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The Shoreline Journal is a monthly community newspaper based in Bass River, Nova Scotia, and serving the Fundy Shore/Glooscap Trail from Truro to Parrsboro.   See submission deadlines...

Established in 1994, the paper was originally published as the West Colchester Free Press by Ken Kennedy Publications, and later renamed to The Shoreline Journal.  In January 2008 The Journal changed hands and is now under the management of  Maurice Rees.  He initiated a redesign of the paper, with the addition of several colour pages in each issue. Each monthly issue concentrates on the many community events which involve residents of all ages, from the elderly to the very young, and those young at heart.  A primary focus is those activities which involve students, whether it be school or 4-H club activities.

Maurice has extensive experience in the community newspaper & advertising field, and has been running several businesses in Maitland for the past few years. 

On-line issues:       This Month            Issue Archives - April 2009 to last month


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The Shoreline Journal understands that rural communities want to know about news and events in their communities, so that's our focus, the things that directly affect our subscribers, sponsors and customers.  Watch for regular items: 

Rees' Pieces (Publishers) Letters to the Editor Community Calendar
Heritage Notes Sports Events Classified Ads
Senior Affairs Nature Notes Credit Union News
MLA Activity Report Community Centres Fire Brigade
Favourite Pet Photo Parish News 4-H Clubs
Kitchen Korner Poems & Photos Obituaries
Front Page Briefs    

plus notes from many communities and organizations such as:

Bass River, CCJS Student Council, Chiganois, Debert Elementary, Debert Legion, Great Village, Londonderry Council, MacCarell Villa, Masstown, Onslow Belmont, skating clubs & other groups

The Shoreline Journal

September 2020


Rees' Pieces September 2020

- Managing expectations

Staff and elected official at the municipalities of Cumberland and Colchester now have several of the most difficulties jobs facing them. To avoid disappointment and a hasty rush to the finish line, they must manage the expectations of taxpayers and business owners on the implementation of high speed broadband and UNESCO Cliffs of Fundy GeoPark. Both initiatives will put the two counties far ahead of other provincial and national areas.

First, let’s look at the high speed broadband project as it is critical to all other things which will provide the opportunity for businesses to be more competitive; increase business relocation; ride the wave of increased interest in home-based business, and fulfill the dreams of those originally from the area who wish to return to their "roots" to continue, start a home-based, a stand alone business or retire.

Increases in population density will certainly be in the upward growth spiral as people wishing to get out of "larger urban areas" and "reclaim their sanity" by living in a rural area will discover broadband needs will be met with the final implementation of the $60.1-Million initiative.

Read the full editorial...

Broadband Agreement Signed

By Maurice Rees

The Municipalities of Colchester and Cumberland Counties appear ready to enter the history books as the first county-wide municipal districts to enter into a joint agreement to bring high speed broadband to all residents and businesses. A $60.1-Million project which has been in the works for approximately two years following an initial meeting held in Masstown.

The initial exploratory meeting, organized by The Shoreline Journal and MP, Bill Casey’s office, brought together Cumberland and Colchester municipal officials, MLA Karen Casey, then MP, Bill Casey and representatives from Develop Nova Scotia to discuss the concept of a two county wide proposal idea proposed by representatives from Xplornet.

Cumberland county councillors, acting on a staff recommendation, approved two motions in a public meeting on August 19th that approved Cumberland’s participation in the joint internet agreement with Xplornet authorizing the Warden and CAO to proceed. A second motion authorized the Warden and CAO to proceed with the project providing Colchester approved and wished to proceed with the same agreement.

Colchester council held a special "in-camera" meeting on August 20th, which reportedly would be dealing with the same subject matter. Details of the meeting’s results were not available at press-time, but the overall project was expected to meet council’s approval.

