Municipal Affairs
Transportation and Works
November 17, 2006

Ministers Commit to Finding Solution to Nicholsville Bridge Issue

The Honourable Jack Byrne, Minister of Municipal Affairs, the Honourable John Hickey, Minister of Transportation and Works, and Humber Valley MHA Kathy Goudie will meet with Deer Lake Mayor Darryl Kelly and Deputy Mayor Barbara Ball on Monday, November 20, to propose a solution to the Nicholsville Bridge issue.

"We want to reassure the people of Deer Lake that a solution to this issue will be forthcoming," said Minister Byrne. "We have listened to the concerns put to us by Humber Valley MHA Kathy Goudie and the Town of Deer Lake concerning the impact the closure of the bridge has had on residents. We look forward to meeting with Mayor Darryl Kelly and Deputy Mayor Barbara Ball with a proposal that should be agreeable to everybody."

"Government�s primary concern regarding the Nicholsville Bridge was the safety of the general public. We addressed that by closing the bridge," said Minister Hickey.

"We are aware of the anxiety of residents regarding the future of the link and we began reviewing our options immediately after we made the decision to close the bridge. However, we want to ensure due diligence before making any pronouncements."

On October 30 the Department of Transportation and Works announced the immediate closure of the Nicholsville Bridge in the interest of public safety. The bridge was constructed in 1940. An alternate route is located approximately three kilometres away.

"As MHA for the area I want people to know that I understand the level of frustration that has resulted in the closure of this bridge," said Kathy Goudie. "This meeting is taking place as a result of consultations with the departments of Transportation and Works, and Municipal Affairs and the Premier�s Office."

"I am pleased to have the opportunity to meet with Municipal Affairs Minister Jack Byrne, Transportation and Works Minister John Hickey and Humber Valley MHA Kathy Goudie on this issue," said Mayor Kelly. "I thank them for their effort on our behalf. I am hopeful that a satisfactory solution to the issue can be found."

Media contacts:

John Tompkins
Director of Communications
709-729-1983, 690-2498

David Salter
Director of Communications
Transportation and Works
709-729-3015, 691-3577

2006 11 17                             5:15 p.m.

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