History of Nova Scotia
with special attention given to
Communications and Transportation

Chapter 47
1999 November

1999 November

First on the Net

Superhighway paved with big ideas of little companies

By Stephen Kimber

It is difficult to imagine now, but there was a time — not long ago — when the founders of NSTN Inc., the little company that pioneered public commercial access to the Internet in Nova Scotia, worried more about whether they could attract enough customers to stay in business than whether they could keep up with what they then hoped would become an insatiable, inexhaustible demand for Internet service in Nova Scotia.

Consider: in August 1992, NSTN recorded 986 calls logging on to its Dartmouth-based dial-up network.  Two years later, in August 1994, the company — by then billing itself as "Canada's largest Internet provider" — was adding new lines almost daily as it struggled to keep up with the more than 60,000 calls that flooded its system that month alone.

A year after that, NSTN's success finally outstripped its ability to finance the demand it had created.  In August 1995, it merged its assets with a larger Ontario-based Internet service provider to become iSTAR.  Today, even iSTAR is too small to compete on its own in the global marketplace.  iSTAR has since been swallowed up by a larger multinational firm, the U.S.-based PSINet.

So, like hundreds of other pioneering Internet startups of the early '90s, NSTN has become one more forgotten piece of Internet roadkill, buried under layers of bigger, faster Mpowered and cable-modemed super-super highways, almost all of them owned by the giant telephone and cable conglomerates that now dominate the Internet marketplace NSTN helped create.

Michael Martineau hasn't forgotten.

"To listen to companies such as MTT or AOL," says Martineau, the former president of NSTN, "you'd think they invented the Internet.  You can be sure that if it was left to the telcos, the Internet would cost ten times what it does and would be a minor data-communications offering for larger companies."

That's one reason Martineau wants to "raise the profile of the Internet pioneers, the people who took the arrows in the back to make Internet access for the masses both possible and affordable."

Martineau was one of them.

Ten years ago this month, Martineau, then a young software engineer with the Dartmouth branch of Ottawa high-tech firm Software Kinetics, set up a subsidiary called NSTN to handle a contract it had just won to "set up and run a technology network to aid research and development in the province."

Although Martineau had been fiddling around with the Internet since 1985, he had to spend much of NSTN's early years "evangelizing" its potential to business and government officials.

By the time Nova Scotians began to twig to what Martineau and his cadre of online missionaries at NSTN were preaching, Nova Scotia was better positioned than most provinces to tap into the worldwide Internet network.  Thanks largely to NSTN.

With the support of a few visionaries in the provincial and federal bureaucracies who championed its funding over the objections of their more hidebound colleagues, NSTN created "the best Internet coverage of any province in Canada," with local access available in smaller centres as well as in Halifax.  Park View school in Bridgewater became the first in Canada to be hooked up to the Internet.

It worked too well.  NSTN's success attracted bigger, tougher competitors.

MTT used its control of the telephone lines to underprice NSTN in a later contract to provide Internet access to all schools in the province.  "MTT offered a price that was only just a bit higher than our cost to buy the needed communication lines from them," Martineau said. "We protested all the way to the premier but, ultimately, we lost."

It was a sign of things to come.

Martineau thinks it was all probably inevitable.  "The Internet saga is simply the story of capitalism played out at a very fast pace," he says.  "It is just not possible for a small-business person, which most ISP owners were, to learn to run a large and mature organization in just a few years."

Today, Martineau has returned to Software Kinetics in Ottawa where he is director of business development for Ontario division.  While he says he isn't bitter about how things turned out with NSTN, he does chafe at the cable and telco industry "marketing glitz" that glosses over the contribution of those who built up the commercial side of the network.

As for himself, he says, "I am thrilled to be sitting at home with a high-speed Internet connection, reaching out to my relatives by e-mail, doing my banking online and ordering Christmas presents for nephews and nieces from my computer.  I still get a thrill when I hear ads extolling people to visit a Web site such as chapters.ca and to know that I was part of creating this new network economy."

So, happy 10th birthday, NSTN.   R.I.P.

[Halifax Daily News, 12 November 1999]

1999 November

Riverside Education Centre
Broadcasts Morning Announcements on TV
and Streaming Video on the Internet

Milford, Nova Scotia

At Riverside Education Centre, the morning broadcast of school announcements is not just for the classroom — it's for the whole community. Every school day morning, the school's Multimedia Studio is buzzing with excitement as the students prepare and produce a 10 to 15 minute TV show to highlight the school's latest news.

Overlooking the Shubenacadie River in Milford, Nova Scotia, a half-hour drive from Halifax, Riverside Education Centre is a middle school with about 590 students in grades 6-8. The new 9300 square metre school is truly a high tech school, designed to take full advantage of the latest technology.

The school has an academic wing, arranged into four coloured sections, providing a self-contained area for approximately 175 students. Each section has six classrooms with adjacent offices, a science lab, lockers, washroom, and a common area equipped with a shuffleboard table, an air-hockey table and TV monitor.

"Apple computers are used predominantly at Riverside," said Blair MacKinnon, Coordinator of Technology for the Chignecto Central Regional School Board Crew members l-r, Kris Sutton, Corey MacDonald, Ryan Parsons, Josh White and Patricia MacAulay begin technical preparations. to which Riverside belongs. "There are Macs in every classroom and the student producers of the morning broadcast rely on a Power Macintosh G3 to produce the morning show."

In the school, each classroom contains three Power Macintosh G3 "All-in-one" computers along with a Performa 5500 used as a video conferencing station. Every teacher has also been provided with a PowerBook to use for lesson planning and classroom administration such as recording marks and attendance. In addition to the four Macintosh computers in each classroom, the school has set-up a computer lab consisting of 21 iMacs that students can use to complete class assignments.

The morning broadcasts are produced in the school's Multimedia Studio, which contains three Power Macintosh G3s running Avid Cinema, Media 100, Sorenson Broadcaster and PowerPoint. Located right next door, Rush Communications, the community cable station, is directly connected to the school's Multimedia Studio and provides the REC-TV channel.

To view the broadcast in each classroom, a LCD projector is connected to a VCR which projects the show onto either a touch sensitive, interactive white board called a Student announcer, Jeff Mason being coached by Staff Advisor, Peter Oldreive.Smart board or onto a large pull-down screen. Classrooms are wired together via a school backbone 100 Base T network and connected to two Power Macintosh G3 Servers and one Macintosh OS X Server. All of the Mac computers run Mac OS 8.1 operating systems and any computer in the school provides students with a connection to the Internet as well as access to their files.

Every school day between 8:30am and 9:00am, a core team of students are assigned responsibilities related to the production of the morning show. Gathering and editing footage of students preparing for a new school day, surfing the Internet for the Today in History segment, scouring the local newspaper for the local weather forecast, preparing a feature on new books in the library, sniffing out cafeteria menu specials, conducting sound checks and ensuring a proper 3-camera setup all contribute to the success of the show which is then broadcast "live" to the school and to the community at 9:05am. There are two technical teams who work alternate weeks along with a roster of announcers. Any student who wishes to take a turn at being an announcer is given the opportunity.

In addition to the school's use of the multimedia studio for morning announcements, it is used to enhance in-school projects, present community news and events and to air twice weekly bingo nights.

Recently, the school extended the morning announcements to the Internet using Quicktime 4.0 Streaming server software running on the Mac OS X Server, accessible through the school's web site at http://riverside.ednet.ns.ca. In the future, the school plans to add new portable film production equipment to enable students to film school activities such as sporting events live outside of the Multimedia Studio.

Apple Canada Inc. website

Riverside Education Centre website

1999 November

Historic Propellor at North Sydney

History buffs can have a field day ruminating over the history of a nine-foot wooden airplane propeller that hangs on the wall at the North Sydney Museum. And very few people know the concrete that covers a large area of Munro Park was actually enclosed by a large aircraft hanger, the area used during the two world wars as a naval air station by the United States. The propeller came from one of those First World War seaplanes. The museum is housed in the former Bank of Nova Scotia building built in 1907.
[Cape Breton Post, 22 November 1999]

1999 November

Website as Millennium Project

Ballots keep pouring in for Dr. T. L. Sullivan Junior High School's millennium project to mark the turn of the century. Principal Vic Gouthro said the project, which will identify the 100 most influential Cape Bretoners over the past century, is exciting for both students and staff. "It's a major project but we are getting lots of support, including technical assistance from the University College of Cape Breton." The school, located in Bras d'Or, Cape Breton County, launched the project in early November and is hoping to have all the ballots in by the end of the year. The nominations will be reviewed by a panel of educators and media personnel and the students will have input into who should be included. Students will conduct research on the 100 individuals and write a biography on each. The final result will be published in souvenir booklet form along with on CD-ROM and a Website. These will be available in May, 2000.
[Cape Breton Post, 29 November 1999]

Dr. T. L. Sullivan Junior High School's website:

1999 November

Trenton Works to Build 1000 Railway Flatcars

The Trenton Car Works, in Pictou County, Nova Scotia, has secured a major contract for one thousand railway flatcars. The work order for TTX Company of Chicago will start in January of 2000 and last for six months. Trenton, which is owned by U.S. based Greenbrier, currently employs about 1400 people. TTX is the largest buyer of railway equipment in North America.
Source: Canada Calling, November 1999

All of the TTX Company's shares are owned by United States' largest railroads who are also the company's primary customers. The company supplies equipment to the railroads, which pay leasing charges based on time, or time and mileage. This is done through contracts and pooling agreements approved by the Interstate Commence Commission, and its successor, the U.S. Department of Transportation's Surface Transportation Board.
TTX website:
Note: The TTX website requires a browser that supports javascript and has scripting enabled. Failure to meet these requirements will prohibit access.
Types of railcars leased by TTX

TTX Company (TTX), is a Delaware corporation with its principal place of business in Chicago, Illinois. The company, originally named Trailer Train Company, was formed by United States railroads in 1956, which pooled their resources to establish a nationwide fleet of flatcars, to help them lower costs and compete more effectively with the trucking industry for the shipping of freight.

