Media Releases

Former Salmon River School Property - Public Meeting

The Municipality of Colchester will be holding public meetings to discuss community survey results and potential development concepts relating to the former Salmon River School property.
Please join us online on Tuesday, May 10, 6:30pm-8pm, or in-person on Wednesday, May 18, 6:30pm-8pm at the Harmony Heights Elementary School (masks required within school).

Community Meetings:

Virtual/Online: Tuesday, May 10, 6:30pm-8pm
Email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to register and receive Zoom meeting link

In-Person: Wednesday, May 18, 6:30pm-8pm
Harmony Heights Elementary School, 25 Cedar Drive, Salmon River (masks required within school)

Unable to attend but would like to know more?
Contact Devin Trefry by calling 902-897-3182 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

 Salmon River Elementary School Property Survey Results (edited January 4, 2022)

Salmon River Elementary School Property Survey Summary (edited January 4, 2022)

Colchester holds the line on tax rates yet again

Colchester County Council successfully approved its 2022/23 operating budget last evening with no increases to the residential or commercial tax rates. This is the fourth year of the last five that the Municipality has been able to hold the line on its rates, with just a half cent increase in 2019.

“The cost of living has been rising at an alarming rate. Council is aware of the financial pressure this has been putting on our residents. Although our Municipality is facing similar rising costs, we were determined to do our best to avoid an increase in our tax rates. I am pleased to announce that we achieved just that,” said Christine Blair, Mayor of the Municipality of Colchester.

The Municipality prides itself on delivering a high level of service to residents while maintaining one of the lowest municipal tax rates in the province. Calculated spending, investment in contingency reserve funds, and long-term forecasting have all contributed to the Municipality’s stable financial position.

In addition to careful spending, this year’s $35 Million budget continues to invest in critical infrastructure and economic development initiatives in the County including rural broadband internet, Debert Business Park and Airport, Fundy Discovery Site, the Cliffs of Fundy UNESCO Global Geopark and other partnerships such as the Truro Colchester Partnership for Economic Prosperity (TCPEP) and the Rath Eastlink Community Centre.

Funding to support the repaving of deteriorating, Provincially-owned J-class roads (subdivision roads built prior to 1995) in the county was not included in this year’s budget. Despite generating significant debate, most of Council were opposed to paying to help fix roads not owned by the Municipality, holding firm to the point that roads owned by the Province should be the sole responsibility of the Province.

With an emissions target of net zero by 2050, the Municipality will continue to lead environmental change by investing in its recently adopted Carbon-Free Colchester Plan including initiatives such as Cozy Colchester and Solar Colchester that offer residents interest-free loan programs to increase home energy efficiency.

Numerous community organizations will also receive support through the County’s extensive not-for-profit grant programs. “It is rewarding to support the many community groups providing such important services and facilities across our Municipality. This support is especially needed as organizations aim to bounce back from the challenges of the past two years,” remarked Mayor Blair.

Each year the County’s operating budget is set within a context of competing needs, requests, opportunities, and anticipated revenues. Some costs and revenue streams are not within the Municipality’s control. Over 44% of taxes collected by the Municipality are transferred to the Provincial Government for services such as schools, housing, libraries, assessment services, corrections, and policing.

Policing costs to the Municipality alone went up 11.04% contributing to the total 5.4% increase in required mandatory payments to the Province, which totaled $15.68 Million. Such rising costs made the budgeting process even more demanding this year.

Colchester County Council remains optimistic about the municipality’s future with much to look forward to in the year ahead.

Community space to open during Mass Casualty Commission Hearings

A community space is being opened in Debert during the Mass Casualty Commission Public Hearings. The Debert Fire Hall will open its doors to offer members of the community a place to go and connect with others in an informal and welcoming environment. Tea and coffee will be available. A community navigator will also be onsite to offer support and resources for those who need it.

Dates and Times:

Wednesday, March 30 (10 -4)

Thursday, March 31 (10 -4)

Friday, April 1 (10 – 12)

Address:
Debert Fire Hall
34 Carter Road,
Debert, NS, B0M 1G0

 

French River Watershed Designated as Protected Water Area

Provincial Environment Minister Tim Halman has designated the French River Watershed as a Protected Water Area. As a result, the watershed that gives people of Tatamagouche their drinking water is now protected provincially, further safeguarding access to quality water for area residents.

The application process for the Protected Water Area designation was initiated by the Municipality of Colchester in 2018. Extensive public consultation, including a public survey and community meetings, supported the application and informed the regulations implemented to protect the watershed area.

