Arthur Blamed For Worsening Fire Blight Spread In Valley

By MNN. Last updated: 2014-07-28 10:51:52

Fire blight, so named because of its resemblance to a scorched tree branch, has been a long-standing problem in the Valley. But the after-effects of Tropical Storm Arthur earlier this month has made fruit growers nervous as the risk of future significant losses to the disease has been heightened.

Robert Peill, President of the Nova Scotia Fruit Growers Association explains the high winds exposed some fresh shoots, making them more vulnerable to the spread of the blight.

Peill urges all apple growers to attend a workshop on fire blight management to be held at 7:00 pm tonight at Van Meekeren Farms at 237 Thorpe Road in Lakeville.

Kingston Legion Benefits From Provincial Funding Program

By MNN. Last updated: 2014-07-28 10:46:22

Municipal Affairs Minister Mark Furey was in a generous mood Friday in announcing $122,000 in improvements to 17 Legions across the province. Kingston’s Legion will be getting $10,000 towards roof repairs. Furey explained the Legion Capital Assitance Program is designed to help Legions upgrade heating systems, washrooms, roofs, siding, doors, and windows, adding a nod to the important contribution Legions play in communities through hosting meetings, activities, and events.

Windsor, Port Williams Cash In On Provincial Infrastructure Funding Program.

By MNN. Last updated: 2014-07-28 10:33:15

The provincial government announced almost $800,000 in funding for 10 high-priority municipal infrastructure projects through the Provincial Capital Assistance Friday, and 2 Valley communities were on the receiving end of some cash. Port Williams got a check for over $127,000, which will cover half the cost of replacing of a wastewater disinfection system, and Windsor gets over $187,000 towards water, sewer, and road upgrades on Stannus Street, a project with a total price tag of over $1.3M.

Municipal Affairs Minister Mark Furey explained that funding is limited, and priority is given to projects that eliminate serious environmental health problems, noting that water supply, sewage disposal and sold waste projects place huge financial burdens on communities throughout the province.

Good News For Hikers In SW Nova Scotia

By MNN. Last updated: 2014-07-28 10:18:14

It was a great day for hikers in Southwest Nova Scotia as news of trail improvements came in thick and fast Friday. West Nova MP Greg Kerr had his track shoes on as he announced over $25,000 towards enhancement of the Petit Bois Trail system on the Campus of Universite Ste. Anne, overlooking Saint-Mary’s Bay. The provincial government kicked in an additional $15,000 through the Southwest Nova Tourism Task Team.

But Kerr wasn’t done, as he also officially opened Leif Ericson Park at Cap Forchu in Yarmouth, with the help of a $125,000 contribution through ACOA. The funding went towards improving walkways, building 6 look-offs, improved access through the gorge, expanded picnic areas, benches, and interpretive signage. The area won the award for Canada’s Best Public Space in 2012 by the Canada Institute of Planners.

Windsor Elms Group Shares Big Lottery Win

By MNN. Last updated: 2014-07-28 10:01:18

A combined group of 5 staff and residents at Windsor Elms Village got a little extra holiday money last week heading into Natal Day weekend when they won a 6/49 pot totaling over $141,000, working out to about $28,000 apiece. Angel Kelley, a residential support assistant, who celebrated with the purchase of a Toyota Rav4, noted the lottery buying group from the residence had shrunk over time as luck was not apparently on their side, but she’ll continue to buy tickets on a regular basis. The winning ticket was bought at the Falmouth Circle K.

Sooners Take 3 From ‘Cats

By MNN. Last updated: 2014-07-28 09:42:26

Eight was more than enough for the Kentville Wildcats as the Sydney Sooners twice took advantage of 8th inning rallies to break open close games to sweep a 3-game series in Cape Breton. Friday night, a 3-run 8th spearheaded 7-4 win for the Sooners, breaking a 7-game slide for them. A 8-2 win in the first game of Saturday’s doubleheader featured a fine Sydney pitching performance. In the series finale, the Sooners put together a 4-run 8th to win 11-7.

Repairs Underway On Cape Spilt Trail

By MNN. Last updated: 2014-07-28 09:27:21

Work got underway Saturday to clear debris from along Cape Split Trail after Tropical Storm Arthur left the popular hiking destination in shambles three weeks ago. Natural Resources Minister Zach Churchill recognized the significance of the iconic trail, and was pleased to report work is proceeding quickly. Aylesford tree cutting company Burton’s Towering Tree Services was awarded the tender last Friday, and is hopeful the clean-up will be completed by the weekend.

Until then, hikers are urged to stay away from the area for safety reasons.