By 1991, TTX and its subsidiaries operated and maintained a fleet of almost 100,000 rail cars, which are leased to railroads pursuant to a pooling agreement approved by the Surface Transportation Board (STB) (previously known as the Interstate Commerce Commission). On its federal income tax returns, TTX listed its business activity as "Leasing Railroad Cars."

The company's objective is to provide standardized railroad equipment and related services to the railroads at the lowest possible car hire rates. All railroads in possession of TTX cars pay charges set by TTX's rate policy, which provides that TTX will charge only what it needs to pay its expenses.

Source: http://www.state.il.us/court/appellates/1998/1963120.txt

1999 November

Large CD-ROM Contract with Florida Schools

EOA Scientific Systems Inc. of Spryfield makes educational software
to teach geology, oceanography, meteorology and astronomy

A company based in Spryfield, a Halifax suburb, that makes educational CD-ROMs has landed a contract with Florida schools. Robert Paul knew his educational CD-ROM was cutting edge, he just didn't expect teachers to be on the edge with him. He had virtually no expectations, let alone a marketing or production plan, when he went after the lucrative Florida school market. Textbooks, he thought, were still dominate. So success, when it came, caught him by surprise. His company, EOA Scientific Systems Inc. makes high-tech CD-ROMS to teach kids the so-called hard sciences — geology, oceanography, meteorology and astronomy. This month EOA won a potentially massive deal to supply Florida schools with four versions of its educational CD-ROMs. The discs will slip into the classroom next September. "I was really impressed they could see how good it was," Paul said. Now, the company and its 25 employees, with some timely help from provincial and federal agencies, are getting ready to take on the world from Spryfield. The company's CD-ROMs teach students from Grades 6 through early college years science in a way that keeps their interest and saves their school boards money. EOA also sells in the retail market for both homeschoolers and those just looking to have fun with science. Its interactive CD-ROMs feature text and still pictures, animation, and digital video and audio. The company has sold CDs in countries around the world, including a test to 500 schools in India this fall.

Paul formed the company in 1991, a year after he and his family moved to Halifax from the United States. EOA began as a consulting firm involved in the earth sciences and satellite remote sensing. Today it still conducts enough research to remain current in sciences and retains strong ties to local scientists. Through contacts with other scientists involved in the remote sensing field, Paul started lecturing to local high school students. In 1992, his contacts put him in touch with a high school in Bathurst, New Brunswick, looking for a computer program to teach fundamentals of remote sensing. With funding from the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency, Paul produced the first product — the Weather WorkStation, which was a far cry from the sophisticated CD-ROMs the company makes today. It was contained on 20 floppy disks, making it a chore to load. "I'm amazed that they were able to use it," said David Bourque, the marketing director brought in two years ago.

When the sale was done, Paul went back to consulting, but colleagues both in the scientific world and in government convinced him the Weather WorkStation was a salable product. He sought out a New York expert in scientific educational software to teach him about content, copyrights and marketing. The homework resulted in a sale of 6,500 copies to Ontario, this time on CD-ROM. That's when the company got more involved in adoptions, the process by which states and provinces pick their textbooks. Publishers, competing for a contract, are asked to send products and pricing. The books have to match national standards as well as provincial or state standards. For publishers, it can be an expensive process with a long lead time. The costs are passed on to taxpayers.

EOA can offer a cheaper, interactive educational tool that can be quickly updated, Bourque said. "We are cutting edge as far as the education system is concerned," he said. Bourque said the company is getting great feedback on its products, especially from teachers. Many software companies entering the educational field often use computer games as their models, hoping that flash will attract youth. "What they don't understand is that teachers get it first and if there isn't substance — if you don't have good lesson plans — then generally speaking you don't have a very good product," he said. Students at the two high schools in Cole Harbour often test the company's latest products, another invaluable source of feedback, Bourque said. "Everything they give us, we try to implement if humanly possible," he said.

EOA sells its products only on CD-ROM, although they all connect to the company's Internet campus, giving students links to up-to-the-minute information on whatever they are studying. It allows students using the Weather WorkStation, for instance, to track a hurricane as it is happening.

Bourque wouldn't talk sales dollars, but he will tout the growth rate. "Exponentially. Six to seven hundred per cent this past year, and we're not even touching the surface."

[Halifax Sunday Daily News, 19 December 1999]

1999 November

Favours ATV Users on Trail

The chairman of the Trans-Canada Trails Committee for Nova Scotia said recently her organization favours all-inclusive use of recreation trails located along abandoned railway corridors. Vera Stone of Halifax said, "we feel strongly, everybody needs to be included." She made the comments at a time when the Bridgewater town council is deciding whether motorized vehicles such as all terrain vehicles (ATVs) and snowmobiles should be allowed on Bridgewater's Centennial Trail. Ms Stone toured the trail last month when she was in town to address a trails workshop, organized by the Lunenburg-Queens Trails Works Committee. She acknowledges the former CN Rail bridge across the LaHave River, which links trails on the east and west side of the river, is "so narrow" that motorized vehicles would have difficulty passing on it. Still, she said, her organization "feels strongly" no one should be excluded from trail use. "In rural areas, the snowmobilers and all terrain vehicle users have helped develop trails," said Ms Stone. "They're right in there." A public meeting to discuss future uses of the trail was held November 9th at the Bridgewater Junior-Senior High School. Commenting on the Centennial Trail that runs from York Street to the foot of Silver's Hill, across the former rail bridge, Ms. Stone said it "is a terrific trail."
[Bridgewater Bulletin, 9 November 1999]

The last train crossed the railway bridge over the LaHave River at Bridgewater on the morning of 9 September 1991. It was a long and heavy train powered by six diesel locomotives: CN 1786 in front, followed by 1760, 1758, 1765, 1764, and 1754.

1999 November 1

J. MacLeod in Broadcast Hall of Fame

The late Jamie MacLeod of Bridgewater was one of nine broadcast legends honoured today at the Canadian Association of Broadcasters' annual convention in Montreal. "It was a beautiful ceremony," said Mrs. Gwen MacLeod, describing the induction of her husband into the Canadian Broadcast Hall of Fame. "I would much rather Jamie had been inducted when he was alive. It would have meant a lot more," she said. Mr. MacLeod, who died in 1996 at age 73, was president and a major shareholder of Acadia Broadcasting, and general manager of CKBW radio in Bridgewater. The Broadcast Hall of Fame, created in 1982, recognizes Canadians in private broadcasting or related industries who have helped raise industry standards from a material or humanitarian standpoint. The nine new inductees bring the current membership to 157. Their names are inscribed in bronze on a hall-of-fame plaque at the Association's headquarters in Ottawa. Candidates are nominated annually by Canada's five private regional broadcasting associations and the CAB's executive committee.

The CAB's announcement: James (Jamie) MacLeod — An Honorary Life Member and former President of the Atlantic Association of Broadcasters, MacLeod started his career at CHNS in Halifax, in 1937. During the Second World War, he served in the Royal Canadian Air Force as a Spitfire fighter pilot. Stationed overseas, he was the youngest pilot on his squadron. After the war, he returned to CHNS until 1949, when he went to CKBW, Bridgewater, as Program Director. In 1974 he became the station's majority shareholder, President of Acadia Broadcasting and General Manager of CKBW. In 1976, under MacLeod's guidance, CKBW was one of the first stations in Canada to become computerized. He is also credited with being instrumental in setting up the regional radio sales organization, Group One Atlantic. He retired in 1989 when the station was sold to New Brunswick Broadcasting. Among his many community contributions, he served as President of the Bridgewater Chamber of Commerce and was a founding member and Secretary-Treasurer of the Bridgewater Development Commission. MacLeod received the Centennial Medal in 1967 for his many contributions to broadcasting in Nova Scotia.

Halifax Chronicle-Herald, 4 November 1999
and Nine Canadian broadcasting greats named to Hall of Fame

1999 November 1

New Fuel Safety Regulations Passed

New regulations governing fuel safety for natural gas and propane have been passed by the Nova Scotia cabinet. "These changes help pave the way for the delivery of natural gas," said Labour Minister Ron Russell. "They help meet our commitment to ensure that all parts of Nova Scotia benefit from offshore gas. Through training and certification, qualified Nova Scotians will be able to take advantage of the onshore job opportunities that are available in the natural gas industry." Public safety and the competency of people working on all types of gas installations are the key issues addressed by these regulations. They introduce a tagging system that is similar to our traffic light system — green indicates all-clear; yellow warns that the system should be repaired; and red means the fuel supply is cut off. These changes complement the apprenticeship training programs set up for gas fitters, and other training set up for certified persons working in propane, in industrial settings and as gas pipefitters. A Fuel Safety Board is established to make decisions on licences and certificates.
Source: Government Media Release 19991101003, 1 November 1999

1999 November 1

Drivers Face Stiff Penalties for Passing Stopped School Bus

Stiff fines face motorists who ignore a stopped school bus. RCMP Const. Herb Martell said motorists are subject to a $337 fine and loss of five points for the school bus violation. "There are very few people who would deliberately pass a school bus with total disregard to the children." Instead he believes people tend to try to beat the red flashing stop sign, they are inattentive, or there is some confusion when the bus is going to stop. No matter the excuse he believes offenders will have a tough sell trying to convince a judge of any of those excuses. School bus drivers are finding the problem particularly bad on four-lane highway. "Motorists feel they don't need to stop when there are four lanes of traffic," said Colleen MacMullin, manager of transportation and operations for the Cape Breton-Victoria Regional School Board. Bus drivers transporting children on highways like Kings Road, Grand Lake Road and Welton Street see the most offenders. MacMullin said drivers are instructed to get a licence plate number and report it to police. Schools also instruct children on school bus safety and remind youngsters not to depend on the red light to stop traffic.
[Cape Breton Post, 1 November 1999]

