Cruise ships calling - Local

A second cruise ship berth at the port of Sydney is a priority for the Cape Breton Regional Municipality, however it remains a question of dollars and cents for the province.

Transportation Minister Geoff MacLellan said Wednesday he supports the municipalitys idea of building a second dock for cruise ships and other vessels, although he couldnt say when the provincial government would commit to the estimated $20.1-million project.

He added the province is facing tough times economically and that may dictate decision-making.

The level of interest is certainly high and clearly the municipality and the federal government have to be at the table as well, which every indication is that they are. It is something that is being considered but the reality is were in very tough financial times, MacLellan said.

He said difficult decisions have been made over the past year to ensure the government is reining in our spending.

Cabinet would have to review the funding options open to the government, likely over a multi-year period, the minister continued.

The cruise ship expansion is described as the CBRMs top tourism infrastructure project with its funding of approximately $6.7 million already in place.

Besides waiting for the Nova Scotia government, the port of Sydney is also awaiting word from the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agengy the federal governments main funding body in the region before it can move ahead with the project.

Seven of the eight Cape Breton MLAs contacted say they are prop....

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