NS health care workers don't have to get flu shots - for now

By MNN. Last updated: 2014-07-28 05:16:48

The province is putting mandatory flu shots for health care workers on the back burner for now.

Health Minister Leo Glavine says his department is looking at how other provinces are handling the issue after Saskatchewan and B.C. adopted mandatory immunization, but it won't be in effect here for the coming flu season in the fall.

Chief public health officer Dr. Robert Strang told the Chronicle herald the government is considering a mask versus vaccination policy. Strang said the government has been encouraging staff to get flu shots particularly at long-term care sites and the IWK, but only about half of the healthcare staff get the annual shots.

Fighting a strawberry virus in Nova Scotia

By MNN. Last updated: 2014-07-28 05:15:15

Strawberry growers are hoping a virus that's been destroying crops is under control.

Charles Keddy, the past president of the Nova Scotia Federation of Agriculture; told the Chronicle Herald they're hoping they're over the hump now after an early spray program this season.

Keddy, who has one of the largest strawberry operations in Kings County says all growers bought into the spray program to combat the virusus which resulted in smaller yields and smaller berries.

Most growers have had a successful season although it was compressed because of the weather, especially due to Tropical Storm Arthur.

He adds that the industry is going to rebound even though they'll never eliminate 100% of the virus, but they'll have healthier plants all around and next year will be even better.

Ruling from the preliminary hearing in the Saunders case expected on Friday

By MNN. Last updated: 2014-07-28 05:14:39

The preliminary hearing into the death of slain university student Loretta Saunders has adjourned until this coming Friday.

Both the Crown and defence presented final arguments this past Friday, and Judge Anne Derrick will rule later this week on whether the case should proceed to trial.

26-year-old Blake Leggette and 28-year-old Victoria Henneberry both face first-degree murder charges in Saunders's death.

An electronic hitch-hiker has departed Halifax

By MNN. Last updated: 2014-07-28 05:13:49

Another tourist headed west from Halifax on the weekend, but this one was much different.

It's a hitchhiking robot callede Hitchbot.

He and his inventors left Halifax to go to Victoria, B.C.

The robot has its thumb out and is getting rides from strangers who get to interact with the talking robot as they give it a lift.

Hitchbot will interact with drivers and record the whole thing for social media.

Ontario-based communications researchers came up with the idea as an experiment into the relationship between human beings and technology.

CBU prez says don't rush when it comes to fracking in Nova Scotia

By MNN. Last updated: 2014-07-28 05:13:12

The head of a Nova Scotia review panel into hydraulic fracturing, or fracking; says the province should hold off on endorsing the industry.

Cape Breton University President David Wheeler says there needs to be more research and public discussion.

Fracking is a technique for extracting oil and gas that involves injecting high-pressure liquid underground.

Nova Scotia imposed a two-year ban on the practice in 2012 due to the potential risk of contaminating surrounding groundwater.

Cabot Trail motorbike crash

By MNN. Last updated: 2014-07-28 05:12:28

A couple from Newfoundland is in hospital after a bad motorcycle crash on the Cabot Trail Saturday evening.

They were with a larger group of motorcyclists near Belle Cote when he lost control and crashed around 6:30.

The pair, both 46 years old; were taken to hospital in Inverness.

She was then airlifted to hospital in Halifax as her injuries were more serious.

The investigation continues.

More land being protected on the Eastern Shore

By MNN. Last updated: 2014-07-28 05:11:53

The Nova Scotia Nature Trust has acquired another 100 hectares on the Eastern Shore.

The new conservation area is on Gerard Island, nearby Taylor Head Provincial Park.

The Trust acquired the lands from local residents through a combination of donations and sales.

It's part of the Trust's campaign to protect the more than 100 islands along 30-kilometres of coastline between Clam Harbour Beach and Taylor Head.

Sports

By MNN. Last updated: 2014-07-28 05:10:49

The Canadian Open was won by Tim Clark who shot a 5 under 65 in the final round at Royal Montreal. Clark beat out American Jim Furyk who had a three-stroke lead after the first three rounds but let his lead squeak away with a 1-under 69 in the forth. Graham DeLaet was the top Canadian, finishing tied for seventh.

In the majors, the Blue Jays won a weekend series in new York beating the Yankees 5-4 yesterday. The Red Sox got by the Rays 3-2, ending a five game slide.

The Baseball Hall of Fame has added six new members. It was a big day for the Atlanta Braves, who saw former pitchers Greg Maddux and Tom Glavine enshrined along with longtime manager Bobby Cox. Tony La Russa and fellow managing great Joe Torre were also elected.

News stories from 2014-07-27.