1999 November 1

Newfoundland Capital Corporation
Acquires Printing Operations

Newfoundland Capital Corporation Limited announced today that it has acquired Atlantic Nova Print Company Incorporated and McCurdy Printing Limited. Atlantic Nova Print operates a sheet-fed printing plant located in Halifax, Nova Scotia. McCurdy Printing operates sheet-fed printing plants in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia and Moncton, New Brunswick. Harry Steele, Chairman and CEO of Newfoundland Capital Corporation Limited stated, "These acquisitions will allow us to solidify our position as the dominant commercial printer in the Atlantic Provinces. Both Atlantic Nova Print and McCurdy Printing have developed strong franchises that, when combined with our Robinson-Blackmore Printing operations in Newfoundland and Labrador, will offer comprehensive services for our customers and operating synergies for all of our stakeholders." Newfoundland Capital Corporation Limited is a Communications Company engaged in Radio and Publishing and Printing. It operates 14 radio licenses across Canada and publishes 19 community newspapers and magazines.
Source: Canada NewsWire

On 15 February 1999, Newfoundland Capital Corporation Ltd. announced it is buying all the radio stations in Newfoundland that were then owned by VOCM Radio Newfoundland Ltd. The deal involves stations
    VOCM St. John's
    Magic 97 St. John's and Clarenville
    CKVO Clarenville
    CHVO Carbonear
    CHCM Marystown
    CKGA Gander
    CKCM Grand Falls, and
    CKIM Baie Verte.
On air since 1936, VOCM Radio Newfoundland Ltd. is the province's pioneer commercial radio broadcaster.
Source: http://www.pubzone.com/pubzone/stories/nfld_radio.html

1999 November 1

CRTC Policy on
Local Management Agreements for Radio Stations

CRTC Public Notice CRTC 1999-176
1 November 1999

Local Management Agreements

Seven local management agreements involving radio stations in
Halifax, Charlottetown, Fredericton, London,
Thunder Bay, Saskatoon, and Regina

The Commission has adopted the amendments to the Radio Regulations, 1986, which are attached to this public notice. These amendments were put forward for public comment in CRTC Public Notice 1999-55. They were registered with the clerk of the Privy Council on28 October 1999, and came into effect on that same date. They will be published in Part II of the Canada Gazette on 13 November 1999.

1.   In CRTC Public Notice 1999-55 dated 31 March 1999 (PN 1999-55) the Commission invited public comment on proposed amendments to the regulations regarding Local Management Agreements (LMAs) for licensees of radio broadcasting undertakings. The proposed amendments resulted from a public process that was initiated in 1998 after the Commission announced its new common ownership policy in CRTC Public Notice 1998-41, Commercial Radio Policy 1998, dated 30 April 1998. That document raised the question of the continued appropriateness of the existing policy regarding LMAs.

2.   The proposed amendments were intended to provide the Commission with the necessary tools for assessing the impact of local management agreements by requiring that licensees obtain prior authorization, in order to operate a radio station under such arrangements. Such authorization would be implemented by way of a condition of licence. The proposed amendments also provided for a transition period allowing existing LMAs to continue for a prescribed period of time.

3.   The Commission received ten submissions in response to PN 1999-55. Five submissions were from radio broadcasters, two from the general public and one from each of the Friends of Canadian Broadcasting, the Canadian Association of Broadcasters and the Commissioner of Competition - Competition Bureau.

A changing environment

4.   The Commission's Commercial Radio Policy 1998 addresses the challenges of a constantly changing environment. More specifically, the common ownership policy now allows a licensee to own more than one AM and one FM undertaking in the same language in the same market. The Commission is convinced that this increased flexibility in ownership within the radio industry will enable it to strengthen its overall performance, and attract new investment. This, in turn, should assist the industry to compete more effectively with other forms of media and enhance its contribution to the support of Canadian cultural expression.

5.   LMAs in the past have typically provided economies of scale for radio stations experiencing financial difficulties, while still ensuring compliance with the Commission's ownership requirements. The Commission continues to consider LMAs to be appropriate tools for radio broadcasters, offering an alternative business model that provides flexibility and creates opportunities for economies of scale.

6.   The Commission is, however, concerned about the possibility that an LMA may have a detrimental effect in a given market. The Commission is concerned that the increased market power of the LMA parties over other radio licensees in that market or potential new entrants could have a negative impact upon the ability of those licensees to meet their broadcasting obligations.

7.   Accordingly, the Commission wishes to ensure that it is able to fully assess the consequences of either the introduction or the continuation of an LMA in a given market, especially with a view to ensuring that all radio broadcasters will continue to have the ability to achieve the objectives of the Broadcasting Act.

The Commission's new LMA policy

8.   The regulations have now been amended to provide a mechanism that will allow the Commission to assess the appropriateness of an LMA in a given market. The amendment to the regulations will allow licensees to enter into or operate their stations pursuant to an LMA, provided that it is authorized by the Commission by condition of licence.

9.   As a result of the amendment, any radio broadcaster wishing to enter into an LMA with another radio licensee will be required to seek Commission approval to amend its radio licence by adding a condition of licence to that effect. The application would be evaluated in the context of a public process.

Guiding principles for new or existing LMA

10.   The Commission has carefully considered the comments made by several interveners regarding the need to have clear criteria in the regulation for the assessment of the appropriateness of an LMA. However, the Commission is of the view that the appropriateness of an LMA will vary from one situation to another and from market to market. Furthermore, each LMA situation will reflect the specific needs of the radio broadcasters wishing to enter into or continue with the arrangement. Consequently, the Commission will evaluate LMAs on a case-by-case basis, taking into consideration all the relevant circumstances.

11.   The Commission sets out below some guiding principles to assist radio broadcasters in evaluating which alternative business model would generally be considered by the Commission to be more appropriate under the circumstances.

12.   The Commission reminds all licensees that an LMA must not constitute a change in the effective control of the undertaking. Such a change of control would require the prior approval of the Commission under section 11 of the regulations. The Commission will continue to expect that the following conditions are met: 13.   In addition, the Commission will be generally inclined to approve LMAs that: 14.   In exceptional circumstances, the Commission may approve an LMA that groups a number of stations in excess of the limit allowed under the common ownership policy. Radio broadcasters will be required to clearly demonstrate that the grouping of radio stations in excess of the allowable limit is in the public interest and that it does not create a situation of inequity within the market.

The transitional period

15.   In PN 1999-55, the Commission proposed to amend the regulations to allow for a transition period for existing LMAs entered into before 31 March 1999. The proposed transition period was defined as:

Until the earlier of:
(a)   the earliest date at which any licence issued in connection with a station that is operated pursuant to the agreement expires, and
(b)   the date on which the current term of an agreement expires, excluding any subsequent renewal.

16.   In that notice, the Commission also required that all radio broadcasters involved in an LMA file a copy of the agreement. As a result, the Commission received seven agreements involving radio broadcasting undertakings in Fredericton, Charlottetown, Thunder Bay, Saskatoon, London, Regina and Halifax. The Commission has reviewed these agreements to assess the appropriateness of the proposed transition period.

17.   With the exception of the Regina LMA, all existing arrangements are on a continuing basis with no specific renewal term. Under the proposals set out in PN 1999-55, the transition period of these agreements would have ended at the date of the licence renewal of the affected radio stations, at dates up to 31 August 2004.

18.   The Commission notes the CAB's comments regarding potential scenarios under the proposed regulations, in which some broadcasters could be compelled to dissolve an LMA earlier than others, consequently facing substantial financial challenges due to the lack of sufficient time to assess their options and amend their business plan. The Commission also recognizes that it may be appropriate to assess LMAs earlier than the date of the licence renewal.

19.   In view of continuing changes in the radio industry and the need for certainty, the Commission has determined that the transition period for LMAs existing as of 31 March 1999 will extend to 31 December 2001. At that time, all radio broadcasters still involved in an LMA will be required to have a condition of licence authorizing the continued operation of their station pursuant to the LMA.

Source: CRTC website

The above is an excerpt only. For the complete text,
see CRTC Public Notice 1999-176

1999 November 8

Chester Y2K Meeting

Local Emergency Preparedness will be presented by Bob Palmer, Acting EMO Coordinator for the Municipality of Chester and Keith Crosland, EMO NS, Western Zone Controller, at Forest Heights Community School in Chester Grant, from 7:00 to 9:00pm on this day. Find out some tips on how to prepare for an emergency situation. Information will be given on the Municipality of Chester, Municipality of Lunenburg and the Town of Bridgewater's Emergency Measures Organization. The first part of the evening will be info on local emergency preparedness with a question and answer period. The second part is discussion on proper planning for every disaster including Y2K. Learn how the Province is getting the Municipalities prepared for Y2K. There will also be an overview on compliancy. FREE! Deadline is November 1. All welcome. Call the Chester Municipal Recreation Office at 275-3490 to register.
Source:   http://www.tallships.istar.ca/ChesterBound/municpal.html
The Wayback Machine has archived copies of this document:
Municipality of the District of Chester

Archived: 1997 April 11

Archived: 1997 May 1

Archived: 1997 July 23

Archived: 1998 June 23

Archived: 1998 December 1

Archived: 1999 February 9

Archived: 1999 May 5

Archived: 2001 March 3

Archived: 2001 April 14

Archived: 2001 November 22

1999 November 8

Generator for Bridgewater Police Station

Too "vulnerable" without generator

The Bridgewater Town Council has taken steps to provide emergency electrical power to part of Town Hall, particularly the police station, in the event of a power outage caused by such events as a severe ice storm. On November 8, the Council decided to spend about $28,000 to buy a 30-kilowatt, diesel-driven portable generator that could be mounted on a trailer and parked outside town hall when it was needed to provide power for the furnace, police station, computers and the engineering department office. Council chose to buy a 30-kilowatt, diesel-operated unit. Delivery is guaranteed by January 1, 2000. "It is a cheap solution to give us some security," said Town Engineer Harland Wyand. "It's an initiative to keep the police station open." Councillor David Walker said he agreed purchase of the generator "is an emergency. I think we would be short-sighted" if the council decided not to buy the unit, he said. "It will be worthwhile to have in the future," said Councillor Walker. Mayor Ernie Bolivar questioned the "over-budgeted amount" on the generator at a time the town's method of policing is under review. "We don't know if the police station is going to be there," he said. The town is debating whether to retain the current police force or to seek RCMP police protection for Bridgewater. Councillor Walker said "I believe that government doesn't move quickly." Not buying the generator, would be "leaving ourselves very vulnerable for the next six or eight months that could be critical," Councillor Walker said.
[Bridgewater Bulletin, 17 November 1999]

1999 November 9

Proposed Changes to 911

Multiple local telephone companies
require changed legislation

Government Media Release 19991109003, November 9, 1999   12:55pm
The province proposed amendments today to the legislation governing the 911 emergency service. "The 911 system has handled more than 500,000 calls since it went provincewide more than two years ago," said Jamie Muir, Minister responsible for the Emergency Measures Act. The Emergency Measures Organization is the provincial agency responsible for the provision of 911 service in Nova Scotia. "During that period, program administrators worked closely with emergency response providers and MTT to iron out operational issues. Now it's time to take a step back and look more closely at the act both in terms of fairness and in terms of future plans."

