Tourism, Culture, Industry and Innovation
November 28, 2018

Premier Ball Announces Support to Expand Cellular Service in Southern Labrador

The Honourable Dwight Ball, Premier of Newfoundland and Labrador, today announced the Provincial Government’s latest project to expand wireless coverage in unserved and underserved communities throughout Newfoundland and Labrador.

Through a cost-shared agreement with Nunacor Development Corporation, NunatuKavut Community Council (NCC), and Bell Canada, the Provincial Government is contributing over $256,000 to provide cellular service to six communities in Southern Labrador.

This non-repayable contribution represents 25 per cent of total funding for the project, which is estimated to cost over $1 million. Bell will contribute $587,000 with Nunacor and the NCC funding the remaining portion.

Premier Ball was joined at today’s announcement by the Honourable Christopher Mitchelmore, Minister of Tourism, Culture, Industry and Innovation; the Honourable Lisa Dempster, Minister of Children, Seniors and Social Development and MHA for Cartwright - L'Anse au Clair; the Honourable Graham Letto, Minister of Municipal Affairs and Environment and MHA for Labrador West; Todd Russell, President, NunatuKavut Community Council (NCC); Andy Turnbull, Nunacor Development Corporation; and Mark Duggan, Bell Canada.

The funding will allow the deployment of LTE (Long Term Evolution) broadband wireless technology in the communities of Red Bay, Mary’s Harbour, St. Lewis, Port Hope Simpson, Charlottetown and Cartwright. LTE will be deployed at 700 MHz allowing for greater reach in rural areas and increased in-building coverage.

Nunacor Development Corporation is the business development arm of NCC, and executes a variety of community and regional projects for the benefit of NunatuKavut communities. The NCC is an Indigenous government organization committed to promoting and ensuring the basic human rights of its members as Indigenous persons, and the collective recognition of these rights by government bodies, industries and the public in general.

On April 30, as part of Budget 2018 and through the Regional Development Fund, the Provincial Government issued a call for proposals that would lead to the investment of $1 million in a new cost-shared cellular service pilot program, contributing up to a maximum of 25 per cent of project costs towards cellular coverage infrastructure upgrades. The remaining 75 per cent are to be provided by the service provider, municipalities, private ventures, co-operatives, social enterprises and/or regional government partnerships.

Support for innovation and technology delivers on commitments in The Way Forward to strengthen the province’s economic foundation and deliver better services and better outcomes for residents. The Way Forward outlines all actions the Provincial Government is taking to achieve a strong, diversified province with a high standard of living, and can be viewed at thewayforward.gov.nl.ca.

Quotes
“Today, more than ever, support for innovation and technology is key to diversifying economies. By partnering with NunatuKavut Community Council, Nunacor, and Bell for this cost-shared agreement, our government is fostering business and economic development in Southern Labrador by removing barriers to advance the region’s sustainability and prosperity. Through our Way Forward, we are committed to strengthening the province’s economic foundation.”
Honourable Dwight Ball
Premier, Newfoundland and Labrador

“Today’s announcement to expand wireless coverage in unserved communities in Southern Labrador will help to accelerate growth in various sectors such as tourism, fishery, health, education and mining. This investment will play a key role in advancing economic development in the region. We are delivering on our commitment made in The Way Forward to support innovation and technology in our province.”
Honourable Christopher Mitchelmore
Minister of Tourism, Culture, Industry and Innovation

“Wireless access is a vital link for people and communities. Today’s announcement is an excellent example of partnership and innovation to overcome barriers and advance economic development for the people of Southern Labrador. As MHA for the district of Cartwright–L'Anse au Clair, I know the immense benefits this connection will provide for these six communities, and am so pleased our government is partnering with Nunacor and the NCC and Bell‎ on this communications solution."
Honourable Lisa Dempster
Minister of Children, Seniors and Social Development and MHA for Cartwright–L'Anse au Clair

“The NunatuKavut Community Council, is proud of its investment and participation in this partnership, and thanks Nunacor, Bell and the Department of Tourism, Culture, Industry and Innovation for working together to make the Cellular Service Pilot Initiative project possible. It brings another positive, meaningful and significant investment into a number of NunatuKavut communities. This project will provide the communities of Mary’ Harbour, St. Lewis, Port Hope Simpson, Charlottetown, Cartwright, and Red Bay with cellular service coverage and will be important to our sustainability efforts in our territory. There are many cultural, economic and educational opportunities presented through the Cellular Service Pilot Initiative project, and we are proud that this partnership we will allow our communities to keep pace with changing technology while remaining connected to the rest of the Province and Canada. By working together, we can provide for this and future generations of Southern Inuit, and we will continue to expand economic opportunity and ensure that innovative businesses have the supports they need to thrive and grow in the years to come.”
Todd Russell
President, NunatuKavut Community Council

“This funding announcement is exciting news for NunatuKavut communities and I am pleased that Nunacor could play a role in bringing cell service to our communities. These improvements will have a positive impact on business growth, education, health care and tourism, contributing to the sustainability of our communities. We would like to thank the Government of Newfoundland and Labrador, the NunatuKavut Community Council and Bell for partnering to make this project possible and look forward to the launch of community cell service.”
Andy Turnbull
Chief Executive Officer, Nunacor Development Corporation

“This is another in a series of significant investments by Bell in telecommunications infrastructure in Labrador that have been enabled by the leadership and partnership of community organizations like Nunacor Development Corporation and the NunatuKavut Community Council. Bell is pleased to partner with Nunacor, NunatuKavut Community Council and the Government of Newfoundland and Labrador to expand wireless coverage with Canada’s best national mobile network.”
Glen LeBlanc
Vice-Chair Atlantic, Bell Canada

- 30 -

Learn more

Cellular Service Pilot Initiative Call for Proposals external link icon

NunatuKavut Community Council external link icon

Nunacor Development Corporation external link icon

Bell Canada external link icon

Follow us on Twitter: @GovNLexternal link icon and @TCII_GovNLexternal link icon

Media contacts
Jason Card
Office of the Premier
709-729-3570
jasoncard@gov.nl.ca

Eric Humber
Tourism, Culture, Industry and Innovation
709-729-4819, 725-9655
erichumber@gov.nl.ca

Kelly Broomfield
NunatuKavut Community Council
709-280-5965
communications@nunatukavut.ca

Erin Sulley
Government Members Office
709-729-5036
erinsulley@gov.nl.ca

Isabelle Boulet
Bell Canada
506-457-5554, 478-7823
Isabelle.Boulet@bellaliant.ca 

2018 11 28                              2:45 p.m.