24 MARCH 2014
Green Party Leader David Coon wants Natural Resources Minister Paul Robichaud to lift the gag order that is preventing his scientific and technical staff from speaking to the media. Coon wants biologists and foresters working for the Department of Natural Resources to be able to speak publicly about the government's new forest strategy, without fear of retribution.
"The staff at the Department of Natural Resources are public servants, and they have a duty to provide their expertise to people of this province for whom they work. This government is holding their expertise hostage. It's not right," said Green Party leader David Coon.
19 MARCH 2014
FREDERICTON – Green Party Leader David Coon is calling on Premier David Alward to publicly release the contract his government signed with JD Irving to guarantee wood supply from Crown land. Coon says that under the Crown Lands and Forests Act, the terms of JD Irving's Crown timber licenses already authorizes the company to harvest timber for twenty-five years and requires it to describe its plant investments and employment levels for a ten year period.
“New Brunswckers and First Nations have a right to know what David Alward has signed away to the Irvings," said Green Party David Coon. "I am concerned that this contract obligates New Brunswickers to compensate JD Irving if public efforts to re-build local forest economies, establish community forests, resolve aboriginal title, or increase conservation measures in the future diminishes the amount of wood the government has agreed to provide the company over the long-term," said Coon. "I worry this contract handcuffs the hands of future governments to the policies of the Alward government," said Coon.
12 MARCH 2014
The decision of the Alward government to permit 21% more clearcutting on Crown land this year will be ruinous for both rural communities and wildlife, according to Green Party Leader David Coon. "This corporate forest plan sells rural New Brunswick and our environment down the river. It runs roughshod over the values and aspirations that New Brunswickers hold dear," said Coon.
The Green Party wants to create the conditions for an innovative and diverse forest industry that suits our forest and sustains our rural communities, but Coon says the Alward plan will make that impossible.
Finance Minister Keeps the Lid Screwed Down on Public Information - Green Party Leader Headed to Court
11 MARCH 2014
Green Party leader David Coon is off to court in his quest to throw open the windows on the work of the Alward government. Coon filed a request on the Right to Information Act to Finance Minister Blaine Higgs on February 13, 2013 for copies of the contracts with the consultants his Department had commissioned to examine the province's regime for shale gas royalties, as well as for copies of the consultants' reports. The Finance Minister refused, so the Green Party leader filed a complaint with the Access to Information Commissioner.
After a 10 month investigation the Access to Information Commissioner, Anne Bertrand submitted a 15 page report to Coon and Higgs on February 7, 2014. In her report, Madame Bertrand recommended that the Minister release the four consultants' contracts to Coon. In a letter to the Green Party leader dated February 24, Finance Minister Blaine Higgs informed Coon that he does not accept Commissioner Bertrand's recommendation.
05 MARCH 2014
Note: The Kent North Nomination Meeting Has Been Postponed
St. Charles Local Service District Chairman Allan Marsh today announced that he will seek the Green Party nomination for the Constituency of Kent North in the September 22 provincial election. Marsh, a successful businessman and prominent anti-shale activist in Kent County, says he is seeking election because there is an “urgent need to give priority to developing clean, sustainable energy sources instead of shale gas, end special tax breaks for high income earners, and start managing forests in the interests of all New Brunswickers.”
25 FEBRUARY 2014
Fredericton, N.B.- Stephanie Coburn was selected as the Green Party’s candidate for the Sussex-Fundy-St. Martins riding on Feb. 19, 2014. Green Party Leader David Coon was the special guest.
"I was never really interested in politics until I realized that partisanship and power had overtaken vision and good decision-making. The Green Party is the only party that realizes we must live within the constraints of the natural environment, and that we can’t continue to pollute and consume without putting all living beings at risk," said Coburn.
12 FEBRUARY 2014
Green Party leader David Coon is concerned that Premier David Alward's new forest plan will sacrifice water, wildlife and rural communities on the altar of money and power. "There is no way more wood can be clearcut from Crown land without running roughshod over the values and aspirations New Brunswickers hold dear," said Coon. "The Green Party wants to create the conditions to build an innovative and diverse forest industry that suits our forest and sustains our rural communities, but I fear the Alward plan will make that impossible," said Coon.
The Green Party leader was commenting on the imminent release of a new forest plan for Crown lands. The Alward government had released a new forest plan two years ago, but the Premier quietly shelved it in the face of opposition from the large forest companies. Natural Resources Minister Bruce Northrup, who had consulted widely on the plan, was shuffled off to the Department of Public Safety.
10 FEBRUARY 2014
Madeleine Berrevoets has announced that she will seek the Green Party nomination in the riding of Fredericton North. She is the coordinator of the St. Mary's Community garden and works as an automotive technician's apprentice.
Ms. Berrevoets lives in Devon on Fredericton's northside with her daughter Audrey.
6 FEBRUARY 2014
New Brunswick Green Party Leader David Coon will attend a rally at VIA's Moncton train station and then board the Ocean on Sunday March 2nd at 3:30 pm to join federal Green Party MP and Deputy Leader, Bruce Hyer on his whistlestop tour to save passenger rail service in the Maritimes.
"Rail service is the future of public transit in the Maritimes, but trains need tracks to run on, and if CN abandons the track between Miramichi and Bathurst, it will be impossible to build a convenient rail transit service between our cities and towns," said New Brunswick Green Party Leader David Coon.
04 FEBRUARY 2014
Instead of giving New Brunswick families a hand-up with their heating bills by expanding grants for upgrading insulation and heating systems, Green Party Leader David Coon says this year's provincial budget is putting the money into corporate hand-outs instead.
"The decision to cut $3 million from Efficiency New Brunswick's budget for home conservation grants, and increase Invest NB's budget for corporate hand-outs by the same amount gives us a good idea where this government's priorities lie," said Green Party Leader David Coon. "At a time when we are all facing eye-popping heating bills, the Alward government is taking money away from us that we could use to cut our heating costs, and giving it away to profitable corporations. It doesn't make any sense," said Coon.