The amendments focus on three major areas of the act: exemption from liability for all local telephone companies, responsibilities of the minister, and prohibitions regarding speed dial.

When the legislation was first enacted, MTT was the only telephone service provider in the province and was granted an exemption from liability. Now that competitive local exchange carriers (CLECs) have entered the Nova Scotia marketplace, the province is proposing to grant other providers the same exemption. "It's only fair that all telephone service providers in the province are on a level playing field," said Mike Myette, program manager for 911. "While MTT provides the network for the 911 system, customers with every local service provider have full access to 911 service. This exemption from liability, however, does not decrease the high level of responsibility all carriers and the province have, to make the system as reliable as possible."

The second amendment deals with the minister's authority under the Act. With the proposed change, the minister will be able to set policies and fees in relation to the 911 service. For example, 911 staff are currently working on a policy governing the release of recorded calls. The policy will balance the 911 caller's right to privacy with the proper administration of justice, authorizing courts to obtain copies of tapes. At this time, no fees are charged for 911 service in Nova Scotia. Should the province decide to exercise an option to follow the practice in other Canadian provinces and implement a cost-recovery fee, the minister will have the authority to establish that fee after appropriate consultation with the telephone service providers and the CRTC.

The final proposed amendment concerns the prohibition respecting automatic dialers, commonly known as speed dial. Currently, there are no exemptions to that prohibition. The province will provide an authorized exemption for people who have disabilities that prevent them from dialing 911 in a conventional manner.

Source:   http://www.gov.ns.ca/news/details.asp?id=19991109003

1999 November 10

Twinned Highway 125 Project Opens Today

After two years of construction, the newly twinned 7.5 kilometre section of Highway 125 near North Sydney, from Leitches Creek to Highway 105 opened today. The $13,100,000 project was cost shared 50-50 with Transport Canada under the Canada-Nova Scotia Strategic Highway Improvement Program Agreement (SHIP). (A government media release dated 8 July 1997 stated the cost of this project would be $9,800,000.)

The new twinning goes from the intersection of Highway 105 and joins the existing four lane section of Highway 125 near Leitches Creek. This section of new road is part of the four-lane, divided highway, controlled access system, designated as part of the National Highway System. "Controlled access" means driveways or other roadways connecting to the highway are restricted. Construction began in the fall of 1997.

The Highway 125 project, which included the successful construction of an environmental protection berm for Pottle Lake, is being used as a prototype for similar situations in the province. Pottle Lake, the water supply for North Sydney, Sydney Mines and parts of Cape Breton County, was identified as an environmental priority making this project unique to a series 100 highway.

Protection of the Pottle Lake water supply presented special environmental challenges. In an effort to protect the watershed from any potential contamination, measures were taken to include a large spill containment berm and a retention dyke. In total the watershed area protection stretches 3.5 kilometres. A second, smaller version of the berm was completed directly in front of Pottle Lake near the Johnston Road.

More than 32,000 tonnes of asphalt were rolled into place this fall. Paving was completed in echelon, a technique that runs two asphalt spreaders almost side by side to form a seamless two-lane roadway.

The Cape Breton Post, 10 November 1999, and the following:

1999 November 10

Y2K Bug Won't Bite Security Systems

We're ready
if the electric and phone companies havn't lied

If your house or business is protected by a security system, you shouldn't have to worry about the New Year beginning with a blast. Randy Whynacht is the director of field operations for Whynacht Security and Survival, one of the largest alarm companies in the area. After checking and rechecking computers and equipment, Mr. Whynacht is confident security systems won't be one of the areas bitten by the Y2K bug as midnight December 31 rolls over to January 1, 2000. Whynacht Security is involved with about 1,200 security systems overall. Between the company's two stations in Lunenburg and Digby, about 600 of those systems are monitored.

All systems and the equipment and computers that operate them have been checked in the past eighteen months. That process began with thorough testing of the systems in the office. Clocks were rolled ahead to the eve of the year 2000 and were left to run for a day. "We had absolutely no problems," Mr. Whynacht says. The company then went back to all the manufacturers of their equipment and obtained written certification to provide to clients who requested it. "Once we tested it here in the office, it was time to look at the stuff in the field," Mr. Whynacht explains. "First and foremost, it was an easy job. I want to emphasize that. Most security systems do not have any time and date dependant functions whatsoever." Once again, the company tested equipment and went back to manufacturers for final clearances. The basic premise for security equipment as it is with other electronic devices, Mr. Whynacht says, is simple. "If you don't have to go to it when the time changes forward and back spring and fall and tell it the time has changed, then it doesn't care," he says. "If you have to adjust a clock at the beginning when you install a system and tell it what year, what day, what month and what time it is, then it should be tested." That should be a two-part test. The first hurdle is the roll over to the New Year. The second is the date change to February 29 to ensure that the device recognizes that the year 2000 is a leap year. Testing both is as easy as setting the clock ahead and allowing it to roll over. If everything still works, the system should be fine.

"We only identified in the course of that research two systems that we were involved with that had potential for a problem. Neither one ended up having one," Mr. Whynacht says. Both systems were interfaced with card access systems designed to unlock a business premises at a specific time of day and arm the system automatically at the end of the day. Those systems had to be aware of the time of day and the day of the week. "So we went and did that in January and February even though the manufacturer assured me in writing that it was fine," Mr. Whynacht says. "By the time we were all done, we had a situation where I can honestly say that if Maritime Tel & Tel hasn't lied to me and the Power Corporation hasn't lied to me, we're ready."

Whynacht Security and Survival has good stand-by electric power already, and the company is in the process of increasing generator power. Consequently, even if electric power fails for the short-term, that won't be a problem. Many of the security systems are also more or less phone line independent. Just to be on the safe side, Whynacht Security staff will run a series of tests just after midnight on New Year's Eve to verify that all systems are working properly. Depending on the features clients require, the company does use a couple of systems that program a clock and date. Even if those systems experience difficulties, it shouldn't be anything more than a warning light that the clock has glitched. Mr. Whynacht expects some people with older systems will see similar trouble-shooting lights. "That happens periodically anyway. It's not unusual for those systems to hiccup and lose track of the time," he says. "They really don't care. There are ancient security systems out there that are still working perfectly fine that we're maintaining."

[Lunenburg Progress-Enterprise, 10 November 1999]

"The second hurdle is the date change to February 29 to ensure
that the device recognizes that the year 2000 is a leap year."

Over the last year or so, several people have asked me why Y2K articles keep repeating that stuff about having to check your system to see if it recognizes that 2000 is a leap year and thus February has a 29th day. They say: "The leap year rule says that leap years are those divisible by four — and 2000 is divisible by four so it is a leap year, same as 1996 and 1992 and 1988 were leap years. Why is there a problem about 2000 being a leap year?"

The problem is this: The leap year rule is not just a simple "divide by four and if it divides evenly (zero remainder) it is a leap year." That is the main part of the leap year rule, but there are two exceptions. The complete leap year rule is this:

(1) A year is a leap year if it is divisible by four,
(2) except if it is divisible by 100 it is not a leap year,
(3) except if it is divisible by 400 it is a leap year.

The years 1900 and 1800 were not leap years, even though they were divisible by 4. Similarly, the years 2100 and 2200 will not be leap years.

Since 1800, 1900, and 2100 are not leap years, why is 2000 a leap year?

2000 is a leap year because part (3) of the leap year rule kicks in. February 29th, 2000 is a very special day. It exists because of a rule that comes into effect only once every 400 years.

The first time this rule operated was on February 29th, 1600.

February 29th, 2000 will be only the second time this rule has ever come into effect. You will have to wait another 400 years, until February 29th, 2400, to see the next time it operates.

1999 November 11

Guysborough Gets Gates Gift

Public libraries in Guysborough County, Nova Scotia, are getting an injection of cash to buy computers, courtesy of Bill Gates of Seattle, U.S.A.. Mr. Gates is chairman of the board of directors, and the largest shareholder, of Microsoft Inc. Based on statistics that show a high rate of poverty in the county, Guysborough's four branches are the only libraries in the Eastern Counties region that will get computers from the Gates Library Initiative, says Eastern Counties Regional Library chief executive officer Linda Travis. The Gates Library Initiative, part of a larger program for donating money to education, was founded in 1997 by Gates and his wife Melinda. According to Gates' personal website, the program seeks "to partner with public libraries to bring access to computers, the Internet, and digital information for patrons in low-income communities in the United States and Canada."

Travis says each branch in the county probably will get at least one computer. The branch libraries in Guysborough County are at Canso, Mulgrave, Sherbrooke and Guysborough. Grants of about $5000 per computer will provide hardware, software, Internet connection, and a package of training and technical support. In Canada, funding is being allocated by province, Travis said. "Once the announcement was made that his foundation was going to be funding computers in libraries, both in the States and in Canada, Nova Scotia obviously was interested in obtaining some of the funding for its libraries." A small group of people from across the province have recently attended a training session in Seattle and will help to install public-access computers in libraries, she adds.