Although not confirmed by municipal representatives, the purpose of the August 20th Colchester meeting is more or less confirmed by Council Tom Taggart, a longtime proponent of high speed broadband, when he stated, "Tonight (August 20th) we have a council meeting and I am hopeful that we will be advised that we have finally completed negotiations with our service provider (Xplornet) and that we will be formally signing a contract to provide high speed, high quality broadband across both Colchester and Cumberland. It has been a long haul, but I believe the end is in sight". 

Other municipal sources confirmed Taggart allusions, and that with a month after receiving approval from Develop Nova Scotia, the $60.1-Million project will proceed. The entire build out is expected to take a little over two years.

Taggart’s column continued, "You can be sure that when that happens there will be public announcements with all the players attending. The next challenge will be managing expectations on timing as well as being provided with a tentative work schedule. This is a big contract and it will take time to get the fibre on the poles or in the ground. Once again as I have details I will be providing to residents".

The final implementation of two county-wide high speed broadband is anticipated to be an important component to significant increases in economic development by improving the competiveness of existing business and attracting new businesses. An additional component is increased residential development of those wishing to move to the areas to enjoy "rural county living" or those professionals who had moved to other geographical locations have built their careers and wish to return to their roots, and continuing their professional career.

Others may wish get out of the "big cities" cash in on higher real estate pricing and build a new home suitable to their needs, put money in the bank and start or continue their profession with a home based businesses.

Combined with the UNESCO approval of the Cliff’s of Fundy GeoPark, the area could see rapid growth over the next two decades. The ultimate success is dependent on the planning and visions developed on what is suitable for the two counties.

Goal: #1 GeoPark

By Maurice Rees

Devin Trefry, Rob Simmons, CAO Colchester County and John Calder, who initially formulated the initiative for the GeoPark, observe social distancing at the GeoPark announcement ceremonies. (Rees Photo)

The hard work will start soon to make the Cliffs of Fundy GeoPark the "#1 GeoPark in the World". In summer 20219, when two UNSECO evaluators travelled to Nova Scotia, they spoke very highly about the area and suggested it had the potential to be #1.

UNESCO was expected to announce the new GeoPark in March, but the CoVid-19 pandemic delayed the announcement until July. Even with social distancing and wearing masks, a ceremony to celebrate the Cliffs of Fundy GeoPark announcement was held at the Five Islands Lighthouse Park on Wednesday, August 5th.

The idea of a GeoPark was originally suggested about 10 years ago by Dr John Calder, Senior Geologist in NS, but has since retired and is now serving as president of the Canadian segment of the UNESCO Geopark Global Network. He expanded his thoughts to include staff at Fundy Geological Museum, staff and other interested citizens in Parrsboro area.

Over the years, the interest increased to include volunteers, community groups. As the process progressed, the Municipalities of Cumberland and Colchester became involved and added critical mass with Cumberland’s District 10 councillor, Don Fletcher serving as chair and Colchester’s Mayor Christine Blair as vice-Chair.

The announcement as one of five Geoparks in Canada is probably one of the most important economic development initiatives the area from Apple River to include the former Palliser site at the head of the Bay of Fundy will experience for several decades. The hype to be a very successful park and the successes it can bring to an area was provided by the UNESCO evaluators when they visited last summer, as outlined in next paragraph:

Dr Nickolas Zouros, president, Global GeoPark Network and credited as the founder of GeoParks lives in Lesvos, Greece. Both he and his colleague, Dr Asier Hilano, from Basque Coast, Spain, were overheard to state, if the Pallliser site would be included in the GeoPark it would be another asset to help make the Cliffs of Fundy the #1 GeoPark in the world.

