It is truly amazing, it really is

I was talking to someone yesterday about the closure of mills and attempts to replace these mills with tourism. He was citing several examples of rural NB mayors touting tourism projects. I have followed this trend but I have a hard time believing it. Who really thinks that you can replace $80,000/year pulp and paper jobs and the $50,000/year forestry jobs that are tied to them with $10/hour tourism jobs? How can that even be credible?

Exhibit A:

Weymouth’s economic strategy unveiled
The Nova Scotia Business Journal

After the closure of the J.D. Irving Sawmill in Weymouth, several local business and community leaders formed Team Weymouth to restore Weymouth’s economic fortunes and take control of its future. The group saw a need for a focused strategy to preserve a future for the village.

Rod LeFort, a local business owner and member of Team Weymouth, said the strategy focuses on development of the Weymouth waterfront and downtown for tourism and recreation. Team Weymouth believes it can work in partnership with the recently created Annapolis Digby Economic Development Agency to help achieve its goals.

“Weymouth was once a shipbuilding community.” Moorhead said. “We will be building on historic pilings to reclaim a bit of the past.” The Municipality of Digby plans to build a new library in the village and Team Weymouth is working to coordinate it into a unified plan for a revitalized downtown. “The library is an important part of this puzzle,” said Team Weymouth member Don Ruggles. “It will be a tremendous asset to the community, and a new building in the right place will serve as a year-round anchor for a vibrant downtown.”

This is amazing to me. A mill closes and the thoughts turn to waterfront development. Did anyone calculate the jobs lost/jobs gained from this effort? Did anyone calculate the wages lost/wages gained?

It is a knee jerk reaction. Oh, let’s use our beautiful coast line to stimulate economic development. Some would say it is because there are no other options. I say that is crazy. There is ‘waterfront’ development in every waterfront community around the globe. Just because you have water or a downtown or some inkling towards tourism doesn’t mean that should anchor your economic development strategy.

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0 Responses to It is truly amazing, it really is

  1. Anonymous says:

    You`re right David – it`s not possible.

    The globalist system is really showing it`s weaknesses, isn`t it?

    Our families struggle along, to afford food, medicine and child-care while we surge ahead every year in productivity and output.

    All while major policing efforts go to combat a drug war long ago lost to our supposed comrades down south.

    All while we add to the pool of hopelessness by engaging in a similarly disastrous and fundamentally corrupt war on terror.

    Come on religious people – what would Jesus do here – keep spending good lives on petro/narco dollars?

    I think not.

  2. nbt says:

    Did anyone calculate the jobs lost/jobs gained from this effort? Did anyone calculate the wages lost/wages gained?

    But that would mean the community of Weymouth would have to pay another thirty or forty grand for 10 more pages on a research study which would tell them the same thing they always say, that government needs to fix the problem. No thanks.

  3. mikel says:

    Keep in mind- what else can you do? Tourism is at least something that can be a local focus, its not like a community can say, “OK, we’re going to get a michelin plant to help restore our fortunes”. That’s not possible, but tourism is. Of course if you are going to do tourism at least do it right, but then again the province steps in. Vegas was built on gambling, but nobody local gets to decide that, if there’s a casino its up to the province where to put it.

    Keep in mind one other thing-in your little story its a ‘local businessman’ who is talking about tourism-surprise surprise. YOu’ll notice that its NOT a recently unemployed guy from the Irving mill. If it was, you might see a much different quote, complete with many colourful expletives.

    But take a look at a place like Vermont. In that birthplace of democracy, it is up to communities to not only regulate property taxes, but also SALES taxes. In other words, IF Miramichi were hit hard, then they could raise/lower sales taxes as an attempt to foster some type of growth.

    But again, this ain’t there. Municipalities really have bugger all they can do to foster economic development, and again, ask Daniel Savoie about New Brunswick’s provincial government when it comes to economic development-they are the only level that wouldn’t be brought on board in local economic initiatives. And this was during McKenna’s reign.

  4. Anonymous says:

    And when I say that the rural regions live of — and in — the past, people still get upset… Please, no offense!

  5. Anonymous says:

    Tough Day for NB Economic Development

    While we were busy announcing 16-week minimum wage jobs for the tourism industry, Nova Scotia announced $290M in aerospace contracts from Boeing/Lockheed (note: NB has had aerospace on the economic development radar screen for decades) and, get this, Atlantic Windows in Port Elgin expanding to Amherst and creating 200 jobs with a NS Business Inc. incentive.

    The good news is, maybe we hit the bottom of the barrel. When the handful of rural manufacturers we have left are expanding to neighbouring NS rather than their own home town, perhaps it will wake up the armies of economic development staffs at the Enterprises, ACOA, BNB etc.

  6. nbt says:

    Two things here. First, the industrial park in Amherst is well established and has ample space to expand (if outside companies and investors chose to move there). As well, Sackville would be the next closest proximity (English speaking area) for Atlantic Windows to expand into, but they do not have enough space and are in need of a more modern and spacious, state of the art industrial park.

    Secondly, if you look at the ridings which were picked for these projects (not to mention the politicians involved), it is obvious that they are going to favour their own province with patronage. It was the same with Chretien’s HRDC loans when he was in power. More of them flowed to NB. Although our military is in dire need of an equpment overhaul so I’m not unhappy with these recent announcements.