April 15, 2003
(Executive Council)


Government disappointed with federal decision to turn down provincial proposal

Intergovernmental Affairs Minister Tom Lush and MHA Sandra Kelly announced today that federal Environment Minister David Anderson has turned down a provincial government proposal to keep forecasting services at the Gander Weather Office.

Minister Anderson made his decision known in a letter to Premier Roger Grimes today in which he noted that the provincial government�s proposal to keep 16 people in Gander, 13 of whom would provide local forecasting, would not be an effective strategy and would not be cost effective, under the new federal plan to consolidate weather forecasting operations.

Both Minister Lush and MHA Kelly have discussed the issue with Premier Roger Grimes and they have decided to take the matter up with the Prime Minister.

Minister Lush said today, "I am deeply disappointed with the decision which reinforces the federal government�s attitude toward the province of Newfoundland and Labrador, and puts further pressure on an already strained relationship."

MHA Kelly said, "The fight to retain weather forecasting capabilities in Gander is not over yet, as we intend to go straight to the Prime Minister asking him to intervene and reverse the decision."

Media contact: 
          Tom Hann, Communications, (709) 729-1341
          MHA Sandra Kelly, (709) 256-8321.

2003 04 15                                        2:35 p.m. 

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