Emcee, Bill Martin, Six Rivers News, called a number of people to the microphone to help celebrate the announcement and to provide a few words of encouragement including: Lenore Zann, MP, Cumberland-Colchester; Hon Karen Casey, MLA, Colchester North and Deputy Premier; Hon Leo Glavine, Minister of Communities, Culture and Heritage; Dr Don Julien, Executive Director, The Confederacy of Mainland Mi’kmag (CMMNS); Dr John Calder, President UNESCO Global Networks, Canada, and the province’s senior geologist, who initially formulated the idea of the geopark; Don Fletcher, Chair Cliffs of Fundy GeoPark committee and Cumberland councillor for District 10; Colchester Mayor Christine Blair, vice-chair Cliffs of Fundy committee; Cumberland Deputy Warden, Ernie Gilbert; Don Beattie, Parrsboro businessman and former committee chair and Tory Rushton, Cumberland South, MLA.

Several other people in the audience were also recognized by the Emcee Martin including former MP, Bill Casey and Devin Trefry from Municipality of Colchester who worked tirelessly on the committee in submitting updates to the final application.

In his brief remarks, Minister Leo Glavine, like many other speakers before him acknowledge: we are in the traditional territory of the Mi’kmaq people and one can see over 300 million years of history unfold before your eyes to experience the wonders of the cliffs including the oldest dinosaur fossils in Canada.

Minister Glavine pledged the Department of Communities, Culture and Heritage will protect, preserve and document the provinces shared history as it is very important as a tool to rural economic development. He noted within the GeoPark area two unique museums the Fundy Geological Museum, Parrsboro and the Joggins Fossil Centre, also a UNESCO designated location, showcase the very important role of Nova Scotia’s history.

Last summer, GeoPark committee members listened intently to the recommendations from the visiting UNESCO evaluators. For decades business and municipal leaders felt the shore was an important area, but still undiscovered. Locally, people were banking on the GeoPark designation raising the area’s profile and be a catalyst to increase economic well-being through tourism and not destroying the areas pristine assets. Globally some GeoParks have annual attendance of millions of visitors.

When the evaluators suggested a path to become #1 Geopark in the World capturing the interest of Millions of people, local committee members instantly realized they were on the right track and the Bay of Fundy shore between Apple River and Truro would quickly rise to be in the top three iconic areas in the province, rivaling Peggy’s Cove and Cape Breton for top spot.

The evaluators said the decision to include the site and other parts of Colchester as part of the GeoPark would be up to Municipal officials but that was the recommendation of the two GeoPark UNESCO appointed evaluators who visited Cumberland and Colchester areas for a two day evaluation tour on July 27 & 28, 2019.

The evaluators positive recommendation caused the UNESCO governing body to approve Cliffs of Fundy GeoPark as one of two new sites in Canada. The CoVid-19 pandemic has slowed down preparations and planning, but the hard work begins now to make Cliffs of Fundy GeoPark the #1 GeoPark in the world. Successful development could see millions of visitors come to the site, over the years, to experience the Bay of Fundy and the geological formations.


RCMP - Beirut Explosion Circle

The above graph shows the extent of damage if the recent Beirut Explosion were to occur in Halifax. The smaller inner circle, 3 KM red zone, would have devastated much of all peninsular Halifax all the way to the Northwest Arm. The north end of Halifax and Dartmouth would be heavily damaged. South end Halifax and downtown Dartmouth would have been heavily damaged. In the larger circle, 10 KM blue zone damage would have been report as far away as Spryfield, Herring Cove, Clayton Park, Beechville, Burnside, Cole Harbour and Eastern Passage. Both Nova Scotia 911 Emergency Communication Centers and RCMP Leadership HQ would be in the 3 KM circle of destruction according to the proposed RCMP plan to relocate the communications centre from Truro. (Submitted).

If Halifax was Beirut

Submitted by Bill Casey

NSBUZZ.ca has published an interesting map which indicates the area that would be devastated by an explosion in Halifax Regional Municipality similar to the Beirut explosion. Within that circle of devastation, 3 KM, as shown in the adjacent graphic, is one of the Nova Scotia 911 Emergency Call Centers and also the RCMP Headquarters for the Province of Nova Scotia. Both would be lost in such an event. 

