a real life version of Barbie goes to Washington but this picture of Sherry; who always seems a loud mouthed blowhard, the picture is just to much for words. thanks eh

  • alwin gallant
    October 01, 2012 - 19:39

    WEARESOSPINELESS seems to have great insight, --- so tell me this, why did we not have a vote on this project, then we could really see how many people wanted this highway, --- but Ghiz was too chicken, relying on people like yourself to tow the line, -- what is your gain there, Mister? I am no trree hugger, I am a frugal taxpayer who hates to see my hardearned money thrown to the wolves (a.k. greedy friends of the party), who may then find themselves in a position to reward Ghiz with a million dollar retirement gift. Funny that no matter who I ttalk to from all walks of life, they are against this project, however many are resigned to being bamboozelled by this government and reserving their displeasure for the next election. ---

  • Island Boy
    October 01, 2012 - 19:37

    weresospineless: Your comment must be the most egostic, "smarmy" (to use and Island expression) I have ever read. Your obvious arrogance is only out done by the Government's self centered acceptance of the least "thought out" route and engineer could present. There are other, more viable routes that could be developed without the cost involved in the route chosen. Now that cost is to be escalated by the cost of losing the next election due to a politician who "has the name but not the game". YOU, sir or madame, are the most ungracious, self back patting commentator. Yes, The Island "people" lost and so, eventually, will the Island Government but, ultimately, they will win.

  • kalvin klein
    October 01, 2012 - 19:28

    To add insult to injury, she stands there with the map and a great big smile on her face.--- Does she not realize that people against this project do not think this is funny. - There is an old saying, - what goes around comes around. - In spite of our forced obligation to pay this woman and the rest of the sheep their pension till they kick the bucket, - we can scratch them from our memory as non entities, - they have done us harm in so many ways, - they should and will be shunned by right thinking people. They are a disgrace to their elected office, for ever a blight on our deomocracy.

    • Snow White
      October 02, 2012 - 00:28

      My thoughts exactly!

  • Mary
    October 01, 2012 - 19:24

    How interesting when we were all worried about dental care for children on this Island and this gets passed!

  • sherry was a good puppet at public accounts
    October 01, 2012 - 19:18

    All the Ghiz team are Puppets under the direction of the ever brilliant Percy Downer............Sherry showed her stuff and her big mouth at Public Accounts to shut down every question that people wanted answered...............The whole Liberal team we must publicly shame until one finally breaks and then they will all scramble.

  • Another
    October 01, 2012 - 19:18

    Another 12 million + for our childern & grandchildern to pay off . We ought to be proud of ourselves ! As far as not electing these people again , how many of them care & will not get a fat pension or goverment plumb . Maybe getting a little tougher as Liberal's Goverments are becoming a thing of the past in Canada . We'll catch up someday with common sense . Am I disappointed , yes , waste & foolishness does this to me .

  • WERESOSPINELESS
    October 01, 2012 - 19:14

    Piet, you will read the opposite. I applaud the efforts of those who protested, but you made my point for me - they protest what THEY see is an injustice. It just so happens that the rest of the province doesn't see it that way. For many, I'm sure their hearts were in the right place, and we can't take that away from them. Consider the actual numbers of those who officially opposed Plan B. You could easily count that many who still think women shouldn't vote. The passion was there - the numbers were not. That's how it works, like it or not.

    • Piet Hein
      October 01, 2012 - 19:37

      WERESOSPINLESS, so you are saying unless you see something as an injustice it is not and those who disagree with you should pack their bags and go home? Am I correct to assume that is what you mean because if that is your intent then many protests and protest movements down through history would have failed if they had listened to that advice. Unless of course that is what you desire - a docile populace that takes government at its word and not dare protest any perceived wrongs. All of your condescension notwithstanding, how can you claim the rest of the Island, I believe in an earlier post you said the opinion of 99 per cent, was in favour of the highway. I have been following the story closely and nowhere have I seen that number from a credible source. Just because other Islanders are not protesting in the streets does not mean they are in favour of the project. Personally, I have not been to meetings nor protests, but I am surely against the road. Silence does not necessarily mean agreement.

    • ELECTRICALENGINEER
      October 01, 2012 - 20:58

      PIET HEIN - Is there anything that you are not against? You say you have not been to meetings nor took part in demonstrations,yet you are still against it. You are like a lot of people who shoot off their mouth at Timmy's and then go home smugly.If you truly cared, you should have at least attended a meeting.Everyone of your posts have a negative connotation.

