Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Nova Scotia Election: Tories, Liberals Make Infrastructure Pitches

Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Nova Scotia Election: Tories, Liberals Make Infrastructure Pitches

Article excerpt

Tories, Liberals make infrastructure pitches

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HALIFAX - Nova Scotia's Liberals and Progressive Conservatives both promised millions for highways and rural roads on the first full day of the provincial election campaign Monday, while the NDP promised millions more to improve access to health care.

Liberal Premier Stephen McNeil announced an extra $240 million over four years in infrastructure spending, while Tory Leader Jamie Baillie promised a $2-billion Rebuild Nova Scotia Fund, which relies on half the money coming from Ottawa.

Baillie said a Tory government would not go into deficit to come up with its $1-billion share of the fund.

He said the fund would be used to twin "Nova Scotia's most dangerous highways," build a new Victoria General hospital and bring high-speed Internet to rural areas.

"It is my expectation that it will create 10,000 jobs over the 10-year period that we renew our infrastructure," he said, flanked by workers at an insulation manufacturing plant in Dartmouth.

Baillie said his plan would twin more highway kilometres than the Liberal proposal, and includes other safety measures on untwinned sections of the highways.

The money would also go toward creating an environmental reclamation and community enhancement fund.

Baillie also suggested the newly amalgamated Nova Scotia Health Authority may come under scrutiny to make it operate more efficiently and save money, saying he would provide more details when the party releases its platform.

"There's no Nova Scotian out there that is telling that this new Nova Scotia Health Authority is delivering services either more efficiently or better," he said. "We've actually created more layers of administration, not less."

McNeil said the Liberals would spend $50 million a year on new schools and improvements to main streets, and an extra $10 million a year to improve the province's gravel roads. The gravel road commitment would add to the $10 million a year already pledged earlier this spring. …

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