Baillie says Nova Scotia, not Portland, should call the shots in ferry deal

April 13, 2016 at 12:56 pm

PC leader says deal should benefit Nova Scotians first

HALIFAX, NS – Portland’s mayor is challenging some of the details concerning the ferry service announced by the Liberal government and Bay Ferries Ltd. Progressive Conservative leader Jamie Baillie says it is more proof that Premier McNeil cannot be trusted to negotiate a good deal for Nova Scotia.

Mayor Ethan Strimling is taking issue with arrival and departure times. He also says “fees, costs and who pays for what,” are not yet confirmed. Portland City Council plans to debate the ferry on May 2.

Baillie says the Liberals should have negotiated those details in advance. The Progressive Conservative leader also says Nova Scotia, not Portland, should be calling the shots.

“Nova Scotia taxpayers have already put up all the money, paid for an American crew and sacrificed transport trucks,” said Baillie. “Now Portland wants to make all the rules as well. Enough is enough. It’s time for the Premier to show real leadership and stand up for Nova Scotia. The premier should shut down this conversation before it even starts.”

Baillie says Nova Scotians expect their Premier to make deals that benefit them, not big companies or other jurisdictions.

“Nova Scotians are tired of getting ripped off at every turn with McNeil’s ferry fiasco,” said Baillie. “The Liberals are in over their heads when it comes to defending our province on the world stage and now Nova Scotia taxpayers are left holding the bag.”

Baillie says the Progressive Conservatives support a sustainable ferry service between Yarmouth and Maine and would only sign a deal that proves the service can pay for itself over the long haul.