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Premier Houston visits storm-impacted areas of Cumberland

Nova Scotia Premier Tim Houston, Natural Resources and Renewables Minister and Cumberland South MLA Tory Rushton and Cumberland County Mayor Murray Scott visited community members and a business in Wentworth to thank them for their efforts following post-tropical storm Fiona.

Nova Scotia Premier Tim Houston was in Cumberland County on Wednesday to meet with Mayor Murray Scott and tour areas still feeling the effects of post-tropical storm Fiona that tore through the area Sept. 23 and 24 and left thousands without power.

 The premier was joined on the tour by Natural Resources and Renewables Minister and Cumberland South MLA Tory Rushton, visiting the Municipality of Cumberland’s emergency shelter at the Wallace Fire Department. While in Wallace, the premier, Rushton, District 4 Coun. Kathy Redmond, who represents the area on municipal council,  and the mayor met with Wallace’s fire chief and members of the fire department.

“It was an opportunity for the premier to thank the fire department for all its work assisting people impacted by the storm and it gave him an opportunity to get out around the county to talk to business people,” Mayor Scott said. “I hope it gave him a better understanding of what people are going through.”

The visit was one of two in Cumberland County on Wednesday as Nova Scotia Power’s chief operating officer David Pickles visited the area in the afternoon.

The premier’s visit included an opportunity to discuss expanding the recently announced generator program to include other necessary items, such as installing showers at fire halls that serve as comfort centres during prolonged power outages.

Scott said it’s a very frustrating time for many Cumberland County residents, especially those who have been without power for two weeks.

He thanked the premier for taking the time to come to the area to see for himself the damage that was caused by a storm that will probably go down as the costliest in Nova Scotia’s history.

“Everyone’s shoulder is to the wheel trying to fix everything and we really appreciate it as a municipality,” the mayor said. “We want to thank the premier for coming to Cumberland County to see firsthand that damage and what we’re facing here.”

The premier’s visit came as Nova Scotia declared a state of emergency for parts of the province, including Cumberland County. It also came as the province issued a call for additional military personnel to help with the cleanup.

The municipality announced Thursday its emergency shelter and comfort centre in Wallace has been discontinued. The mayor thanked the Wallace fire department, the Red Cross, municipal staff and volunteers for their assistance as well as fire departments and community groups across the county since the storm.