The other 911 Emergency Communication center for Nova Scotia is now located a safe 100 kilometers away in Truro.

The new RCMP plan is to move the Truro 911 Emergency Communication Center from Truro into that 3 KM circle of destruction near the other 911 Emergency Communication Center which is already there. In the event of a disaster in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia will lose both 911 Emergency Communication Centers and the RCMP Headquarters at the same time.  

Why would anyone do that?

All leading authorities in emergency communications rate "geographic separation" as the primary requirement for a safe emergency communication system. Nova Scotia has that "geographic separation" now but the RCMP are eliminating it in a giant step backwards. 

This proposal puts all Nova Scotians at unnecessary risk and should be reversed. One catastrophic event in Dartmouth will render the entire province without 911 emergency service and RCMP emergency leadership.   

Former MP, Bill Casey continues to fight to halt the relocation of the Truro communication center to HRM as advocated by current RCMP plans. Casey can be reached at 902 397 1305.  

Page One Briefs - September 2020


Nova Scotia’s borders are not closed, but so everyone understands the process and what happens, the Shoreline Journal reached out to government officials. We received the following response from Marla MacInnes, communications officer. Anyone arriving in Nova Scotia from outside Atlantic Canada must self-isolate for 14 days to help prevent the spread of COVID-19. Provincial staff are present at the land border, airports, and ferries to advise travelers from outside Atlantic Canada of self-isolation requirements. As well, travelers from outside Atlantic Canada are expected to complete a tracking form, available at https://travel-declaration.novascotia.ca/en The Province is calling visitors entering Nova Scotia from outside Atlantic Canada to ensure visitors are self-isolating.  

The girders on the new Lower Debert Bridge are now in place. Work is on schedule for completion by October 31st, 2020. Closure of Hwy 4 has caused problems for local businesses with lack of thru-traffic. Some motorists, not familiar with the area, have had to retrace their driving as the road is closed between Exits #13 and #14 if they wanted to get back onto Hwy #2 to get to Bass River or other communities, before reaching Parrsboro.

Either as our CoVid-19 concerns subside or we get more comfortable with social distancing and wearing masks, the Bass River Baptist Church is resuming Sunday services, and a resumption of their monthly advertisement. Rev Larry Tirrell will lead the services at 11 am on Sundays. He can be reached a the church at 902-647-2567 or at home 902-843-5941.

Colchester County District RCMP is investigating a fatal motorcycle collision that occurred August 10th. At approximately 2:45 p.m., Colchester County District RCMP, EHS and Fire responded to a report of a motorcycle collision on Hwy. 311 where the motorcycle went off the road and struck a pole. The driver, a 61-year-old was pronounced deceased at the scene. An RCMP Collision Analyst attended, and the highway was closed for several hours.






Portapique Victims









in html

County of Colchester Emergency /

Grief Line / Help Line Numbers

Families of victims may contact Kelly Gratto-McCarthy at 902 843-4193 or 902 893-0677 for details on how to access the funeral support funding.

Provincial Mental Health Crisis Line is available 24/7 for anyone experiencing a mental health crisis or someone concerned about them. Call (toll-free) 1-888-429-8167.

Kids Help Phone is available 24/7. Call (toll-free) 1-800-668-6868

Morneau Shepell has opened its 24/7 bilingual crisis support line to help anyone in need of emotional support as a result of these tragic events. Call (toll free) 1-844-751-2133.

Association of Psychologists of Nova Scotia are offering services to enhance the physical and mental health of adults, children, adolescents, and families. Contact 902-422-9183.

HOSPICE Colchester East Hants is also available for grief support by calling 902-893-3265.

For any community member requiring assistance finding the support they need contact Jennifer or Kaitlyn at the Municipality by calling 902-897-3185


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  The Shoreline Journal

Maurice Rees, Publisher
The Shoreline Journal
Box 41, Bass River, NS B0M 1B0
PH: 902-647-2968; Cell: 902-890-9850