MP Lunney announces investment for small craft harbours on Vancouver Island

    FRENCH CREEK, B.C., July 16 /CNW/ - Small craft harbours at French Creek,
Ladysmith and Crofton on Vancouver Island will benefit from substantial
improvements thanks to an investment by the Government of Canada.
    James Lunney, Member of Parliament for Nanaimo-Alberni, on behalf of the
Honourable Loyola Hearn, Minister of Fisheries and Oceans, today announced the
Government of Canada will invest $2.2 million to improve the small craft
harbours at French Creek, Ladysmith and Crofton. In addition, a number of
minor projects will be carried out at other small craft harbours throughout
Vancouver Island.
    "Our small craft harbours are gateways to coastal fisheries, commerce and
recreational activities," said Dr. Lunney. "Improving these harbours will
benefit the local communities on Vancouver Island, as well as fish harvesters
and everyone who uses them."
    These projects are being undertaken by Fisheries and Oceans Canada's
Small Craft Harbours Program, in close collaboration with the harbour
authorities that manage and operate the facilities for transient and local
users. The close co-operation with clients allows the Government of Canada to
provide a system of harbours and facilities across Canada that support
commercial fish harvesters.
    The Government of Canada understands the importance of small craft
harbours to communities across the country. Since February 2006, the permanent
annual funding for the Small Craft Harbours Program has been increased by
$20 million, with a further $10 million commitment made in Budget 2008 for
repairs and environmental cleanup at recreational and non-core fishing
harbours to permit the transfer of these harbours to interested parties.
    Details about these projects may be found in the attached backgrounder.


                             ON VANCOUVER ISLAND

    Approximately $2.2 million will be invested by the Government of Canada
to improve several small craft harbours on Vancouver Island.
    These funds will be directed to specific project initiatives throughout
Vancouver Island, as outlined below:
    Two separate improvement projects will be undertaken at the French Creek
harbour. The first includes the installation of concrete floating wharves,
with shore access, to replace the current, deteriorating timber structure. The
second is the planning phase of a multi-year major capital project to improve
harbour access and provide increased space for moorage.
    A project at the Crofton harbour facility will increase the amount of
electric power available to harbour users and ensure that new receptacle
cabinets use power more efficiently through the utilization of metered
outlets. Remaining older electrical cabinets will also be replaced and housed
in corrosion-resistant enclosures, providing a continued safe supply of
electrical power.
    At Ladysmith, the construction phase of a multi-year major capital
project will be initiated to extend the existing detached off shore rockmound
breakwater shoreward along the south-east side of the harbour. This will
improve the wave climate and boat safety, while facilitating more efficient
use of the harbour.
    A number of minor works projects throughout Vancouver Island will also be
carried out to support safe harbour operations and help ensure facilities are
in good repair. Work may include replacement of worn, infested, or rotten
timbers in wharves or other marine structures, electrical system repairs and
repair of damage caused by storms. These preventative harbour maintenance
projects will help to avoid major repair costs, loss of fishing gear, damage
to fishing vessels, potential pollution and loss of services to users of the
facilities. The projects are generally carried out locally by harbour
authorities, contractors and suppliers located in the coastal communities.

For further information:

For further information: Backgrounder: Improvements to Small Craft
Harbours on Vancouver Island, Hannah R. Mahoney, Communications Advisor,
Fisheries and Oceans Canada, Pacific Region, (604) 666-7120

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