  • Melissa
    October 01, 2012 - 19:06

    Is anyone surprised? This is about safety? Gimme me a break. I thought this government was simply a little greedy before however now I see they are simply better than us. They must be better than us 40 million dollar shortfall in their pension plans, but not to worry they are going to pay it over four years. Cutbacks to everything. 200 employes from DOT told weeks before there jobs started that sorry no money for ya. the PNP taste still in our mouths. Remember the players PEI. Not just the Liars. 20 million dollars to straiten some curves. SHAME on all of you.

  • Jeff
    October 01, 2012 - 18:59

    It doesn't matter who is in office, who opposed it or who was for it. "Plan B" was bound to happen at some point. It's about time someone did something with that highway. A lot of people said it was dangerous, but there hasn't been any major accidents ..... I say if it is a dangerous stretch, why bother waiting for that major accident. Everybody out there got their cash for their homes, land , etc... Get on with your lives & enjoy the new highway.

    • the cost
      October 01, 2012 - 22:14

      Jeff - I hope you enjoy the new highway - and I also hope you, your children and your grandchildren enjoy paying for it in the years to come as PEI approaches bankruptcy.

  • WERESOSPINELESS
    October 01, 2012 - 18:52

    So, I see some of those opposed are showing their true colors, speaking about civil disobedience such as blocking road crews or provincial vehicles. The ego! The arrogance! This would be nothing more than sulking. The fight was fair, you lost. The self-righteousness of shouting through a megaphone and have a 100-strong crowd shout along with you seems to have inflated your self-worth and relevance beyond the single vote you have in the matter. First of all, the tendering of these contracts are as transparent as you can get. Everyone can bid. The people actually doing this work, if delayed by some egotistical weekend warriors, will only end up getting paid for the work, plus the delays - and the project will still go ahead. As much as it hurts you to think a grand injustice was dealt here, nothing of the sort has happened. It hurts to lose a fight, but that's precisely what happened. Sometimes, the underdog isn't right. Remember that this is a highway improvement project, and in the opinion of the majority, a much-needed one, and money well spent. The drama some are exuding could be likened to the decimation of a billion hectare swath of the rainforest. Hobby activists aside, many an island voice was heard, and we must applaud the effort. As for blocking workers to make your arrogant point of how your opinion is that much more important than the 99%, go ahead, make a total fool of yourself. The RCMP, at great public expense, will remove you and whomever you accompany, and work will continue. Or, you could gracefully but begrudgingly allow progress to happen, and keep your powder dry for another topic that might get more support. Take the high road, even if we end up straightening it and making it safer for you. Make sense?

    • Piet Hein
      October 01, 2012 - 19:02

      WERESOSPINLESS, so you feel people should not practice their democratic right to protest what they see as an injustice. Think back to the Clayoquot Sound protests of the 1990s. The protests went on for a whole summer or more and for years after that even when it seemed the protesters had lost. But they had not lost and the area now is protected. You may give up when it seems hopeless, but many more people have more courage then you and are willing to fight for what they see is right.

    • hammike
      October 01, 2012 - 19:35

      You are right. Civil disobedience has never actually worked to change things. Oh, except for when Rosa Parks refused to sit at the back of the bus. Or when Martin Luther King organized rallies. Or, closer to home and in more recent history, the standoff in Oka the prevented rich developers from building a golf course on Native land. Yes, you are correct, we should never stand up for what we believe in.

  • rita russell
    October 01, 2012 - 18:35

    Some day the truth will come out about this diasterous project. Some day we will know what supreme greed was behind this, - what stupid head had the Premier in his power, We read about how smallminded jalous Islanders voted for this boy just because his Father had been Premier, --- discounting a woman because she was not 'elite' enough, -- not seeing that anything would have been better than this arrogant boy who barely made it through university, but had the road levelled through politic before his every step. Don't you all feel dumb now,--- if not, you sure should , look at the mess we are in, look what is ahead, HST and higher taxes, --- and just because you couldn't stand Olive--- snobs --- eh. you all wanted the BRIGHTON BOYS

  • Former Islander
    October 01, 2012 - 18:27

    Ohhhhh Plan B has been approved...oh no! the Island way of life will now be threatened!! Same as when the Link was being built and when the waste management facility was built.... finally..get it built and get it over with.....

