The Opposition Liberal party is deeply concerned about plans by the Conservative government to cut back on snowplowing on rural roads.
Several MLAs have received correspondence from Department of Transportation employees warning of the reduced plowing services.
The Transportation officials warn that plowing services could be affected this winter. They say a strike by plow operators could mean plows wouldn’t touch rural roads during a snowstorm. However, it goes on to say this is something the Higgs government is considering doing anyway as a cost-cutting measure.
“This is a rural province and snow plowing services are essential during New Brunswick’s harsh winter months. Not plowing our roads in rural areas during a storm is completely unacceptable,” said Francine Landry, critic for Transportation and Infrastructure.
“It’s a matter of public safety. People could be stranded for days. Not only does it put residents at risk of being trapped in their homes, it could prevent emergency vehicles from getting to people who need help,” added the MLA for Madawaska Les-Lacs-Edmundston.
The Liberal party is very worried about how the Conservative government is making life more difficult for rural New Brunswick.
“They’re cutting services, and the first services to go are in rural New Brunswick,” said Landry. “They just tabled a capital budget that sees significant cuts for the maintenance of rural roads and highways. Now it appears they don’t want to plow these roads either. The Liberal party will stand up for people in all corners of the province and against this assault on rural New Brunswick.”