Reflecting back on the past year, Pictou West MLA Charlie Parker is pleased with some of the accomplishments that have happened in the community, but has some more projects in mind for 2013.
As always roads are an important issue in rural parts of the county and he’s happy they were able to get a large number of roads improved in his riding during 2012, including 29 kilometres that were double chip sealed as well as numerous asphalt paving projects.
Of course they’re always more to be done. Among those scheduled for repaving this coming year are the Millbrook Road, Durham Road, Three Brooks Road, Alma Road, parts of the Trans Canada and a replacement bridge at Waterside.
Another major accomplishment for 2012 was the $1.4 million investment that’s been announced for upgrades at West Pictou Consolidated.
He, like many, was also happy to see the lumber mill in Scotsburn reopen.
Another major step forward for the county, including those in Pictou West, he said was seeing the Pictou County Wellness Centre completed. That will be a major benefit to all he said.
Also exciting for the community was the renaming of the Trans Canada 106 Hwy to Jubilee Highway.
“That’s special for the people of the area,”Parker said.“I give full credit to the Northumberland Monarchist group. They pushed hard for that.”
Although not entirely locally, Parker said he was glad to see the province was able to work out a deal to keep Port Hawkesbury Paper open.
“It certainly impacts back into Pictou County,”he said.
Looking ahead to 2013, there are several projects Parker wants to look at taking care of.
One issue he wants to see addressed in particular is finding a way to deal with the smell of emissions from the Northern Pulp plant on Abercrombie Point.
He said the province will be working with the company and the Department of Environment to find a solution that works for everyone.
“We’re hopeful to have a solution there in the new year,” he said.
He also plans to fight for keeping the River John school open. He said it is a community gathering pointing and one that impacts a large number of groups and organizations.
“It’s vital that it remain in the River John community,” he said.
Also with 2013, he said it’s likely there will be an election.