  • Rick Nessman
    October 01, 2012 - 18:21

    So the dictator can now claim that he has done everything to safeguard the environment and give the green light for this stupid useless project. What have we done electing such A FOOL to lead us. How could we have been so blinded. The party that pledges to institute re-call legislation in the next election will win, - except for the liberals, - we will remember all the lies, and that their arrogance is the reason we need such legislation. Mark my words, we have not seen the real figures for this. The overrun will floor us, ---- there is no way these 'friends' doing the work is not going to milk it for all it is worth. Sherry talks a good load of ...., - they are going to stop the project if there are environmental problems. they will watch it every day, she says - Janice, my sides hurt, - you standing there spewing this makes you look the fool -- yah, Lomer is going to stop, = that will be the day hell freezes over. The next election will be sweet, - probably the Premier will agree, --- he will leave before that with his retirement bounty secured. Go away with you Ghiz, you little ........

  • WERESOSPINELESS
    October 01, 2012 - 17:55

    Most of those who feel they were ignored by their government, that this project got a rubber stamp, seem to be under the misconception that those who take to the streets to express their opposition are somehow right, simply due to their underdog status. The majority of islanders do not oppose this highway improvement. The 250 or so islanders who took to the streets may very well feel like this government ignored the collective voice of islanders, but an opinion screamed is still just an opinion. There were 140,000 other opinions contrary to those opposed. It hurts to find out your passionate appeals to the government's sensibilities were for naught, but don't get confused to the point you actually think it was a bully getting its way. This highway improvement plan will go ahead. Some who feel their opinions should matter more than the majority because they protested and made signs will continue to make a scene, but in the end, there was no crime committed here, and democracy prevailed. It's quite obvious islanders want this improvement to take place, and it's going to happen. The birds will still chirp at Strathgartney, rivers will still trickle, birds will find new nests. The sky isn't falling. Let this be a lesson in 'majority rules', and perhaps an ego check for some of the more rabid naysayers. Time to put your bullhorn batteries back on the recharger for the next cause du jour.

    • Bill MacDonald
      October 01, 2012 - 19:58

      WERESOSPINLESS, your arrogant and patronizing comments makes me wonder if you are not someone I know who works in the premier's office. Let me throw out the initials G.T. Arrogance is his middle name.

    • intobed
      October 01, 2012 - 20:50

      No, democracy has not spoken. Clearly Islanders have an opinion, one way or the other. The proper way to solve this would have been a plebiscite (a vote by the people) with a clear yes or no question on this issue. Instead, the government just railroaded this plan through in a manipulative way, starting by pretending there was a Plan A. If I held a party and invited everyone on the Island who liked you to attend, and only ten people showed up, does that mean the other 140,000 don't like you? You are deluded.

    • how many?
      October 01, 2012 - 21:47

      140,000 other opinions? I'm sure that there aren't that many folks eligible to vote in l'il old PEI There must be a few kids under 18 out there. And there weren't 250 people taking to the streets - ~300 people took the time to write expressing their concerns over the environmental impact assessment. An online petition back in the Spring collected about 4,000 signatures against Plan B - many, many more are now opposed as it is being exposed for the money wasting sham it really is.......

  • Larry Grossman
    October 01, 2012 - 17:51

    A sad day in history when an elected body so totally trample on the people that elected them. I cannot begin to recount the disgust I feel for this government. To think that Islanders are being treated this way. It is hard to understand why Mr. Ghiz show such annimosity and disdain for his fellow Islanders, and the Island landscape?

  • Bill Kays
    October 01, 2012 - 17:45

    So it is pretty obvious that this government is NOT WILLING TO DO THE WILL OF THE PEOPLE. Therefore before we vote in any other government we had better put in place a mechanism where we can get them put out of office for mismanagement or non confidence. We should not have to wait for them to sign more contracts binding us to more bad deals. You know that plan C thru Z will now just be steamrolled out with no thought of public consultation. We should have a way to throw the bums out right now, today. Perhaps we have to block the Trans Canada Highway again as we did back in the seventies or at the very least block the provincial building parking lots. If we the people, are not willing to take a stand for what they believe in then I guess we will get the type of government we deserve. I say it is time to stop the government.