Nova Scotia's share of the funding will be divided among public libraries according to a formula based on poverty statistics. "Eligibility is based on a poverty threshold of 17.6 percent or higher, based on the Poverty Profile 1996 report issued by the National Council of Welfare in the spring of 1998," according to the Gates website. Funding is aimed at low-income communities "where the need is the greatest and the fewest people have computers and Internet access at home," states the website. Rather than replace existing funding from government and other sources, gates' website explains, the Gates funding should serve as a catalyst for government, business, foundations, and individuals to support public libraries.

Guysborough County Journal, 11 November 1999
Eastern Counties Regional Library website
Bill Gates' personal website
Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation website
Libraries and Access to Information
Gates Library Initiative
Gates Library Initiative Projects in Canada

1999 November 12

Largest Movie Theatre Complex East of Toronto

Empire Theatres Ltd. today opened a new phase of the company's Bayers Lake movie theatre complex in the Bayers Lake Industrial Park on the western outskirts of Halifax. The addition includes five wide-screen auditoriums with high-back seats, digital sound, and expanded legroom. The new section also includes a separate six-station concession stand and extra washroom facilities. The expansion brings to 3,800 the number of seats in the complex, with 18 screens including Atlantic Canada's only IMAX theatre. This is the largest cinema complex east of Toronto. Empire Theatres remains Canada's only 100 percent Canadian-owned movie exhibition company, with locations in Nova Scotia (Halifax, Dartmouth, Bedford, New Minas, New Glasgow, Truro, Amherst, Yarmouth, and Sydney), New Brunswick (Fredericton, Saint John, and Dieppe), Prince Edward Island (Charlottetown), and Newfoundland (St. John's, Mount Pearl, and Corner Brook). The company will open a new 12-screen venue in St. John's on 10th December.

Empire Theatres operated 109 screens as of 9 September 1999. Boxoffice Magazine's Directory of North America's 56 Largest Movie Circuits Ranked by Size (as of 1 January 1998) places Empire as 37th, up from 41st twelve months earlier. Boxoffice reports the executive roster as: Stuart G. Fraser, President, Kevin MacLeod, Director Theatre Operations, Brian MacLeod, Concessions, Greg MacNeil, Film Buyer, and Dean Leland, Director Advertising. The company was founded in 1984, and has its headquarters at 115 King Street, Stellarton, Nova Scotia.

Empire Theatres Ltd. is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Empire Company Ltd. Empire Company Ltd. was incorporated under the Companies Act of Nova Scotia on February 12, 1963. Predecessors of Empire had been carrying on business since 1907. As at April 30, 1999, Empire Company Ltd. had approximately 33,000 full-time and part-time employees. Empire Company Ltd. stock trades on the Toronto Stock Exchange under the ticker symbol EMP.A — as of 12 November the 52-week low is $24.40 and the high is $32.95. The stock closed Friday, 12 November at $28.85, up 60¢ from the previous close. The trading volume for the week was 280,200 shares.

Halifax Daily News, 12 November 1999
National Post, 12 November 1999

1999 November 12

Ingonish Cable TV Changes

On this day, the CRTC approved an application by Ultra Tek Cable Limited, Ingonish, Victoria County, to amend the licence for the radiocommunication distribution undertaking serving Ingonish, by authorizing Ultra Tek to: The Commission noted that Ultra Tek will use the currently authorized channels and the following additional channels — 32, 42, 48, 53 and 56, each with a transmitter power of 10 watts — for the distribution of all of these services.
Source: CRTC Decision 1999-489, 12 November 1999

Glenn Warren is the sole director of Ultra Tek Cable Limited [RJSC ID#3000802] 15 Kings Point Road, Ingonish. Mr. Warren also holds the positions of president, secretary and treasurer.
Source: Nova Scotia Registry of Joint Stock Companies [RJSC]
Note: In August 2000 the RJSC database was moved to

1999 November 16

Gates Gives $809,000 to Nova Scotia Libraries

Fifty-six of Nova Scotia's public libraries will soon have more computers and increased Internet access thanks to an $809,000 gift from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Education Minister Jane Purves announced today. Separately, Microsoft Canada will donate software with a retail value of $327,000 to the libraries receiving grants. The grant, part of the Gates Library Initiative, is intended to increase technology access for people who would otherwise not have access to computers and the Internet. "On behalf of the people of Nova Scotia, I want to thank Bill and Melinda Gates for their generosity," Purves said. "The Gates Library Initiative will provide more access to technology and the Internet, particularly to those who need access the most."

The partnership between Nova Scotia and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation began in October of 1998 with the launch of the Canadian grant program. Public libraries in many Nova Scotia communities are eligible to receive grants to purchase computer hardware and technology training for library staff. The grant will provide funding for 114 Internet workstations and the establishment of four regional training centres at libraries in Yarmouth, Halifax, Truro and Sydney starting in the spring of 2000. Staff training and technical support are included. According to a July 1999 Statistics Canada study, individuals in the highest-income households are nearly five times more likely to regularly access the Internet than those in the lowest-income households. The goal of the Gates Initiative is to partner with provincial, territorial and state public libraries to provide access to technology for everyone. "Our public libraries play an important role in educating people of all ages," Purves said. "This gift, combined with our ongoing initiative of providing public and student access to the Internet, will give more Nova Scotians the tools they need to gain knowledge and find jobs in the growing information economy."

In both the United States and Canada, grants from the Foundation are targeted toward libraries that serve low-income communities. Canadian libraries serving populations where 17.6 per cent or more of the population live in poverty are eligible for Foundation grants. Figures were determined by the Poverty Profile 1996 report issued by the National Council of Welfare. The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation places a major focus on helping to improve people's lives through global health and learning. Since the inception of the Gates Library Initiative in 1997, the foundation has awarded grants of more than $35,000,000 to 2,200 libraries in the United States and Canada.

The Gates have donated about $15,000,000,000 this year to their Foundation, now the biggest charitable fund in the United States with assets of $17,000,000,000. That reduced Mr. Gates total wealth to $77,500,000,000 as of 28 September 1999, but he remains the world's richest man, comfortably ahead of Warren Buffett of Omaha, Nebraska, chairman of Berkshire Hathaway, who ranks number two with a fortune of about $36,000,000,000 (the amounts in this paragraph are stated in U.S. dollars). When figuring Mr. Gates' worth, it is necessary to state the date because his wealth consists almost wholly of Microsoft shares which often vary — up or down — in price by two or three dollars from one day to the next; each one-dollar change, up or down, in the price of Microsoft shares means about one billion dollars, increase or decrease, in Mr. Gates' fortune.

For Western Counties Regional Library the grant will provide funding for the establishment of a regional training centre in Yarmouth, and new computers and printers for its branches in Digby, Lockeport, Shelburne, Westport, Weymouth, and Yarmouth. The new computers will all be loaded with popular Microsoft programs. Software may include: Word, Excel, Powerpoint, Access, Publisher, Frontpage, Bookshelf, Encarta Reference Suite, Internet Explorer 5.0. (The list is subject to change based on final system test and license negotiations.) The target date for the installation of the new computers is spring 2000.

The regional libraries have a choice of ordering the computers directly from Gateway, the Foundations partner in the project, or using the money to buy the workstations locally. The package provided by Gateway is very impressive. The computers (Pentium III/600 MHz) are fully loaded with software (e.g. Windows NT, Office 2000, Bookshelf 2000, Internet Explorer, Encarta Reference Suite 2000, Encarta Africana 2000, and Norton Virus scan) and come with extensive training and support manuals. Libraries buying locally will be required to purchase equipment that is comparable in quality and capacity and will not receive the software from Microsoft. It is anticipated that the public access computers and training labs will be installed during March and April 2000. The number of workstations provided to each eligible library is based on the population of each community. Each library also receives a printer. Those libraries receiving four or more workstations also receive a web server to promote the development of digital information. In addition, hardware and software for two help desks are being donated by the Gates Foundation to the Nova Scotia Provincial Library.

Yarmouth Vanguard, 23 November 1999
Kentville Advertiser, 23 November 1999
National Post, 25 November 1999
Nova Scotia Dept. of Education media release, 6 Nov. 1999
Western Counties Regional Library media release, 18 Nov. 1999

Gates Library Initiative at

Nova Scotia Libraries Eligible for a Grant
from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

Reference: Nova Scotia Libraries Eligible...

Western Counties Regional Library

A training centre in Yarmouth, plus new computers, printers, and software for six Western Counties Regional Library branches in Digby, Westport, Weymouth, Lockeport, Shelburne, and Yarmouth, will become a reality next year thanks to the recently announced gift from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to Nova Scotia public libraries. The new computers and the training centre will mean greater access to job banks for those seeking work, to reference sources, specialized training programs for community groups, and better learning facilities for staff. The Regional Library's automation trainer, Verna DeVillier, was part of the Nova Scotia team which participated in a recent five-day training skills program hosted by the Gates Centre for Technology Access in Seattle, Washington. The target date for the installation of the new equipment and training centre is next spring.
[Digby Courier, 24 November 1999]

1999 November 17

Nova Scotia's Telegraphs, Landlines and Cables
Included in
U.K.'s National Maritime Museum Online Catalogue

The online article Nova Scotia's Telegraphs, Landlines and Cables, by D.G. Whidden of Wolfville, Nova Scotia, has been included in Port, an electronic information service from the Centre for Maritime Research, National Maritime Museum (NMM), Greenwich, England. Port helps you find information relating to maritime studies on the World Wide Web. Internet resources have been specially selected and described, and users can either search or browse the catalogue of resources. The subject coverage ranges from naval construction to marine pollution, safety at sea to voyages of exploration. The catalogue currently contains some 890 resources, and this number continues to grow. The catalogue's coverage is predominantly UK, but over time this too is expanding. The catalogue of resources is at the core of the gateway, but Port also provides easy access to a range of related electronic services developed by the Centre for Maritime Research. Port aims to provide a service of improved access to quality-assured information on the Internet for maritime studies. Port is a selective gateway which does not aim for comprehensive coverage of maritime-related Internet resources, but for coverage of only the highest quality resources available within the maritime field. Every resource has been selected and described by a librarian or subject specialist.

