From hurricane Fiona to the province recognizing Mi’kmaw as the first language, there was no shortage of news throughout Nova Scotia, and in Pictou County in particular.
We at the Advocate have taken a look back at all our 2022 editions and have chosen the top news stories of each month. All are listed below, as well as the first few paragraphs as they appeared in their respective editions.
Child daycare centres react to reduced fee
Published on Jan. 26
A transformation for child daycare in Nova Scotia has drawn concerns from child care centre operators.
They have responded to a reduction in child care fees announced by Premier Tim Houston under the Canada-wide Early Learning and Child Care Agreement.
Houston revealed the reduced fees on Jan. 14, while centre owners and directors were informed about the plan the previous day.
The Canada-wide Early Learning and Child Care agreement will provide $605 million over five years to turn the present early learning and child care sector into a province-wide, publicly funded system, with the option for every currently regulated and licensed child care provider to join the new protocol.
Solar energy users get reprieve from NSP rate hikes
Published on Feb. 9
Supporters of solar energy are gratified that the province has halted Nova Scotia Power’s (NSP) plan to hike solar power rates.
Premier Tim Houston announced in a press release on Feb. 2 that his government will impose regulations to prevent the utility’s proposed net metering charge and how it would impact small businesses and residential solar users in its most recent rate application.
NSP announced Jan. 27 it was applying to the Nova Scotia Utility and Review Board with a plan that included a net metering access charge of $8 per kilowatt per month.
Riverton resident reflects on past, current war on ancestral Ukraine
Published on March 9
War in Ukraine impacts Gerald Romsa deeply.
Born in Ukraine, Romsa, who has lived for some 20 years in Pictou County, is recalling another time after the Second World War when he accompanied his mother from Ukraine to Canada when Soviet dominance forced them to leave. The current Russian invasion is underscoring his affinity for his homeland and his disgust with Russian President Vladimir Putin.
Ukraine was a veritable doormat for military forces from Germany and the Soviet Union during the Second World War when both countries invaded neighbouring Poland at the war’s outset.
Legislation enshrines Mi’kmaw as Nova Scotia’s first language
Published on April 13
Enshrining Mi’kmaw as Nova Scotia’s first language is vital to its preservation and profile, says the chief of Pictou Landing First Nation (PLFN).
Chief Andrea Paul said Pictou Landing and Nova Scotia’s 12 other First Nation communities welcome the provincial legislation introduced by L’nu Affairs Minister Karla MacFarlane to uphold first language status and support work to preserve and promote it.
“I think it’s excellent,” she said. “I know it’s something the province has been working on for some time. We have to recognize how important our language is and what this government has asserted through this legislation. There are a lot of things happening and I think we’re moving in the right direction.”
Westray service drives emotions
Published on May 11
People felt a powerful sense of presence on Monday during the 30th anniversary service of the Westray mine disaster.
They gathered at the memorial park to commemorate the fatal May 9, 1992, coal mine explosion in Plymouth.
“Memories – without them I don’t know where we’d be,” said Debbie Martin, sister-in-law of one of the 26 miners who died in the explosion. “What we have is this park. It’s built for sad reasons, but it’s so beautiful.”
The service has taken place during some inclement weather but this time was graced with a clear, cool and relatively calm evening.
Pictou residents concerned about reform home function
Published on June 8
Residents along Elliott Street in Pictou are feeling uncertain about the clientele being treated at a criminal reform facility.
Natalie Lebrun has already shared her thoughts about the issue. She operates a child daycare service at her home at the end of the street.
“I’m concerned because of daycare,” she said. “We chose to be here for the safety and quiet.”
Lebrun and her family have lived at their present location for more than 10 years. She can recall what she finds now to be a non-descript looking facility.
Grohmann Knives noise complaints falling on deaf ears
Published on July 20
Debbie and Gary Nowlan’s entire bodies relax, like clockwork, at four o’clock in the afternoon.
That’s when the Grohmann Knives factory on Water Street in downtown Pictou, less than 200 metres from their home in the former Consulate building, shuts down for the day.
Until then, each Monday through Friday, from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. (minus a half-hour break for lunch), a steady, loud, industrial drone and the odd high-pitched screech emanate around town from the back of the iconic knife manufacturer’s shop.
With two-foot cement walls and the windows closed, the Nowlan’s home only allows in a dull hum.
Cottager opposes reasons for locking beach access
Published on Aug. 31
A Caribou Island cottager is questioning a dispute over accessing a popular beach and why it was not handled better.
Michelle MacCarthy, who lives in Bedford but spends time at a cottage on the harbour side of the island, said she and others were surprised by landowners for claiming title to the beach and a short path people like MacCarthy have used to access it.
Mark and Katherine O’Blenis own a small property near the path and faces the beach after purchasing it earlier this summer.
4-H’s 100th birthday wraps up Exhibition
Published on Sept. 14
A successful 2022 Pictou-North Colchester Exhibition concluded Sunday with a celebration of Pictou County 4-H’s centennial.
Jason Buchanan, president of the Pictou County 4-H Council, said he was pleased with the exhibition’s overall success and the response to the 4-H activities after two years without the exhibition due to the pandemic.
“I think it went really well,” he said. “We’re coming back from COVID, so I’m definitely encouraged about the future. It seems like it will come back again.”
He also saluted those involved with 4-H over the past 100 years.
Local farm industry continues recovery from recent storm
Published on Oct. 19
A maple sugar operation is back where it started, thanks to a recent storm’s devastating sweep through Pictou County and other parts of Nova Scotia.
Dalhousie Maple Farm Products is experiencing several weeks of fallen maple trees being harvested so that operators Peter MacLean and his son, Kevin MacLean, can determine when and if the operation can resume.
A tour of the operation on Dalhousie Mountain revealed wholesale tree damage around the camp and processing buildings.
Options shared to reduce impact of rising food prices
Published on Nov. 23
The cost of food is hitting businesses and consumers hard but a restaurant owner says there are solutions.
Camille Davidson, who owns and operates the Stone Soup restaurant in downtown Pictou, says buying local is one way around the general price hikes on food.
“The best way to keep food prices reasonable is to buy local,” she said. “As a country, we’re doing ourselves a disservice. We’re approaching food security all wrong. As a society, we have to look at what we can buy locally, how we can best support our local economy.”
She said buying locally has the potential to add more local growers and allow the present ones to expand.
Dog credited for saving residents from rural fire
Published on Dec. 21
A young dog has achieved hero status by alerting two adult residents to a fire at their home in Waterside.
The 18-month-old female German shepherd named Athena aroused Renee Kilburn-Greene and her husband, Liam Greene, in time for them to escape relatively unharmed.
They were displaced by the blaze along Shore Road that was reported at about 1 a.m. Dec. 12.
They had only recently married and bought the home with plans to start a family.