“It was clear from the public consultation process that most area residents were in favour of advancing the application for the Protected Water Area designation,” said Christine Blair, Mayor of the Municipality of Colchester. “Clean water is one of the most fundamental needs of a community. It is essential to human health, a healthy environment, and a sustainable economy. We are pleased to be able to protect this valuable resource for generations both now and into the future.”

The Protected Water Area regulations protect drinking water supplies by giving municipalities the authority to manage watersheds, including restricting or prohibiting activities that may impact water quality or quantity. Now that the watershed is designated as a Protected Water Area the Tatamagouche Water Utility, owned and operated by the Municipality, is responsible for protecting the area and enforcing the regulations.

“The watershed provides water for the village of Tatamagouche. It’s important that we maintain the pristine water that the village is fortunate enough to have. I am pleased the government has taken into consideration the work that was done to protect the watershed and has designated it as a Protected Water Area. Kudos need to go to the staff of the Municipality for the work that went into getting here and to the community for standing up to be heard. I am over the moon,” said Michael Gregory, Councillor, Municipality of Colchester and Chair of the Tatamagouche Source Water Protection Committee.

More information on the Protected Water Area regulations.

Colchester Holds the Line on Tax Rates

After weathering the financial challenges of 2020, Colchester County Council successfully approved its 2021/22 budget last evening with no increases to the residential or commercial tax rates.  This was the third year of the last four that the Municipality was able to hold the line on its rates, with just a half cent increase in 2019. 

“We know this past year has been challenging financially for many of our residents and businesses. Although our Municipality continues to face rising costs that are beyond our control, such as education, policing, libraries, and corrections, Council was determined to do its best to avoid an increase in our tax rates. We are pleased to say that we were successful in achieving that,” said Christine Blair, Mayor of the Municipality of Colchester.

The Municipality prides itself on delivering a high level of service to residents while continuing to maintain one of the lowest municipal tax rates in the province. Long-term forecasting, investment in contingency reserve funds, and calculated spending have all contributed to the Municipality’s stable financial position.

In addition to careful spending, this year’s $32.9 Million budget continues to invest in critical infrastructure and economic development initiatives that will aid in post-pandemic recovery in the County including rural broadband internet, Debert Business Park and Airport, Fundy Discovery Site, and the Cliffs of Fundy UNESCO Global Geopark.  

The Municipality is leading environmental change by investing in Carbon-Free Colchester initiatives, and numerous community organizations also will receive support through the County’s extensive not-for-profit grant programs.


“We have a variety of hardworking community groups that provide important services across our Municipality. Many have struggled this past year with an inability to fundraise due to public health restrictions. Council is pleased to be able to support these organizations, especially during such challenging times,” remarked Mayor Blair.

Each year the County’s operating budget is set within a context of competing needs, requests, opportunities, and anticipated revenues. Some costs and revenue streams are not within the Municipality’s control. Nearly 46% of taxes collected by the Municipality are transferred to the Provincial Government for services such as schools, housing, libraries, assessment services, corrections, and policing.  This year the County had to accommodate another 3% increase totalling $438,539 in its required mandatory payments to the Province, bringing the total transfer to $14.9 Million.  Such rising costs have made the budgeting process more and more demanding with each given year.

Recognizing the uncertainty of the pandemic and what each day may bring, Colchester County Council remains committed to fiscal stewardship and is optimistic that in partnership with its residents and businesses they will see brighter days ahead.

Colchester Honours and Remembers Those Lost During April 2020 Tragedy

April 15, 2021

As the anniversary of the tragic events of April 18 & 19, 2020 approaches, the Municipality of Colchester prepares to honor and remember the 22 lives and unborn child that were so senselessly taken one-year ago.

In remembrance, the Municipality will be lowering flags at its offices and facilities to half-mast and lighting the Municipal Office at 1 Church Street, Truro in blue. Other organizations and community members are encouraged to join in similar expressions of observance that may include hanging a flag in a window or tying Nova Scotia tartan to a mailbox.

In addition to deeply impacting local communities and the province it has been apparent by the outpouring of love and support received from around the country, and the world, that this tragedy has greatly affected many.

The Municipality of Colchester would like to thank all who have offered condolences, kind gestures, expressions of remembrance, and donations to support the community and victims’ families. All have been a light that has helped restore and lift spirits during a very dark and difficult time.

“Our hearts and thoughts are with all who continue to grieve and heal. We hope that comfort and solace may be found in those around us both now and in the days ahead,” said Christine Blair, Mayor of Colchester County.

 

Media Contact:

Devin Trefry
Mayor and CAO’s Office
Cell: 902-956-3239
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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