Port's description of Mr. Whidden's article reads as follows:

Nova Scotia's Telegraphs, Landlines and Cables by D.G. Whidden gives a history of telegraphs and was originally published in 1938 in the Wolfville Acadian. It is part of a site dedicated to the history of communications in Nova Scotia. After looking at landlines, the Nova Scotia Electric Telegraph Company, the Dominion and the Montreal Telegraph Companies, the Canadian Pacific Railway and Canadian National Telegraphs, the article turns to submarine cables. This describes the first attempts at laying submarine telegraph cables in the area. The article looks at the achievements of Frederick Newton Gisborne and the Atlantic Cable Company, which went on to successfully lay a cable from Ireland to Newfoundland. The article contains numerous quotations from contemporary newspapers. The article contains a biography of the inventor of the submarine telegraph system, Frederick Newton Gisborne.

Sources: The NMN's website, at
and the NMN's What's-New file, 18 November 1999, at
also the NMM's Quality and Selection Policy, at

Note: In 1999, the item titled Nova Scotia's Telegraphs, Landlines
and Cables
ran on a server  located in  Edinburgh,  Scotland,  and
thus qualified as being a UK source.  However, the editorial control
of this  website  was/is  located  entirely in  Canning,  Nova  Scotia.

Nova Scotia's Telegraphs, Landlines and Cables
Current location

1999 November 17

Conversion of Radio Station CIGO to FM

On this day, the CRTC approved the application by MacEachern Broadcasting Limited of Port Hawkesbury, to replace the existing Port Hawkesbury AM radio station CIGO with a new English-language FM station operating on the carrier frequency 101.5 MHz, channel 268B, with an effective radiated power of 19,000 watts. CIGO has operated as an AM (amplitude modulation) station on the frequency 1410 kHz since it began operating in October 1975.

MacEachern Broadcasting president Bob MacEachern said he is optimistic the station can begin FM (frequency modulation) broadcasting as early as January 2000. "The timeline is a little fuzzy now, but we know it's going to be early in the new year," MacEachern told the Port Hawkesbury Reporter. "We expect to have towers erected in the next two weeks, and antenna systems have been ordered, along with the transmitter and some generating equipment. Most of the ordering has been completed, and it's now a matter of those orders being filled and us getting the equipment here and doing installation." CIGO will eventually leave the AM band, but the station will simulcast on both the old AM frequency and the new FM frequency during the first six months of the FM transmission; this simulcasting has been allowed by the CRTC to allow longtime listeners to make the transition to the new frequency. The FM system will allow CIGO to increase its transmitter power from the present 10,000 watts to 19,000, thanks to a new transmitter in Auld's Cove and a secondary transmitter in the Port Hawkesbury Business Park, replacing the station's existing AM tower in Troy.

MacEachern Broadcasting stated to the CRTC that the purpose of the application was to replace its existing aging AM transmission equipment and to improve the quality of service to CIGO's coverage area. CIGO currently offers an adult/contemporary format, and plans to maintain this format on the new FM station. When construction has been completed and the new station is ready to begin operation, the CRTC will issue a licence expiring 31 August 2004 (CIGO`s current expiry date). If the station is not constructed and ready to operate within twelve months of today's date, extensions may be granted provided that MacEachern applies in writing to the Commission before the twelve-month period expires. The Department of Industry has advised the Commission that this application is conditionally technically acceptable. The Department will only issue a Broadcasting Certificate once it has determined that the proposed technical parameters will not create any unacceptable interference with aeronautical NAV/COM (navigation and/or communication) services.

Port Hawkesbury Reporter, 23 November 1999
CRTC Decision 1999-492, 17 November 1999

MacEachern Broadcasting Limited [RJSC ID#2259460], 11 MacIntosh Avenue, Port Hawkesbury Business Park, has two directors: Robert L. MacEachern and Brenda MacEachern, both of Port Hawkesbury. Robert L. MacEachern is president and secretary of the company.
Source: Nova Scotia Registry of Joint Stock Companies [RJSC]
Note: In August 2000 the RJSC database was moved to

1999 November 17

Trail Meeting to Discuss
Chester's Abandoned Railway

Trail consultants contracted by the Municipality of Chester are hosting a public meeting tonight (November 17th) at the Chester Basin Royal Canadian Legion to discuss developing 46 kilometres of abandoned rail line from Hubbards to Martins River for recreational use. The non-profit Aspotogan Trails Association is already developing the first 11 kilometres of rail line from Hubbards to East River into a multi-use trail, which the municipality, through the recreation department, is also supporting. The consultants are Gordon Ratcliffe Landscape Architects in association with Griffiths Muecke. Chester Municipal Council wants to determine if there is public support for such a project, what issues particular to trail development do residents want addressed and what are the costs involved. The municipality is particularly interested in hearing from abutting landowners, individuals and groups, like the Aspotogan association, who are willing to assist the effort and potential trail users of all types. Following the legion meeting, a project newsletter will be prepared and circulated and a series of smaller community meetings will be scheduled. Other issues include possible trail surfaces, bridges, drainage and public safety. The Aspotogan Trails Association is upgrading an eleven-kilometre trail that follows the abandoned Halifax & Southwestern Railway line between Hubbards and East River. Trailblazers along the multipurpose trail will be guided through wilderness areas and past coastal views by interpretive and directional signs. They will also enjoy access to picnic areas and other amenities. The trail should eventually become part of a 24-kilometre trail system that connects Queensland Beach Provincial Park to the east and Graves Island Provincial Park to the west. In addition to significant municipal and community support, the trails association has received $50,000 through the Nova Scotia Trails Destination Project. Human Resources Development Canada has contributed $11,000 while the Nova Scotia Sport and Recreation Commission has provided $52,500.
Lunenburg Progress-Enterprise, 17 November 1999
and http://www.gov.ns.ca/news/details.asp?id=19991109012

1999 November 19

Price of Gasoline Rises

On this day, the average price of gasoline in Halifax was 66.9¢ per litre, compared to 59.9¢ per litre on 6 July 1999.
[Halifax Chronicle-Herald, 24 November 1999]

1999 November 19

An Oddity:   19/11/1999

Calendar Curiosity

A common style used for writing dates looks like this:  19/11/1999.  In this particular example, all digits are odd (not even).  There is nothing very unusual about a date which has all odd digits — there have been ten such dates in this month of November alone, from 1/11/1999 to 3/11/1999 to 5/11/1999 and so on.  There were ten more in September, eleven in July, etc.  But there is something remarkable about 19/11/1999.  It won't happen again for more than a thousand years.  1,111 years and six weeks will go by before such a date will occur again.  After today, the next date with all odd digits will be 1/1/3111.

Is it possible for dates with all even digits to occur?  Yes, and these are not rare.  Next February there will be nine dates with all even digits, from 2/2/2000 to 4/2/2000 ... 28/2/2000.  There will be nine more in April, again in June, and so on.  But 2 February 2000 is notable for this:  It is the first such date since 28/8/888, more than a thousand years ago.

oddity   peculiar, strange, unusual

1999 November 22

Amherst Confident Y2K Bug Will Not Be A Problem

Emergency Generators Installed,
Extra Police Scheduled for New Year's Eve

Amherst isn't worried about any Y2K gremlin spoiling its millennium party. "I can confidently say that the Town of Amherst will be an excellent place to celebrate millennium events," says Anika Shipley, spokeswoman for the town's Year 2000 planning committee. On this day, Ms. Shipley told Town Council that staff "have identified critical scenarios and have developed steps to deal with them. Each essential service has been reviewed and tested for Y2K compliancy." Contingency plans are in place to ensure electricity, water, sewerage, traffic lights, and emergency communications are maintained in the event of a worst-case scenario. Ms. Shipley said only a massive electric power failure could affect Amherst, adding that's unlikely because Nova Scotia Power has assured its systems are Y2K compliant. But if the big utility's power system does fail, emergency generators will kick in at key locations to ensure the police and fire departments, as well as the Town's water and fuel supplies will continue to function. Extra police will be on duty to maintain home and business security. Amherst also has updated its emergency response plan and will hand out brochures containing tips to help residents prepare for any emergency, whether caused by a computer glitch or a snow storm or other cause.
[Excerpted from the Halifax Chronicle-Herald, 24 November 1999]

1999 November 24

MT&T Incorporation Act Amended

Bill 24
An Act to Amend Chapter 156 of the Acts of 1910,
an Act to Incorporate
the Maritime Telegraph and Telephone Company, Limited

On this day, Royal Assent was given to the following Act of the Nova Scotia Legislature:
1   Clause 14A(1)(a) of Chapter 156 of the Acts of 1910, An Act to Incorporate the Maritime Telegraph and Telephone Company Limited, as enacted by Chapter 73 of the Acts of 1990, is repealed.
[That's the entire text.]

Source: Bill No. 24 – An Act to Amend Chapter 156 of the Acts of 1910, An Act to Incorporate the Maritime Telegraph and Telephone Company Limited

Nova Scotia Legislature
Second Reading of Bill 24
An Act to Amend Chapter 156 of the Acts of 1910...

16 November 1999

Mr. Timothy Olive, (Dartmouth South):
    Mr. Speaker, I would like to move second reading of An Act to Amend Chapter 156 of the Acts of 1910, an Act to Incorporate the Maritime Telegraph and Telephone Company, Limited.

Mr. Speaker:
    The honourable Leader of the New Democratic Party.