  • Larry Grossman
    October 01, 2012 - 17:39

    A sad day in history when an elected body so totally trample on the people that elected them. I cannot begin to recount the disgust I feel for this government. To think that Islanders are being treated this way. It is hard to understand why Mr. Ghiz show such annimosity and disdain for his fellow Islanders, and the Island landscape?

  • name that highway
    October 01, 2012 - 17:29

    THE LOMER MACDONALD HIGHWAY.

    • name that highway
      October 01, 2012 - 21:58

      THE GREAT GHIZ GATEWAY OF GREED

  • Good
    October 01, 2012 - 17:19

    I'm glad to see this is finally happening. Look at the image - the current route is all over the place! Our highways need to be improved one step at a time. Hopefully sometime in the future, we will be able to travel to Charlottetown without hitting 50 - 70 kmph zones...

    • intobed
      October 01, 2012 - 17:53

      Why? What is wrong with 50 - 70 km zones? They are there to keep the people driving and he people in the area safe. Why are you in such a hurry?

    • good?
      October 01, 2012 - 22:20

      "Hopefully sometime in the future, we will be able to travel to Charlottetown without hitting 50 - 70 kmph zones..." - well, no, you won't be able to do that because a few miles down the road from Plan B is a place called Cornwall, which has houses, traffic lights and speed limits. So how useful is Plan B now?

  • Bill Kays
    October 01, 2012 - 17:15

    FINALLY. The overwhelming majority has its way. I'm looking forward to the improvement.

    • Bill Kays
      October 01, 2012 - 17:48

      I DID NOT MAKE THIS STATEMENT - as if anyone would really think that I did. Someone has spoofed my name. FINALLY. The overwhelming majority has its way. I'm looking forward to the improvement. It may have been a government employee or MLA.

  • Valerie Docherty Should Be Ashamed
    October 01, 2012 - 17:06

    Valerie you should be ashamed of yourself-as a once supporter of yours I and the rest of my family are most disgusted with you voting with party lines to save your own big paycheck-hope you sleep well at night

  • come on
    October 01, 2012 - 17:03

    finally now start

  • Justin
    October 01, 2012 - 16:40

    FINALLY!!!! It is over and Common Sense has prevailed. Just imagine the problems down the road if we started listening to 40-75 tree huggers everytime there was to be a construction project done in PEI. Good to see Common Sense is more Common then the tree huggers.

    • not tree huggers
      October 01, 2012 - 22:05

      Common sense? Where's the sense in spending $12m+ that we don't have to build a road we don't need? Oh - and as I've said before we're not tree huggers - most of us are just ordinary people with more than half a brain who have the ability to think for ourselves and see through the pseudo-technical jargon fed to us as a rationale to "move forward" on a plan with no benefit to the majority of Islanders..

  • Piet Hein
    October 01, 2012 - 16:30

    The rubber stamp has hit the paper. The environmental study determined what it was supposed to determine, the environmental technicians were told not to find any problems with the proposed road and that is what happened so there was never any doubt that the study would rubber stamp the highway. Now Ghiz has cover and can tell people the environmental study approved the project. The whole process was political theatre from beginning to end with the end result never in doubt.

  • Ryan
    October 01, 2012 - 16:20

    We are not impressed.

  • Say YES To Plan B
    October 01, 2012 - 16:18

    It's good to have a government that does the right thing not just the popular thing.

  • Ed Gallant
    October 01, 2012 - 16:15

    This is the first time that I get to see the route that they want to take. The existing road is crookeder than a dogs hind leg. I don't know what effect it would have had on Stratgartney Park, but this was the obvious route.Millions of dollars could have been saved and they would accomplish what they are trying with Plan B. The only reason I am upset with Plan B is that they didn't use Plan A. To me, a lot less of an impact would have been to go through the park.

  • Sylvia
    October 01, 2012 - 16:10

    Why am I not surprised. This was a done deal a long time ago. With all the b.s. this government is spreading, there's enough fertilizer for every field in P.E.I.

  • johnny cash
    October 01, 2012 - 15:48

    Oh Gee,big suprise there. They have to let the money train run on time,after all christmas is coming and the lieberal friends need to trade their bmw,mercedes porches and audis etc. 2013 is close so the new models are out.

  • don
    October 01, 2012 - 15:38

    Sherry shame on you. you sold us out. you are a disgrace to islanders. REAL ISLANDERS. no luck will fallow this road. for every person that is killed or hurt i hope you can say on tv that you are sorry for the death.