For more than a decade now the Nashwaak Watershed Association has worked with the Dept of Environment and Local Government on a project to measure and classify the waters of the Nashwaak River as part of a larger project that was to eventually see all waters within the province classified according to agreed upon protocols (methods of measurement etc.)
Since 2003, a point at which we had completed all the required work and submitted it to government and were expecting the process to pass into law, we have been waiting.
We maintained a correspondence with the various ministers heading that department, and could never get either a “yes we will finish it” or “no we are not going to finish it” .
We were given no coherent reason for the stall and so, after looking at the existing laws asked for the Nashwaak to be classified by a provision within the law allowing for it to be done at the ministers discretion.
We were told that wasn’t possible. In fact we were told a number of things, until we felt we had no choice but to seek an opinion on the matter, as we felt there was possibly some other influence at work.
Last year, a group lead by the NWAI approached the Office of the Ombudsman asking for a review of the file and comments on whether or not the government was acting in good faith, or if we were in some way out of line expecting to have the Nashwaak classified.
On Friday the Ombudsman’s office tabled his report with the Clerk of the Legislature, and we have posted it here for you to read and judge for yourselves the behaviour of our governments under the last five premiers or so.
You might also note his conclusions on how protected our water is.
There is an election coming up this fall, and I suggest reading this report will give you cause to ask some direct question of your local candidates.
I advise doing so.
Thanks for your time.