Mr. Robert Chisholm:
    Mr. Speaker, I was just wondering if the member who is sponsoring this bill would take a few moments and explain to members of this House the reason behind the introduction of this bill.  I would certainly appreciate it.  I have a little bit of information, but I think there are other people here who would like to learn more about this bill, and the member for Dartmouth South could help us.  I say this intervention in the form of a question.  I wonder would the member for Dartmouth South mind getting to his feet to answer that question.

Mr. Speaker:
    The honourable member for Dartmouth South.

Mr. Timothy Olive:
    I would be very pleased to, Mr. Speaker.  I thank the member for the question and for the comment.  Yes, I did do a little research on this because I anticipated that I might be asked the question.  As you may be well aware, the Maritime Telegraph and Telephone Company, way back in 1910, passed a private Act to incorporate the company.  Subsequent to that and in recent time, as a matter of fact, you are probably also aware that the Maritime Telegraph and Telephone Company has amalgamated with three other major organizations in Atlantic Canada.  The actual Clause 14A(1)(a) of Chapter 156, makes reference to the fact that the company is directly or indirectly controlled by Maritime Telegraph and Telephone Company Limited and that clause is, in fact, being eliminated because it is no longer controlled by Maritime Telegraph and Telephone Company Limited.  I hope that clarifies the matter for the honourable member. (Applause)

Source: Nova Scotia Hansard, 16 November 1999, page 2144

1999 November 25

Southwest Regional School Board
School Cancellation Announcements

We have reached that time of year when schools may be cancelled due to inclement weather and dangerous road conditions. The decision to cancel school is arrived at through a consultative process involving a number of individuals located in different geographic areas of the Eastern Zone (Lunenburg and Queens Counties) and the Western Zone (Shelburne, Yarmouth and Digby Counties). Factors which are taken into consideration are weather and road conditions, weather forecasts and, above all the safety of students walking to school, waiting for a school bus by the roadside, or traveling in school busses to and from school. Weather conditions can vary greatly from area to area and can change significantly within a few hours.

The decision to close school will normally be made by 6:30am and the following radio and television stations will be immediately notified to announce cancellations: Designated Board staff will notify media outlets regarding cancellations. To limit the possibility of a prank caller canceling school we will always quote a prearranged password.

Southwest Regional School Board news release, 25 November 1999

Reference: Southwest Regional School Board, Yarmouth

1999 November 30

Cape Breton Genealogy Goes Electronic

A Cape Breton genealogical centre will soon begin an electronic make-over of its archives, easing the workload for researchers worldwide looking for Nova Scotia connections. The Roots Cape Breton Genealogy and Family History Centre will hire nine employees to develop an interactive website and convert more than 90,000 records into electronic form over the next three years. Funding for the project was announced today. The government of Canada will invest $169,554 through Human Resources Development Canada and $105,625 through Enterprise Cape Breton Corp. Roots Cape Breton will also receive $25,000 through the province's Community Opportunities Fund, a program of Nova Scotia Economic Development designed to support projects with significant long-term benefits to a local economy. The Municipality of Victoria County and the Nova Scotia Highland Village Society will each contribute $4,300 toward the project. The Nova Scotia Highland Village Society started Roots Cape Breton almost 10 years ago in response to the increasing popularity of genealogy in Victoria County. Among its archives are digital census records, conventional census accounts, birth and marriage records, formal and informal family histories, published and unpublished community records, and church documentation.

The Nova Scotia Highland Village Society, established in 1959, is a non-profit organization dedicated to protecting, interpreting and furthering the buildings and artifacts at the Nova Scotia Highland Village Site in Iona, and to preserving and promoting the Scottish Highland culture in Nova Scotia. The village includes an Outdoor Pioneer Museum, the Roots Cape Breton Genealogy and Family History Centre and Highland Village Gift Shop and Outdoor Entertainment and Theatre facility. The village attracted more than 43,000 visitors between 1998 and 1999, of which about half were from outside Nova Scotia. The Highland Village Society currently employs about twenty people and is complemented by a board of directors and group of volunteers.

Government Media Release 19991130002

[Reference link added 27 January 2002, then linked to an archived copy 29 May 2011]
Go To:   Highland Village, a living history museum and cultural centre that celebrates the Gaelic experience in Nova Scotia
This is a bilingual website, English and Gaelic.

1999 November 30   12:00 noon AST

Network Television
Arrives On The Internet

At 11:00am Toronto time, a new television service began broadcasting over the Internet. The company, iCraveTV.com, began sending 17 channels free of charge to anyone in the world who had the computer setup and bandwidth to receive the signal. The company is blazing a new trail in cyberspace, by grabbing the signals of Global, CTV, and other Canadian and United States broadcasters and retransmitting them on the Net. Kevin Shea, president of Global, said the networks weren't contacted until faxed letters were received a few minutes before the broadcasts began. In the letters, William Craig, president of iCraveTV.com, said he would be contacting broadcast executives in the next few days "to discuss ways in which we can work together to enhance your station's presence on the Internet."

"I think many of us foresaw a day when someone would try and create what looks like a cable company out of the aether," said Mr. Shea. "But not this soon, so we're a bit stunned." He said the new company's operation raises critical copyright issues, including how much a broadcaster pays a show's creator for the right to air it, and what happens if someone else extends the show's reach beyond the area the broadcaster paid for. "We are examining both the legal and regulatory implications of this with other folks in the industry, other Canadian networks that were given notice today," he said. "The only remedies ultimately are going to be somewhere premised in either laws or regulations."

When cable television first came on the scene some thirty years ago, extending the reach of over-the-air broadcasters, there were confrontations and lawsuits that evolved into new regulations, he said. For example, broadcasters had to pay more for shows, but they won the right to substitute their feeds, including commercials they had been paid to air, on U.S. channels that were broadcasting the same show. Despite the shaky quality of iCraveTV.com, Mr. Shea said the concern is real. "In the days, weeks, years to come, the transmission is only going to get better."

iCraveTV.com requires a PC (personal computer) video reader and can only be displayed on a corner of a PC screen, since the image is composed of a reduced number of pixels. The company's website states that, to view the show, the user needs either RealPlayer G2 or RealPlayer Plus plug-in, and a relatively fast internet connection, at least a 56k modem connection, but the company recommends cable modems or ADSL (ADSL, asymmetrical digital subscriber lines, are available from telephone companies in some locations.) Viewers with IBM-compatible computers should have, as a minimum, a Pentium 200MHz MMX processor, with 32 megabytes of RAM, running Windows 95/98/NT. For the audio component, any soundcard with speakers will be adequate. One of the ordinary browsers, Netscape Communicator or Microsoft's Internet Explorer, will serve the purpose, but the viewer should obtain the latest version. The site can only accommodate 100,000 viewers at a time so far, but Mr. Craig said it has attracted tremendous initial interest. He said the site received more hits in its first day than major Internet-access company Yahoo Inc.

National Post, 1 December 1999
and http://www.iCraveTV.com/

Company Incorporated in Nova Scotia

iCraveTV.com is owned and operated by TVRadioNow Corporation [RJSC ID#3033729] , which was incorporated as a Nova Scotia unlimited liability company on 29 September 1999. The company's registered office is at 1959 Upper Water Street in Halifax. Kirby J. Campbell is president and William R. Craig is secretary. Both are directors of TVRadioNow Corporation. Their civic address is One Armstrong Place, Butler, Pennsylvania.
Source: Nova Scotia Registry of Joint Stock Companies [RJSC]
Note: In August 2000 the RJSC database was moved to

The seventeen channels are:
   2   NBC     http://www.nbc.com/
   3   NewVR   http://www.chumcity.com/newvr/
   4   CBS     http://www.cbs.com/
   5   CBC     http://www.tv.cbc.ca/
   6   Global  http://www.canwestglobal.com/
   7   ABC     http://abc.go.com/
   9   CTV     http://www.ctv.ca/
  11   OnTV    http://www.ontv.ca/
  17   PBS          
  19   TVO     http://www.tvo.org/
  23   PBS          
  25   SRC     http://radio-canada.ca/
  29   FOX     http://www.foxnetwork.com/
  36   CTS     http://crossroads.ca/
  47   CFMT-TV  Toronto  http://www.ultimatetv.com/tv/ca/on/cfmt.html
  49   WB      http://www.tv.warnerbros.com/
  57   CITY    http://www.citytv.com/
Source:  http://www.iCraveTV.com/tv/listings.html

iCraveTV.com Defies Ultamatims
From Broadcasters and Producers

NFL Issues Warning to iCraveTV.com
Not To Broadcast Games

Upstart Raises Hackles of Broadcasters

The Canadian Association of Broadcasters (CAB), representing private radio and television stations, has demanded that a new Internet service stop carrying broadcast signals on the Internet. iCraveTV.com is showing nine Canadian and eight United States TV stations on its website. These 17 stations can be received by anyone in the world who has a high-speed Internet connection and suitable computer hardware and software. The received signal has good-quality audio, but the video signal produces a picture that is small and often grainy — a short-term condition that no doubt will be improved as greater bandwidth becomes available in the coming months.

In an open letter dated 3 December, [available at the time at http://www.cab-acr.ca/new/nr_dec0399.htm] the CAB warned William Craig, president of TVRadioNow Corporation, owner and operator of the iCraveTV.com website, that he had until 5:00pm Monday, 6 December, to cease and desist what it called "unlawful streaming of broadcasters' signals" or face further legal action. "iCraveTV.com isn't playing by the rules," says Michael McCabe, president and CEO of the Canadian Association of Broadcasters (CAB). "They have neither sought nor obtained permission to use our signals. To suggest otherwise is a misrepresentation of the facts." McCabe, speaking for the nine Canadian broadcasters, says iCraveTV.com is violating a host of copyright and trademark issues with the Internet service. The nine Canadian TV stations are owned by CHUM Limited, the Global Television Network, the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, TVOntario, and CTV Television Limited. The letter: "Broadcasters aren't trying to prevent anyone from lawfully accessing their signals. iCraveTV.com violated a host of copyright and trademark issues in launching their new Internet service. Additionally, the inferior quality of the signal provided by iCraveTV.com doesn't meet the high standard set by Canada's broadcasters and expected by Canada's viewers. Broadcasters have made significant investments in their signals and their programming. iCraveTV.com is expropriating those signals and those programs without permission and to the detriment of the brands broadcasters have carefully built over the years."

