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Transportation and Works
November 27, 2006

Government Ensures Labrador Communities Can Access Supplies

Government has taken steps today to ensure residents of Williams Harbour and Norman Bay, Labrador, have more access to essential supplies.

The Honourable John Hickey, Minister of Transportation and Works and Minister Responsible for Labrador Affairs, announced government will provide a grant to the communities of Williams Harbour and Norman Bay to enable freight to be shipped via longliner when their ferry service’s annual contract expires on November 30.

The grant will be provided to the local service districts to lease a longliner which will bridge the gap between the end of the contracted ferry service (M.V. Challenge One) and the time winter freeze occurs.

“This government recognizes the challenges of isolation that people face in these communities,” said Minister Hickey. “The goods and services that most of us take for granted aren’t readily accessible for these residents and we are pleased to help ensure vital supplies get into the hands of those who need them.”

Minister Hickey says the department has contacted the chairs of both local service districts, who welcomed government’s offer. The minister also pointed out he has worked closely with the Combined Councils of Labrador to ensure the issue was addressed.

The Department of Transportation and Works provides a contracted passenger and freight service between the isolated communities of Williams Harbour and Norman Bay which runs from June 9 to November 30 each year. Generally, operating beyond November 30 was impossible due to winter freeze but in recent years the ice conditions have lessened. When the ice freezes many residents use snowmobile to transport supplies.

-30-

Media contact:
David Salter
Director of Communications
Department of Transportation and Works
709-729-3015, 691-3577
davidsalter@gov.nl.ca

2006 11 27                                   4:05 p.m.


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