The Canadian Film and Television Production Association (CFTPA) served a notice, identical to the CAB letter, to stop what they call an illegal infringement of producers' rights under the Copyright Act. The CFTPA is a non-profit, trade association representing more than 300 companies involved in Canada's independent production industry, including Alliance Atlantis Communications, Great North Productions, Salter Street Films, Temple Street Productions, Sound Venture Productions, Motion International, Minds Eye Pictures, Ellis Enterprises, Crescent Entertainment, Keatley Films, Breakthrough Film & Television, Triptych Media, Shaftesbury Films, Upstart Pictures, Pacific Motion Pictures, Film East, Filmo Bandito, Pan Pacific Productions, Caltalyst Entertainment, Galafilm, Imagex, and White Iron.

iCraveTV.com has also raised the hackles of U.S. broadcasters. "We are very concerned," said Ben Ivins, senior associate general counsel at the National Association of Broadcasters. Craig's service, launched on 30 November, is supplied to all free of charge. The company hopes to obtain revenue from banner ads placed on its website. Craig, a former employee with Rogers Communications, Fox Sports, and the CRTC, says he has forwarded the CAB's letter to his own lawyers to study the broadcasters' concerns. "We remain quite confident and we've seen nothing here that causes us to alter our views or course. The broadcasters need to understand a bit better about what we're doing, and what we're doing is helping them to distribute their signals more effectively. They're looking a gift horse in the mouth." The CRTC decided earlier this year not to regulate broadcasting on the Internet.

The National Football League has warned iCraveTV.com to stop broadcasting NFL games. "Any transmission of NFL broadcasts would infringe upon NFL copyrights," said Brian McCarthy, and NFL spokesman. "TVRadioNow Corp. is clearly infringing on our clients' copyrights and trademarks," David Kent, a lawyer with MacMillan Binch, wrote in the letter ordering iCraveTV.com to cease and desist.

National Post, 4 December 1999
Halifax Daily News, 4 December 1999
The Globe and Mail, 7 December 1999

Also: iCraveTV.com http://www.iCraveTV.com/

Canadian Association of Broadcasters (CAB)
CAB: Radio's Role on The Information Highway
(As of 8 December 1999, the CAB's website contains nothing
about Television's Role on The Information Highway.)

Canadian Film and Television Production Association (CFTPA)
British Columbia Producers' Branch of the CFTPA

Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC)

Global Television Network
CanWest Global Communications Corporation
National Football League (United States)

McMillan Binch

CHUM Limited does not have a website (none found after extensive searching).

A Wake-Up Call for Broadcasters

...Canada's broadcasting industry has long been dominated by a swaggering old-guard, ultra-conservative male club. Most have hard-knocks backgrounds in sales and marketing, not programming, and their business instincts are still stubbornly emerging from the 1960s. Their idea of the future is the next release of the Nielsen ratings. Prodding this bonus-bloated bunch into the brave new digital world isn't easy. It's hard to turn the Queen Mary. But that's exactly what Michael McCabe, head of Canada's private broadcasting lobby, attempted to do early in November 1999 at the Canadian Association of Broadcasters' annual industry powwow in Montreal. The chosen catalyst: an external consultant's report, titled FuturePlan, warning of the revolutionary changes ahead. "Our industry is poised to change more in the next ten years than it has in the last fifty," Mr. McCabe said... Today, Mr. McCabe's difficult task is to impose a single vision on an industry whose biggest players are battling bitterly amongst themselves and, moreover, adopting different survival strategies for an uncertain future... It may be hard to turn the Queen Mary, but it's better than rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic.

Matthew Fraser, in the National Post, 9 November 1999. Dr. Fraser is professor of communications, School of Radio and Television Arts, Ryerson Polytechnic University, Toronto. He writes a regular column for the National Post on developments and trends in electronic communications.

FuturePlan: Beyond 2000
Ken Goldstein, consummate industry insider and futurist, and President of Communications Management Inc., drafted the CAB's wide-ranging FuturePlan.

Believed to be the First in North America

    Subject: News - Morning Coffee Edition 12/09/1999
    From: InfoBeat <news@infobeat.com>
    Date: Thu, 09 Dec 1999 05:49:50 MST

TORONTO (Associated Press) — The name says it all. ICraveTV.com is a new service that pulls television signals out of the air and broadcasts them over the Internet, to the chagrin of the TV networks. Launched last week, the free service allows consumers to click on a Web site menu for 17 channels, including U.S. networks ABC, NBC and CBS and the Canadian giant, CBC. A grainy image the size of a passport photo pops up in the corner of the computer screen with the "real-time" broadcast of the chosen station, just like on any television set. With industry giants such as Microsoft working to merge Internet and television use, creators of the Canadian service, believed to be the first of its kind in North America, hope to gain a foothold in a market they expect to expand exponentially as technology improves.

In May 2000, Mr. Craig said that the name iCraveTV.com stands for Internet Canadian Radio And Video Entertainment.
[National Post, 4 May 2000]

1999 November 30

Building Schools on the Web

The Southwest Regional School Board's website now allows the public an opportunity to view progress of school construction, including Digby Regional High School and three new P3 schools under way. A recently-added link, called New School Construction, on the Board's website offers a series of photographs of the various projects. "Our communities are excited to see much-needed schools being built," says Board Superintendent Ann Jones. "This link provides a convenient method for our public to view the projects as they progress." A statement last week from the Board said photographs will be updated monthly, and the link will be expanded by the addition of highlights from the monthly project management team meetings. Aside from work at DRHS, construction is going on at three other P3 schools in the Board's jurisdiction: Bayview Academy (P-9) in Mahone Bay, Lunenburg County; Aspotogan Consolidated Elementary School (P-5) at Mill Cove, Lunenburg County; and Forest Ridge Academy (P-6) in Barrington, Shelburne County.
[Digby Courier, 8 December 1999]

Southwest Regional School Board's website
SRSB news releases
New School Construction
Aspotogan Consolidated Elementary School photos (new building)
Bayview Community School photos (new building)
Forest Ridge Academy photos (new building)
Digby Regional High School photos (major renovation)

"P3" is a term that has been widely used in
Nova Scotia in the last few years, to refer to
a new arrangement, Public-Private Partnership,
for financing new schools.

1999 November 30

Annapolis County is Ready for Y2K, Authorities Say

The Town of Annapolis Royal will have extra staff
on duty at midnight in case something happens

The Annapolis County Emergency Measures Organization held a meeting on this day to address concerns about their preparedness for what might happen on New Year's Eve. With the possibility of computer crashes, power outages, and anarchy looming over this year's New Year Eve, EMO coordinator Reg Ritchie says his organization is prepared for whatever happens. With only a month to go before the end of the millennium, the county says it's ready for whatever Y2K problems arise. The police, and power and telephone companies also report they will be ready when the clocks turn at midnight December 31st. In addition to the contingency plans laid out for the area, Ritchie explains that their operations centre will be tied in with its provincial counterpart in Halifax. In Halifax, Ritchie says, they will monitor what happens in other countries like New Zealand to see what happens there before it happens here. He adds that despite concerns from Annapolis Community Health Centre, the sewage and water systems should be sufficient if the pumps lose electric power.

Bridgetown RCMP Detachment commander Baxter Upshall says his constables have plans in place to move their operations should their detachment office lose power. He says their computers are Y2K compliant and they have enough fuel and communications gear in case of emergency. According to MTT representative Paula Minnikin, telephone communications won't be a problem. After testing and re-testing their systems, Minnikin says the company expects a seamless transition from 1999 to 2000. As for electricity, Nova Scotia Power representative Greg Carlin says they are as prepared as they are ever going to be. He explains that all the systems passed Y2K compliance tests last June. "Anything with a chip in it was the focus of testing," he says. "Everything passed." There may be worries about other regions like the New England states causing problems here because they're connected to the same electric power grid as Nova Scotia, but Carlin says it's not much of a factor. He points out that the Quebec ice storm two years ago wreaked havoc with that province's power grid, but Nova Scotia wasn't affected. With the only connection point with the United States being in New Brunswick, Carlin says the United States poses no significant problem. Ritchie himself says there's more to fear from an ice storm than from what might happen at the turn of the century. He says the operations centre won't even be manned unless an emergency occurs. He still advises residents to make preparations though. He says residents should prepare with extra clothing, bedding and portable lighting just in case.

As for manpower for the occasion, the essential service providers say they will have extra personnel on duty and on call should anything come up. Carlin says NSP will have crews on duty and more on call in case of power problems. Minnikin says MTT will keep more staff on call in case of emergency. Even the Town of Annapolis Royal will have extra staff on duty in case something happens in town. At the regular monthly meeting on 18 October, the Annapolis Royal Town Council approved a motion by councillor Adrien Nette to bring in two Public Works employees from 10:00pm to 2:00am on the night of December 31st, to be there in case of emergency.

[Annapolis Royal Spectator, 2 Nov. and 14 Dec. 1999]
[Bridgetown Monitor, 7 December 1999]
[Middleton Mirror-Examiner, 8 December 1999]

Go To:   History of Telegraph and Telephone Companies in Nova Scotia

Go To:   History of Railway Companies in Nova Scotia

Go To:   History of Electric Power Companies in Nova Scotia

Go To:   History of Automobiles in Nova Scotia

Go To:   Nova Scotia History, Chapter One

Go To:   Nova Scotia in the War of 1812

Go To:   Nova Scotia Historical Biographies

Go To:   Proclamations: Land Grants in Nova Scotia 1757, '58, '59

Go To:   Statutes of Nova Scotia, 1805, edited by Richard John Uniacke

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